Classic Daimler restoration

Areas of Interest – Finding Corrosion on the 1986 Daimler DS420

During the inspection of the 1986 Daimler Double Six, the Bridge Classic Cars workshop team have found some corrosion areas that they would like to look more in-depth at.

The team noticed a few areas on the underside of the classic Daimler during the process of inspecting the trims, this pushed the team to begin getting to the root cause and seeing just how far the corrosion goes into the sills and several substructures.

With that, the team began to carefully take apart the sills and loose corrosion on the underside of the car to then start to formulate a plan for repairs.

Inspection – Assessing the 1986 Daimler DS420

The 1986 Daimler DS420, which arrived recently at the Bridge Classic Cars workshop from America, has been up on the ramp for our teams to begin inspecting and assessing the classic limousine.

As part of its inspection, the team will build up a report on the overall condition of the vehicle along with any areas which need further assessment and a plan for repair or refurbishment. This time, the team were focusing on the underside of the classic Daimler to make sure it was structurally sound and safe before any further work is carried out.

The team turned their attention to suspension pickups and mounts, sections of frame, substructure mounts as well as the all-important body shell sills.

First Colour – First Coats of Colour on the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The paint and body team at Bridge Classic Cars have had the 1987 Daimler Double Six in our in-house paint booth for the first layers of colour to be laid down.

The team have begun the process of colour by first painting the inner sides of panels, doors and also inside the door jams and inner arches of the classic Daimler. Each of these pieces has gone through the same process as the rest of the car in the run up to this huge milestone in the restoration.

Once this stage of paint has cured and hardened, the car will taken out and remasked ahead of its full repaint.

Step by Step – Priming the Panels of the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The panels for the 1987 Daimler Double Six have been moved into the Bridge Classic Cars in-house paint booth for primer.

The paint and body team have been working on perfecting each individual part and panel of the classic Daimler. The team have worked on, cleaned down and prepared the pieces for their first layers of epoxy primer to get them into the same stage as the bodyshell which the team are working on alongside.

The first layers of primer have been laid on the panels and will cure before several more stages of refining and working before colour.

Refined – Perfecting the Bodywork on the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The Bridge Classic Cars body shop has been working on getting the 1987 Daimler Double Six into the best possible shape ahead of being moved back into the paint booth.

The team have begin body filler work, which as a rule is used as sparingly as possible and the vast majority of the filler put onto the car is sanded away. But, it is necessary to get each panel the right shape and curve flowing into the next piece.

With this, the team will sand away 99% of the filler and then the car will go back into the spray booth to have its next round of primer applied. The next stage of the process to getting this stunning classic Daimler back in the best shape possible.

Primed & Read – 1987 Daimler Double Six in Primer

The 1987 Daimler Double Six has been taken back to bare metal in the places where the repairs were carried out by the Bridge Classic Cars fabrication team. Now, in the hands of our body shop technicians, the car has been refined and perfected before being thoroughly cleaned before going into the paint booth.

The classic Daimler is being finished in its first round of epoxy primer ahead of the team paint matching the reworked areas to the original dark blue paintwork. The team laid down the primer layer by layer carefully allowing it to settle flat and evenly across the luxury 4 door saloon. With this stage done, it will be transferred back into the preparation area for the team to begin sanding and finishing before it goes back into the paint booth for the next stage.

All in the Details – Preparing the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The paint and body team at Bridge Classic Cars have been working on preparing the 1987 Daimler Double Six for paintwork to begin.

The body team have been carefully and meticulously sanding and working each panel ahead of its appointment with our in-house paint booth.

While the team were working on each individual panel to get them perfect, they also welded up and finished off some of the small pinholes to get that flawless finish when it comes time to paint.

Each of the welds then had minimal filler work carried out just to flatten any low points caused by the finishing work.

Covered – Retrimming the Window Trim, Headliner and Sunroof of the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The sunroof, headliner and window trim from the 1987 Daimler Double Six are in the Bridge Classic Cars trim shop to be recovered in matching beige material.

Brian has been working on getting each individual piece cut out and perfectly retrimmed after being carefully stripped back and prepared for this stage. Each individual piece has been hand-worked to give the best fit and finish for the classic Daimler.

Top Work – Rust Repairs to the Sunroof of the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The fabrication team in the Bridge Classic Cars restoration workshop at our Suffolk HQ are hard at work repairing the rust issues in the sunroof of the 1987 Daimler Double Six.

Monty has been working his way methodically through the entirety of the classic Daimler. This time he has turned his attention to the sunroof and sunroof opening of the car, which is showing some noticeable signs of corrosion both on the interior and exterior of the car. Firstly, the sunroof panel was removed and stripped back to best assess the piece.

With everything cleaned back, the level of corrosion could be seen and assessed. Monty began handmaking the various patch panels and pieces needed for both the roof panel and the sunroof rails. With all of these pieces carefully templated and made, the process of welding them into the car could begin.

Because of the tolerances in the sunroof mechanism, the welding process has to be precise and accurate as to not warp any of the pieces with the heat generated by welding.

Top End – Retrimming the Window and Sunroof Pieces from the 1987 Daimler Double Six

Several pieces from the interior of the 1987 Daimler Double Six have been transferred to the in-house trim shop at Bridge Classic Cars.

The trim team have been carefully deconstructing and stripping back the various pieces of trim and panels from the roof of the classic Daimler. The sunroof of the car was removed in order to be inspected and assessed before it will be retrimmed by the team.

Next, the headliner of the car was stripped back and the foam sanded to be readied for the new headliner for the car fitted very soon.

Finally, the trim team carefully took apart the rear window trim and after cleaning up the surface retrimmed it in brand new foam strips.

Preparations – The Doors of the 1987 Daimler Double Six in Primer

The doors from the 1987 Daimler Double Six have been moved from the body shop to the paint shop at Bridge Classic Cars.

The doors have been prepared for their first coat of primer before being taken back through into the body shop to be perfected and shaped in anticipation for the body shell to be moved into the department from the fabrication shop and readied for primer.

Sealed – The Boot Floor of the 1987 Daimler Double Six Seam Sealed

After the repairs to the boot floor of the 1987 Daimler Double Six – The Bridge Classic Cars teams have been working to make sure everything is sealed up tight.

The body team at Bridge Classic Cars have been underneath the and in the boot of the classic Daimler to seal any joints between the panels which make up the boot floor. This is crucial for the longevity of not just our repairs on the car but the longevity of the whole car itself.

Top to Bottom – Repairing the Boot Floor of the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The Bridge Classic Cars fabrication shop have been working their way through the rust repairs on the 1987 Daimler Double Six.

Monty has been cutting out the corroded metal in the boot floor of the classic Daimler. Using the pieces cut out of the boot, he created new pieces for the car which were then test fitted to check before being welded in. The hand-made floor patch also had the strengthening beads rolled into the material to follow the original channels in the existing floor to create one complete uniform piece once painted.

A small patch panel also needed to be made for an area of corrosion behind the fuel tank. Like the others, the area was cut out and rust treated before the new piece was welded in.

The Other Side – Rust Repairs to the Arches and Door on the Passenger Side of the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The fabrication shop at Bridge Classic Cars have begun work on the rear passenger side of the 1987 Daimler Double Six to fix any of the rust issues in this area.

Our fabricators have replaced several areas around the wheel arches and sill which had entirely rusted through. Monty, our fabricator, has hand made new patch panels for these areas to make sure that everything in that area is solid and rust-free.

The fabrication team have also had to make a new wheel arch edge for the classic Daimler. This had unfortunately been affected by rust and spread into the bottom of the rear door. Each of these pieces were then cut out, prepared and new pieces welded in to remove any trace of corrosion.

With the new metal in the rear quarters of both sides, Monty can keep moving rearwards on the Double Six to get the body completely rust-free before it goes into the Bridge Classic Cars paint shop.

Bringing Up the Rear – Tackling the Rust on the Rear of the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The Bridge Classic Cars fabrication department have been working their way towards the rear of the 1987 Daimler Double Six and ultimately towards the end of the fabrication work needed on this classic Daimler.

Monty, one of our fabricators, has been carefully working on cutting out the rear sill and rear arch to perform the necessary repairs. Each of the pieces has been made by hand to ensure the best fit and finish on the patch panels. Monty has only removed the affected areas to retain as much of the original metal as possible that is still in good shape. This included a section of the rear door which had rusted out, along with the leading edge of the arch/door jam.

Inch by inch, he welded the new pieces onto the bottom edges of the car until finally the job was completed. All of the pieces were formed and pushed/pulled to the best possible fit so when it is moved to our body shop, there will be as minimal filler work as possible before the car’s respray.

Fresh Metal – Wing and Door Rust Repairs on the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The Bridge Classic Cars fabrication team have been working on getting any and all signs of corrosion out of the 1987 Daimler Double Six currently in our Suffolk HQ workshop for restoration.

Monty, one of our fabricators, has been methodically going through the car to address any issues with a series of smaller sympathetic repairs where needed. One of these areas is the wings of the car and the bottoms of the doors.

He has gone through each panel to determine just how much material needs to be removed in order for it to be structurally sound and safe. Monty has made a series of patch panels for both the wings and the doors of the Daimler from scratch. Handforming each of the pieces until it was a tight fit and flowed with any curves or radiuses on the car.

With this step done, he will carry on through the car getting all the necessary areas completely sorted out.

Parts and Pieces – Making New Pieces for the 1987 Daimler Double Six

The in-house Bridge Classic Cars fabrication team have been working on the rust repairs to the 1987 Daimler Double Six.

Monty, one of our amazingly talented fabricators, has been hand-making patch pieces for the front end of the Daimler.

Monty began work by replacing a section of the windscreen frame which had corroded. Using the original piece as a template, Monty hand-formed the replacement piece and refined it perfectly to get the patch the perfect shape and size to fit in the windscreen.

After that, Monty turned his attention and skill to the front wings of the Double Six. The wings needed multiple repairs to them, both on the inside and the outside.

Monty has had to remake several brackets and pieces for the car. These pieces have to be precisely bent and shaped to allow the wings to fit back onto the car while also allowing the panel to be adjusted. After this, Monty began to work on the headlights of the 1980s luxury saloon.

Nearly the entire headlight surround had to be cut out of the car but this gave Monty the opportunity to hand-make a replacement piece and have the best fit and finish on the whole piece. The welds were then carefully ground down and some small adjustments made to the piece.