Beach Mk 4 Serial #104  Restoration Project 

This page was last revised: Thursday, 04 October 2007  

Rolling (well sitting) on its own wheels September 2007 Notes Photos
Seat Fitting February 2007

Rebuilding Chassis (Not well ordered) new 09/08/06
Progress since December 2004
Photo Index

Beach Mk 4 Sports Racer serial number 104 resurfaced in August 2004 after 30 years. It was purchased from a salvage yard outside of Boston, MA by Mary Whitton and delivered to her in mid-October 2004. See Nick England's extensive web site on Beach Sports Racers for more info on Beach cars.  Don't miss the story from the mechanic who lengthened the car in 1972-73  

The car is undergoing restoration with work begun at  Krause and England, Inc. and work being completed by the same team who are now at K&E's successor, Apex Vintage, Inc.

This site is in two main sections: General Restoration History (where you are) and Restoration Details. Right now the latter link has info and photos from the disassembly and inventory so that we can get all the pieces back together again properly.  First reassembly photos are now here, but unorganized (9/8/06).

 History--most recent info is first

October 4, 2007.    We got to the Concours on Sept 23, but not under the car's own motive power--we were a sight towing #104 behind #103, Nick's car.  Photos made in the Apex Vintage shop on 9/21/07.  The list of "things left to do" is below 30 items, including most of the wiring, final fitting of the (old) chassis.  Plan is still to leave it in the old paint.  Goal is still to do a test day before the end of the calendar year.

Summer 2007.  The spring/early summer race season in NC kept the K&E team busy and slowed work, but we're on schedule to display a running car in the race car group at the Concours de Graylyn September 23 and do track testing at VIR on September 27. Once the chassis was painted, Dave Blum seriously started reassembly.  Hydraulic lines are in, water piping is underway, fitting of parts back into the engine compartment is in process.  Meanwhile, the engine was disassembled to see what needed to be done.  The answer was lots--but that is coming along too.  The side pods and doors, the body components that had been lengthened, are out to be shortened.  A modern bladder has been made for the original gas tank.  The front and rear body work go to Apex Vintage for fitting to the chassis and cleanup the week of August 27. 

The plan is to leave the car in its current (one version past original) paint..  The lettering is all hand done, so the paint job is quite a piece of history. However, the paint is definitely not pristine or modern or even particularly pretty.  (MCW-8/25/07)

Winter 2006-2007.  During rebuilding the chassis, many pieces replaced (e.g. trailing arms) because old fittings couldn't be removed.  Priorities continue to be first safety of the driver and then faithfulness to the original design.  New tubing is 1" instead of 3/4" and some bracing has been added. (Photos will follow some day.)  The aim was to put the car together again so that any and all welding required for tabs to hold/connect things could be done before the chassis was sent out for paint. 

Here are a few photos from February when I was there to fit the seat.  The roll bar and the upper tubes along the side were just tacked on at this point.  The roll bar was raised about 2" after this fitting.  Note that the car is sitting on its tires (sort of flat-..) and the seat is sitting on a 2x4.  That is about the clearance the car has when on track.  The diagonal brace actually goes through the bottom of the seat.

After a second seat fitting, the chassis went out for paint on March 1, 2007.  Photos

July - Labor Day 2006.  Chassis cut up and shortened.  New tubing in many places where the cutting and previous welding made reuse untenable.  Photos (unordered as yet) show progress.

8-9 July 2006.  Many hours prepping the photos/web site so they will be useful to Dave.  

6 July 2006.  Today I went to K&E for first fitting of car to driver.  Dave Blum has welded in new members to create the new driver's compartment and tacked on the new roll bar.  I sat in the car to do an initial test of height of roll bar and position of seat.  Seems like it will be quite comfortable.  Took all the other parts of the car over to K&E today (except some small body trim parts) so that the engine can be fitted and all the mounting tabs can be welded in place before the chassis is painted.

2006 Spring.  Went over to K&E to talk about style of roll bar.  Decided on safety over historical recreation and will have a full side-to-side roll bar.  Shortly after this visit Dave cut the chassis into two pieces in preparation of cutting all of the old mid-section out to  be replaced.  Looked really funny to see two halves of the chassis standing up on end.

2006 Spring.  I washed down the front and rear bodywork and began polishing the front end.  Looks like it will polish up reasonably.  The plan is to drive the car at least a season or two with the original paint. It has very period hand-lettered signage on the body.  The original metallic seaform blue color was prettier, but the green and black is growing on me.

2005 Fall.  Back from bead blasting and the good news is that the rust was all superficial.

P1010049.JPG (160619 bytes) Chassis after bead blasting.  Back to front view.  October 28, 2005.

2005-07-20.   First pieces leave our house for K&E.  The pieces that went are those that will be involved in shortening the car back to it original length (chassis, doors, sidepods) and the engine and transmission.

  chassis2K&EP1010124.JPG (226582 bytes)

Story from the mechanic who lengthened the car in 1972-73    

12/12/04 (Sunday)  Nick got the reservoirs out.  Mary first disassembled the left front suspension previously taken off the car and then worked on the right side, leaving it attached.  Nick helped with a very recalcitrant bolt and worked on removing the trim so that the pods could come off.  Off with the instrument panel, the Beach number plate, and the side pods.  Without fiberglass, we could flip the chassis and work on taking the gazillion pop rivets out of the floor pan to take it off.  
End of day:  the chassis was stripped bare

Left:  Pod comes off.
Above:  Removing the bottom.

Days End. 
Chassis completely stripped.

12/01/04  (Wednesday)  Nick got the right front off as a unit.  Mary took out trailing arms and shift linkage that had been loosened previously.  MCW took out the water plumbing.   We took out the brake and clutch lines.  Took out the U-bar across the middle that had held the old seatbelts. 

Less and less left on the chassis; more and more pieces in the bins.


Week of 11/29/04  Work on web.  Taking establishing photos for the details we already had.  Adding notes.

11/28/04  Real work took precedence, but we spent a little time drawing schematics of systems, straightening up, tagging parts that got missed before, figuring out what unidentifiable pictures actually were taken of, etc.  We find we need more establishing shots to go with the closeups.  The pre-disassembly pics from Mass, the track, and during cleaning are going to be valuable for the incidental things that show up in them, e.g. the way the ground wire attached to the block.

11/27/04  Day 3.  The Englands left about noon and Mary and Nick worked from them till about 7.  Got a lot done.   First we did a wiring diagram and later got all the wire out.  Nick did the radiator.    When he got that out, we put the car on jackstands as high as the floor jack would take it (less high than the jacks would go).  I got the rest of the water plumbing out.  Nick  worked on the hydraulics and front suspension.  Took the other two wheels off.  The camera batteries died, so we just loosened stuff from then on.  I got the rest of the rear suspension loose and most of the shift linkage loose.  Nick finished with the hydraulics.   Estimate is that there may be two more days of work.  (Hubris is setting in.)  

A day of details.  Brake Light Switch Front side of plumbing from reservoirs Radiator mount.

11/26/04 Day 2.  George England (Nick's brother) here for Thanksgiving and we three worked from about noon to dinner time on Friday.  We hung the body pieces on the wall then disconnected all the pieces and parts that we had to to be able to pull the engine-transmission.  John Poulton came by to deliver the engine hoist that he is loaning us.  Pieces removed were water pump, distributor, rear wheels and their suspension parts, fuel pump, starter relay, starter motor. Disconnected water hoses, some of brake lines, ......  Had to cut one small brace under the transmission to get the assembly out of the car.

  Easy does it Success!

11/20/04  Day 1 of cleaning and minimal disassembly. Removal of reminders of critters past, acorns and leaves, critters present, and dirt. Body panels off; old seat and belts out; battery and gas tank out.

Before First you lift out crud Then you vacuum out crud

11/19/04  Delivered to Whitton's house for cleaning and disassembly.

week of 11/8/04  Engine made to run (well 3.5 cylinders maybe) at K&E.  Comment from Dave and Pete: Had to get critter nests out of the air intakes and BOY is it loud!

10/14/04 Car delivered (thanks to Ivan Frantz who trailered the car from Massachusetts along with his race car when he came for the VSRA event at VIR October 2004).

August 2004:  Car in salvage yard.  Thanks to Joe Hankins for photos and keeping the car at his house for about 10 weeks.