miwifri
miwifri New Reader
5/18/10 4:09 p.m.

I've been a car enthusiast and racer for years, having picked up the bug from my dad right from the start. When I was 3 years old he bought a new 1956 Mercedes 190 SL. I remember being on the showroom floor with my parents when they picked out the color. This car now sits in my father's storage barn and he would love to make it mine so that I can have it restored. This isn't the kind of job I would do myself and I wouldn't want to take it to a shop that isn't going to do a reasonably good job in a timely way. I'm not interested in a concourse winner with every correct nut and bolt but I do want to do the car justice and make it a solid driver with a good cosmetic restoration. I'd like to get this done in a timely way so my father, who is 87, can still enjoy his old dream car.

Where is there a shop, or shops, that can do this work for a reasonable price?

miwifri
miwifri New Reader
5/18/10 4:18 p.m.

I failed to mention that I am in central NY state. I have a trailer and would be willing to transport the car a few hundred miles to get the work done.

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim Dork
5/18/10 7:29 p.m.

I'd go to the local car club shows/meetings and see if I could pick up some recommendations. The timely/reasonable money requirement is likely to be a bit of a problem as there are always more issues than you can see so you'd have to budget for the extra time and cost.

miwifri
miwifri New Reader
5/18/10 8:30 p.m.
BoxheadTim wrote: I'd go to the local car club shows/meetings and see if I could pick up some recommendations. The timely/reasonable money requirement is likely to be a bit of a problem as there are always more issues than you can see so you'd have to budget for the extra time and cost.

I think you are right about the issues not seen. This car has been through a few phases of body repair... 30 or 40 years ago.

Gary
Gary Reader
5/19/10 7:30 a.m.

Magno Restorations, 16 Maple Street, Topsfield, MA

Phone: 978 887 8809

Or read this article http://www.dearbornauto.com/history/articles/index.shtml

and contact Alex Dearborn for advice. For years Alex was one of the premier Mercedes restorers in the country.

flyinlow
flyinlow
5/19/10 11:06 a.m.

Whatever rour budget is, increase it by 50% and you'll avoid the inevitable, "well we have to replace this widget, it can't be rebuilt," comment that can stop a project in its tracks. Be realistic about how often you'll use the car, how you really want it to look (labor is by far the costliest part, so if two more hours of labor added to the bill to get the look you want, after having just paid for 8 hours, then pay the additional two...you only want to do this once.), also, if you're not in a rush, most shops will charge less if they work on it between other projects. BUT, if you do that, have some time agreement with specific goals in writing. You do't want your project to be THAT project otside under the tarp... Ask to talk to customers who've used the shop you choose. Good luck.

rconlon
rconlon HalfDork
5/19/10 12:29 p.m.

I would talk it over with the best Mercedes dealer in town. Try to get them interested in the project and see what they suggest.

cheers Ron

Tom Heath
Tom Heath Webmaster
5/19/10 1:17 p.m.

Mercedes does a really good job of supporting their classics, so much so that there's a factory-run restoration center in California and Germany.

It's not close, but there's probably no better resource for replacement parts.

Click here for the M-B Classic Center web site.

Andy Reid
Andy Reid Auction Editor
5/19/10 2:59 p.m.

I agree with Tom. if you call MB Classic Center they can put you in touch with the best guy in your area or even do teh restoration if you like. Your 190SL is only going to be worth more money at this point and any money you put into it is money well spent. I would go for a really good and correct restoration. it does not have to be a Pebble beach restoration but making sure the correct parts are fitted is a good idea. A 190SL is a pretty difficult restoration if bodywork is needed but the cars are beautiful and benefit from it. If you do it well, the car will last well past your and my lifetimes, after all it is a Mercedes.

miwifri
miwifri New Reader
5/19/10 6:49 p.m.

Thanks for the comments guys. I now have some places to start. Additional information is certainly welcome.

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