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Old 02-13-2009, 04:35 PM
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Truck bedside bottom edge stretched, how to fix?

I am fixing the bed on my buddies truck and am having trouble with a bedside that has been bent up from the bottom. I have moved it most of the way back with my hands and some bad hammer work, but can't go any further because of the stretched metal I believe.

I am wondering if a heat and cool cycle will work here for shrinking or could I resort to slotting the metal with my cutoff wheel so I can move the bedside bottom edge back down then weld it back up? Red lines are where I thought I would cut it if that's what it takes.

Any opinions appreciated .
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Old 02-13-2009, 05:46 PM
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If the bottom of the bedside was just bent then there is likely little or no stretching in that area. Although depending on how it was bent and the exact constraints of the panel you could end up with some stretched metal.

I think your best plan of attack would be work the metal off dolly, the objective here is to move the metal around and not stretch it. Hold the dolly behind where you don't want it to move and hit where you want it to move. The key is light taps if you start thrashing away you will not be satisfied with the results.

If you get to a point where you just cant seem to tune it in perfection you likely have some stretched metal and the best way to shrink and automotive body work is a shrinking disc. Do a search here and on metalmeet.com regarding the use of a shrinking disc. You could use a torch but it doesn't allow for the same controled shrinking that can be easily achieved with a disc.
Good luck
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