An Introduction to Classic Car Wood: Common Issues and Varnish Removal

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Many classic cars are lavished with wooden trim, from dashboards to door capping’s. Other classic cars are even made of wood, such as pre-war vintage vehicles and classic cars such as our Practical Classics Morris Minor Traveller demonstration car.

With time, inevitably the original finish of wood both on the interior and exterior of a classic car deteriorates and needs refurbishment. Various elements attack wood from water ingress and damp to sun bleaching and extremes of temperature that may cause bleaching and cracking.

In this classic car maintenance video, Ed Hughes discusses the first thing to consider – whether classic car wood can be saved, treated or restored or whether it is so badly stained, rotten or weak that replacement is the only alternative. Having established that, he looks at the first stage of surface preparation when reviving wood on a classic car, which is removing the old varnish and coverings. This is essential to remove any staining and also to create a surface ready for preserving and finishing. This Skillshack tuition video shows you a practical demonstration of how to remove varnish without damaging the wood substrate.