Home at last

Posted on January 01, 2020 by Niek Nijsen

Brünhilda is home. It’s been a long time coming, but I’ve finally been able to move her to the newly prepared garage. Over the last two years a lot has happened in the background, which all began with the original move to the UK a few years ago. On the 13th January 2018, mum & dad brought her across on a trailer from her long-term storage back in The Netherlands. Dad and I had been working on restoring her for quite some years earlier (back in 2007), but all came to a halt when I moved to the USA in 2011. She’s been gathering dust ever since. As I didn’t have a garage to store and work on her yet, a family member offered their garage for temporary use.

I slowly began working away at the list of things to do, primarily sorting out the wiring and rebuilding the interior. Progress was slow and difficult, as I had limited knowledge about the car and as a result spent most of my time staring at her trying to figure out what to do. It wasn’t until Christmas 2018 when I reached a big break through. Together with dad we got the engine running again, after a 12-year silence. To our surprise only a few attempts with easy-start fluid were needed in order to get her roaring. I must say she sounds loud, although it might have something to do with the fact that the exhaust hadn’t been connected yet. Either way, it was like music to our ears, and we were very happy to say the least.

The months that followed I finished the interior and elected to remove the LPG tank that was fitted in the booth. The main reason for this is the fact that there’s hardly any LPG available in the UK, and we’d be carrying a lot of dead weight around during rallies. The decision was made to remove the installation all together. As a result, a lot of holes which allowed hoses and bolts to go through the chassis were now open and uncovered, prime areas for rust to fester. All restoration work came to a grinding halt, again.

Many months passed, as dad and I decided on what to do. Eventually we elected to start over, back to square one with a full bare metal restoration. It would be the best base for what we had in mind, participating in classic car rallies. A lot of modifications will be required in order to prepare the car as best as we can, including the fitting of a roll cage, so the new approach will lend itself perfectly for this. The next step, however, would mean work needed to be done to the garage at my new home, which we owned since August 2019. We began by modifying the roof support structure in order to fit a two-post car lift and allow it to go to full height. Next we build a desk and various storage facilities that would hold all the parts during the restoration process. Although not completely finished, Brünhilda was moved from her current storage to the new garage on November 15, 2019. With a bit of luck, I’ll be able to finish the garage over the next few weeks and the restoration process can finally begin.

To kick off the project and as a bit of a motivation boost, dad and I went up to GSM performance in Nottingham to try new seats on November 24, 2019. We tried many different types and shapes and eventually our choice fell on the Rev II seats with matching 4-point harness, both by Sparco. Can’t wait to get these fitted!

Return to Previous Page