2020 Porsche Classic Restoration Competition
1995 Porsche 911
Our entrant for this year’s Porsche Classic Restoration Challenge is a car that’s coming full circle since it was delivered by Pfaff Porsche in 1994. Not a barn find, not a low-mileage rarity; it’s a car that has been driven, enjoyed, broken, and fixed for almost 26 years. Follow along in the next few weeks and months as we bring it back to new.
26 years of Toronto’s potholed roads and exposure to the elements over five owners have taken their toll on the body of our 993 project car. While it still presents well from a distance, Pfaff Autoworks, our Porsche-certified bodyshop, will still have a lot of work to do in order to return it to showroom condition.
Our challenge car, a 1995 993 Carrera originally delivered by Pfaff Porsche, displays a remarkably clean underbody for a car with 200,000 km and 26 years of exposure to the elements. A testament to the quality and strength of the original vehicle. Still, a number of items show significant wear or damage, including fender liners held on with zip ties, rusted bumper supports, and more. Over the next few weeks, we’ll correct all of these issues.
Our 993’s interior shows the right amount of wear for a car that’s been driven and enjoyed for 26 years. Some trim pieces have cracked, and the shift knob has clearly seen better days. Fortunately, Porsche Classic offers thousands of factory parts for classic vehicles so we can retain this Pfaff-delivered car’s originality.
The 993’s suspension has held up well since it we delivered it in 1994 – the shocks and springs were replaced in 2016. As we bring it back to showroom condition, we will address the brakes, wheels, and tires, using only Porsche original parts and the correct N-spec tires.
The combination of a rear-mounted air-cooled engine and Canada’s extreme temperature fluctuations have taken their toll on some of the cosmetic aspects at the rear of our 993 project car. The rear light clusters are faded and cracked, the rear bumper supports have deteriorated and separated, and the paint has faded. But, our car has good bones, and can be returned to like-new condition with some hard work and new Porsche Classic parts.
While our project 993 shows significant mileage, its engine and drivetrain show the benefits of regular maintenance. 26 years of grime have built up, but its 3.6-litre engine runs strong, and the six-speed transmission shifts well. Still, we’ll be extracting the drivetrain as we prepare the body, revitalizing it in the process.
Removing the drivetrain is the next major step for our Porsche Classic Restoration Challenge entrant, this Pfaff-delivered 1995 993. We’ve now stripped the engine of its accessories so the engine and transmission can be removed. They will be completely rebuilt and re-sealed in parallel with work starting on the 26-year-old body.
Drivetrain out! We’ve extracted the engine and gearbox of our 1995 Pfaff-delivered 993. The next step in our Porsche Classic Restoration Challenge is a full rebuild of the drivetrain, while the body will head to a Pfaff Autoworks, our Porsche Certified body shop, for repairs and paint.
While our 993 has its drivetrain rebuilt, and its bodywork addressed, we’re also sending out its speedometer/odometer for a rebuild and cleaning.
Our 993 restoration project is moving along nicely. We’ve separated the drivetrain, which will be extensively cleaned and rebuilt, with all worn-out or damaged parts replaced. Our service manager, Mike McCarthy, has over 35 years of experience with Porsche engines and worked on this car when it was new, and the transmission will be rebuilt as well.
We’ve fully disassembled the engine of our 993 Porsche Classic restoration project. Its internals demonstrate the quality of the original car and the benefits of proper maintenance. An inspection by master technician Chris Hillier and service manager Mike McCarthy – 70 years of Porsche experience between them – show internals in amazing shape for a 26-year-old car with 200,000 km. We’ll be replacing piston rings, exhaust valves, bearings, guides, and gaskets to bring this flat-six back to new.
Preparation, organization, and proper documentation is key during a restoration. Pfaff Autoworks, our Porsche Certified Collision Centre, has begun disassembly of our 993 restoration project, carefully tagging each piece, documenting whether it is to be replaced, or repaired, so the whole car comes back together seamlessly.
What do walnuts have to do with car restoration? Normally used to clear carbon buildup inside the engine, crushed walnut shells are also effective for cleaning off 26 years of buildup without eating away any metal. Here, classic technician David Draganac uses them to bring our 993 restoration project’s transmission casing back to like-new condition.
Some serious prep work being done on our Porsche Classic restoration project. Our 200,000-km 993 has had its glass, bumpers, and sunroof removed at Pfaff Autoworks, our Porsche Certified Collision Centre. For a 26-year-old car, it has excellent bones, but some repairs will be needed before we move to the next steps.
Sometimes modern techniques can enhance the process of classic restoration. Our classic technician, David Draganac, is a bit of a 3D-printing whiz, and created these plastic covers that are used to mask parts of our 200,000-km 993’s engine so the engine block parts can be cleaned with crushed walnuts.
Pfaff Autoworks, our Porsche Certified Collision Centre, is making great progress on our 993 restoration project. Rust at the base of the windshield has been repaired, a dent in the door has been fixed, and new plastic has been welded to and re-formed on the rear bumper where mounting points have melted over time.
The mechanical side of our restoration is progressing along nicely. Pictured are a fresh clutch and newly-rebuilt cylinder heads.
Pfaff Autoworks, our Porsche-certified body shop, is preparing our 993 Restoration Challenge car for paint in its origina Polar Silver Metallic colour, with particular attention on the 26-year-old plastic bumpers, correcting imperfections before they're refinished. Each panel will be fastidiously blocked, sanded, primed, and refinished to factory specs.
Our 993 project car's engine is looking significantly spiffier after many hours of cleaning. Next step: reassembling its components including fitting new guides, bearings, and piston rings, as well as rebuilt cylinder heads.