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Classic Fiat 850 Restoration Episode Two

Classic Fiat 850 Restoration Episode Two

13 June 2014

We previously introduced you to Nick & Bob and their little project restoring a Classic Fiat 850. In Episode 1, we saw the guys get the vehicle home, only to then find out the extent of the work that was needed. In Nick’s own words, we now look at what followed…

“Now it was time to get down to the hard work. We stripped the car completely, literally everything was taken off so that it could be inspected.”



“Bob set to work on the body. The more he prodded and probed, the more rot he found. The car was mounted on a few old plastic beer crates and some planks and it was obvious that we needed a rotisserie which Bob borrowed from a friend. The sheet metal needed was bought locally and we used Frost in Rochdale for some of the restoration bits and pieces we required to set to work.”

“Bob got his welding head on and got stuck in. Basically he replaced the floorpan and welded up some other bits and pieces as well. It was a bigger job than he thought and took him weeks although, in time honoured fashion, we stopped around 5pm each work day for some amber nectar.”



“The conversation usually drifted to what a great little car it would be when done. Perhaps we wouldn’t have been so enthusiastic if we had know the trials and tribulations ahead.”



“Being Bob’s apprentice, one of my jobs was to clean the engine up. I set to with a wire brush, some strong gloves for protection and a can of petrol. Much graft later and the engine came up quite nicely.”



“Internet searches revealed how difficult it was going to be to source parts. Not much doing in Italy but some bits were available in the USA and Holland.”

“The first thing I bought was an Abarth exhaust from Portugal. It looked really good when it arrived and it gave us a boost to see a shiny, new part.”

“I suppose I was the parts man and made it my task to snap up any useful looking bits on ebay. I found a couple of Fiat 850 manuals, some rear lights, a good chrome 850 badge and an original lock for the engine bay.”

“We took a look at the fuel tank and cleaned the exterior up. No rot of holes so we used some petrol tank sealer and hoped for the best. It is difficult, over a period of time, to remember all the little jobs that were done but there were many. Perhaps I should have kept a diary but, then again, I’m not that sad.”

petrol tank


With the basics underway, come back soon for Episode 3 of the great Fiat Abarth escapade!

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