PDA
View Full Version :

Welding Body Panels-Any Tips ?



itsmecord
11-06-2009, 10:29 PM
So as the title says I am looking for some tips on welding body panels.As it stands I am working on my wifes 72' Karmann Ghia.The car suffered some MAJOR nose damage when it met a deer.We picked the car up for $250 AKA dirt cheep for a ghia.To be honest we thought we got a better deal than we did.The car looked like an easy nose job would have it in tip top shape,but upon further inspection (at home) we found it needed the nose job,floor pans.rocker,rear fender work,and a few other little rust area's replaced.None of it is a bid deal and considering how hard these cars have become to find we still came out ok.
Here is what we have to work with.
http://i599.photobucket.com/albums/tt76/91suzukisamurai/ghia003.jpg
http://i599.photobucket.com/albums/tt76/91suzukisamurai/ghia004.jpg
http://i599.photobucket.com/albums/tt76/91suzukisamurai/ghia008.jpg
http://i599.photobucket.com/albums/tt76/91suzukisamurai/ghia007.jpg

---------- Post added at 11:29 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:24 PM ----------

In picture 1 and 2 you can kinda see a line from the hood to the headlight area...this is a BAD previous nose job.So I cut out the P/O's welds to evaluate the damages....It turns out this car had been wrecked a few times and had received multiple "attempts" at being restored.We found the car had 14..yes FOURTEEN layers of paint,and so far i have removed 25 lbs. of bondo from the car. Here is the car with the fender removed.
http://i599.photobucket.com/albums/tt76/91suzukisamurai/HPIM0441.jpg
http://i599.photobucket.com/albums/tt76/91suzukisamurai/HPIM0440.jpg
http://i599.photobucket.com/albums/tt76/91suzukisamurai/HPIM0439.jpg

Gadget
11-07-2009, 05:50 AM
Looks like you'll be busy for awhile. Also looks like a fun project.

---------- Post added at 07:50 AM ---------- Previous post was at 07:48 AM ----------

If you have a TIG welder here is an article on tacking that might be helpful. It references stainless but tacking is tacking.

Tacking article (http://www.weldingtipsandtricks.com/weld-stainless-steel.html)

itsmecord
11-07-2009, 11:54 AM
I have not worked on the car much...We really started busting tail the other day on it,and since then put it between 2 big tree's and stretched it out a little to make up for what the collision did to it.I have the nose hammered back into shape and only need to weld the seem shut.The fender has turned out not to be a big issue,after I cut it off I got out the body hammers and beat it back into shape,and welded it back on to the car.I am in the process of Frenching the tail lights,and will hopefully before we move to wyoming for college get the headlights started...we will be doing porsche style headlights that lay back.Soon I will get some pics of what it looks like as of now, ALOT BETTER !

arandall
11-08-2009, 07:54 PM
Cord:
Aren't the "Porsche" style headlights identical to all the old stlye VW beetle lights?
I bought a set from a wrecker, and believe it or not, am considering putting them into my '47 Chev. business coupe - haven't quite decided yet.
Too bad VW parts don't come cheap like they used to "back in the day"!!

Cheers,
Art R.

itsmecord
11-08-2009, 09:34 PM
At a glance yes,but to a person that knows and really takes the time to check it out they are different.The porche ones don't have the turn signals integrated if I remember correct. And they would look sweet in you rig !

robrob
11-09-2009, 07:32 AM
Take a look at these Eastwood.com welding helpers:

The first two are copper backing tools to help prevent burn through:

http://www.eastwood.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/250x160/5e06319eda06f020e43594a9c230972d/p37623.jpg
Welders Helper 3X3 Set Flat/Curve/AngleCop Plates (http://www.eastwood.com/metal-fabrication/welding/welders-helper-3x3-set-flat-curve-anglecop-plates.html)

4 and 8 inch magnetic Copper Butt-Weld Backer set (http://www.eastwood.com/metal-fabrication/welding/4-and-8-inch-magnetic-copper-butt-weld-backer-set.html)

These are panel clamps to precisely hold panels in while MIG welding:
Intergrip Panel Clamps Set of 4 (http://www.eastwood.com/metal-fabrication/welding/intergrip-panel-clamps-set-of-4.html)

Eastwood.com has a lot of great stuff for car restoration.

Rob

itsmecord
11-09-2009, 11:55 AM
Wow,the eastwood site look's strikingly similar to harbor freight.Thanx for the linx.

vault
11-13-2009, 12:07 AM
MIG is the way to go for auto sheet metal. Make sure you have a good seam other wise you will have the tendancy to slow down too much to fill in the gap and end up melting a hole in it.

itsmecord
11-13-2009, 10:03 AM
Thanks for the tip...I know all to well what you mean LOL !

robert
01-10-2010, 07:33 AM
Also try 0.23 wire it will help with burnthru, you can weld really thin with that wire.

arandall
01-10-2010, 09:52 AM
Cord:
You probably already know this, but don't do a long continuous bead after you have it tacked in place. It builds up too much heat and warps the metal. Take your time and just do short beads - about 1" or less, alternating locations (start - middle - end) so that the panel heats up evenly.
Hope that helps.

Art R.

bradler451
01-11-2010, 11:07 AM
I used to have a 1978 chevy c10 it's alot of work to get rid of rust but the final product when it's done is worth it stick to the project I would like to see how it turns out :)

itsmecord
01-12-2010, 08:02 PM
Thanx for the tip/encouragement. I have not worked on the car in a while now sadly....However I did start work (FINALLY !) at a restoration shop as a body man so I will now learn more,and have more/better tools to work with !!! And,i dont mind having a steady paycheck. It makes me feel like a little less of a failure as a father....Working on random peoples cars for $50 here and there was really stressful !

arandall
01-13-2010, 12:19 AM
Cord:
Good luck in your new job.

Art R.

KHK
01-13-2010, 08:52 AM
Congrats, and good luck on your new job!!!!!!!!!!!

bradler451
01-14-2010, 10:30 AM
Congrats man!!!!

Uncle Ed
01-14-2010, 11:21 AM
Now you can work on lots of cars and get paid randomly!

Good luck with the new job and don't tell them you have tools or you'll get asked to take work home with you!

Kiwimike
02-16-2010, 09:25 PM
If you are using a Mig, make sure all the metal is completely bare with no rust. Short welds are the ticket. Turn your polarity around to +ground and this will take the heat out of the metal, if your welder will let you do this.
Small spot welds through drilled or punched holes are good too.

barracuda
03-18-2010, 09:45 PM
itsmecord if you do not have a flange tool already invest in one (vise-grip style) dose just fine unless you plan on doing lots&lots of panals than go pneumatic. You will want to flange your vehical panal so your new sheet metal lays on flnged area.when welding suggest mig,stitch welding is best start about every inch to inch&half apart along complete seam than start over again til you completely weld seam let cool between passes this way you will have little or no warpage.

barracuda
03-18-2010, 09:51 PM
itsmecord if you do not have a flange tool already invest in one (vise-grip style) dose just fine unless you plan on doing lots&lots of panals than go pneumatic. You will want to flange your vehical panal so your new sheet metal lays on flnged area.when welding suggest mig,stitch welding is best start about every inch to inch&half apart along complete seam than start over again til you completely weld seam let cool between passes this way you will have little or no warpage.

whitescout
07-01-2010, 08:06 PM
So,.... how is the new job going, and have you done any work on your car?

ISKI
08-09-2010, 03:02 PM
I think that Tig would be great, but slow. I paid for college by fixing cars with a buddy in his garage. I would hold a large wet sponge on each sided of the seam (ice cold water). He would run a Mig bead as fast as possible while I moved the sponges along the seam to quench the heat. This resulted in almost no heat distortion to the panel. One would need to tap/grind down the bead as it bumped up (need some indent so you don't grind it all away). If it was an expensive car we would fill with lead and scrape, most cars got Bondo or Marglass. I would think that with a Tig you could eliminate most of the bump, but it would be 4 times slower and you would have to watch the heat.

wellis77
08-10-2010, 01:05 AM
How is the job and have you made any progress on the car? There is a guy on Viperalley.com building a Ghia with a Viper V10, custome suspension, all kinds of craziness. Would love to see where you are at with your build.

ISKI
08-10-2010, 07:47 AM
A Viper V10 should be tough to match. I can fit this V10, but it is out of my budget. Currently I need to remake the rear A-arms, Add some gussets, add some thin tube to hang the glass body, and make more aluminum interior panels. So I've done the brunt of the direction stuff, and am working the details. I can mount the transmission, suspension and most of the body today.