A recent Sydney trip included a stopover at Andy’s Restorations. Andy and Donna Minas are well respected within the auto industry, producing world-class workmanship on anything old and cool. Beyond the business, they’ve been active in the hot rod hobby for all of their lives, both as participants and more recently as promoters, when they took on the task of rejuvenating the Hot Rod and Custom Auto Expo.
After 20 years at Caringbah, the operation outgrew their facility, which resulted in an investment in a new purpose-built factory at Kurnell. That was in 2010, and today the business employs five staff on the floor, including their son James, with extensive skills and experience between them. Underlying that is their commitment to work to deliver work to the highest standard with consideration to customer’s budgets.
This ultra-modern phantom bodied ’34 Cabriolet has passed through a few shops before landing here. Andy’s initial instructions were to get it engineered, so they stripped it down completely for inspection and have since reassembled the car with a target to get it running. “The engineer asked us to put a couple of extra crossmembers in. We did that, painted the chassis and then reassembled the car. The owner has a sign company, so he’s going to wrap it,” Andy informs. The XR8 motor was already in place, next step sorting out a curved front screen and refining the removable hardtop.
Andy can’t take credit for the work so far on this breathtaking ’65 Buick Riviera, but he’s happy to get it across the line. “We’ll pull it down, check everything and reassemble, then get it on the road. We might even get Mike Curtis to make a set of wheels for it, something different,” says Andy. Under the hood is a fully detailed Buick Nailhead V8.
This ’33 Ford roadster will be beauty and the beast rolled into one. Andy bought the Speed 33 body and rolling chassis from the States a few years back on behalf of a customer who was chasing such a project. It features a folding hardtop roof and will host all of the modern conveniences you can think of. The Boss Nine crate engine from Jon Kaase Racing Engines is in place, along with fuel injection to give the 521 cubic inch, 700hp street engine some manners. Big dollar Kugel rear end is still under wraps for its own good!
Classy ’57 Chevy street machine has been on the road for a lot of years, still looking great on top but was worn out underneath. Rather than rebuild the old suspension, the current owner brought it to Andy to have everything transplanted over a new Art Morrison chassis. In the process it’s getting new Retro Rack power steering and a RHD conversion, air conditioning, new wiring, new exhaust and pretty much anything else that needs attention. The Chevy 350 small block remains in place.
Sporty Mercedes is a 1959 model 190SL, well worthy of a restoration given their value today. This one was left in a barn downunder after being shipped out from England years before. When the owner passed away, his son (still in England) sold the car to a local enthusiast who’s consigned Andy to restore the heavily rusted body to its prime.
With all of the hard work taking place in the restoration shop, Andy has commandeered a second warehouse as storage for projects in progress. The 1948 vintage Chevy COE cab central on the hoist has a date with a C30 chassis coming soon. The GTS Monaro is scheduled for a full resto, although we wouldn’t touch a thing…
1937 Chevy is looking tough, but it’s been a long road to get there. Originating from WA, the coupe has passed through a few hands with some fabrication and repair work being done along the way, but will ultimately cross the line with the fit and finish that Andy’s Restorations is renowned for.
With cool delivery vans in such high demand, it’s a wonder something as rare as this 1949 Dodge Route Van even made it to Australia! Apparently just 50 of this model were made and this one was used as a Snap On van in its earliest days, on close inspection you can still make out the Snap On signwriting. The Flathead Valley Diesel Service livery is authentic too. Andy’s job is simply to get the van running and driving. From there it’ll serve as a promotional vehicle at a tourist town in the NSW Northern Rivers district.
Loving the Nut Roasters F100 in startling red. A complete build in house, it started as little more than an original cab and doors, with a truckload or new and reproduction parts to complete the project. Simple but cool, it’ll be in service by the time you read this.
You’ll find Andy’s restorations at
or by calling 02 9668 8669. www.andysrestorations.com.au As featured in Cruzin #219, January 2019.