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Design Files: Full Restoration of a 1968 Porsche® 911S

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Posted September 13, 2019 in Rebuild Porsche® Project

img-blog-car-16The web is filled with before and after photos depicting the restoration or modification of every kind of Porsche® you could imagine. But these photos you may take a quick glance at often leave out the most interesting part of the story: how to go from a weathered, rusted hoopty to a polished classic.

So, in an effort to show how much work goes into the restorations you see online, we are starting a new blogging series called Design Files, where we will take you on a step-by-step journey through some of our favorite projects. It seems only fitting that the first installation of this series would be focusing on the complete restoration of a 1968 Porsche® 911S—a car that, fully restored to the factory specs, can be found for sale for more than $200,000.

Tear It Down

The first step in the complete rebuild of any Porsche® is to strip the car down to the bare chassis. This began with the removal of all of the interior components like the seats and safety belts. Once those parts were removed, we also remove the engine, transmission, and suspension systems from the vehicle.

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After taking the car down to its bare bones, we inspected the body of the vehicle for any damaged body panels, fixing what we could and replacing anything that was beyond repair.

Then, with all of the components removed, we stripped the paint down to the metal and covered all of the openings of the vehicle with tape and plastic.

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Build It Up

We then sprayed a primer, followed by a base coat of Guards Red paint that was color-matched to the original factory shade. As with all of our restorations, we went the extra mile to ensure that we maintained authenticity by using the same paint Porsche® uses in its factory. That means using only Glasurit paint supplied by BASF. We applied a final clear coat once the paint had set. After all, Porsches® are revered for their body styles, and a fresh, classic coat of paint is the best way to highlight its beauty.

(If you want an extra layer of protection, you can opt for our ceramic coat, which bonds to the

paint and reduces fading and other developments that can hurt the aesthetic of your vehicle.)

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After that, we took our time color sanding and buffing the entirety of this Porsche® to bring out a mirror-like finish. At this point, we also replaced any damaged trim, rubber, or lenses with OEM parts before partially reassembling the vehicle and reinstalling electrical wires and cables to ensure safety and functionality. We also gave all of the interior electronics a thorough examination to make sure every part of the car was completely operational.

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While we had the engine out of the vehicle, we stripped the motor and transmission down to the nuts and bolts, inspecting for any damage or critical wear. The work performed depends on the engine type. The cylinder heads were rebuilt. The crankshaft and connecting rods were also inspected and rebuilt. We installed new MAHLE pistons and cylinders and replaced all the bearings, timing chains and timing chain ramps. We also sent out all of the hardware for plating and the sheet metal out for powder coating, giving the car the most original look once the work is done.

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After getting the parts back, we reassembled and reinstalled the motor and other mechanical parts in the freshly painted vehicle. We did this carefully, as we do with all of our work, to ensure we did not scratch the new paint.

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Once we double and triple checked all of the parts, we took the car out for a test drive to make sure everything was running and handling correctly. We made a few tweaks and changes to the car—typical for rebuilds—and sent the finished, completely restored vehicle back to its owner. Luckily, we remembered to grab some shots of the full build before we sent it off:

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If you are interested in undertaking a similar rebuild Porsche® project or would like more information about the length or cost of a project like this one, give 911 Design a call at (909) 982-9111. 911 Design is an independent business and is not affiliated with Porsche® Cars North America.