This can be quite applicable to motorcycles and cars… probably tractors and much more as well.
Motorcycles are my passion since early childhood . In 2nd grade, I wanted to have a motorcycle shop !
I’m of the “DON’T TOUCH IT !” person. My wonderful 2002 V-Rod has never been washed (lazy.) I Love it ! Everyone should try one…
Phone rings and a very good old friend says that his younger cousin bought a 1964 Triumph T120R Bonneville brand new in Alabama, and wants to sell it 52-years later. Not ridden for the last 40-years. . kicked over once in a while. Engine free. “Want to buy it ?”
Sure. . . not cheap. .I don’t dicker. Now I own it. Clean carbs without disturbing dust and grease ? Clean inside of tank, but not outside ? Leave tires alone. Make it a “rider” but don’t clean it to look almost new ? (Do not do that ). All the way restoration or leave it alone.
NEVER ! ! be tempted to touch up a little chrome with a “bit” of silver paint ! That is a KILLER move. . DON’T DO IT ! You can’t un-do it easily.
“ORIGINALITY CAN NEVER BE DUPLICATED !”
A friend named Tom Phillips said it best of riding a “perfect” restoration. . but this is in reverse. . It is like a “New Crayon”. . draw one picture and it will never be NEW again! A “Barn find” that is upgraded will not be as it was.
We did a 1951 Harley servicar that was a “barn find”. A great mechanic friend from 7th grade, was able to put in a new “Rubber Ducky” carb float without disturbing the grease and dirt externally. A couple wires were repaired, then covered withhold friction tape and hand scrubbed with dirt and sand / gravel.
It ran and we all rode it. New owner rides it. . .Loves it “As-Is.”