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Old 10-23-2006, 02:45 PM
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Metal plugs for filling firewall holes??

Okay, I have a number of holes in the firewall that I will be filling and will likely need some filler peices. While I realize I can (and have) cut my own plugs I was wondereing if anybody had come up with a better solution than setting down with a pair of tin snips and trying not to to loose large amounts of blood in the process??

Thanks folks.............John

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Old 10-23-2006, 03:13 PM
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The coolest way I have ever seen I learned from the Covell "Basic metal working" video. He took a whole punch (I have a couple of Roper Whitney ones) and punched a hole in the doner piece. He then used a step drill to drill the hole out he wanted to fill to the same exact size as the plug he just made from the doner metal. The punch puts a "center punch" mark in the center of the plug that stretches the plug a little bit. When you put this plug in the hole with a dolly behind it and hammer on the plug it spreads out holding the plug in the hole!

That and welding it in with a jewelers torch using .023 MIG wire as filler and you can make some super awsome repairs.

This trick is in the first five minutes of the tape. I stopped the tape right there and told my wife, THAT trick was worth ten times what this tape cost, I could toss it in the garage without even watching the rest and feel good.

Brian
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Old 10-23-2006, 03:13 PM
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Here is a thread that shows the way I do it.
Econo punch

You can also go down to the local sheetmetal fab shop and fish around in the slug bin for slugs of the right size. If you cant find the right size, get bigger and drill the hole out to fit.

Hope this helps,
mikey
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Old 10-23-2006, 03:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRork
Okay, I have a number of holes in the firewall that I will be filling and will likely need some filler peices. While I realize I can (and have) cut my own plugs I was wondereing if anybody had come up with a better solution than setting down with a pair of tin snips and trying not to to loose large amounts of blood in the process??

Thanks folks.............John
Gloves . but that is obvious, I do a rough cut and grind to fit holding the piece with vise grips , I also use a magnet to hold the plug in place on the firewall for a tack weld............ then again you could drain all your blood
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Old 10-23-2006, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR
The coolest way I have ever seen I learned from the Covell "Basic metal working" video. He took a whole punch (I have a couple of Roper Whitney ones) and punched a hole in the doner piece. He then used a step drill to drill the hole out he wanted to fill to the same exact size as the plug he just made from the doner metal. The punch puts a "center punch" mark in the center of the plug that stretches the plug a little bit. When you put this plug in the hole with a dolly behind it and hammer on the plug it spreads out holding the plug in the hole!

That and welding it in with a jewelers torch using .023 MIG wire as filler and you can make some super awsome repairs.

This trick is in the first five minutes of the tape. I stopped the tape right there and told my wife, THAT trick was worth ten times what this tape cost, I could toss it in the garage without even watching the rest and feel good.

Brian
Great Tip! I'll remember that one!

On my 49 Hudson the orginal tub firewall holes that weren't used had a punch-out tack welded into place. Instead of trying to redo all of the holes I opted to fill any unused holes with a washer that was the right thickness and radius tacked in place as the factory did and then I mig welded the center hole closed and ground the welds.

It's not the smooth look a lot of folks go for but it will look like the Hudson came from the factory with no holes punched through the factory cut-outs.

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Old 10-24-2006, 05:05 AM
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I'm with Pepi...I've been fillng the holes in the firewall of my 48 p/u for the last two days. I either borrow a plasma cutter or just use my cutoff wheel to make rough cuts and then grind them down to where they are snug, then use a magnet to hold them in place while I tack them. For the small holes I just hold (or have someone else hold) a piece of copper on the engine side and then weld from the inside of the cab.

Barry
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Old 10-24-2006, 05:35 AM
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Good advice on the video.. where can I pick that up?
I'm always looking for good information!
Quote:
The coolest way I have ever seen I learned from the Covell "Basic metal working" video.
We did the cut and fill method on this mustang engine bay. Took alot of time but the results are woth the effort.
Good luck,
Scott!
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Old 10-24-2006, 06:00 AM
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The only problem with magnets, is that it messes with a mig weld. I generally tape them. Quick tack or two, and it's there.

If you have a helper, hold a piece of metal on the firewall, and have the helper draw the line inside the hole. Cut to the outside of the line. Just be patient. It's simple. Use 19 gauge (or 20, if you can't find 19).

If you think plugs are tough, try to match contours of the firewall where a section of roll bar protrudes through it!!! Thats a challenge !

Paper works awesome, because it bends in only one direction like metal. The metal piece is actually easier, because it will stretch.
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Old 10-24-2006, 08:16 AM
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These are great tips. Thanks a bunch. The Ron Covell tip is cool. Ill have to try that. I also found in a magazine last night that he also sells an assortment of plugs for this already cut. You just drill out the hole to make a nice tight fit.
Thanks again everybody................John
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Old 10-24-2006, 12:55 PM
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Using washers for hole plugs

Buy yourself a Bunch of different sized washers through a cheap parts outlet. use a magnet, another bolt, or just anything that suits your fancy to hold it while tack welding. The washer doesn't have to fit perfectly in unseen spots or should fit closely inside the hole for a clean surface fit that will be seen later.
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Old 10-24-2006, 07:36 PM
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plugs

Buy fender washers. smaller hole and larger OD.....just my .02....GlennK
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Old 10-24-2006, 08:18 PM
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Covell kit for hole plugs

I picked up one of Covell's kits @ the Street Rod Nationals a few years ago. I think it was around 20 bucks. Nice assortment of plugs ranging from about 1/4 in up to 1.25 inches - about 10 different sizes in all. These are 18 gage thickness.

Use a step drill & drill out your hole to the plug size you prefer. A little hammer & dolly work will hold the plug tight in the hole - no need for magnets or other devices.

To me, this is a great time saver.

Good Luck

Mike.
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Old 10-24-2006, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UR50SLO
Good advice on the video.. where can I pick that up?
I'm always looking for good information!

Scott!
Scott, Covells videos and tools are available at his site (click here). He is a super stand up guy who I have always felt very comfortable doing business with, a real quality guy.

I have a few of his videos and they are all very good.

Brian
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Old 10-24-2006, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
Scott, Covells videos and tools are available at his site (click here). He is a super stand up guy who I have always felt very comfortable doing business with, a real quality guy.
Thanks for the link!!!! I've got it saved in my favorites!!!

Your the man Brian!

~Scott
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Old 10-24-2006, 09:16 PM
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There is a ton of great info on this thread. Many thanks to all of you for the willingness to share your experiance. Cant wait to get after it.
Thanks again
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