Correcting the paint of the Lincoln Mark III.

My 1971 Lincoln always looked very nice and shiny when you looked at it from a distance, but I had a really hard time keeping the black paint in good shape. I applied a lot of coats of wax to hide swirl marks, fine scratches and other paint imperfections.
I even had the car at a professional detailer to have some of the paint corrected - but he gave up and said that there is nothing he could do for me as the paint would be too soft...
The paint really is very soft and you could even make swirl marks with a soft microfiber towel...
The detailer left some wet sanding marks behind on the trunk lid which were a big sore in my eyes.
So I decided to correct the paint by myself.

I bought the best dual action polisher that is on the market - the Rupes BigFoot 21. This is a professional machine which can correct all serious paint defects and bring the paint back to perfect condition. It takes some practices to do it correctly but its not very difficult to do. I can't recommend this polisher enough!
See my previous post to check out the correct technique.
I also bought the complete Rupes foam pads, compound and polishes system and the results are amazing.
The swirled and scratches paint came out like a mirror!
I´m very happy with the outcome. I also did some touchups on some small stone chips and wet sanded some areas.

You can see the before and after pictures below.

lincolnpaint-SM2014-04-11 13.40.13
I finally bought a professional polishing machine. The Rupes BigFoot 21. Its a great and very effective tool!

Removed the CONTINENTAL letters to be able to polish the hood better
look at all the fine swirls and scratches
I will also restore the letters as some of the black paint has polished off over the years...
repainting the letters
the paint before and after polishing - as you can see all the imperfections are gone.
see all these fine scratches and haze and some wet sanding marks that were left behind from the professional detailer
all scratches and imperfections are gone after polishing!
The Mark III looks spectacular after the paint correction. I have to reinstall the restored letters now.
lincolnpaint-SM-2014-06-15 00.05.29
the restored letters are back on the car.
the polished car


The cars are in winter storage :-(

With winter approaching rapidly, today I returned the license plates of my cars and put them into winter hibernation. I did not drive my cars very much this summer due to a mostly very rainy summer. So I did not rack up too many miles on my cars this season. I just made about 200 - 400 miles on most of them...
The cars are now in their cosy garages and will all get a new wax-, lubrication- and thorough cleaning job during the next few weeks. I usually also disconnect all the batteries, give the weatherstripping and rubber a good coat of silicone spray and treat all leather areas with leather conditioner. I also clean the interior carefully and over- inflate the tires to make sure that they do not get any flat spots. I will also park the tires on styrofoam. I really hate winter and snow and I am already looking forward to next spring... Over the winter I will rebuild the starter motor of my 1967 Eldorado and detail the undercarriage. The Lincolns undercarriage will get a very good cleaning as well. The 67 DeVille will get some new front wheel bearings and probably a new wheel cylinder and power booster. The 58 Eldorado will also need new front wheel bearings. So there will be a lot of minor things that will keep me busy over the winter...

Below are some pictures of our very last cruising tour this week with the Mark III

cruising through the scenic landscape of Austria looking down at a lake

the Mark III enjoying the last sun rays...

the whole family in the Lincoln - little Elliot is taking a nap as usual - nothing beats the soothing sound of the V8...


New pictures of my Mark III online

We finally found the time to scan the 3 rolls of film my wife shot of my Mark III a couple of weeks ago with her good old analog Hasselblad camera on Fuji slide film.
You can find them in the 1971 Continental Mark III image gallery. Enjoy! Below you can see two sample images out of the gallery...

in the garage

long time exposure at night


Mark III Photoshooting

My wife and I did a quick photo shooting of the Mark III today. As we shot the pictures on good old analog medium format slide film it will take a while to have the film developed and scanned. I will post the pictures here as soon as they are available. Below you can see a few digital ones we also shot.

my wife Afra with her good old analog Hasselblad camera

Little Elliot with his mom

the Mark III

rear view

what a nice interior!


A Photoshooting with my Cars

We had a short photo shooting with my cars today. My wife shot a roll of good old medium format slide film through her good old Hasselblad camera. You can find the image gallery with the best pictures from this shooting here. Not in the pictures is my AMC-Pacer which is not running at the moment.

seen from the roof top of the garage

most of my American cars in front of the garage...


Cadillac BIG Meet 2011

The Cadillac BIG Meet is Europe’s biggest Cadillac meeting - held every year at the last weekend of August.
My wife and I are part of the organization team together with some good friends. At this years addition we had the theme “Cadillac meets Lincoln“ and so we invited Lincolns to the show field. My own Continental Mark III just got ready for the show a couple of days before the show, so I drove it there along with my 1958 Eldorado Seville which was piloted by my friend Tayfun.
On Saturday there is always a cruising tour limited to 40 preregistered cars. When we arrived at the host hotel lots of people were surprised seeing me arrive in a Lincoln ;-)

30 minutes before the tour started, suddenly the 58 cut out and did not want to start again. I once again suspected a clogged fuel line and we blew the line through. Unfortunately it did not help at all - the line was free. With the help of Lucky (a fellow 1958 Biarritz owner) we disassembled the fuel pump and found out that the valve inside came loose and was no longer in its seat. Lucky put it back and the car ran beautifully again. It all was fixed in 15 minutes and the 58 was ready for the cruising tour.

At the show on sunday 133 Cadillacs and 11 Lincolns participated. There were many awesome cars on the show field, like one of the worlds best 1953 Eldorados, a spectacular 1958 Eldorado Brougham, lots of 59 Eldorados and everything else ranging from 1921 to 2011. The show was once again spectacular.

You can find all the pictures of the show here:

My 1971 Continental Mark III just before the start of the cruising tour.

The cars are gathering for the cruising tour

1958 Cadillac Eldorado Seville Fuel Pump repair
Lucky repaired the fuel pump of my 58 Seville 30 minutes before the start of the cruising tour - Thank you Lucky!!!!

My friends Claudia and Tayfun drove my 58 Eldorado Seville

one of the many awesome cars at the show - 1958 Eldorado Brougham # 535 - my dream car

a small overview of a part of the show field at the Kremsegg castle

You can find all the pictures of the show here:


Preparing the Mark III for the Cadillac BIG Meet

This years Cadillac BIG Meet had the special theme „Cadillac meets Lincoln“ and so I wanted to take my newly acquired Continental Mark III along with my 58 Cadillac Eldorado Seville to the show. As the car return from the technical inspection on wednesday night I only had 2 short days to detail the car for the show.
Luckily my buddy Tayfun volunteered to come to my garage for 2 full days to help me getting the car show worthy. Without his help I would not have been able to get the car ready in time. Thanks Tayfun!!!!
As I ran out of garage space my other great friend Richard helped me out and lets me store my 1967 Eldorado at his cool garage for a while - thanks Rick!!

My 67 Eldorado is temporarily stored at my friend Richards garage until I find a solution for my storage problems - thanks Rick!

The Mark III needed the full treatment as it was very dirty from its long journey from the United States to Europe. It needed a complete interior treatment along with lots of paint detailing to look great again. So we worked until 1am in the morning each day. During these few days we had the highest August temperatures ever recorded, so a lot of sweat was produced...

My friend Tayfun in the garage polishing the paint - around midnight...

in the middle of the night - we set up some film light...

Tayfun wet - cleaning the interior

Tayfun cleaning the interior

wet-cleaning the interior

the hubcaps were cleaned in the dish washer - my wife was not very happy about this...


The Mark III now has an Austrian license

Every car imported into Austria has to pass a very detailed technical inspection before it can get an Austrian license plate. You will also have to change the lighting system to go with our law. T3 headlights are not allowed and H4 lights are required, and you need some amber turn signal lights to pass the inspection. The rest of the car has to be in perfect technical condition as well.
I had to install 4 new shock absorbers, all new brake hoses, 2 upper ball joints and 2 outer tie rod ends before it could pass the inspection.
The car then passed the test without a problem and I´m now having all the paper work in hands to have the car registered here in Austria.

The Mark III arrived today!

After a - what it felt for me - endless time of waiting it was finally time to welcome my newly acquired 1971 Lincoln Continental Mark III to Austria.
It arrived today - very unexpectedly when I got a call from a lady I know who is the manager of local gas station. She called me and asked if I would expect a Continental. She explained that a truck just stopped at her gas station to ask for directions to my home. Luckily I was still at home and so I jumped into the car to get to the truck driver and show him where I live, as he did not speak our language at all.
I then guided him through town and we started to unload the car close to my home.
When the car rolled of the truck I was shocked! The once perfect vinyl roof was badly damaged. It was immediately clear that it was damaged on the truck of the long journeys last leg.

Problem was that I could not really talk to the driver and write something down. I took lots of pictures immediately though. So I called the trucking company and they said that I should send them the pictures. The next day they called and asked why nothing about the damage was written down on the papers when I received the car and that they probably would not pay because of this!!!

Looks like I will need a good lawyer now to fight with the insurance company.
I got a raw estimate from a good upholstery shop here for the repair which is for 60 hours of work + material.
You have to remove almost the entire interior of the Mark III, including the rear window mechanism with the glass and most of the weatherstripping to get access to the fasteners which hold the moldings in place. Most of the plastic fasteners also are no longer available - so you will have to be very carefully when you remove them.

The original top material of the Mark III was called “Cavalry Twill Vinyl“ and the only company which can offer a correct replacement top seems to be SMS Auto Fabrics

The material alone costs 475.- + shipping.

Besides the damage to the roof during shipment- the car is really nice. It drives beautifully and everything works as it should.
I already delivered the Mark III to my restoration shop to prepare it for the inspection for the Austrian license. We will have to convert the lighting system to go with Austrian law.
The first inspection showed that I will also have to install 3 new brake hoses, 2 upper ball joints and both outer tie rods. Got most of the parts already from - only the front brake hoses seem to be difficult to get and very expensive. Luckily I found a shop on ebay where they are available for half of the price of what most Lincoln specialists are asking.

Here are some pictures of when the car arrived - it got extremely dirty from the transport unfortunately.

as you can see it was squeezed in pretty closely into the truck - watch the beam just above the vinyl top...

The damaged “Cavalry Twill Vinyl“ roof

my first ride in the Lincoln

at home - saying “Hello“ to the Cadillacs

in front of the garage

in my old garage - together with our Roadmaster

first sunset in Austria

dressed for the first night...

at the restoration shop - awaiting inspection


A sailing date for the Mark III

I finally got some shipping details for my Mark III which is still sitting in the harbor of New York waiting for its shipment to Rotterdam in Europe.
It will sail on board of the “Hanjin Palermo“ Voyage 008E
Cut off at harbor NY: 24-JUN
Sailing: 28-JUN
ETA in Rotterdam: 14-JUL

So it will be around August before I can see the car for the first time... Its still a long wait.

The Mark III will sail across the ocean on this ship - the Hanjin Palermo


The Mark III is on it's way to Austria

The Mark III is now on it's way!  The truck came just before noon today to pick it up from Brian who also snapped the following great pictures. The car was loaded and left Farmington Hills, Michigan just before a big thundershower.
Sitting regally atop the trailer, the Mark III begins its journey to Austria, to begin a new chapter in its existence.  It will be quite a sight as it travels to the harbor of New Jersey from where it will cross the ocean in a container. I cant thank Brian enough for all the things he did to get the car to perfect condition - I have never meet such a great gentleman-seller before!

Thank you Brian!


New speakers, new alternator, new trunk lining material and a new windlace for the Mark III.

Today I got some new pictures from Brian, the previous owner of my Mark III, who is doing the final refinements before the car will be picked up next week.
He got a new set of replacement speakers for the car The right one had a tear in the cone. The left wasn't that bad, but the mounting part was starting to crumble.  Brian removed the wiring harness from the old speakers and soldered them onto the new, so they would plug in correctly.  He is a professional philharmonic musician and he said that they sound much better, no distortion and better frequency response. Brian got the speakers from the same source where I got the ones for my Cadillacs before - from Greg Thompson from Turnswitch.
Skip, the upholstery guy, installed the new trunk carpet - and as you can see on the pictures below - it turned out beautifully. He also installed a new windlace on the drivers side - which turned out perfectly as well. As you can imagine I´m really looking forward to finally get the car ;-)
When Brian thought that everything was fixed the alternator went out - so he replaced it as well and even installed a new battery! AWESOME! The speed control was also fixed and works perfectly too!

the windlace before

and after it was replaced...

The old connectors were soldered to the new replacement speakers

The old speakers

The new speaker installed on the drivers side...

...and the passenger side

The new trunk carpet - perfectly installed by Skip

The new trunk carpet - perfectly installed by Skip

The new trunk carpet - perfectly installed by Skip


The Mark III got new seat padding

While my 1971 Lincoln Continental Mark III is still in the USA and waiting for the shipment to Austria, the seller was so kind to have some things fixed on the car. The padding underneath the drivers seat became very dry and crumbled. So he took the car to his upholstery guy to have some new foam installed. While the car was there, they also installed a new trunk carpet set, a windlace and repaired the front window mechanisms to work perfectly. I cant thank Brian enough for having all these little things done before the car is leaving. He will also install a new set of original front speakers, fix a heater valve and repair the acceleration function of the speed control. He also already installed a new inside rear view mirror as the old one was “blind“.
Thank you Brian!

the foam underneath the drivers side was crumbling

pretty big hole

not much left

the new seat padding under construction

the finished new seat padding


I bought a Lincoln Continental Mark III

After searching for a 1970 Lincoln Continental Mark III for a while, today I purchased a 1971 Mark III from Brian Ventura, a very nice Lincoln Collector in Michigan. Before I found this car from this gentleman I tried to get my hands on 3 others, but always the deal fell through... Two were taken off of ebay before the auction ended. I had another one appraised in Michigan, which looked like a very nice car, but the seller did not keep his word. Although we had already fixed the deal and agreed on a price, he suddenly wanted $ 4.000.- more on what we had agreed on when I wanted to send him the money... I do not like this kind of games! As it turned out the car was also involved in an accident which was not repaired properly...
I then placed a “Wanted“ ad on the forum of the LCOC and Brian sent me a message that his car would be for sale. At first he was not sure if he really wanted to let it go, but after he saw that it would go to a good home he decided to let it go.
Today I sent the money. The owner will still generously fix some minor issues and at the beginning of May it will start its journey to Austria. It has been a pleasure to deal with Brian and I cant wait for the car to arrive.
It is a very nice Mark III and Brian took great care of it and fixed all mechanical issues and invested a lot of money into it.
Here are some very nice pictures of it which Brian sent me:

thats how it looks today waiting for the pickup - still in Michigan

a very clean and perfectly detailed engine bay with all correct clamps and hoses with all mechanicals done properly

The Mark III at the Motor Muster car show at Greenfield Village at the Henry Ford Museum in 2010

I love the cloth interior

The Mark III at the Motor Muster car show at Greenfield Village at the Henry Ford Museum in 2010

The car was exhibited at the 100th anniversary of Ford at the Wixom Plant where it was born in 1971

The car was exhibited at the 100th anniversary of Ford at the Wixom Plant where it was born in 1971

In front of the Ford building in Detroit


Everything about Gerald´s 1958 Cadillac Eldorado Seville, 1967 Eldorado, 1967 DeVille and 1971 Continental Mark III! -

Geralds Cadillacs

Here you can find lots of info about my 1958 Eldorado Seville, 1967 Eldorado, 1967 DeVille, 1978 Biarritz and 1971 Continental Mark III, their history, videos, pictures, restoration info and general information about 1967, 1978 and 1958 Cadillacs and 1971 Continental Mark III.

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