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  #16 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2011, 01:07 AM
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The only change I would make to your plan is in #8 where you plan to punch and plug weld the panel prior to stitch welding the top seam. Instead of plug welds I would temporarily screw the panel together at the flange, this way you avoid any disortion from the plug welds. Once the panel is welded you remove the screws and weld up the holes.

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  #17 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2011, 03:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lizer
ooh I just thought of something else.

When I make the initial cut in the old metal, 2-3" down from the body line. If I just make that cut first, and leave the rest of the panel still attached (or screw it back if I already removed spot welds), is there any reason I can't put in my panel clamps and butt weld the old panel back together to practice my weld?

I don't advise this.

Get some scrap metal or just take off the scrap piece off the car, cut that and practice on it. This is a good way to try a butt weld and try to planish out the shrinkage. If you learn this, you'll never be in doubt again.
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Old 03-17-2011, 06:38 AM
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When I suggested a full panel I was referring to ones that installs like the original and not a half panel. Sometimes the half panels are all you can get so that's what you have to use, but I believe you are working on a Mustang so full panels should be available. Full panels are a lot more expensive but well worth it because they save time and you will have less body filler and in the end a lot nicer job. Most of those splice panels (especially the cheaper ones) are very poorly made and are warped and distorted when you get them. Opinions vary and I'm sure you will do whats best for you and do a good job. I run a small body shop so saving time and using good quality parts saves money for me and gives my customer a better job. Good luck on your project!
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Old 03-17-2011, 08:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 39Hemi
The only change I would make to your plan is in #8 where you plan to punch and plug weld the panel prior to stitch welding the top seam. Instead of plug welds I would temporarily screw the panel together at the flange, this way you avoid any disortion from the plug welds. Once the panel is welded you remove the screws and weld up the holes.
You're right, that is a better way to go.

Brian
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2011, 08:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwa1015
When I suggested a full panel I was referring to ones that installs like the original and not a half panel. Sometimes the half panels are all you can get so that's what you have to use, but I believe you are working on a Mustang so full panels should be available. Full panels are a lot more expensive but well worth it because they save time and you will have less body filler and in the end a lot nicer job. Most of those splice panels (especially the cheaper ones) are very poorly made and are warped and distorted when you get them. Opinions vary and I'm sure you will do whats best for you and do a good job. I run a small body shop so saving time and using good quality parts saves money for me and gives my customer a better job. Good luck on your project!
X2. I will add that I've seen too many cars where the weld seam for the partial panel shows up once the car is parked in the sun and the metal starts expanding. If you can get full quarters, use them. The partial quarters are inexpensive for a reason.
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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 03-17-2011, 09:08 AM
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Now I have never done a full repro quarter let me first say that. But I would doubt they fit any better than any other repro part like a fender which is usually pretty bad. A complete OEM quarter, God yes they are MUCH easier than doing some splice job (other than a pillar splice of course) but an aftermarket? Man, I have to wonder just how bad of fit they are and doing the partial quarter would have to be easier.

Brian
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Old 03-17-2011, 10:21 PM
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The driver's side was a full quarter replacement. It was a horrendous pain to get it all to fit. I think I mentioned it earlier, I ended up giving up after fighting it all winter and took it into an amazing body shop in my town who did an amazing job putting it in. In the end I'm glad I did because I learned a lot in seeing what they did. I had to do the entire quarter because it had been all hacked up previously.

The passenger's quarter is not all hacked up, only has some serious body damage. I have more confidence in my welds than my ability to make a good fit. But I may be oversimplifying it. I'm almost positive I am. I also thought the full quarter install wouldn't be too bad.

The skins are made of the same metal, and even in the same presses as the full quarters. The reason they are more expensive is partly because there's a little more metal, but it takes a lot more time to make the full quarter. Several other parts have to be spot welded in place, and the panels need to be removed from the die in order to make the other bends. It's a more involved manufacturing process which means more $$$. At any rate, my Mustang supplier is always having big sales and they have free shipping on these, so cost isn't so much a factor on the parts I buy.

I'll practice a butt weld with the panel off the car then.

Every time I use reproduction sheet metal I do feel like I'm rolling the dice. I've lucked out thus far and the panels I've had (floor pan, full quarter, trunk lid, tail light panel, trunk extension, wheel house, strut support, battery tray and fender battery apron, front radiator support, rear trunk brace, door skin, front and rear valance) haven't been too aweful in terms of being dinged up or impossible to fit, though I might have to do some modification on nearly all of them, such as hog out a bolt hole to get it to line up properly, etc. Whenever I can opt to save or salvage the original panel I do. Original Ford tooling for the 67 Mustang model year is basically limited to hood, fenders, and front valance for sheet metal. There may be a few odds and ends but I think those are about the major parts.

Thanks all for the advice and comments thus far. It's a nice discussion. I do listen to and consider everything everybody tells me, and then weigh it against my abilities and goals. I've participated in threads before where the original poster is asking for help and advice and never follows anything that they're given. It's frustrating and in the end I chalk them up as an idiot and never help them again. I'll never be That Guy. If I really didn't want answers I wouldn't waste my time creating the thread in the first place.
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Old 03-17-2011, 10:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR
You're right, that is a better way to go.

Brian
So the plug welds are probably too much? Extra warpage factor? i guess if the full seam is being welded i can't image why the plug weld is necessary in the first place.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:11 PM
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Well the thing is if you screw it you have a lot more control. Just screw it, (I personally usually have enough Vicegrip C clamps to do the job and skip the screws, hardly ever use them) and then weld the seam.

Brian
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:06 AM
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For sure I'll have things screwed down. I don't start any welding until everything's screwed well into place.
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Old 03-19-2011, 12:47 PM
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I mentioned before that I couldn't seem to butt welded seams without having the seam shrink and suck inward. Is that a fact of life with welding thin sheet metal or is it my technique? (I am trying to cut the metal so that there is zero or very little gap although honestly I could have improved up on this part. I also am welding the seam as a series of tack welds, letting them cool. I am finishing the weld by grinding it down with the edge of a cutting wheel on a 4.5 in grinder with the wheel held at a 90 degree angle to the panel). Again, the reason I don't like this is because I can't access the back of the panel is certain parts and you are left filling this in with a coat of filler which I don't like (I'm sure it would be greater than 1/8 and perhaps closer to 1/4 inch at it's thickest point).

As mentioned above, with lap welding, I've heard that on some cars, you can see the seam even under paint in certain light. Any idea why this would be the case if the seam were fully welded?

Just as an experiment I might get one of those flanging tools and try welding a practice panel lap welded and one butt welded just to compare the amount of distortion I get.

Thanks again.
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Old 03-19-2011, 01:02 PM
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It's mostly technique as you can butt weld with very little to even zero "sinking in" depending on where it's at.

Here is the flanging tool I have and have used for many years. I don't like the air ones at all, seen them in action and I wouldn't have one. That goes for the hole punch as well, hand all the way for me with tools like these.

Brian



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Old 03-20-2011, 01:39 AM
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Thanks as always for the advice. I'm gonna do some practicing to get the welder dialed in and use zero gap butt welds on some scrap to see how I do.
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old 03-20-2011, 08:04 AM
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Butt welds are totally do-able so practice and get-r-dun.

Brian
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Old 04-03-2011, 11:38 PM
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Just an update for those of you that still even care...

I got the quarter cleanly off, kept all my weld mating surfaces in perfect shape. The new skin came in but was damaged so I am waiting on them to get me a new one.

I just wanted to say thanks so much for all the help, between all of your input and suggestions it has made me much more confident in this and I really feel like a pro going through all this (though I'm far from one), but it's only due to your input!

I took the old panel, cut it, and am practicing the butt welds. I'm happy with my welds. My beads are flat and have good penetration. Anyways, the practice panel is turning out great and I can't find any obvious warpage from what I can tell. I also have determined (after seeing the replacement panel) that I think I'm going to make the same on the top side of the quarter instead of the side of the car. I think it will be a little forgiving and less noticeable this way.
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