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My Tuppaware Porsche 356. It's a bit of a time-warp. Whilst it was built back in the 1980's it has never actually been c...
My Tuppaware Porsche 356. It's a bit of a time-warp. Whilst it was built back in the 1980's it has never actually been completed. It was built by a company called Auto Styling, who were based in Perth but have long since closed down. I'm the third owner and hopefully it will get to see the road at some point.

There's a heap of work that's been done already, but there's also a heap of work that still needs to be completed. There's also a heap of work that I would like to re-do as parts availability in the 1980's left a bit to be desired and so there have been lot's of creative solutions employed.

My plans are to get the car assembled and roadworthy and then use it for a while to give it a bit of a shakedown. Then once I am happy I'll strip it all down again and paint it.

Ironically the molds for this car still exist and are owned by a fella in Adelaide who also has a similar looking speedster. Small world eh.
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  • Mick posted a new blog post in Speedster
    Bosch Symmetrical Headlight Lense
    IMG_7571 Managed to trade for an second early style Bosch symmetrical headlight lense. I already had one of these but was missing it's partner.Now I have two. :)I'll swap the slightly later hella ones I have on there now out for these period correct ones....
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  • Spent some time today chipping away at fitting the windscreen. The height of the screen frame needed to be cut down as it was still too high, so I carefully measured everything out and trimmed some more off of it. I also re-profiled the sides to fit the supports.

    With the screen surround at the right height I could now have a go at fitting everything together and seeing how it fitted on to the car. So with the rubbers trimmed down and fitted in to the frame, along with the screen I...
    Spent some time today chipping away at fitting the windscreen. The height of the screen frame needed to be cut down as it was still too high, so I carefully measured everything out and trimmed some more off of it. I also re-profiled the sides to fit the supports.

    With the screen surround at the right height I could now have a go at fitting everything together and seeing how it fitted on to the car. So with the rubbers trimmed down and fitted in to the frame, along with the screen I attempted to fit it.

    The correct way to fit the screen is to bolt the uprights to the frame and then drop the entire completed assembly into the mounting holes on the cowl. My attempt was sightly different as the posts were already mounted to the car as I have yet to establish the correct location for the post to frame mounting holes.

    As with all Speedster windshield frame installations, everything needs to be fitted / trimmed / whittled to suit the car as they are all different. This is especially true on my car. So the plan was to check the fit and then make any final adjustments before marking out the mounting holes.

    The installation was okay, I noted that the frame still needed some adjustments here and there, and the profile, whilst 110% better then before, could still do with lowering in the centre. It needs to come down about an inch, which could probably be done with the tensioner. I managed to press it down by hand and get it to sit reasonably good. However, by far the worst part was that there was rather a large gap below the screen at the centre.

    The gap, it seems, is due to the angle of the support posts, they appear to be raked too far backwards, which is something that has been on my mind since installing them. I loosened the posts off and allowed the screen to tilt forwards a little and the gap at the bottom closed up almost completely.

    So what to do?

    I compared the posts with the set that came with the car. These are definitely a little more 'upright', although considerably longer in length. The cowl itself is not the issue as it is flat, as it should be. It is possible of course that it is partially due to the glass, I'm not sure what dimensions a speedster screen should be, but a longer glass would also reduce the issue. The profile of the screen surround also affects the screen angle a little too, as rotating the posts changes their inclination and the surround directly influences the orientation of the posts.

    There's not too many options available to me. There's no adjustment as such, everything kind of bolts down until it is tight against the cowl. There's a little adjustment on the centre support rod, which is (I am led to believe) a common way to pull the centre of the screen surround down, but no real way to tilt the screen forwards.

    I think I need to re-profile the bottom of the upright supports to bring the top of the screen forwards and twist the surround a little to align it better. This seems to be the only option available to me. Fortunately I have a spare set of screen support posts, albeit they are slightly different. I'm not even really sure they are 'Porsche' parts, there's every likelihood that they are from something like an MG.

    I guess before I do that I need to spend some time looking at photos of other cars and see if I can't figure it out.

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  • Speedster uploaded 6 photos in the album Interior.
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  • Speedster uploaded 2 photos in the album Windscreen
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  • Apart from finishing mounting the screen and hood, the next job is to tackle some of the body issues. Most of the little jobs that need undertaking require holes to be glassed up, so it looks like I need to hone my fibreglassing skills. I've got door handle holes to be patched so that I can fit the correct handles, a dash gauge hole to be filled so that I can fit the correct gauges, holes that the hinges sit in that need to be repaired so that I can fit the correct hinges and a bunch of...
    Apart from finishing mounting the screen and hood, the next job is to tackle some of the body issues. Most of the little jobs that need undertaking require holes to be glassed up, so it looks like I need to hone my fibreglassing skills. I've got door handle holes to be patched so that I can fit the correct handles, a dash gauge hole to be filled so that I can fit the correct gauges, holes that the hinges sit in that need to be repaired so that I can fit the correct hinges and a bunch of shoddyness to address.

    I've been swatting up on glassing techniques and have received some good pointers from the FB community. I'll do a bit more reading too before I get stuck in but starting to get my head around what's required.

    The absolute worst part is the doors, they have the wrong door pulls, wrong outer handles, wrong hinges and the body has been hacked to try and get everything to line up, which has resulted in some MAJOR SHODDYNESS. But nothing that cannot be fixed with a little time and patience.

    The door gaps are probably the worst part of the body, they are shocking. First step is to get the doors hung correctly with the proper hinges and then repair the A Pillar where it has been hacked. Once this has been sorted out I can fix up the external and internal door handles. I'll leave the cosmetic aspects such as door gaps until I attack the rest of the body.

    For me the doors are one of those components that need to look right, they are another clear giveaway that the car is a replica. A lot of this has to do with the style of the door capping and handle type / location, small details but it's always the small details that make or break a project.

    The door cappings that were supplied with the car are made from wood. They are super heavy and not really the right shape or size. They were obviously made by the utilising skills that the past owner had, which is fine, they would have looked okay trimmed but I'm not happy with them myself. The original cappings were made from steel, and whilst this is probably outside of the skillset of most, it's something that I should be able to make up as they look relatively simple. They are also necessary for fitting the side curtains, so something that will likely be tackled soon rather than later.
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  •   Speedster commented on this post about 3 months ago
    Been chipping away doing a few jobs today. Decided to mount up the lights but having trouble finding the correct measurements for the rear number plate and light.

    The beehive lights were already located as the body is molded at that location to accept them, however the measurements that I have for the number plate location put it too high up. All of the photos that I look at have the number plate directly in-between the lights.

    It's almost like the beehives lights are mounted in the wrong...
    Been chipping away doing a few jobs today. Decided to mount up the lights but having trouble finding the correct measurements for the rear number plate and light.

    The beehive lights were already located as the body is molded at that location to accept them, however the measurements that I have for the number plate location put it too high up. All of the photos that I look at have the number plate directly in-between the lights.

    It's almost like the beehives lights are mounted in the wrong location, which there is little I can do about short of re-glassing them. This may be on the cards down the track, but not something I want / need to do right now.

    Also spent some time going through the lenses I had to find a matching pair. I have a few symmetrical lenses, which are correct for the year but only one of the correct style Bosch scripted lenses so had to make do with some Hellas instead. I'll try and trade to get another Bosch lense.
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    • Managed to get some dimensions from another member of the Aussie Porsche Replicas FB page (Thanks Ian).

      The mounting holes are 175mm down from theManaged to get some dimensions from another member of the Aussie Porsche Replicas FB page (Thanks Ian).

      The mounting holes are 175mm down from the decklid shut line. Also confirmed that the number plate should be level with the lights. Looks heaps better now.
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  • Mick posted a new blog post in Speedster
    Umbrella Handbrake
    6292134_large One thing that I dislike about the VW based speedster kits is that they all have the handbrake in-between the seats, rather than under the dashboard like the originals, which is an obvious giveaway on its provenance. So this has always been on m...
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  • One thing that I dislike about the VW based speedster kits is that they all have the handbrake in-between the seats, rather than under the dashboard, like the originals. So this has always been on my list of things to change with my kit.

    Think I've worked out an easy-ish way to make an under-dash umbrella style handbrake using a bay window bus handbrake. I've got one coming in the post so will have a bit of a play when it arrives.

    The mechanisms are very similar in that you turn the handle...
    One thing that I dislike about the VW based speedster kits is that they all have the handbrake in-between the seats, rather than under the dashboard, like the originals. So this has always been on my list of things to change with my kit.

    Think I've worked out an easy-ish way to make an under-dash umbrella style handbrake using a bay window bus handbrake. I've got one coming in the post so will have a bit of a play when it arrives.

    The mechanisms are very similar in that you turn the handle to release it. The Speedster setup uses a lever to transfer the action across to the cable which protrudes from the front of the chassis. I've seen others replicate this but it requires some jiggery-pokery to get it all to work, plus you need to have longer cables made up.

    My idea is simply to use a cable directly on the end of the bay handrake mechanism that then runs to the front of the chassis. The inner cable can then continue inside and join up to the two existing cables using a block similar to the original Porsche part (item 27 in the exploded view).

    Of course I'm pretty sure that its not going to be as simple as it sounds, as there's going to be some form of force multiplier required (lever-arm), along with making sure that the cable does not interfere with the gear shift mechanism or anything else in the tunnel, but I think the idea can be made to work.
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  • Speedster has been updated
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  • Speedster uploaded 19 photos in the album Windscreen
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  • Received a cool present from Pat Brown the other day, he made up a length of tube to fit my flip top filler cap. The cap has a screw thread mounting that he matched up. Now all I need to do is fit it to the fuel tank and cut a hole in the bonnet.

    Fitting the unit into the tank will first require me to make up a drip shield so that any rain that makes it inside the hood area is caught and directed down beneath the car. I'm currently on the lookout for a suitable steel pressing that I can adapt.
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  • Received an order from Vintage Speedster, that's pretty much all of the parts I need to get the speedster on the road. The remaining stuff is just cosmetic. Can't wait to get stuck in but need to get the bus finished off first
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  • A few more bits of the puzzle...
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  • After a four month wait my hood frame, windscreen frame, side screens and hood cover has finally arrived. Happy days. Now I just need to figure out how it mounts in the car. Looking forwards to getting the hood frame installed so that I can make the car weatherproof.
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  • Mick posted a new blog post in Speedster
    Hood frame has finally arrived
    IMG_1362 After a four month wait my hood frame, windscreen frame, side screens and hood cover has finally arrived. Happy days. Now I just need to figure out how it mounts in the car. Looking forwards to getting the hood frame installed so that I can make the ...
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  • Mick posted a new blog post in Speedster
    Gauges Finished (Kinda)
    IMG_1316 Finished off the gauges this evening. Scaled the fascias down to fit and printed out a few test prints. I initially tried to print onto transparent water decal paper but found that the ink was not vibrant enough and did not show up that great on the ...
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  • Mick posted a new blog post in Speedster
    Gauge bezels finished
    IMG_129_20190606-130844_1 Sanded the faces back last night and offered them up. Pretty stoked with how they are looking so far. Just need to scale the decals and print them out. Not too sure how the green will look over the black face. Guess I will soon find out....
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  • Finished off the gauges this evening. Scaled the fascias down to fit and printed out a few test prints. I initially tried to print onto transparent water decal paper but found that the ink was not vibrant enough and did not show up that great on the black background. This was a shame as the transparent decal paper works a lot better then the white.

    So unfortunately I was forced to use the white paper so that the green numerals were visible. This had one unfortunate side effect - that the...
    Finished off the gauges this evening. Scaled the fascias down to fit and printed out a few test prints. I initially tried to print onto transparent water decal paper but found that the ink was not vibrant enough and did not show up that great on the black background. This was a shame as the transparent decal paper works a lot better then the white.

    So unfortunately I was forced to use the white paper so that the green numerals were visible. This had one unfortunate side effect - that the white edge of the paper was clearly visible in a few areas against the black background.

    One other thing I noticed is that despite having a laser printer the quality is really not that good. It could be down to the way that I'm processing the image but having exported it 1:1 from an SVG program and printing it 1:1 it came out surprisingly pixelated.

    Despite the quality issues I decided to continue on and get the gauges back together as I figured I could touch up the white bits with texta and as I now had the artwork, at some point down the track I could get some vinyl stickers printed up. At least I would have some functional gauges for the time being.

    With the transfers in place they are then 'cooked' in the oven for 10 minutes at 150 degrees. This is to 'set' the transfer. Unfortunately on a few of the transfers the surface bubbled up a little. I'm guessing that this may have been due to water trapped underneath, or maybe they were not in the oven long enough. With no info supplied with the decal paper it's pretty much anyones guess as to why,.

    With the decals installed on the faces I poked and cut the various holes and then reassembled the gauges. Despite the obvious quality issues they don't look too bad (as long as you don't get too close). I need to get the bezels chromed (I may just paint them for the interim) but even with the dodgy looking faces they will do just fine. (and they didn't cost me $1k like the reproduction units you get).
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  • Sanded the faces back last night and offered them up. Pretty stoked with how they are looking so far. Just need to scale the decals and print them out. Not too sure how the green will look over the black face. Guess I will soon find out.
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  • Mick posted a new blog post in Speedster
    DIY Gauge Bezels
    IMG_1286 Made a start on the gauge faces today. I tuned down some bezels for the centre of the gauges. The bezels are to make the 914 gauges look more like the original 356 style of gauges. I made them out of aluminium stock which will polish up nice and easi...
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  • Made a start on the gauge faces today. I tuned down some bezels for the centre of the gauges. The bezels are to make the 914 gauges look more like the original 356 style of gauges. I made them out of aluminium stock which will polish up nice and easily. I spent a bit of time and cut out the individual odometer and trip counter holes on the speedo bezel. I also stripped and painted the gauge faces. Once the paint has had a chance to dry I will sand back the paint from the rim of the bezels...
    Made a start on the gauge faces today. I tuned down some bezels for the centre of the gauges. The bezels are to make the 914 gauges look more like the original 356 style of gauges. I made them out of aluminium stock which will polish up nice and easily. I spent a bit of time and cut out the individual odometer and trip counter holes on the speedo bezel. I also stripped and painted the gauge faces. Once the paint has had a chance to dry I will sand back the paint from the rim of the bezels and give it a bit of a polish.
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  • Mick posted a new blog post in Speedster
    Combo Gauge Update
    unknown-9-jpeg_large A little more progress, removed the red screen from the kombo gauge to install the 911 temp gauge. The gauge pod and temp insert are a direct swap, the only real difference is that on the 914 the gauges are arrange on top and bottom whereas on the 91...
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  • A little more progress, removed the red screen from the kombo gauge to install the 911 temp gauge. The gauge pod and temp insert are a direct swap, the only real difference is that on the 914 the gauges are arrange on top and bottom whereas on the 911 they are side by side. The 356 shares the top / bottom orientation and has similar warning light locations so I will use the 914 pod and fascia. One interesting thing that I noticed when I removed the gauge was that hidden behind the fascia at...
    A little more progress, removed the red screen from the kombo gauge to install the 911 temp gauge. The gauge pod and temp insert are a direct swap, the only real difference is that on the 914 the gauges are arrange on top and bottom whereas on the 911 they are side by side. The 356 shares the top / bottom orientation and has similar warning light locations so I will use the 914 pod and fascia. One interesting thing that I noticed when I removed the gauge was that hidden behind the fascia at the very top of the gauge face there are numerical temperature graduations. evidently 150 is regarded as too hot (the beginning of the red zone). The 911 style white bars will be replaced with the early style 356 green numerical style when I redo the faces.
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  • Finished off the gauge faces today, now I just need to print them up and try them out. Also received a 550 style flip top filler cap in the post courtesy of Ebay. Need to make up a new filler neck for the tank and cut a hole in the bonnet to fit this. For some reason, whilst my tank has been converted to a central filler location it does not stand upright (see photos above) not a massive drama to sort and will give me a chance to make up a proper rain tray. The cap is made from aluminium so...
    Finished off the gauge faces today, now I just need to print them up and try them out. Also received a 550 style flip top filler cap in the post courtesy of Ebay. Need to make up a new filler neck for the tank and cut a hole in the bonnet to fit this. For some reason, whilst my tank has been converted to a central filler location it does not stand upright (see photos above) not a massive drama to sort and will give me a chance to make up a proper rain tray. The cap is made from aluminium so will polish up alright but to tell the truth I'm kinda digging the patina on it.
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  • Mick posted a new blog post in Speedster
    Flip-top filler cap
    img-1206_large Finished off the gauge faces today, now I just need to print them up and try them out. Also received a 550 style flip top filler cap in the post courtesy of Ebay. Need to make up a new filler neck for the tank and cut a hole in the bonnet to fit this...
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  • Started to draft up the images for the replacement gauge fronts, so far I have managed to get the tacho done. The process basically involves scanning the original face to get a basic image showing the locations of the markers. Then drafting a new image using the old markers as a point of reference. I've matched the font to one very similar to the original 356 A gauge font and also take a grab of the colours. The end result is an image that looks very similar to the original style gauge but...
    Started to draft up the images for the replacement gauge fronts, so far I have managed to get the tacho done. The process basically involves scanning the original face to get a basic image showing the locations of the markers. Then drafting a new image using the old markers as a point of reference. I've matched the font to one very similar to the original 356 A gauge font and also take a grab of the colours. The end result is an image that looks very similar to the original style gauge but with the correct scaling for the 914 gauge. The centre tacho in the image is the new version, the outer two images are early and late style facias.

    I also managed to pick up a 911 oil combo gauge in trade for a 4 jaw chuck.. This will allow me to run the oil temp gauge in the position that the hand brake warning light normal resides in the 914 gauge. I would really like to run both temperature and the pressure gauge but without a facia from a 3-way gauge this is not possible. I will keep my eyes open, you never know what will turn up.

    I'll draft up the speedo and combo gauge facias in the week and then take a look at whats involved with printing the water slide transfers.
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