Araldite® Rapid works for Rolls-Royce restoration project
Motoring author Malcolm Tucker not only writes about cars - enthusiasts should read 'The Goodwood Phantom', his account of BMW's 1998 acquisition of Rolls-Royce motorcars and the emergence of the eponymous new model - he also restores them.
One of his most ambitious projects has been the repatriation of a 1920 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost from the USA and its remarkable progress towards a complete renovation.
Registration number 10CW came off test in February 1920, and was an 'Alpine Eagle Speed' model fitted with an open sports body manufactured by Ferguson's of Belfast.
At some point during the 1920's it was re-bodied by New York coachbuilders Brooks Ostruk and eventually, after having lain in an open-fronted Wisconsin barn for some 40 years, recovered to the UK by Malcolm Tucker in 2008.
A car restoration consists of a few major and many minor tasks. One of the smaller jobs was to prise off the shrunken and brittle Bakelite covering on the conduit that houses the leads from the distributor to the spark plugs. The pieces broke away or fell off in random amoeba-like shapes. Once the steel tube was bare and the rust removed, the sound pieces of Bakelite were re-fixed using Araldite® Rapid. As only about fifty percent of the original material was saveable, the 5-minute setting time of Araldite® Rapid enabled the positioning of the usable Bakelite to be manipulated to best effect.
Once set, the remaining gaps were built up with body-filler. When rubbed down, the dark brown Bakelite and beige body-filler had the look of a Giraffe's neck. The painted conduit now looks as good as new.
Confidence was at a high, and Malcolm decided to apply the same process to the steering wheel, the covering of which had also 'blown' due to aluminium corrosion of the wheel itself. This time, the covering came away without breaking into shards, and after the aluminium oxide was removed, the removed pieces of the covering were bonded in their original positions. Once set, the wheel was polished and now looks as Henry Royce intended.
After nearly five years of work, the car is well on its way to completion later this year.
For Malcolm Tucker it will have been a labour of love and one during which he has found a new friend in Araldite®. "Araldite ® Rapid' has been invaluable in giving the right result every time. Araldite has got its own impressive pedigree as a brand - I suppose you could say it's the Rolls-Royce of adhesives."