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what type of welds do most of u guys use when your doing body panel replacments i have a mig welder im trying to figure out what would be the best way to replace the lower quarter panel and a lower fender patch can anyone give me some pointers ive been welding on scrap metal and i think im ready to start patching up my ride
 

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Stitch-welding = welding an inch or so at a time, allowing the metal to cool down to prevent warping :) Do it in several different areas to save time.
 

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I agree with CDJr. and the link provided by Maxturbo is great. Use a low setting to prevent blow through and space out the welds to avoid warping. My son learned to weld in auto shop class in HS and has been teaching me. I practiced on some smaller pieces like you, then welded some pieces on the car that didn't really matter and could be covered up - like parts of the floor pans, on the inside, in the corner :) If you have it dialed, you should see an even heat ring around all the welds.
 

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A trick I have seen body shops use and have used myself to control panel warping is a soaking wet beach towel. You lay the wet towel as close to the panel where it is to be welded without covering the welded area. It will amaze you at how well this works to control the warpage of other panels or the one you are welding. The small amount of water that runs off of the towel to the area that is welded won't hurt the weld.
 

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Panel replacement

Everybody has there own liitle tricks for this one. Mine is using compressed air. I weld about 1/2 of an inch, then cool with a stream of compressed air. Don't let the panel get so warm you can't hold your hand on it. Jump around a lot. Weld at one end of the panel, then go to a different spot. Go to a body shop and get an old fender, cut a portion out, then do a practice patch on it. It's all about patience. Hurry through this job and you'll be kicking yourself. Good luck.:)
 

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I've built serveral custom vehicles over the past 15 or so years and I've done everything from rust repair, panel replacement, to custom body mods. All of the tips mentioned are good and work well. Patience is the biggest key to a good finish, but I watch time and time again something that most people overlook, and thats finishing the welds after the panel is completely welded in. Using a grinding wheel to knock down the welds can create just as much heat as welding on the panel. The trick is to use a flapwheel disc on your grinder instread. A coarse wheel such as an 80 grit will work quickly and leave a smooth finish. Flapwheels produce much lower temperatures and don't leave the messy "gouges" as a regular grinding wheel does. I just finished wleding a 6"x6" patch in my front fender and will require only a light coat of finishing putty to finish the repair...mush better than a couple applications of lightweight filler.

P.S. always use a quality "spray-galv" coating on the backside of patches on enclosed areas that can't be reached after completed.
 

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Thanks for that tip K-Man. I'am in the process of restoring a 66 Corvair Corsa Turbo conv. and I'll for sure use that one. :)
 

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Could you post a picture of the flap wheels you use on your grinder and where you get them?

Thanks
 

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well dang i must of done my panel wrong.I looked online and seen a pic with spot welds all down it to fill in the butt weld so thats what i did.I thought welding 1/2" would mess it up so i done it the spot way.This took awhille but its on now
 

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Great advice here. However, the link above doesn't work.
unfortunately over time if a thread does not get any new posts in it for "x" amount of time it will be deleted when they do a site clean up. I'm not sure exactly how long "x" is but I'm sure the admin could answer that.
 

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For the body panels, I only do spot welds. It may take awhile, but I do less heat damage to the panels (especially since I can't do finish bodywork to save my life). For the the panels that aren't seen, such as the floor pan, I use a stitch weld.

Using only spot welds on fender/body panels, I'm able to minimize the warping and more easily maintain the shape of subtle contours. Here is what I'm doing to the fenders of my truck project. I stretched the rear wheel openings 3.5 inches and dropped the front fender opening 2.5 inches. The tough part is that the lips of the fenders have compound curves, so the only way I could maintain the shape is to use spot welds only. You can see the result by looking at the rear fender opening of my Chevy II - I stretched those openings 5.5 inches the same way.



 

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Great info guys. Perfect timing too. I got the interior out of my Nova and found swiss cheese for a floor board on the driver's side. :mad: I knew the driver's front needed work, because I could see the shop floor (aka Fred Flinstone). :rolleyes: but the stupid jute padding wicked the moisture back to the rear as well.

I went to the local muscle car shop, and they had the Goodmark 1/2 pan in stock for $79. Woo-hoo! The only sucky part is that it's made in Taiwan. So much for keeping my American muscle car all-American... :( I'd prefer to use parts made in the USA or Canada (love the Speed Tech control arms I bought).
 
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