Hello Group, I have truly enjoyed the "Restoration" thread. I have a good friend named Charlie Dixon who is an expert at saviing original paint whenever and wherever possible. Even bikes with large chips and scrapes, under Charlie's careful hand, may often be "saved," along with original decals. By careful filling in, color sanding, and filling in, over and over, Charlie has saved bikes from a full restoration, which to my mind never have the charm of an original. Yes, in theory, the new paint that Charlie applies and "feathers in" to the old means the bike is not, strictly speaking, an original bike any longer. But it is very, very pleasing to the eye, and it satisfies my particular collecting sensibility. Also, when it is expertly done, no one is ever likely to detect his handiwork.
On a side note, another friend of mine restores vintage acoustic instruments. He tells me it is not uncommon for an older fellow to bring in an old Gibson guitar, say, that has been abused, sometimes by himself, or a family member. The owner asks how much a restoration would cost, and sometimes the cost of restoration exceeds the value of the instrument. More often than not, the owner asks for the restoration, regardless. The psychological comfort and uplift provided in such instances is most significant. It is as Garth Libre said in an earlier post: "The restoration is as much a restoration of the owner as it is of the bike."