The difference in the rebuilding of a car and a restoration is simple. A rebuilt car has new parts. A car that has been restored contains the authentic parts of that model and year right down to the hub caps. It is as it was when it was brand new, totally restored to its original condition.
"Pimping" a car is in vogue today, yet it doesn't take us back in time like a restored car does. Owners who rebuild their cars have a very similar pride in their vehicle, but it is not seen as a work of art like restored vintage cars are.
The restoration process of any car encompasses not only the outer body of the vehicle that everyone can see, it also includes the mechanical components. Yes, in order for a car to be considered vintage, and restored, even the parts themselves must be the same year as the model vehicle, and these parts must be restored to their original condition, at least as much as is humanly possible.
This is why restoring a vintage car is considered an art form. It can take years to properly restore a classic car. Restoration of a classic car can include disassembling the whole car to clean and even repair the original parts. Then the entire car must be reassembled. All parts, inside and out, of the classic car must be restored for the car to maintain its value as a vintage automobile.
In many of these old cars the entire engine has been cleaned, repaired and put back together.
If you are thinking about restoring a car there are some things you should know. It will take a long time to restore the car, and it can be very expensive. You should have some mechanical know how and some knowledge of body work as well.
Restoring a car will also include the interior of the vehicle. If at all possible it is best to try to repair the car's upholstery. It will be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to find upholstery for a 1957 Bel Air. If you can't repair the upholstery you may have to do a little research and find out what colors and materials were used in the original model. You will want to get as close to the original upholstery in every way.
You will also have to investigate the paint colors of the cars from that year. You can find paint and vintage car parts at a few places, so it is not impossible. It is, however, very important that you do your homework and choose the correct colors. If you don't, it could bring the value of your finished production down by a small fortune.
If your car is repaired with new parts, but not originals, it will not be considered a restored classic car. A restored classic can have a high price tag connected to it. Collectors of classic vehicles pay thousands of dollars for these cars. Some rare models of cars have even sold for millions.
Another thing you will need to restore your car is time and patience. Having a place to be able to work on the car is a good idea too, you don't want this old guy exposed to the elements while your trying to restore it. Oh, yeah, you will also need the money to buy the parts and the materials that you will need. So, you better love this car, or you won't have the determination to finish this project.
Does it make you crazy to see old cars laying in junk yards? If so you may be the kind of person who has what it takes to restore an old vehicle into a beautiful, classic car. You can give one of these old timers a new lease on life. If completed over a period of time, the financial outlay won't be too hard on your wallet.
If money is not the problem, but mechanical knowledge or time are, you can find vintage car restorers and pay them to do it for you. It will be much more expensive, but they can do it in less time than you could. You may feel the price is well worth the results.
If you decide to restore the car yourself, you may have found a new way to make money. Once you have completed the work on your own classic car, you will be able to charge people for your services by restoring all or part of their classic vehicle. It is more than a hobby, it is a labor of love, and once you've done it you may not want to give up working on cars. Many people have found a new line of work for themselves after they have restored their own cars.
You may finish and find a new model car to love. You can sell your restored classic car to purchase another model that needs work. There is nothing like looking at a piece of junk and turning it into the most beautiful car driving down the street. Restoring a classic car is a labor of love, but like anything worth having, it is well worth the effort.