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Wow! our site needs life support. If it weren't for one of Mitch's perpetual projects and John's clock the lights would be out.

In an effort to breath some life into the site I'll post some pictures of my project. It contests of freshening up the drive train, rebuilding the long abandoned AC system, detailing the engine compartment, dash and carpet.  

So far the engine looks good and the evap is holding pressure, kind of an improvised test kit but it's holding pressure. 

I'm taking some welding classes and going to tackle some small floor pan repair.



-- Edited by dashboard on Saturday 6th of February 2016 09:32:19 PM

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Kevin

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I'll be watching for the AC resurrection as I have one in the garage for the 66 that need attention.



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Well the hardest part was starting the first cut. Watched several Eastwood videos and did some reading on MIG welding, then just jumped right in. The welds need some grinding, seem sealer and paint but I'm ready to jump to the other side. This is my first floor pan install, it's also my first attempt at welding, I think with time I'll improve.

Engine is on is on its way to the machine shop; Nailhead's are big, ugly, heavy and expensive to work on but holy-ge-gosh do they make torque 445 ft lbs at 2800 rpm.  



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Kevin

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You're doing fine with the welding. I HOPE you invested in a couple burn blankets to protect the door panel and surrounding glass from all the sparks created by cutting, welding and grinding.

I would suggest more plug weld holes on the other side for strength and use the drill screws to hold the pan tight to the floor so you aren't trying to fill an air gap between the layers with the weld. I try to keep plug welds no more than an inch apart.

Take the excess from this pan, cut it up and practice getting the welds level by setting the wire speed down some and/or moving the nozzle faster while filling the hole. Makes for less grinding...cool

This is the trunk pan I put in my '66 Malibu last winter



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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Good suggestions Mitch, hopefully by the time I get to the trunk my welds will improve. Welding is one of those things I always wanted to try but never have.

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Adding yet another skill to your toolbox Kevin.

And of course... no Dashboard car project is complete without the use of some actual wood (2nd pic with the floor section out)!  thumbsup



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And twine, it's holding up the exhaust system.



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Lost in the 60s wrote:

You're doing fine with the welding. I HOPE you invested in a couple burn blankets to protect the door panel and surrounding glass from all the sparks created by cutting, welding and grinding.

I would suggest more plug weld holes on the other side for strength and use the drill screws to hold the pan tight to the floor so you aren't trying to fill an air gap between the layers with the weld. I try to keep plug welds no more than an inch apart.

Take the excess from this pan, cut it up and practice getting the welds level by setting the wire speed down some and/or moving the nozzle faster while filling the hole. Makes for less grinding...cool

 

 

 

 I hate to say it but I actually did and do practice. It's not the same as laying on the floor with the seat mounting bracket pocking you in the ribs.    



-- Edited by dashboard on Wednesday 24th of February 2016 01:14:44 PM

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Kevin

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Looking Good!

See??!! That metal stuff is almost as easy as that cellulose stuff. Best part is if you cut it too short, you can weld on more and cut too short again!!

Glad you're learning this (valuable) skill, and enjoying it as you do. The more you practice the more it just comes naturally - amperage, feed, "working the puddle"...

I hope your classes have stressed safety and proper gear. It's a PITA to "suit up" just to tack a few things together, but you'll never believe how FAST you can strip off a sneaker when a molten blob drips on your foot!! Unless you already have, the fastest way to become a better hobbyist welder is to invest in an auto-darkening helmet.

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John D. - St. Louis Park, MN.

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Nothing wrong with practicing to develop a higher skill level. You probably weren't great at that 3 letter word thing the first few times either, but you kept at it...laughing



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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Looks like you are doing fine. For me its about learning and expanding the skills and knowledge, hopefully to use the next time, and the next to do better.
Michelangelo did not show up at the Sistine Chapel for his first day of work.

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Lost in the 60s wrote:

 You probably weren't great at that 3 letter word thing the first few times either, but you kept at it...laughing


 

 I found that to be much more natural Mitch, certainly more comfortable and enjoyable. One question Mitch.  You did take the helmet, coat and gloves off...right?

 

    



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dashboard wrote:
Lost in the 60s wrote:

 You probably weren't great at that 3 letter word thing the first few times either, but you kept at it...laughing


 

 I found that to be much more natural Mitch, certainly more comfortable and enjoyable. One question Mitch.  You did take the helmet, coat and gloves off...right?

 

    


 Yep, she said she wasn't attracted to Darth Vader..dunno



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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Getting some shop time in, moving forward with the red project.  No work today however, I got subbed out to put up Christmas lights.



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looking good!

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Now that's eyeball deep in CAC...hyper


Total strip, powder coat and rebuild of the rolling chassis ?



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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Let me guess... those Christmas trees are on wooden bases with wheels on them, right?  beers



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SShink wrote:

Let me guess... those Christmas trees are on wooden bases with wheels on them, right?  beers


 No there not wood. It can get pretty windy on the front porch when the winds out of the SW off the river. We have some concrete pads that are 20"X20" and 3" thick, used as a sidewalk before the addition. There heavy, the tree stands are fastened to them, there not going to move, we tested them to 100 MPH. We have added two more trees since the pix was taken and there is one more coming.



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dashboard wrote:
SShink wrote:

Let me guess... those Christmas trees are on wooden bases with wheels on them, right?  beers


 No there not wood. It can get pretty windy on the front porch when the winds out of the SW off the river. We have some concrete pads that are 20"X20" and 3" thick, used as a sidewalk before the addition. There heavy, the tree stands are fastened to them, there not going to move, we tested them to 100 MPH. We have added two more trees since the pix was taken and there is one more coming.


So exactly how did you test the tree bases at 100 MPH?  Did you strap one into the bed of the Elky and go for a little test run?  gearbanger

Thought I'd attach a pic of when I found the red Buick at the car corral at the Buick show a couple of years ago now I think?  I'm sure it'll look much nicer when you're all done!  notworthy



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Stan S.-Twin Cities Northland

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Thanks for the oldie pix, still haven't desided on a color, at the rate I'm going I have plenty of time. Leaning toward black top, body and interior or black with red interior, or a color similar to the Elky.
I just knew the with engineering back ground you wouled want to know about the fictional wind tunnel testing so here's a pix of the operational test. And yet more trees have gone up, can't seem to control ourselfs.
We got our first measurable snow so the cars are in for the winter. But I did drive them last week.
I stopped working on the car long enough to build an extension for my blast cabinet. When done I'll be able to blast parts up to six feet long. It installs very quickly with the original door remaining in place, when not in use it will be removed. Frames done tomorrow I'll work on the shell. It all started because I want to blast the core support And some other long parts.



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When I removed the fenders prior to taking the body off the frame I found this surprise. The drivers side cowl shoulder had suffered damage in its earlier life. I could have left it that way, once the fenders installed it would never show, but it was a training opportunity I couldn't pass up, if I really muffed it up I'd just stick the fender back on.
There are no Buick parts available but Chevelle parts work with some tweaking never hurts to learn how to tweak so I jumped right in. Kind of a cut and paste project, cut out the old, trim the new and weld it in.

Now to rebuild the core support. Found a guy in Canada that hand makes core support parts for 65 Buick GS's. 



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Isn't it amazing what other hacks will leave unrepaired to save time ??? The Chevelle parts should be exactly the same, as GM used the same pieces for all the inner structure. The mis-match comes from the repro parts not matching the original very well. I have to "tweak" nearly every part for my Chevelle as well.

That core support needs some ironing from a crash too. Any interest in finding a better one from down south and having it shipped ? I have a left door coming for my '66 from southern Kansas for $53 FedEx shipping.

I installed one of those Buick support mount repair kits on a '68 a couple years ago. It replaced the lower 4 inches of the support face and the mounts. It did fit OK.



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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Your doing great Kevin.  It is really amazing what is covered up.  When I saw that car at the Buick show I would have never guessed it need that kind of work.  It will be pristine when you are done.beers



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Thanks Jim, I was a bit surprised myself. I may be over doing the repairs, some could have been with smaller patches. The car is actually very sound, nothing like Mitch's project. The only bad spots were pin holes in the floor boards at each seating position and the trunk floor around the fwd body mounts. The rear fwd body mounts are the Achilles heal in these cars, the mount brackets corroded early, just poorly designed.
The cross braces, rockers, floors, fenders, doors, trunk lid and hood are in excellent condition, in fact they are ready for paint. The rear quarters need some work aft of the wheel wells, I'll be cutting those open next. Then all thats left is the core support, it needs repairs to the headlight mounting body's. I had them hand made in Canada by Wolf Steel Enterprises, they do nice work on parts that are not repoed. Most of his stuff is done for very high dollar collector cars mostly imported stuff. The core support was damaged at some point but also has the typical battery corrosion. The Special and Skylark have the battery on the pass side on, in the GS it's on the right side because the 401 starter is mounted on the drivers side.
Once the body's done it will sit until summer, in the mean time I'll work on drive train, suspension and interior. I plan to bust down the frame tomorrow and have it blasted hopefully next week.



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Nice piece, that will eliminate all the bendy issues.


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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Well there's a first time for everything, I was surprised, all but one bolt came out fairly easily. The frame is in excellent condition, making me wonder if it was replace. Anyone know if the frames were stamped with the vin back in 1965.
Ball joints are original with factory rivets still in place, it also looks like the shocks and springs have never been replaced. That would explane the flotey mushy ride.  

Amost got it done today but I got drafted to do some domestic chores. 



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dashboard wrote:


I just knew the with engineering back ground you wouled want to know about the fictional wind tunnel testing so here's a pix of the operational test. And yet more trees have gone up, can't seem to control ourselfs.


Thanks for the explanation Kevin.  I suspected leaf blowers of some kind were involved.   thumbsup

I forget the past life of this one... was it an upper midwest car, or did it come from down south somewhere?  With so little rust, I find it hard to believe it lived in MN very long.



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Here's a little history on the car. It it was built in Kansas City then delivered to the new owner about 100 miles south of the plant. The second owner then took it to St Louis, were it stayed for 30 years. It then went to Minnesota were it would stay until I bought it in 2014.

As I fuddle along with the restoration with some help I also researched the cars past ownership. I have spoken with three previous owners. I spoke with the original owner, we had a great conversation. He’s a little older now but he clearly remembers walking into Gribbe Motors in Parsons Kansas and going through Buick brochures then ordering the car. His new Buick GS was delivered on June 12 1965. He was 27 years old then. He’s now a retired doctor.
He told me a great story, here’s the Readers Digest version. In the spring of 1967 he drove the car into Mexico. South of Mexico City while driving in the mountains the temp and alt lights came on, the engine had badly over heated. He pulled the car over shut the engine off and secured a ride back to Mexico City. There were no Buick dealers in Mexico City so he went to a Ford dealer. The dealer went out with a wrecker and brought the car back to the dealership were it was diagnosed with a failed water pump. A new pump needed to be shipped from Huston Texas. He spent a week in Mexico City awaiting repairs.
The Ford dealer replaced the water pump and he began his journey back to Kansas. On the return trip he said the car lacked performance and the engine just didn’t run right. When he returned he took the car to a local Buick dealer were it was determined the engine block was cracked and needed to be replaced (this may explain the LT engine code vs LR). With the car just over two years old he traded it in on a new Buick.
He has fond memories of the car and greatly appreciated the current pictures I sent him. He is going to dig out his old photo albums and have copies made of some Kodak Instamatic pictures from 1965-67 and send them to me.
I look forward to talking with him in the future and sharing my progress with him.

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If the frame was stamped with a partial vin, it would be on the top rail, left side behind the rear tire between the last 2 mounts. It should have the assembly date stamped in the face of the rail directly below the area of the partial vin.

Nice back story on the car. I wish I could find previous owners of some of mine, but MN won't do that for us.

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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Kevin, that's a great story.  I don't think I ever heard that part of the car's history.  I don't think I'd want to break down in Mexico City! 

I'm exactly 2 hours north of Parsons, KS.  Let me know if you need me to pick up any Kodak pictures or any other documentation from the original owner.  My math says he is now about 78 years old, right?



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Lost in the 60s wrote:

If the frame was stamped with a partial vin, it would be on the top rail, left side behind the rear tire between the last 2 mounts. It should have the assembly date stamped in the face of the rail directly below the area of the partial vin.

Nice back story on the car. I wish I could find previous owners of some of mine, but MN won't do that for us.


 Looks like the Kansas guys stamped in a different spot. This was just below the driver's door, aft of the body mount. It is the original frame buy the way. 



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Cool ! Maybe GM moved the location after '65 to make it more "hidden" ? Both my '66's are on the top rail, under the trunk pan. One is from Atlanta and the other from LA.

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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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When prepping the frame for the blaster. I found this little guy with his food supply stole away inside the fwd frame.  Been there for sometime, I think he may have Minnesota origin.



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dashboard wrote:

When prepping the frame for the blaster. I found this little guy with his food supply stole away inside the fwd frame.  Been there for sometime, I think he may have Minnesota origin.


 I found his lost cousin in my seat frame about 8 years ago when I re- did my seats.



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I've finished my blast cabinet extension and have been blasting in it. Works great!
The frame is back from blast and paint. It was blasted, primed then two coats of satin epoxy were applied.
Now to get the springs on order and start assembly.



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Wished we lived closer again Kevin!  I'd be over to help you with the chassis re-assembly, and maybe to use your new and improved parts blaster...  beers



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Love to have you here Stan. I miss being able to run up the 'need help' flag and have members stop by to help or going to someones house to help out. I always learned something doing that.

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A94A8FD2-9DA8-401A-B051-1C7FFF407B68.jpeg4A3A3929-4D34-4CEF-9BF6-7252EC13D5F5.jpeg91C57D5E-FB44-4750-9D22-5632E2039490.jpegEF6A3D0B-12E6-4D65-BF4D-48D4C6A1F270.jpeg915D48D7-EACB-4D08-8B35-7113274E7FA8.jpegAfter two year intermission I got back on the project for a bit. The body is back on the frame all 14 frame to body bolts lined up perfectly. Still a paint job and assembly behind Bruce. For now the body and frame are back in the trailer while I work on the fenders, hood and trunk deck.



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There ya go, having the body off the roto and on the frame will be inspiration to make more progress.

The hard part is done. The next difficult step is deciding on a color and finding a competent painter to trust. If you can do it yourself, like Bruce, you have control over the process and outcome.

Having 2 buildings now, I can separate much of the clutter and "stuff" I didn't want to try to protect from overspray at the old place. I am seriously developing an idea on building a curtain "spray booth" in the "new" shop this summer, along with a myriad of other mods the current building needs to be able work year round.

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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Looking great Kevin. Wish I were closer so I could see in person.



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"The next difficult step is deciding on a color and finding a competent painter to trust. If you can do it yourself, like Bruce, you have control over the process and outcome."

Thanks for the vote of confidence Mitch, but thse might be mutually exclusiverolleyes



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Sitting at home dreaming stuff up during stay at home time.
I've reached the point where the doors will be going on and off the body several times for fitment, alignment, block sanding, painting and finial assembly. After researching available door dollies and stands I sketched out a door dolly that adapts to my transmission jack. The transmission jack affords pitch and roll in two axis plus up and down, I added a couple more adjustment, twist and bend; this will allow me to dry fit and mark the hinges prior to final installation. If one is good two must be better and their reversible, that is the door can be mounted facing in or out. In for tweeking and installation out for painting.

All made from leftover steel used to reinforce the body when it was on the rotisserie and some left over Rustoleum paint.

Next, two more jigs, one for fenders and one bumper installation.

 



-- Edited by dashboard on Monday 13th of April 2020 12:27:39 PM

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dashboard wrote:

Sitting at home dreaming stuff up during stay at home time.
I've reached the point where the doors will be going on and off the body several times for fitment, alignment, block sanding, painting and finial assembly. After researching available door dollies and stands I sketched out a door dolly that adapts to my transmission jack. The transmission jack affords pitch and roll in two axis plus up and down, I added a couple more adjustment, twist and bend; this will allow me to dry fit and mark the hinges prior to final installation. If one is good two must be better and their reversible, that is the door can be mounted facing in or out. In for tweeking and installation out for painting.

All made from leftover steel used to reinforce the body when it was on the rotisserie and some left over Rustoleum paint.

Next, two more jigs, one for fenders and one bumper installation.

 



-- Edited by dashboard on Monday 13th of April 2020 12:27:39 PM


 Looks like a patent might be in the makings.  And made in the USA.  Looks great Kevin



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Looks great but I am a little disappointed that no wood was used in the making of the fixture.  razz



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jim larson wrote:
dashboard wrote:

Sitting at home dreaming stuff up during stay at home time.
I've reached the point where the doors will be going on and off the body several times for fitment, alignment, block sanding, painting and finial assembly. After researching available door dollies and stands I sketched out a door dolly that adapts to my transmission jack. The transmission jack affords pitch and roll in two axis plus up and down, I added a couple more adjustment, twist and bend; this will allow me to dry fit and mark the hinges prior to final installation. If one is good two must be better and their reversible, that is the door can be mounted facing in or out. In for tweeking and installation out for painting.

All made from leftover steel used to reinforce the body when it was on the rotisserie and some left over Rustoleum paint.

Next, two more jigs, one for fenders and one bumper installation.

 



-- Edited by dashboard on Monday 13th of April 2020 12:27:39 PM


 Looks like a patent might be in the makings.  And made in the USA.  Looks great Kevin


 Wow, yes, very cool.



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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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SShink wrote:

Looks great but I am a little disappointed that no wood was used in the making of the fixture.  razz


 Oh Stan, you know me to well.

MOD II, the fender adapter, currently on the drawing board utilizes an arching wooden cradle that fits into the fender wheel well opening to support the outer side of the fender. I want to be able to install and remove the fender with the tire installed and the car resting on it's suspension. 



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Kevin

Northwestern Ohio



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dashboard wrote:
SShink wrote:

Looks great but I am a little disappointed that no wood was used in the making of the fixture.  razz


 Oh Stan, you know me to well.

MOD II, the fender adapter, currently on the drawing board utilizes an arching wooden cradle that fits into the fender wheel well opening to support the outer side of the fender. I want to be able to install and remove the fender with the tire installed and the car resting on it's suspension. 


Now that's the Kevin I know!  beers



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Stan S.-Twin Cities Northland

1971 Heavy Chevy Tribute 350 c.i./TH350

1997 Pontiac Trans Am LT1/6 Speed Manual

Forum influenced terms: 'Link Paste', 'Stanitized', & 'Revolving garage door...' 

 



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Things are happening here, slowly, but there happening. Finally starting to put some panels is primer sealer. I installed doors, fenders and set the hood in place just to check body lines and panel gaps. All gaps were at 3/16” +or- a smigin with the exception of the drivers door, it had. 5/16 gap where it meets the rocker panel. Somewhere in the cars past demolition derby career the drivers door was replaced. I welded a 1/8 rod along the bottom and it fell right in. Then the fenders and doors came back off and I shot them with black 2k epoxy primer sealer. Still need to prime the rear of the car and the hood and trunk have not been touched yet.
But its something and its going in the right direction.



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Kevin

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5 minutes a day plan...gets a car built.
Looks good.
Do you want patch panels to fill the butchered speaker holes ? I have a couple doors here I've been trying to sell for years and get no interest. If you want, I'll cut out what you need before I give the rest away or scrap them.

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Mitch D.   River Falls, WI

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Some Assembly Required

1966 Chevelle SS 396 M20

1970 Chevelle SS 396 M20



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Lost in the 60s wrote:

5 minutes a day plan...gets a car built.
Looks good.
Do you want patch panels to fill the butchered speaker holes ? I have a couple doors here I've been trying to sell for years and get no interest. If you want, I'll cut out what you need before I give the rest away or scrap them.


 Thanks for the offer Mitch. I've made a repair panel for the area, after the vent window and door glass assembly is installed I will install the patch panel using a 3M adhesive. For now it's handy access to reach inside the door, I still need to spray soundproofing inside the door.  



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Kevin

Northwestern Ohio

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