The picture above shows the dash board of Maserati 3500 GTI being retrimmed at CCCR, the same car also had a new roof lining made and fitted, both of these tasks take extraordinary skill and patience to get perfect in fit and finish. Not only is the right materiel required but the number of stitches per inch, the stitch tension and the thread width are all critical to making just the seams of the roof lining look as Maserati intended! And the dash board is beautiful with all the different surfaces of paint chrome, glass, vinyl, and various plastics working together to inform and please the eye all at once, but each of those surfaces must be perfect the painted part of the dash must have no runs dirt inclusions or dull finish, the vinyl must taught around all radiuses, ripple free with no abrasions and off course using the correct glue product, the chrome trims polished highly before refitting to make sure all tarnish is removed and then fitted beautifully flush onto the vinyl with tiny 5mm nuts requiring infant size hands to access them!

Above is one of the highly experienced CCCR team rebuilding a very poor condition XK150 body, again a task requiring a highly skilled operative! We are removing corrosion and making the new panels on site out of flat sheets of steel of various thicknesses. Does not sound too technical really....  Until you realize that we had sheets of steel delivered to us recently but they were rejected because they were 0.1 mm too thin! Also if the body of the car is not supported correctly whilst being worked on it can twist out of shape to the point where the doors will not shut. The thin car body panels are best welded with oxy Acetylene gas torch to help prevent panel distortion, however if the flame is unbalanced in the mix ratio of oxygen to Acetylene you will end up with a poor weld with impurities contained within the metal.

These are just a few examples of what is faced when restoring a car to the very highest of standards and at every stage of a restoration there are technicalities that challenge us from achieving a perfect job, and with the immortal words of my first boss David Perkin (One of the most highly skilled vehicle body repairers I have ever known!) still ringing in my ears of "Any one can do an average job Jon, but not everyone can do it perfectly" spurs me and the CCCR team on to over come issues, in their own way the team at CCCR are artisans refining their craft, and there is nothing more satisfying than hearing a customer coming into our workshops and remarking how beautiful the cars look, just as if they had entered a art gallery.

Jonathan Wills

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