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Old 03-13-2004, 07:07 PM
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I have seen the light!

Not too long ago we were talking about welds. Butt welds, lap welds, flanges etc...when Randy popped in and offered up http://www.metalmeet.com and a couple of pictures.

Being that I have an active interest in metalshaping, I went to the site. I found a guy by the name of Wray Schelin who fabricates Jaguar panels (among other things). He lived about two hours away from me, but I shot him an email and asked if I could serve as a shop hand. He quickly got back to me and said I could visit this weekend.

Well I just got back. I spent most of the day helping Wray with an old rare Chrysler door...I say helping, I mean HOLDING the door over a post dolly while he worked it with a slapper and a hammer.

Maybe sounds boring to some of you, but it was damn interesting. Here's why. He tig-welded this skin (that he probably hand formed) to this door. He lightly ground down the welds...colored the door with a magic marker and hit it with 120 grit disk. This was like a guide coat..showed the highs and the lows.

Over to the post dolly we went, to stretch out the metal. Again, it was colored with the marker...again it was hit with the 120 grit. I felt this door, the now INVISIBLE weld seam...and it felt awesome to me. Wray was not satisfied. He continued to stretch, color, sand, stretch, color, sand...

This door was damn close to perfect...but CLOSE to perfect isn't what Wray is all about. He kept on keeping on.

I was there from 10AM until about 5PM, during that time, we mostly focused on this door. By the time I left, he related that we were about 1/3 done (due to where the door had to be welded it was extremely difficult to work the metal).

I am just amazed. With practice and an understanding of the mechanics of metal you CAN put a car back together without bondo. For the most part, I figured bondo was a fact of life...most especially when dealing with some kind of welding..seems it's nigh impossible to get rid of the small imperfections left after welding...this is not true.

If you got this far..you should really check out metalmeet.com it will be worth your time.

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Old 03-13-2004, 09:45 PM
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Hi Unstable (bet you're even more unstable now!!!)
Glad to hear you had great time working with Wray. You won't find a better, more knowledgeable metalshaper than him.
You're right, CLOSE isn't in his vocabulary. PERFECTION is all he will accept. I'm sure you went away with a few new tricks.
Did you get any pictures to share with us???

Randy Ferguson
Metalshaping & Kustom Paint
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Old 03-14-2004, 08:30 AM
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actually no...even though I brought the camera, I didn't take any pictures. Since he was working to put food in his mouth...I didn't waste time taking pictures...maybe next time.
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