Gil’s Garage

Gil Baumgartner
CTCI Authenticity Chairman


The Restoration Manual is a great tool for all 1955/56/57 Thunderbird owners. It was written for those that are restoring or just maintaining their Thunderbird as well as those that already own a restored Thunderbird. It was developed to provide information on all subjects, minor maintenance, servicing and up keep as well as body removal if one so desires. If you are having your Thunderbird restored by a shop it is highly recommended that they be provided with the Restoration Manual even if you are doing a modified car.

The complete manual with all the addendums has a total of 481 pages with pictures and captions. The subjects are too numerous to list. However a complete 13-page index with over 500 subjects is available on the CTCI website www.ctci.org – click on Car Tech, the third item down is the index which can be printed and used with the manual. The last 10 items on page 13 of the index are clarification or corrections on previous subjects.

I receive questions almost daily that are covered in the manual – example, today I received a question regarding the markings on a 1955 bumper jack base. The answer is in the manual. Looking in the index under jacks it refers to pages 73-77. Those pages show all three years of the Thunderbird jacks. Page 76 photos # 27 and # 28 show two types of jacks that are found in the 1955 models with detailed descriptions of both types. The second question today regarded lifting the body from the frame which can be found on pages 266-275 of the manual.

(click on pictures for larger images)

The manual with all addendums, the last and final being addendum J, is available from CTCI complete with binder. Future subject are available on the CTCI website under Car Tech, then Gil’s Garage. Currently close to 100 subjects regarding Thunderbirds can be found there.

I have been taking questions for 40 plus years regarding Thunderbirds and have learned a lot from research and other knowledgeable Thunderbird enthusiasts. Over the years this knowledge has been proven, documented and put into the restoration manual. If you own a Thunderbird the restoration manual is a good investment.

One last comment that was mentioned above and most members appear to overlook is a complete printable index is available at www.ctci.org.

Gil Baumgartner

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