By Rosa (@roadkroozer)
Autobody issues…ugh, that dreadful word. My ’65 Ford Falcon, “La Callejera,” was in desperate need of a makeover. Her trunk’s condition had been a result of weather wear. As the old primer began cracking and chipping it was time for a touch up. No biggie, easy fix.
Unfortunately, I have quite the schedule at hand as a mom working to complete college. So, after removing the previous paint, the job of primering the car took a pause of four months. Over that time, surface rust began to accumulate. Too busy to continue, I refused to just have my husband do it—he is an auto body guy after all. But, he respected my decision and when it was time, helped me reach my goal of working on it with my own hands.
As Gasoline Girl members, we believe that there is no finer reward than doing the work needed on your car yourself—it’s even more fun and rewarding to get help along the process. What began as a small fix quickly turned into the trunk, rear fenders, and rooftop.
Just in time for the Mooneye’s Xmas Car Show, I had an open week and there was an opportunity to get the job at hand done. It all began with me saying, “Why don’t we just rattle can it and see what it looks like.” That was all that needed to be said. My husband and I quickly gathered the items: rust remover, scouring pads, some primer and then it was on to the fun part—changing the color to something fun.
With help from fellow Gasoline Girl member, Jenn, we made quick progress on Day 1. After posting an Instagram update of what we were working on, Edith reached out and offered to come help as well. Edith is a fellow wrench turner and owner of a beautiful ’54 Chevy. Together, the job was completed in two days.
As women who encourage other women to be hands on learners with their vehicles, this felt just right. It was an empowering feeling having your gal pals offer to come help and assist you in making your car look beautiful and complete the job sooner.
Before we could make it to the car show, we also had to figure out the glitch in turning La Callejera on. After not being able to solve the issue, we called our buddy Jay to troubleshoot. There was no juice out of the ignition switch when the key was turned. So, a new ignition switch was installed as well as the alternator, coil, solenoid and battery. Jay cautioned us to not cross the wires at the ignition switch. After all that… still nothing. Ugh! What could it be?!
It’s times like these that you laugh about afterwards, saying, “Why didn’t I think of that in the first place?!” With the help of our friend Nick that confirmed we had crossed the wires at the ignition, we were able to get the car back in action.
Let me tell you, installing an ignition switch isn’t easy, it’s annoying. It’s underneath the dash, so you have to get upside down and situated on the floor of your car—maneuvering between the transmission tunnel and pedals. The ignition switch has a big spring to lock it into place and requires the use of hand strength to do so.
All-in-all it’s part of the car wrenchers’ experience. We keep on learning and turning those wrenches—because where there’s a will, there’s a way. La Callejera is a work in progress and her makeover will continue. But we made it to Mooneyes with the updated paint job and had a great time!
Stay tuned for the next wrenching adventure!