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mistermuscles 12-08-2004 12:08 PM

1934 Chevy (Replacing Wood With Steel) QUESTIONS
I am going to replace the wood in my 1934 Chevy with steel. How would I go about doing this?

Would I use steel tubing? And where would I put the steel to brace the body?

Also, if anyone has done this, and has pictures, I would GREATLY appreciate it if you could send them to me at

I have never done this before, so I thank you for your patience and answers!

Take Care!

mobythevan 12-08-2004 02:59 PM

I don't have answers for you , but I am replacing the wood in my 34 pontiac with steel. Everything in the pontiac was wood, all the pillars and structure. The toughest part I guess is re-attaching the door jamb steel plates so that the fit and finish looks somewhat original. I am using sqaure steel tubing that mostly matches the original dimensions(1", 1.25",1.5"). I guess I will then shim the original steel pieces and tack them in place. It is going to be a long process. The biggest thing pacing me is deciding what to do with the surface rust on the inside of the body before I put steel structure back over it, covering most of it up from future access.

John Kelly 12-08-2004 03:54 PM

I don't know if this will help, but I've done some tubing and flat bar constructs for welding sheet metal to:

You can form square tubing using a hollowed out stump or a pair of 2X4s nailed to a bench to pound some curve into the tubing. Or get a compact bender from:


MARTINSR 12-09-2004 08:23 AM

My brother and I did his 22 Buick roadster. This body had NO structure what so ever, we are talking sheetmetal skins nailed to the wood.

He designed most of it and did an amazing job. The first thing you have to remember is not to get locked into any particular metal size, use what makes sense at the particular place you are working on. Also, only use the wood that was there as a "guideline", don't try to duplicate it, you are REPLACING the wood right? If you wanted it perfectly the way it was you would be using wood. :)

On the larger pieces like the hinge pillers we used 3x2 eighth inch wall tubing. We made a template to the shape of the body with poster board and then using a band saw cut the outside of the tubing to match the body. Then, welded a strip of metal down the edge of the tube, makeing it a tube again. We left the inside straight, so all the way around the door all the pieces are straight. On your taller 32 doors, I would think about bending the tubing or after cutting it like we did, weld in your strip, then cut the inside and do the same. You can end up with a piece of tubing exactly the shape you want.

There were areas we only used angle iron, there were places where 1 inch tubing was used. Just use the right steel that makes sense. I have to tell you, we could pull the interiour out of this car and show it, the stucture, all painted nice looks that good.

mistermuscles 12-09-2004 10:41 AM

Thanks A LOT guys!!! I Appreciate your Advice!!

mobythevan 12-09-2004 12:05 PM

I'm going to buy a bender like that, it will make life so much easier.

Randy Ferguson 12-09-2004 08:48 PM

A sheet of 18ga sheet metal, a bending brake and shrinker/stretcher combo will put you in good shape too.

Randy Ferguson
Ferguson Coachbuilding

davidfaulkner 05-11-2011 11:05 PM

34 chevy wood replacement
I in the middel of wood replacement on a 34 chevy at this time . I have traveled to AZ from Maine . to do this job . For a body shop with no fabrication tools. I have ben in the fab biz for 32 years . The first step ,go to harbor tool ,for a shrinker , stercher ,beverly shear, and asmall and brake. The total cost was about 450 bucks. Then went to a steel shop and had them form up a bunch of 16 ga. Into .750 by 1.00 and upto .750 by 300. And started fabbing . Ihave 2 weeks to getterdone! So far im smokin thru it good luck! And hope this helps.

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