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308 front end replacement options

Discussion in 'Technical Q&A' started by fivebob, Mar 13, 2004.

  1. fivebob

    fivebob Karting

    Jan 31, 2004
    223
    Tauranga,New Zealand
    Full Name:
    Callum
    I've just purchased my first Ferrari, a 1983 308GTS-QV with 28,000KM on the clock. However the previous custodian was a little less than kind to it and bounced it off a guard rail so I'm looking for options for the front end repairs required.

    Damage to the chassis is limited to the radiator supports which have been ripped off forward of the LH Front suspension mounts. I don't expect to have any problems replacing/repairing these parts, or panelbeating the rear panels, but the front panels are probably beyond repair and I'm looking for replacement options, either original or Fibreglass/Composite items. I don't care if fitting aftermarket parts affects the value of the car as I will never sell it, but I do care about the quality of any parts I fit.

    So what I'm looking for are sources for OEM parts or high quality aftermarket parts, plus any advice you may have on the repairs required.

    -Callum
     
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  3. Jerrari

    Jerrari F1 Veteran

    Jul 24, 2001
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    Jerry Wiersma
    No offense intended, but you are going to have your hands full w/ this project. I would venture a guess at $10,000 in repairs. Best of luck to you. :)
     
  4. GrigioGuy

    GrigioGuy Splenda Daddy
    Global Moderator Owner

    Nov 26, 2001
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    Dindu Nuffin
    Well, Ferrari UK is the best bet on panel replacements. See the sponsor list for contact details.

    If it were mine, I'd get one of the aftermarket 288 GTO replica kits and see what happens
     
  5. fivebob

    fivebob Karting

    Jan 31, 2004
    223
    Tauranga,New Zealand
    Full Name:
    Callum
    No offence taken, I know it's not going to be a simple job and I'd estimated around $15,000 for repairs, but as it owes me around $7500 in it's current state I figure it's still worth doing.
     
  6. Verell

    Verell F1 Veteran
    Consultant Owner

    May 5, 2001
    6,993
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    Verell Boaen
    Shipping from Europe is going to be a tad pricey, also, the way the doller has dropped has made European prices jump by 25%-30%. Unfortunately, the best sources for new parts are Ferrari.uk and
    Ferrari Spares:
    http://www.ferrarispares.com/
    Ferrari Spares both makes new panels, they also are dismantlers.

    The following are US sources for used parts. All are reliable suppliers:

    Ferrari Parts Exchange - Probably the largest 308 used parts source in the US:
    http://www.ferraripartsexchange.com/

    T. Rutlands also sources used parts:
    www.TRutlands.com

    ITALIAN DESIGN & RACING - GTO rebodies, new & used parts:
    http://italianauto.com/page4.html

    George Evans sometimes has used parts:
    http://www.evansauto.com/

    There are others, but this should get you going & I believe are the highest volume suppliers.
     
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  8. Staceman900

    Staceman900 Rookie

    Mar 12, 2004
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  9. tbakowsky

    tbakowsky F1 World Champ
    Professional Ferrari Technician Consultant

    Sep 18, 2002
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    Tom
    Count on 20k to repaire that car. The damage looks to be very extensive. I really don't think it would be worth fixing the car due to amount of damage. There will be alot of unseen damage aswell that you only find once you start removeing the crunched peices.

    There will also be many areas of the repair that you will have to send out to be fixed. This will cost a bundel of the green stuff as well.

    The thing that will cost the most in the end will be all the little things. Headlight motors, bumpers, lenses, the grills above the headlights, lower front grill etc. All that stuff adds up really fast. Never mind the major components for the big damage.

    In the end obviously the decision is totaly up to you,and how your going to approach the project. If it is going to be a hobby car for a while then jump in and save the poor thing. If you want it on the road A.S.A.P then be prepared for a large amount of cash to vacate your wallet rather quickly.

    Tom
     
  10. Newman

    Newman F1 World Champ
    Professional Ferrari Technician Consultant Owner

    Dec 26, 2001
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    The thing that would make me want to fix it the most is its a euro QV. Probably a quick car from a 308 standpoint. I agree, major money to fix but look at me, Im crazy for restoring my 79 but Im enjoying it.
     
  11. Verell

    Verell F1 Veteran
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    May 5, 2001
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    I think your best chance would be to see if you could cut a deal for a complete 'front clip' ie: Everything in front of the doors. Anything you end up not needing you can sell on eBAY.

    I've done some metal bending myself, & must say that that rear quarter looks a tad challenging. One thing going for the project is that the 308s used good old fashioned mild steel in the bodies, not the high strenght stuff that's generally used today. It responds real well to classic body bending techniques. Tap it & it bends a bit, the way you'd like it to bend. Modern hs panels either won't bend, or else bend to much, no little taps little bends!

    The bonnet is going to be tough to do anything with because of all the box structure at it's rear. No way to get inside w/o cutting things apart. Hmm, maybe that's the way to do it, cut it apart, straighten the reinforcing member & the outer skin, then re-weld the cuts.

    Restoring that rear quarter around the taillights is going to be challenging also. Those are some of the most complex curves I've ever seen in sheet metal. I'd sure look for the upper 1/2 of a rear quarter panel, at least from the wheelwell back.
     
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  13. atlantaman

    atlantaman Formula 3

    Mar 31, 2002
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    Charles
    TRutlands is going to be your best bet for this stuff---shipping large pieces from England is out of the question--Rutland will have what you need
     
  14. atlantaman

    atlantaman Formula 3

    Mar 31, 2002
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    Charles
    OOPS--sorry--did not realize you were in on the other side of the world
     
  15. carl888

    carl888 F1 Rookie
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    Oct 31, 2003
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    #12 carl888, Mar 14, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    Hi Callum,

    Congratulations! Are you the same Callum I used to hang **** on from the Aussie ferrari list???

    In any case, since you are in NZ and freight may not be such an issue, in my silly collection of stuff, I have the whole front chassis section off a GT/4. I am not too sure if a GT/4 front section is the same but I'd be happy to measure it up for you. Here is a pic of it. It came from a race car that was crashed backwards into a wall (Yes, I was in it) and I kept the front section as it was fine. The only thing I want off it is the rack. The GT/4 has different headlight mounts and a batery box, but I think the metalwork apart from that is the same. If you are interested, you can have it for $400 USD + freight.

    Regards,

    Carl.
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  16. Newman

    Newman F1 World Champ
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    The front structure is not the same. The rack mounts the same way but forward of that, the rails are all different.
     
  17. fivebob

    fivebob Karting

    Jan 31, 2004
    223
    Tauranga,New Zealand
    Full Name:
    Callum
    Thanks for all the links, looks like www.ferrarispares.com is going to getting a lot of my hard earned dollars. After adding up the prices for all the components I can think of replacing it comes to just under $10K, which includes the rear that I think, can probably be panel beaten.

    This is a project car, I don't care how long it takes to fix, or to a certain extent how much it costs. Ferraris are not cheap in this part of the world, and I could spend $35K on the repairs before the total cost would exceed what I can purchase one for over here. If the cost is going to be too high I may have to open Fivebob's Ferrari Spares and recover my investment, or do sacrilegious things like trying to squeeze a F105 engine into a MR2, but somehow I don't think that will happen.

    While I haven't seen the car in person yet, it arrives at the end of the month, the photos I have show the extent of the damage a bit clearer than the ones I posted. From what I can see most of the damage is confined to the left guards, most of the small parts are intact and undamaged or have suffered minor damage, but as I've never looked closely at a 308 before I could be horribly wrong. From what I can tell the damage to the front was caused by the guardrail uprights pulling everything forward and as such did a lot less damage than a frontal impact would have.

    While I like the idea of the 288 GTO conversion I'm not sure that it will pass New Zealand's strict repair compliancing process, which basically states that all repairs must be done using OEM or equivalent parts and must be carried out in accordance with the manufacturers instructions. I'm not sure if they would consider these to be equivalent parts but I'll ask my repair certifier just in case.

    Not sure how easy it would be to find a front clip, I've already put in a request for one from the company in Japan that I got the car from but so far no luck, getting one from any other country with perhaps the exception of Australia would be a major hassle with freight if my past part importing experiences are anything to go by, finding a dealer that's prepared to ship such large items for a reasonable price is next to impossible, of course I've only dealt with the Japanese import sector who have enough customers locally and don't want the export business, maybe the Ferrari market is a bit different.
     
  18. fivebob

    fivebob Karting

    Jan 31, 2004
    223
    Tauranga,New Zealand
    Full Name:
    Callum
    Hi Carl,

    Nope never been on the Aussie Ferrari List, must be someone else.

    Thanks for the offer but they don't look to be the same and NZ regulations require that the parts used come from the same model, so I'd have too much hassle with red tape to even consider this.
     
  19. BigTex

    BigTex Seven Time F1 World Champ
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    Dec 6, 2002
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    There was a front clip in FerrariAds.com for a while.

    Thanks for WAKING ME UP ON SUNDAY AM with those pics! Wow!

    I guess the snow is a clue, as to how it happened? Good Luck to you.

    It's rebuildable if you have time and patience. Do you have an oil well in your back yard, like we all do here in Texas? ;)
     
  20. BigTex

    BigTex Seven Time F1 World Champ
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    That front clip is a BIG honkin' part!
     
  21. M.James

    M.James F1 Rookie

    Jun 6, 2003
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    Guys, Guys! Front clips are not hard to come by, since there are so many people out there not replacing fuel lines when they should (engine fires). These folks have a few front ends handy:

    http://www.ferraripartsexchange.com/

    Look under Damaged Ferraris, second one down!

    For Euro 308 pieces, these folks have Euro bumpers, Euro air dam, grille, etc. etc. etc.:

    http://www.italianauto.com/page4.html

    If you desperately need something 'local', try surfing around here:

    http://www.ferrariportal.com/

    Ted Rutlands/Maranello Auto Parts also has bodywork on-hand as well.
     
  22. f355spider

    f355spider F1 World Champ
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    May 29, 2001
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    I had MUCH less severe damage to the front, and very little damage to the rear on my 308, and it was promptly "totalled" by Chubb insurance carrier. Good luck with this endevour, but I agree with Tom Bakowsky, this is going to get real expensive, real fast. As Tom mentioned, the little stuff can each cost in the several hundred dollars, and there are a LOT of them. I briefly saw the estimator's sheets for my 308, it was extensive, and totalled in excess of $17k to do it right.

    Here's a picture, totally drivable, rear ended a flat bed and his hitch went right into my hood; the radiator/condensor, fans where all messed up, needed a new hood, front clip, bumper, etc. I was hit on the left rear by a Harley, minor damage to left rear. (accident was a 6 car chain reaction)

    I hear the guy who bought the car at auction just pulled everything straight, and repaired everything he could, and only replaced what he had to. He did it on the cheap, and the car probably shows it.
     
  23. M.James

    M.James F1 Rookie

    Jun 6, 2003
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    That's just plain wrong, Dave. Sorry for the loss.
     
  24. f355spider

    f355spider F1 World Champ
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    May 29, 2001
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    It was a shame, as I put a lot of sweat and money into the car to make it as perfect a driver as possible. It was previously a cosmetically perfect "garage queen" which I updated and started driving everywhere.

    But, I took the insurance money and got a 328 (upgrade!), check my profile. :)
     
  25. PSk

    PSk F1 World Champ

    Nov 20, 2002
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    Pete
    Fivebob, I'm a kiwi living in Australia now. Do not worry about getting a front clip, just fix what is there. While the NZ regulations are stricked, it does not stop you simply making the front chassis again ... remember Ferrari simply made it out of rhs, or something ... and it is not rocket science.

    IMO the most important thing is to get it on a chassic jig and make sure it is 100% straight and then the chassis is repaired to be perfectly straight and 100% correct so the concours judges do not have heart attacts ;). This IMO will mean removing all the front panels (infront of the windscreen) right down to the chassis frame. Once the chassis is straight and perfect it is just a case of putting everything back on again, with new right front guard, etc.

    New Zealanders can fix anything, thus this is definately fixable.

    I would suggest that you talk to Evans European who are top level car panelbeaters in Auckland and you could remove most of the stuff from the front and rear, and then get them to chuck it on their computerised chassis machine. They will be able to pull things straight if anybody can. They also do classics so will know the game. You might be surprised as they might be able to pull the front chassis so straight that it will only need minor repairs if any. They straightened my Alfa Sud after an interesting classic car racing prang ... and it was better than it was before, and only took them 1/2 an hour on that machine!

    Otherwise contact the NZ Ferrari club and they will give you good contacts. While Ferraris are rare in NZ, they are there and NZ has some of the best restorers in the world ... in fact many Pebble beach winning cars have been restored in NZ.

    Being so isolated has some advantages, one of them is it has taught many people how to fix things, without just bolting on a new one. Infact F1 used to be full of NZ and Aussie mechanics because of that ... it breeds laterial thinking and the nothing is impossible attitude.

    I actually think that is how I will obtain my first Ferrari ... just got to be in the right place at the right time (without causing the accident ;):D) ...

    Pete
     
  26. Newman

    Newman F1 World Champ
    Professional Ferrari Technician Consultant Owner

    Dec 26, 2001
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    #23 Newman, Mar 14, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    The good news is the front chassis ahead of the control arms is sheet metal and some small tubes. The lower portion that is ripped off is sheet metal made into a box. Once all the bad stuff is off, it will be easy to repair. My biggest concern would be the quarter panel and would most likely go for a complete panel rather than hammer and cheese it up especially if you are keeping it and time isnt an issue. Do it right and do it once. This is a pic of a US spec car so your tubes will be a tad smaller and the bumper mount is different as well.
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  27. carl888

    carl888 F1 Rookie
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    Oct 31, 2003
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    Hi Callum,

    I've seen friends fix damage worse that than that, you'll be fine. Having seen the extra pics you posted, the damage is not that bad once you remove the panels. Good luck!

    Carl.
     
  28. Wayne 962

    Wayne 962 Formula Junior

    Nov 27, 2003
    434
    I would guess that a good place to start would be with a complete chassis like this one that was just on eBay:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=6212&item=2463257836

    My lay-opinion is that it would cost quite a bit in parts alone to fix the car (if you bought new ones). If you had a fire damaged car and this wrecked one, then you could probably combine the two together with about $5-$10K in parts and do it.

    -Wayne
     

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