FFotW: Fuelfed Driver’s Early 1965 911

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We are honored to be asked by Fuelfed driver Jerry W. to post his beloved 1965 Porsche 911. You can read a small profile on Jerry a few years back. Jerry now wants his baby to go to true enthusiast that can give it the regular exercise it deserves.

Jerry writes:

This is a very early 1965 Porsche Coupe. Research of the serial number of 301278 shows it was probably built in May of 1965. Nonetheless, Porsche registered all early cars in the U.S. as 1966 models. There are differences though. The ignition switch bezel is a nice polished brass piece which is more attractive than the later black plastic model. The gear shift and hand brake boots are leather rather than rubber. These are important points for collectors.

I purchased the car from a collector in Minnesota. He purchased it in Phoenix, AZ and had it shipped to his heated and air conditioned collection area in 1989. I purchased it from him in 1998 and drove it to my home in Geneva, IL. Overall, it was in fine condition but needed the carburetors cleaned and reworked among other items. It had been well cared for but only rarely driven so it needed TLC.

I have records from one owner who had the car from 1977 to 1987 in California and miscellaneous records into Phoenix, AZ. They will be transferred to the new owner along with the Certificate of Authenticity from Porsche. I will also include all records and receipts for the 14 years I have owned the car. I will also include a sizeable library of books and literature.

The car was equipped with air conditioning when I bought it but was not in working order. I removed the evaporator, condenser and compressor but left the hoses in place. All will be included with the car.

The engine in the car was from a 2 liter “T” and the transmission was a four speed. Although they ran well the engine had a slight knock at idle which I didn’t like so I eventually found a 2 liter 1968 “E” engine and five speed transmission which I installed. They are in excellent condition. The car runs very strongly and will spin past red line of 6800 RPM easily if one is not careful.

Apparently, sometime in the 80’s an owner decided to change the exterior to look like a later model “S”. The job was done tastefully with moderate flares added to the rear fenders, a full “Porsche” reflector and rubber bumpers added to the rear and a “Splitter” type front air dam along with “S” type trim on the rocker panels, front and rear bumpers and black trim added to all the windows. It was then painted well in white instead of the original “Togo Brown”. While it looked nice, I preferred the original look so I began collecting correct items for an eventual “renewal”.

It took many years but I finally succeeded and the car now looks almost as it did it 1965. I say “almost” as I retained the “S” trim on the rocker panels and rear bumpers because installing the new pieces would expose some holes which were drilled for the “S” trim modifications. However, I have all brand new correct trim for these areas and it will be included in the sale.

The chrome wheels are originals dated from 1965 and in surprisingly good condition. A close inspection will reveal some imperfections but they still look great.

The Hella driving lights are worth special mention. The originals are extremely difficult to find so when I found a pair in their original boxes with mounting instructions I bought them immediately. Boxes and all are included with the sale.

The car is currently equipped with H1 headlights. I also have the original headlights. If the buyer desires, he may have the originals which are in excellent condition. It is a matter of choice. One or the other, but not both. All lights on the car, both interior and exterior work properly, including the license plate and inside trunk lights.

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The interior has been totally renewed and looks marvelous. The steering wheel is an original wood model which was reworked by a highly talented man who rebuilds guitars and other string instruments for well known musicians. The wheel was in great need and he did a magnificent job. It simply looks gorgeous. The old floor upholstery along with the “horsehair” insulation was removed and the floors were totally free of rust. They were painted with POR 15 and then new high tech soundproofing was installed. Original German Wool Square Weave upholstery was installed and looks marvelous. The headliner was replaced with a reproduction of original, an original rear view mirror was found and installed and the entire dashboard upholstery was reproduced and installed. This is a story in itself as the original 65-68 cars had a punched pattern in the vinyl which was no longer available – anywhere! I tried reproducing it myself with different processes but gave it up as hopeless. I finally came on the idea of a laser. Fortunately, there was a laser cutting company nearby which tested and found it could be done so I had a solution. Unfortunately, the cost of programming, etc. was high but could be split if many pieces were done. I did it with the gamble of others needing the same job and happily found many throughout the world. I still produce the kits and have made a lot of early car owners happy.

Seat belts were a problem. The car had none when I bought it but the original anchors were still there. Originally, the car had three belts for each seat and were a bit of a mess. I wanted retractables so I found some later Porsche belts but mounting them was a challenge. I fabricated a mounting system which uses the original mounting points without drilling holes, etc. If an owner wanted to be totally original, it would be an easy conversion. I’m the first to admit they aren’t “pretty” but they’re effective and that was my primary concern.

On to the mechanicals: Over the years I have redone just about everything in the car. The brakes have been rebuilt with wheel cylinders overhauled, new flexible brake lines and a new master cylinder. Of course, the system has been flushed with new fluid installed. They are excellent. The engine runs beautifully and is leak free. I have driven in near 100 degree weather but the engine temperature never rose above halfway. The transmission is quiet, shifts quickly and smoothly. The clutch is new with less than 500 miles on it. The rear suspension bushings have been replaced with new rubber models. I did the job originally with plastic and they were awful. Stiff and squeaky. The rubber are quiet and comfortable. Both the “banana arms” and spring plate bushings have been done.

The engine has MSD ignition and coil which work perfectly. The Weber carburetors have been completely cleaned and new jets, floats and accelerator pumps installed. I wish I could say they’re perfect but they’re only “close”. The car accelerates strongly but from idle to low speed there is a slight hesitation. It’s the best I can do. Legends devoted to Webers are beyond counting and I’m no expert so if you can do better, be my guest. I replaced the original air cleaner with chromed rain shield models with K&N filters. I will include the original and a new filter with the car.

The instruments are all original and all work properly. The windshield wipers work fine and even the washers work. The original Webasto gas heater is still in the “Smuggler’s Box”. I took it all apart and made sure it was clean and operable, painted it and reinstalled it. The original exhaust pipe is still there but rusted away and I have no idea where one might be found. I also have a Webasto manual for it in Adobe. Frankly, I wouldn’t trust the gas heater and have no need for it anyway as I installed new “SSI”stainless steel exhaust heat exchangers on the engine last year and they will burn your shoes off if you turn it on full blast. The heat exchangers have a minor exhaust leak at the #2 joint but I don’t have the energy to do anything about it anymore………… I’ll explain:

I owned a 1956 Model 356 from 1962 through 1965. I loved that car and drove it to California and back twice. I eventually sold it when family growth demanded but always hoped to have another Porsche in my garage some day. I had worked as a mechanic in my early years so I have a fair amount of knowledge of cars and have always enjoyed them. I became a machinist and eventually had my own shop. I’ve had a number of collector cars and done almost all work on them myself. This 1965 has been a real love and I will hate to see it leave but I am now 75 years old and just don’t have the energy to enjoy it plus I don’t want to leave it for my wife to worry about. It’s a great car. It needs absolutely nothing. I wouldn’t hesitate to get in tomorrow morning and head for either coast. Mechanical condition has always been first to me and appearance was important, but second. This car shows it perfectly. Early Porsches were prone to rust and this car is free of it except for the front member. It’s the only place I’ve ever found any rust and it’s relatively minor as there is only a small quarter size hole. It has never been noticeable in any way so I haven’t bothered with it. The same goes for the front suspension. I never replaced the bushings because they never indicated a need. I have never raced this car and I doubt it ever has been used for racing.

Is this a “Concours” car? Not at this point, primarily because of the non-original engine and transmission. Could it be? If the drive train were ignored, absolutely. Of course, that would mean taking it apart completely and stripping everything. Very expensive and when one were finished, it would become a “garage queen”. I prefer to drive a car rather than just look at it and load it on a trailer. This is a car which could be raced at Goodwood but I think it would be more fun just to own and drive. There are a few chips in the paint and other minor blemishes to be found but you have to look closely. These cars are rare and increasing rapidly in value. I believe one can drive this car for many years and then turn around and make a nice profit on it.

I’m happy to answer any and all questions about the car. It can be driven at any time and I would urge anyone who has a sincere interest in it to personally inspect it and go out for a “turn around the block”.

Gerald Weiland (630) 208-152 eight

Email him here

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