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How to fill holes? and other questions

3758 Views 7 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  bullheimer
Well i am new at auto body but good with engines. I can do the bondo stuff with no problem but i have a ranger i would like to know how to fix some of the holes on.

What my main goal is to learn how to do a little bit of auto body. I have a 57 chevy truck i am soon going to be working on, and it needs some work. I thought first it would be best to practice on my ranger to see if i can accually do some of the work.
There are some holes and rust spots on the ranger and if all the autobody goes well i am going to put a 302 in it.

What sort of tools do i need to get? I know that is a big question and there are lots of tools that are out there but if anyone could give me suggestion like, What type of welder do i need? Or can anyone recomend a book or something?

My family is good with getting cars running and going fast but no one really knows how to do auto body. I thought i would be the first to start

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Well I can make anything with a hammer and metal, and a welder too :D

Depends on how deep into bodywork you want to get. If you just want to learn to patch bodypanals and do the basics go to the RBBO site I have a whole section of step by step how to's on the subject to get you started, if you need the link message me if you can't find it on here somwhere.

As for tools to justt get started, a little wire fed mig welder, some hammers and dollies, air compresser doesn't hurt a bit, a good grinder, some cutting discs, a micrometer, a D/A orbital air sander if your got the air compresser to go with it. Some sand paper from 36-180 grit, or if your going to prime and paint to 36-600. Some sanding blocks, I like the thick rubber ones as well as the half inch flexible rubber ones. A filler grater makes life easier, looks like a cheese grater.

Also if you don't have very good patients, a heavybag and a BFH (Big Frikin Hammer) that was toned down for the children :D . All of that stuff isn't a must have, but it makes everything alot easier, autobody isn't as hard as you think, just takes time, a smooth touch and good eyes.

Let me know if you need some guidance after you check out the how to's in RBBO site, be glad to help.

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fallow his advice ive started dooing my own body work couple mounths ago it wasnt that hard well the second time it wasnt 1st time i just cut it out and started over
just dont quite untill YOU are happy with the results
If you buy a wire feed welder, you MUST buy a grinder. It's the law. Some GOOD hand shears and a nibbler would be nice. If you have a steady hand with the grinder, geta small hand grinder w/ a cut off wheel. Oh. unless I forget, safety shield or goggles and band-aids. I don't know this from personal experience....I've read about it. Ya, that's it :rolleyes:
OOps, almost forgot. Remeber eigth grade science. I forget this lesson ALL the time. Heat transfer. If it gets hot on the top, then the backside gets just as hot. I'll weld something and "grab it from the bottom to be safe" I've airmailed many a panel and bracket getting a reminder of this lesson.

[ July 15, 2002: Message edited by: Madd Syntst ]</p>
As an old time bodyman I'll give you a little advise. Before you go whole hog and rush out to buy a lot of equipment, check with a local jr college and see if they offer a class in Autobody. Although I don't agree with everything they teach nowdays and think, well KNOW I could teach a better one, you will go a long way towards your goal if you attend a class. After that, the ICAR classes are a very good way to keep up. Everyone makes mistakes, but a little education will make them a lot less painful !!!
If your still wanting to fill those holes on your ranger the best way is to put a penny on the backside of the hole and then weld overtop of the penny, weld wont stick to the penny...

[ July 19, 2002: Message edited by: BuggyMan303 ]

[ July 19, 2002: Message edited by: BuggyMan303 ]</p>
Hey Andrew,
Before you go out and buy a welder, ask some buds if they have one and try it out first. There are a lot of welders on the market from a few hundred to a few thousand. You can pick up a decent welder for home for around $400.00. You could probably pick one up used for less if you shop around. One important thing when you do get a welder is to make sure you get one with a gas hookup. You use argon with the welder. This makes for a cleaner weld and to me is as different as day and night. You can rent a large argon tank for around $6.00/mo. and usually a deposit fee of around $30.00 for the tank. A larger bottle will last quite awhile and is around $25.00 to refill each time. For home use you may have to refill once or twice a year if you are not welding on a regular basis. For doing body repair a welder is a must though. Along with a grinder,some dollies, clamps, and a good set of cutters or shears. As far as the metal shears go I would buy a GOOD set of straight shears and you could get by with a cheaper set of L.H. and R.H. shears. When the travelling tool shows come to your town stop in and pick up some tools for a cheap price. Use them and see how they work. If you decide to really pursue autobody repair then you can always replace the tools with better over a period of time. You will need a good book or hang with a bodyman for awhile to find out how some tools work. Using hammers and dollies is a great lesson in itself. One wouldn't thing so but there is different hammers and dollies for different jobs. Pick hammers, shrinking hammers, etc. Body men of today is nothing like body men of yesterday. Good luck and let us know your progress.


[ July 23, 2002: Message edited by: Kevin45 ]</p>
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i'm just like you, i can build motors but cant find my *** with both hands when it comes to bodywork. i have layers any layers on the back of my truck, -none more than an 1/8" thick, so i hope they stay on. i know i've sanded off ALL the filler i had put on more than once wasting hella time. i try to trade out work with body men, neon signs or motorcycles or whatever, had to pay $1000 to my body guy to fix both cab corners and a door hinge, so it is very spendy. if i was a girl, well, i better not say that. my buds where i used to live pounded panels and they each had about 20 different hammers and christ it took them hours and hours to do anything-at $35/hour (cheap!) nothing left there for less than 2 g's. even for one fender. (they didn't use bondo)
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