1961 Porsche 356B Roadster

In a society where the ‘bigger better deal’ rules supreme, vehicle ownership can sometimes be measured in months rather than years, let alone decades. In the case of this Lüfteknic customer, who is only the second owner of this Ruby Red 1961 356B Roadster, he is a definite anomaly with over 50 years of ownership and counting.

The little Roadster came to Lüfteknic with a broken shift linkage, a relatively simple fix, and when the car was ready to push in for repair it took nearly all the available staff to push the car inside. A quick inspection reveled dragging brakes all around, nearly 100% seized, and a brief discussion with the owner who up to this point had never had a major service done on the car, set things in motion.

After picking up, the car’s braking system restored and rejuvenated, the excitement of ownership and possibility of further improvements on the 356 began to be considered. Much like the aging of  your own face, which you never really see since you live with it day in and day out, the owner never really noticed the slow decline of his Porsche. Not that it was in exceptionally bad shape or poorly cared for, it had just been a long slow downhill run.

From the start we had noted that the engine was down on power and in need of an overhaul. This was the next major step, and again although the owner was hesitant. Once things were torn down and a burnt exhaust valve revealed itself it became further to the point that we were on the right track in bringing this Brumos-sold Roadster back to former glory.

Back to as-good or better performance than when he had first owned the car, the owner’s eyes were now suitably opened to just how amazing his car had been, and could be again. The final step because to address the swollen and aged door skins. Rust in the lower door skin is a very common problem on 356 cars, and with a thorough inspection and recommendations on how to address the rest of the chassis rot, the decision was made: do it all. 

Everything came apart, with new floors, rockers, sills and other miscellaneous bits of metal added to replace the oxidized pieces. Door skins were cut and sections replaced, and 356 Coupe door posts were cut and modified to fit in the Roadster body, the original Roadster items being long since unavailable. 

Finally, the car was resprayed in its original Ruby Red hue. A last minute thrash to complete the car for the Richmond Porsche Meet saw the car take home people’s choice aware that very same day, and it has seen many more miles of enjoyment in the additional days since then. 

-Chassis: 1961 Porsche 356B Roadster. Complete restoration including new floors, door sills and rockers, lower door skins, etc, with a single-stage Ruby Red respray (all done in house at Lüfteknic). 

-Drivetrain: Original engine / case / heads / crank / con rods, rebuilt to 1719cc, rebuilt carburetors, etc, with original un-touched transmission. 

-Suspension: Original torsion bars / leaf springs w/ Koni Sport adjustable dampers. 

-Brakes:  Original 356B  four-wheel hydraulic, aluminum drums 10.92″ all around, rebuilt with new shoes, etc.

-Wheels: 15×5.5″ w/ 165HR15 Vredestein Sprint Classic radial tires

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