Barn Find T6 Coupe: 1963 Porsche 356B

I am beginning to wonder what people are doing with air-cooled 356s these days. It would seem the craze and ensuing rush to drag every 356 out of the barn and flip it for big money has died down. But with all the cars we still see coming out of the woodwork, how many of them are ending up restored back to their original glory? Certainly, bidding on cars like this multi-colored 1963 Porsche 356 here on eBay is a bit light compared to what it used to be, with the high bid just over $22,000 and the reserve unmet. This car previously wore a very pretty shade of paint known as Royal Blue, which I’m sure the next owner will make a priority to recreate.

Here’s the other thing: for all the fervor over 356s, does it occur to anyone else that there are still a lot of them out there, being found in barns and California backyards? This is one of those cars where I’m always certain we’ve seen the last of them, and then another one pops out. Truth be told, this is one of the more restoration-ready projects I’ve seen as of late, and what I mean by that is you’re not starting from scratch. There’s a decent shell and a running drivetrain in the back beneath that twin grill engine cover. The seller notes some previous floor rust repairs, but doesn’t detail whether the body has any serious cancer to address. Despite the color change, it looks like it emerged largely un-messed with.

Whenever it was repainted, someone went all the way into the jams with this cream / yellow color, which is an odd choice when covering up a paint code as pretty as Royal Blue. The interior as originally black, so that looks to have survived, but the upholstery will still need to be redone. The original steering wheel remains in place, but the backseat lower cushions and the headliner are both missing. You will be restoring this car all the way through, but I could also see living with the odd color exterior and just making the interior look brand new. The drivetrain is no longer numbers matching, so no one should be offended if you live with the old respray for a while.

The seller doesn’t detail what sort of work they did to get the engine fired back up, as I doubt it emerged from its barn state humming like new. Still, it’s a good sign it was able to be lit up at all after seeing that first picture of how it was found; it certainly didn’t look promising. Also shocking are some of the eBay photos that reveal a pan that looks far, far better than what you’d expect out of a vintage car lying in the dirt. Overall, this may be one of the more sensible 356 projects to take on if you don’t mind a restoration, but if you do, could you at least let us know how it turns out?

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Comments

  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    This car is ugly but looks to be solid. Someone either put the later disc brakes, hubs and wheels on it or it’s one of Porsche’s overlap models going into ’64 where they ran out of parts and just went to the next generation running gear. We had a ’59 roadster that had a ’60 rear clip with the bump under the bumper where the ’60s backup light was going to be put. Sure hope whoever restores it goes back to the original blue color. The mud flavored yellow does nothing for it.

    Like 12
  2. Kurt

    I wonder how much these engines cost to rebuild. The VW engine equivalent can be rebuilt for well under 5K even with Okrasa twin carbs and exhaust.

    Like 1
    • Scott

      10-15k.

  3. bobhess bobhess Member

    Kurt… If you don’t have to replace the pistons and cylinders the basic costs are bearings, seals, valve grind etc. It’s an easy upgrade to up the cc to 1700 pistons and cylinders if you want more power. Kits for the Zenith carbs aren’t much as they are pretty basic. If you do your own work it will probably be a little more for parts overall as there isn’t anything in the 356 engines that VW parts fit in. Labor is the big number but it’s wise to spend the extra money on known shops with history with the engines. Costs vary depending on what’s needed to rebuild the engine but Porsche stuff is a little higher than VW.

    Like 8
    • Kurt

      Thanks for the info. Labor has been the big expense on all the VWs I’ve restored, and I’m guessing Porsche labor costs even more.

  4. Scott

    Restore a 64 SC. An example of cost increase. A washer for the king pins was $2 for the VW part. $10 for the exact same part from Porsche parts places. Just a simple example.

    Like 4
    • RJ

      That’s not just Porsche vs VW parts. People who will not do their own research are fair prey for specialist suppliers for any marque.
      The same can be said for marine applications that use off-the-shelf car engine parts.

      Like 6
  5. 914Shifter Member

    Wow!! Its up to $40k now! I bet anything someone wants this to drive just as-is, cuz it looks so cool! They usually are not drivable when they look this rough. I would like to see the looks on the faces of the guys at the country club when this car pulls up!

    Like 4
    • DavidL Member

      Get it to crank over and run, throw an old rug over the seat and go for it. Tip your hat to the guys as you hand the keys to the valet, grab your clubs out of the front and stride up to the front door in your plaid plus-fours and white golf shoes.

      Like 5
  6. TouringFordor

    The build sheet says the upholstery was red (rot), not black (schwarz).

  7. Charles Sawka

    I just have never understood the fascination and following these things have. I’m not saying they’re bad,it’s just that when Porsche introduced the 911 these little guys don’t compare. My opinion. Karmen Ghia with a 1800 and disc brakes can be built for 1/3 the price and give you the same performance.

    Like 1
    • Kurt

      Gotta be pure nostalgia. For the price of even a new bone stock 1600 dual port engine I can buy a new GM or Ford V8 crate engine . Crazy thing is, I bought the VW anyway.

      Like 2
  8. t-bone BOB

    Ended:
    Jun 22, 2021
    Winning bid:
    US $45,000.00
    [ 23 bids ]

    Item location:
    Cleveland, Ohio

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