Gary's Restorations

Preserving our transportation history, one piece at a time.


Should I recondition or restore my project?

Reconditioning is when you try to keep the project as original as possible but only correct obvious cosmetic and mechanical problems

Restoration is when you take the project completely apart and restore every nut, bolt and screw, rechrome and repaint. 

You need to ask yourself several questions to decide which approach to use.

What is the condition of the project?
•    Would polishing the paint and trim make the project look acceptable?
•    Does it need only “tune up” mechanical work or does it need a
complete overhaul?

How rare is the project?
•    The rarer the project, the higher the resale value and the more likely it will be worth a ground up restoration. Generally, it costs about the same to restore something rare vs. something common. 

Who will do the work?
•    If you do the work yourself, it will lower the costs of restoration and make a restoration more economically feasible
•    If you pay someone else do most of the work, restorations are usually not economically feasible unless the project is extremely rare and has a big collector market following. 

What is the value of the project when reconditioned or restored?
•    Will the costs of restoration exceed the resale value of the project?
•    Will the costs of reconditioning exceed the resale value of the project?

Is the project for you or for resale?
•    Does it matter if you lose money on the project once you decide to sell it?
•    Do you plan to keep the project forever? 

Once you answer these questions, you can decide if you should recondition or restore the project.