I did some e-Bay scrounging over the winter. Now that the weather has improved I installed some of my finds. I also repainted some of the chrome
|The “nose” trim on the front of the hood and just above the grill used to be painted on the inset portions. Over the years this has all word away. I matched the paint as best I could based on the surviving painted trim on the dash. Then I left it on the shelf because I was chicken. But the worst that could happen is that I have to strip the paint back off. So I pulled the chrome off the car and cleaned it carefully. These parts should probably be re-chromed. They are not badly pitted but there are pits around the edges and the rest of the chrome is thin and scratched. But I have not found a good plating shop (any suggestions?) so I will wait. You can see the condition in this close-up.|
|Hanging in my living room is this “bullet-nose” off a 1950 Studebaker. It is in rough shape but it still has “STUDEBAKER” embossed across the top. I figured that would be a good piece to practice on. My plan was to thin the paint way out and use a small pointed stick and a fine brush to “push” the paint around the chrome. It worked pretty well.|
|I changed the procedure a little on the actual parts. Since the edges were mostly straight lines I tried to use masking tape to mask off the edges. It worked but did not really save me much effort. The area to paint is a bit large so it was hard to get the paint on without brush marks or blobs. Also when I thinned the paint enough to flow well it also tended to want to run. And you can’t get both sides of these angled parts level at once. So I just kept them moving until the paint set.|
|The final result was OK. The edges were not as even as I would have liked. I was able to carefully clean this up with a razor blade but it is still not perfect. If only I was not so clumsy with a brush! I think the end result looks pretty nice.|
|The fixture is in great shape. The bulb is even good. No power though. One of the switches is probably bad.|
Here are the two side by side. Guess which one is the new light?
The new one snapped right in place. I need to figure out a way to clean the headliner. Years of cigarette smoke and coal dust created that lovely patina you see.
|The car’s radio is not right for the car and is in the way. I pulled it out to get under the dash and never put it back (more on that here). The controls were left in since I had nothing better to put in there.|
|My car left South Bend without a radio so I really wanted the correct “radio delete plate” to cover the hole. e-Bay to the rescue! I snagged a radio delete plate in reasonable shape. It is the wrong color and had a dent. Some careful hammer work flattened it out.|
|But it was still a metallic bronze color instead of the semi-gloss black that it should have been. I masked it as best I could. Electrical tape stuck to the thin edges better than paper tape.|
|I painted it with semi-gloss spray paint. The factory black is more grey (or is now after 66 years) but this is what I had. The final finish was not very even but rubbing compound and polishing made it look much better. This is right after the masking came off.|
|Radio controls out, delete plate in! Under the camera flash the color difference is painfully obvious. But I can live with it.|