I attend our monthly Porsche club’s dinner/meeting on a regular basis because I love Porsches and other Porsche owners. Lately, I’ve noticed a change in membership. Living in South Florida in the 90’s, Porsche meetings were much different than they are today. Most of the conversation revolved around our next planned track day and what modifications/upgrades you made to your Porsche in advance of the upcoming track adventure.
As a company, the 90s were dark days for Porsche. If someone attended one of our monthly meetings and announced that Porsche would offer the GT3 and GT4 we likely would have told him Donald Trump stood a better chance of becoming President! If you wanted your Porsche lower, stiffer and faster it was accomplished with bolt on upgrades and engine tuning. You had to get your hands dirty to achieve Sport Plus, you didn’t simply press a button on the dash.
Fast forward to 2017 and the Porsche line-up offers more than we could ever have imagined in the early 90’s, only 25-years ago. Imagine what things might be like 25-years from now? At our recent club meeting I was involved in a heated conversation revolving around Porsche Connect Plus, Apps and connectivity found in a lot of new Porsches. All things I know nothing about. Current Porsche owners are a different breed with different expectations and thank goodness for that. In 25 short years Porsche has climbed out of a very serious hole and now offers the most incredible lineup of automobiles imaginable. Which makes Porsche owners like Bernie Dennison that much more of a treasure.
Bernie is a retired Dentist. However, his dental practice was never open more than 27-hours a week because he much preferred to spend time at his other business, B. Jay Engines & Fabrication in Columbus, Ohio. As the owner/ operator of B. Jay Engines & Fabrication, Bernie knows as much about metal working as he does filling cavities.
Now retired, most days Bernie can found working on his 1965 Porsche 356 SC. A project that came to him with not much more than a roof and a drivetrain! As of today, Bernie has completed all the metal work on his ’65 356, rebuilt the engine and the car is just back from paint.
As you saw in the video, Bernie handled the break in procedure in his shop right in his back yard!
There isn’t much Bernie cannot do in his home shop and there isn’t much Bernie hasn’t done over the years as it relates to automobiles. Bernie raced extensively with SCCA for over 30 years and in fact built his own racecar twice. Why? Best I can tell, it was simply because he could!
We eagerly anticipate the 1965 356 SC roaring to life and seeing it on the roads of North Carolina. Don’t plan to see the 356 on many show fields, this one will be a driver and the driver knows how to drive.
In the event the 356 needs adjustment or repair, Bernie will simply drive it home, diagnose the issue and repair it. Removing the engine, making the repair and still driving the car to dinner would be normal for Bernie. It is refreshing to know the only diagnostic equipment that will ever be needed for this 356 are Bernie’s ears and hands.
If you’re at all interested in learning to work on your own Porsche, I highly recommend you take advantage of your local club, find the closest person to you that still works on their own Porsche and spend some time getting to know them.