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On Friday the 13th (good omen i know) i saw a 1978 Fiat 900T camper van in my local scrapyard, and at once i fell in love with it. as soon as i got home i had already decided that i had to have it and rang up the scrapyard to see if it had been registered as 'scrap' thankfully it hadnt, so the scrapyard said it could be mine for £200 plus £25 delivery, i said straight away that i would have it and it would be delivered on the 17th .
the caravan as seen...
I then had to clear out the garage as it was full of plumbing equipment, panda parts, and a few fiorino bits. After 3 days of hard work the garage was clear enough to take the camper. On the day of collection i had to take some wheels up to the scrapyard as someone had pinched 3 of the wheels , Here it is being sorted out and delivered...
Here is what she looked like on the forklift truck before being put on the transporter
Once i got her home i wanted to make sure she was complete, and apart from the cooker/sink she is complete (sink and cooker are now in her, thanks to 'scrapheapchallenge' off Retro-Rides picking one up i won off ebay)
Here some pictures of the cool 70s interior...
Next came the inspection of the lift up roof, and thankfully thats complete too, but i found that where the rubber sits when the roof is down was hiding loads of rust ...
I also stole its nose but only so i could see the condition behind it...
Well I started the restoration today, and started off with removing the rust. I now know I need the 2 front arches, the 2 rear arches, the sills, underneath the rear bumpers, some of the floor, the entire left hand side area above the rain channels, the 2 tailgates (upper and lower), and thats just the bodywork, I havent even looked at the chassis, engine, gearbox, interior, dashboard, or electrics , oh well at least i got the windscreen washer to work
Here are some pictures of the 'slight' rust...
Good to see someone taking the time to restore an 850. I look forward to following your restoration here and hope it is of help to others who may be thinking of doing the same thing.
Good on you
Well not much has happened what with work and trying to clear space around the camper to work on it, but i have got a little update, it seems that a previous owner did a little bit of modifying as its been fitted with a rare Fiat 850 coupe engine . The original engines had 35bhp, but the 850 coupes had 52bhp (feel the power ). best of all the spare engine is also an 850 coupe engine, so thats me happy for a while (until i start grinding out the rust that is).
Well i have been taking off the filler that seems to cover 30% of the camper, and here are some of the pictures of the rust, filler and holes...
Yes that filler IS an inch thick
Oh dear Chris, your work really is cut out on this. I've only ever seen a car with that much filler once and I ended up giving up on it.
Keep your chin up, it'll be worth it in the end.
Thanks Stuart for the encouragement, it helps alot
Sorry for the lack of updates, but there is not much i can do as i am waiting for another Amigo owner to strip his so i can fix mine. The only bits i could do without his parts are - take off the front spotlights, and do loads more sanding
Oh, i have also starting stripping down the spare engine
Well i am still waiting for parts but i now have a mate off Retro-Rides who is helping out with the restoration , he had offered me a lend of a car battery so i could test the lights etc, so last Sunday (19th October) he popped along in his 1979 Triumph Dolomite 1500 and not only lent me the battery, but also helped me try and start the engine, and after 4 hours of tinkering, the campervan is running very nicely indeed, plus all the lights work too
Videos of the first start...
I too have just had my fiat 900e pandora delivered and sort of starting it. The roof seems to be the main niggly issue. I dont really know much about them but fell in love, as you do.. Hasnt been started in 5 years but dry stored, Hoping that i can get it to run. Just trying to source the correct battery to begin with.#Please keep in touch as id like to learn from you as you go. Mine is same colour too but with the pandora roof.
Many thanks for the post.
Did you get the camper done?
Im almost done to a degree, body looking ok but still i will need to do the roof