'73 Manta Rallye Resto/Rehab/Rescue
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Thread: '73 Manta Rallye Resto/Rehab/Rescue

  1. #1
    Opeler Jetmugg's Avatar
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    '73 Manta Rallye Resto/Rehab/Rescue

    Hello, everyone, and thank you for hosting this excellent forum. Last week, I purchased a '73 Manta in St Louis, MO, from a guy who used to be pretty active on this board (Calvin).

    A little background - my first car was a '71 Manta Rallye. Here's a pic of me and my mom standing in front of that car, circa 1984/85.



    Fast forward to last week - I saw an ad on Craigslist for a '73 Manta for sale. The ad looked promising - CA car, by way of TX, has some SCCA racing history, became a non-running car at some point, and has been sitting, untouched for 12 years or more. I made contact with the seller, arranged for some friends to help load it onto my trailer, and went to retrieve the '73.

    Calvin gave me a quick tour of the car, we bolted some wheels and tires onto it, and rolled it out into the alley...



    With some help from friends, we loaded the car and all related parts onto my pickup truck and trailer.






    Overall, the car was in decent shape (NO RUST, CALIFORNIA CAR - HOORAY), with the exception of the interior...



    Over the last decade, rodents had apparently set up home (some losing their lives along the way) inside the cabin of this car. The smell was absolutely horrendous. I have owned/restored/rehabbed a lot of cars in the last 30 years, this interior was the worst I have ever encountered. I actually upchucked a little.

    Steve.
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    Opeler Jetmugg's Avatar
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    The next day, I set my sights on cleaning out the interior. Full tyvek suit, charcoal canister respirator, good gloves, hat, etc.



    The interior was disgusting. After pulling out the passenger's seat, I saw maggots crawling all over the carpet and floorboards. Basically, I just kept working until I had removed every bit of upholstery, carpet, door panels, headliner, and trunk mat material, cleaning and disinfecting along the way.

    Underneath all the filth was a remarkably solid car. I kept the seat frames, as the OEM Opel brackets were welded to the later-model Honda seat frames.







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    Opeler Jetmugg's Avatar
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    Luckily for me, a friend offered to store the car for me until late summer.

    Side note - I am in the middle of another project, getting ready to attend Bonneville Speed Week in August. The Opel will have to wait until after Speed Week to get much love, but at least it's clean, dry, and rodent-free for now....







    Steve.

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    Opeler Jetmugg's Avatar
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    OK - encouraging news - after a little research, I no longer believe the small white worms squirming around on & under the carpet were true maggots. I think they were Acorn Weevils. There were vast quantities of acorn shells in the car.

    Steve.
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    Manta

    Great pics and story. Welcome aboard from the Wichita Kansas Opel Club.

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    Opeler Blue Manta's Avatar
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    Welcome back to Opel ownership Steve. My first car was also a Manta that I bought back in 1980 and I too currently have 73 Manta project but it is does not share the biohazard challenges yours does. Looking forward to watching your progress.

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