Tag Archives: Detail Gray

  • An Electric Restoration- Electric Blue Restores a Chevy S10

    Wayne of Electric Blue isn't a bandwagon kind of guy. He didn't buy a Prius and fill it with stickers to shout how environmentally conscious he is. Wayne's interest in electric conversions and environmentally friendly vehicles goes back to the first oil embargo in 1974. As with anything, he began by using what he had laying around; a 1959 Morris Minor and the motor from a Clark fork lift he had sitting around at his job. He spent his nights after work completing the project. Converting the Morris Minor wasn't easy, he didn't have the help of how-to articles, discussion forums, or manuals, he just had to "made it work". Wayne then got experience on the restoration side of things while he owned a European Restoration shop. He explained he's been using Eastwood products since 1980, and they make their way onto all of his projects. After making some electric vehicles for himself, things "snowballed" and he had a small part time business going while running the restoration shop. Years passed and Wayne has decided to turn the "hobby" into a full-time business these days. He's done about 400 conversions since the Morris Minor and we decided to follow his most recent restoration and electric conversion project.

    Enter the base, a tired, well used 1983 Chevrolet S-10. The upsides are that it's pretty clean with no accident damage or heavy rust. It just needs some light rust prevention and a ton of cleaning. Wayne plans to install a custom interior, restore the body and then install an 11-inch electric motor that's capable of 550HP at 9,000 RPMs, with a whopping 1,200 lb-ft of torque. He figures even at the detuned 350 HP @9,000 RPMs and 600 lbs of torque, it should keep any speed-freak happy!

    Wasting no time, Wayne stripped the S10 down to bare bones. Not only does he like to convert the vehicle to electric, he likes to give these vehicles a nut and bolt restoration when possible. He plans to restore and detail everything as it would have come from the factory. With the bare chassis up on the lift he could get to cleaning and painting it.

    Since the frame was pretty straight and free of major rust Wayne only had to clean it and apply a few coats of Eastwood Chassis Black. From there he restored and detailed the suspension and brakes using chassis black and Detail Gray to give everything a factory-fresh appearance.

    With the suspension, steering, brakes, and chassis all built and detailed, Wayne is just about ready to pick up his electric power plant and control board. He tells us that he will be machining his own adapter plate to run the electric engine on the stock S10 transmission and rear end. He also mentioned he is playing with color schemes right now, but a silver or burgundy are in the running. We can't wait to see how well this thing moves with that monster electric engine!

    For more information about Electric Blue check out their website and watch this space for more updates about Wayne's S10 build.

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  • So fresh, So Clean, Aluma Blast is better than the real thing!

    I have to admit, other than my well-know vintage wheel obsession, I have a close second obsession in cleaned, detailed engine bays. Nothing "grinds my gears" more than a car at a show with a beautiful paint job, shiny wheels, nice interior.. then you look under the hood and the bay is a mess of wiring, oil, rust, and corroded parts. Sure it's great if it runs well.. but such a disappointment when it is quite simple to tidy up the engine bay and detail the "easy" bolt-on parts.

    I have found a few "go-to" products in our selection of Engine Compartment Paints that when used together, can transform an engine bay.

    Many drivetrains new from the factory, have a bare blasted aluminum intake manifold, transmission housing, alternator, and a slew of other parts. They look great.. but the unsealed, bare aluminum is very porous and grease, dirt, and grim can really get ingrained in the pores, and those parts quickly become quite ugly. With the help of our Chassis Kleen, some water (power washer works wonders!), and a coat of our new-improved Aluma Blast paint, many of these parts can be easily transformed into like-new appearance. We worked closely with our labs to once again, "one-up" ourselves and improve upon this already popular paint. We are proud to say that our Aluma Blast has just the right combination of metallics, the right hue of silver, and a formula that lays so smooth, people will think you part really has just been blasted. Check out the pics below where I used that exact same process to take this original transmission from an ugly, greasy, mess, to one that fools many that it is brand new!

    The Aluma Blast works great on most anything, you can vary the amount of "flake" in the final finish by the distance you keep the nozzle from the part, and how heavy you lay the paint on. I like to do light dust coats while holding the can about twice as far from the part as you normally would with other aerosols. It gives that high "flake" or shimmer that you see in a freshly blasted part right out of the cabinet. Make sure you paint the parts away from anything you don't want a dusting of Aluma Blast on, the metallics really like to travel in the air and WILL land on anything you don't want to be silver (ask me how I know...).

    In addition to manifolds and transmissions, It is nice to use the Aluma Blast and our other detail paints to break up too much of one color in the engine bay. You'd be surprised how much of a difference it makes to spray small things like the engine mount brackets, or shift linkage. It really keeps your engine from looking like you just dusted the entire bay with one can of spray paint. Below you can see a few more pictures where I recently used a combination of Aluma Blast, Extreme High Gloss Chassis Black and Silver Cad. I even use Aluma Blast on cylinder heads to keep the "New OE" theme going in the bay. Since Aluma Blast is good for up to 250 degrees Fahrenheit, it can be used on many engine parts that normal paint may flake or discolor if applied in the same spot.

    My last little tip for any of these Engine Compartment Paints is that you can use our Diamond Satin Clear to protect the detail paints from greasy fingerprint stains or if you have any accidental leaks. I've found that you can spray some detailer on the dirty part and rub the fingerprints, oil, etc off with no ill effects or staining. Just add multiple coats of diamond clear until you get the desired gloss over the surface!

    So start cleaning those drivetrains and engine bays, tidying up your wiring, and getting the engine compartment as clean as the rest of your ride! Just be careful it's surely a sickness and can make you border on OCD when you may find yourself detailing every little bit you can unbolt!

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  • Year In Review.

    2010 is well underway and we’re already off to a good start. While the world remains an uncertain place, I find I can still get away from it all by taking a “garage break.” Our projects are still there (in a variety of running and non-running forms!) and I am encouraged by the market in general. Classics of all shapes and sizes continue to trade well on Ebay, at swap meets, and in the local classifieds. It’s good to know that in a time of uncertainty our hobby exudes a sense of permanence. Old cars, trucks, and bikes aren’t going anywhere, and neither are the people that work on them.

    That said, all the more reason to get on those projects so that they’re cruise night ready! We have a whole bunch of products I’m particularly excited about – for any skill level, and any budget. Last weekend I was in the garage getting organized and finishing up a brake master cylinder overhaul on my ’63 Austin Healey. It’s an older restoration and I was getting tired of less than adequate pedal performance, not to mention the safety issue!

     We used the master cylinder as a good test of our Eastwood Brake Gray, a tough coating that comes in the form of an epoxy ester resin combined with a pure stainless steel pigment. Best part is that it’s not just for metal – it can be used on ceramics, wood, and even leather. The stuff is tough as nails and refused to fail even after constant exposure to DOT 3 brake fluid. It also “looks” good too – it’s the same color as our Detail Gray. The fluid reservoir in the Healey is also a trouble spot – they originally painted them black in the factory and as you can imagine over the years, brake fluid does its best to eat the paint, especially when yours truly cheats and tries to top off without a funnel. I know, not smart. In this case I used our 2K Ceramic Chassis Black to ensure a durable finish that would stand up to DOT 3.

    On another note, one of the kids who lives down the street recently got his first car, an ’81 Chevy Caprice Classic wagon. Hot ride! I think it belonged to a family member, so he got it for the “right price” and has been busy trying to trick it out on a pretty tight budget. The alternator gave up the ghost last week and I suggested that he replace it with one of our Maxx Power alternators –we have recently started carrying starters, alternators, and even distributors that are completely new (no refurbs here) and in every aspect better than OEM products. They’re perfect for both reliable daily drivers and performance engine builds. The job was a quick swap – it bolted right into place, and with a fresh belt, he was good to go. At $200 bucks, you can’t go wrong. What’s more, this unit puts out 105 amps, much higher than original equipment, and also has a higher output at idle, which will be important once this kid puts in the stereo system he told me has plans for.

    Ancillary engine parts are just another way Eastwood can get you on the road quickly, deliver the performance you’ve always looked to us for, and do it without breaking the bank. I’m pretty excited about this new line of products. 

    Before I sign off, I’ve got to mention how impressed I am with our team for combining two great products into one portable unit. I am of course, talking about our Master Blaster – The Eastwood Dual Blaster.Now you can effortlessly switch medias or even customize your own media mixture – sand, abrasive, whatever you want! It can be done on the fly with our exclusive mixing valve and can cut blasting times in half. Impressive stuff. I was cleaning up a grimy, painted, set of extra wire wheels I have for the Healey and used a relatively strong mixture of crushed glass. That same day, my son wanted to strip the bottom of a small fiberglass boat he has. We simply set the mixing valve to pure soda (which was in the other tank) and he went to work. The soda was strong enough to remove multiple layers of thick bottom paint (from what I understand that stuff is pretty brutal), but delicate enough not to etch the skin coat covering the fiberglass laminate. Best of all, when we were finished, we rolled the Master Blaster back into the shop!

    I’m certain your experience with these new products will be as rewarding as mine.  Let us know, and remember, you can always read what the Eastwood Family (you!) has to say about the products here on the site and also in the forums.

    Drop us a line!

     Best, Curt     

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