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  #61 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2017, 10:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR View Post
The one thing I am concerned about is the setting of the car back on it's wheels. This is a must do when hanging quarters and such but I really have to wonder if it's a good idea on a unibody like this that has been completely disassembled. If it were me it would be clamped to the frame rack or something similar to keep the body from shifting. The forces on the front sub frame going up would have to move that floor a LOT, I am thinking this is a bad idea.

Brian
Maybe tack the old roof back on temporarily to help as well?

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  #62 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2017, 02:19 PM
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One thing I learned from crash fixing with computerized equipment is that unibody dimensions do not change with "mechanicals out", but having the body bare allows more points to be measured. So, in my theory, with the body all screwed together AND to the properly positioned subframes, the running and rolling gear can be in or out for the sake of measuring. There should be no deflection of the assembled body and chassis. Of course this was taught to me on "mill and drill" full unibody cars, and a 70s Pontiac is another matter entirely. It should be just as stiff but only about half as accurate on dimensions.

What would thrill me here is to see a jig built (or maybe connectors are already in place, other than the floor???), to hold both subframes in proper relation to one another. Then setting the body (rockers) just as squarely over that, then from there up... panel fit and comparative measurements (side-to-side) will get you to home plate.

I've just never back-halved anything myself. Like Brian said, if it was us doing it we would want pinchweld clamps on the rockers or a jig made to fit. Like Pugsy says, if you are involved in the manufacture of car body parts, you should not have too much trouble with this. Its a matter of scale, and I just want to know your foundation is the square-est it can be without hassling anyone too much.
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Old 06-09-2017, 04:53 PM
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Panel and structural panel replacement on 77 firebird trans am

Ok, so fit this panel right as it sits now? That's where it was when i cut it apart and everything was braced, so idk why that wouldn't work too. The benefit in doing it this was being I avoid all the flex and load concerns we've been talking about from the suspension. How many yays and how many nays do I have??


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  #64 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2017, 09:01 PM
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Which panel, the inner roof? Yes, you gotta start somewhere so go, do. But don't weld, just screw. Make the weld-on panels fit the body with screws... then... Assemble the body, mount everything to it, set the car on all fours and see where you're at. I keep wanting to glance under the car. I'm a little freaked out by the bracing being all on top but I reckon it is effective. I guess its that way so you have all the room to play underneath the car.
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Old 06-13-2017, 04:52 AM
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Panel and structural panel replacement on 77 firebird trans am

See the sketch below. I think the vending moments make the ends of the car wanna roll in, or the floor bow down, however you want to say it. I didn't think I needed bricking on the bottom of the car. Also, I think the tubing frame running all the way through the car is a brace in itself. The cage I have welded in, although on the top of the car, should provide side to side roll bracing. Which are you concerned with?




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  #66 (permalink)  
Old 06-13-2017, 06:31 AM
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I'm not. Put it together. Is a vending moment after you insert coins but before the beverage arrives?
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Old 06-24-2017, 11:54 AM
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Hey guys I wanted to post here and see if you have any tips for me. I'm putting pieces together as of last weekend. Agsin, I think moving and fitting things together 100 times will get me to where I need to be, but I was hoping you guys may have some tips to cut it down to 50 times. Here's what I have:

I am mocking the full rocker up. It seems like I am higher with it than the factory one was at the cowl, but the top of the rocker is still not meeting with the quarter and the inner quarter structure by about 1/4".


Here's a shot showing what looks to me to be proof that the front is already too high.


And if you look closely in this one you can eye ball it and it sure looks like the base of the DS is a lot higher. This may have been like this from the factory but I sure seems strange.


The angle on the rocker is about .3* with the back too low (relative to the front door post). The PS is still welded in from factory and is 0.0. Side to side is difficult. I place the angle finder on the cowl but depending where I put it I can make it say anything I want from .1* to1.8*. The top of the roof shows .3* with the DS needing to come up more!!






Roof


Any thought on what to do short to get me closer before I go hanging doors and everything? The thing that gets me is that since this is all sheet metal it bends around and I could probably beat stuff with a hammer a little and make the angle finder say anything. For example; the a-pillar legs will flex in or out a little, so who knows if the angle I'm reading on top is right? Again, pretty sure fitting everything will get me there, but I'm looking for a short cut. Why the rocker isn't meeting up with the quarter in the back is the biggest pain and cause for confusion with this. I can keep beating snd cutting the cowl upwars, but I already think I have pushed it higher than where it was.


Also, as I mentioned before, I will be putting flush mount glass on this car, but I was hoping to put it off awhile as I just bought a 1970 firebird. My plan was to fit the factory glass in and make sure gapping around the window was consistent. The flush mount stuff fits in the factory opening so if I get that right the flush mount should plop right in in my opinion. Is this a mistake? Do I need to fit the ACTUALLY pieces I'm going to be using?
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Last edited by Schroeder; 06-24-2017 at 12:09 PM.
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  #68 (permalink)  
Old 06-25-2017, 11:24 AM
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Fit actual parts to be used or risk being sorry. Using angle finders is not measuring. Check dimensions on the replacement pillars, they were probably made with sectioning in mind rather than full replacement so they may not fit like the original or even match each other.
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Old 06-25-2017, 08:08 PM
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Well I think everyone is pretty well so in the camp of having to test ft everything to see if my panels are on right, but I'm going to keep posting here through out this process. If you guys see something I'm doing wrong tell me.

The back of the rocker at the quarter seems too low by about 2mm, but the front is too high by 10mm. I just did some quick figuring and I think I'll lower the front to fit. It will only be a .4* incline from front to back if I do that.

Here's the spot on front that I think is showing I'm too high.


Here's the same spot on the donor car.


Here the rear at the quarter.



What should the quarter to rocker gap be? I'll fill this with bronze/magnesium (i think that's what it is) weld later.


I busted out the clecos I ordered a couple months ago and man are they sweet!! Freed up quite a few vise grips by using the clecos.




Current angle.


PS factory rocker


Figures for lowering the front 10 mm and raising the back 2mm.


How it looks inside against the floor pan.






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Old 07-15-2017, 05:44 AM
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....Anyone see anything that looks odd from that last post? Any red flags or should I continue in the fit up?

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Old 07-15-2017, 09:09 AM
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looks like you're in love with that angle finder. Looks like you air chiseled the part out without even first addressing the welds with grinding. You should only do that on rust. Never on something strong enough to tear out the welds like that, or on convertibles. You may have moved it yourself. Worth looking closely for any weld to see if something is causing it not to mate where you want. The Support looks off and worth also checking the rails. Cowls usually lean back but not with that much off unless there's other noticeable damage. Pillars tend to twist too but you're not at that point yet. The support will need to be level and if not means you'd be spreading the solution around with cheap fixes to hide it. You're investing too much time with angles and angle finders and haven't even hung the door. Hang the door. These cars don't fit perfect and parts aren't perfect but you can make them fit perfect, but stop wasting time with that angle finder. A laser level works great for quickly pointing out things that are wrong being you are on level ground and all the tires are filled the same or level on stands/rack/etc
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  #72 (permalink)  
Old 07-15-2017, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schroeder View Post
....Anyone see anything that looks odd from that last post? Any red flags or should I continue in the fit up?

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At what point are you going to be able to hang the doors and see how they allign with the cowl, rockers and quarter panels?

John
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  #73 (permalink)  
Old 07-15-2017, 09:34 AM
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Panel and structural panel replacement on 77 firebird trans am

Well I have everything fit "good enough" to try hanging the door. I made a little improvement since the last post with all the pics. I pulled the rocker off and am prepping it to weld. I would suspect that adjustments will have to be made and the rocker WILL have to come off again. However, if I get lucky and things line up pretty good it would suck to have to pull for weld prep, re-hang it, and then basically start the whole fit process again, so I'm getting it ready now. For me this consists of grinding the EDP off where the floor pan flange will mount and spraying weld thru primer where I took the EDP off. After that I'll re-hang, align, and fit the door to the new rocker and factory quarter. Next I'll put the roof skin on and align it all. Next I'll do the rocker business I'm doing now on the PS. Then I'll do the quarters- one side at a time.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that I will mount all the front end components too before moving on to the other side and welding everything.


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  #74 (permalink)  
Old 07-15-2017, 09:36 AM
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you should fix that support and hang the fenders and hood too. That cowl is important for all of that, so if you expect something fishy than you should do that. Use some screws or temporary tack in a few places. Might as well have it prepped in case it fits perfect.
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  #75 (permalink)  
Old 07-15-2017, 09:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tech69 View Post
you should fix that support and hang the fenders and hood too. That cowl is important for all of that, so if you expect something fishy than you should do that. Use some screws or temporary tack in a few places. Might as well have it prepped in case it fits perfect.


Which support?

Sounds like your plan is my plan. We posted at the same time. See my post right before yours.

Thanks for the input fellas.


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