The Tornado workshop is fully equipped with custom built shot blasting booth and spray booth, chassis jig, 4 hydraulic vehicle ramps, welding and cutting gear, lifting equipment, lathe, custom exhaust machine and full fabricating facilities. Maximising in-house skilled work allows Tornado to effectively control both quality and costs. As clients tend to prefer buying original cars from America, typically “barn finds” and old models found on sites like eBay, Craig’s List and Hemmings, these old classics are often in poor condition. After a thorough inspection Mike will be able to produce a restoration estimate however with old original cars there are invariably issues which arise once the car is fully dismantled at which point clients are briefed on further works. Client communication is an important part of the restoration process. Mike is a mine of information on original specification and he knows where to locate spare parts and body panels from American suppliers, however if a body panel is unavailable Mike will fabricate hand made sections to complete the total restoration of the body shell.



Shot blasting is imperative in full vehicle restoration, it is the only way to ensure all rust is appropriately located and rectified. After removing the engine, gearbox, drive train, suspension, windscreens and windows, interior and all ancillary components, the body shell is removed from the chassis. The chassis is then repaired if necessary and sprayed black, meanwhile the shell is attached to a rotisserie to allow 360 degree rotation and shot blasted back to bare metal, following which the body panels will be replaced or repaired as necessary. Similarly, suspension components are also blasted back to bare metal and sprayed black.


A re‐sprayed body is the first thing people judge a restoration job by and it exemplifies the quality of the restoration. Tornado send all restoration re‐sprays to specialist paint finisher Spectrum Paintworx. Priming body shells as well as re-­spraying chassis and suspension components are done in-house at Tornado. Older cars will have sheet metal dashboards, interior door panel sections and other trims, which will also be painted in-­house. Preparation and quality are imperative in order to achieve the correct finish therefore a great deal of importance is put upon sending perfectly repaired and primed body shells to the paint shop.




Custom made parts are necessary when there is a small repair required in an otherwise solid body panel, in this instance the rusty section is cut out and a hand moulded section is welded in. For many American models lower sections only are available for front and rear wings therefore the lower section, which is usually the rusty part, is cut out and the replacement is welded in, taking great care in the welding process not to overheat and distort the body panel. Engine, gearbox and drive train brackets will also be manufactured in‐house if necessary. Custom cars will require more custom made components.

Tornado Automotive