This driveway-art doesn’t drive down the road but in the spirit of “getting-ahead-of-myself,” I’ve been playing with the lights. When I first trailer-ed home this Bavaria and hooked up a battery, one light worked. Scratch that two, the trunk light worked. But before discovering that I gave a yank to the headlight switch and got only one tungsten filament hot, the driver side rear running light. That’s it. Not a single headlight, brake, hazard, side marker, nothing. Clean the grounds you say? Yeah, I’ve been trying that. But when you pull apart a light and most of it has corroded to point you’re surprised it’s still attached, pulling bulbs for clean grounds is just the beginning of the job.
But I am nothing if not full of can-do spirit and double negatives. I’ve got spirit, yes I do. I’ve got spirit, how ’bout you? So I also enlisted the “while-you-were-in-there” psyche. That includes pulling apart everything, finding frayed wires, scraping and painting rust, polishing bits, general cleaning. I believe the technical term is polishing a turd. Why do I do it? I suppose many people, including me, have a dream of finding a collector car in a barn. But with TV and the internet you would be hard pressed to find the owner bereft of their prize’s value. It’ll take money to buy it probably a lot of money. Then chances are it will require more time, effort and money to source parts and do unique repairs or rebuilding.
With an old BMW tossed aside as a parts car, the only thing I’m doing is saving it. After all, can I really make it worse? Every original part will be improved upon or replaced with quality. The rust that started chewing the steel will be sealed. And ultimately it will be put back on the road with a level of scrutiny to hopefully be appreciated by the enthusiast yet enjoyed without worry. My ambition with most of my cars is to infuse enough value into them that the next steward will proudly take it over, maybe improve upon it or simply drive and enjoy. They may not have started as a rare barn find but with sentimentally soaked toil, it could be appreciated like one.