Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: the Big Sky State
Quarter Panel Replacement on a '65 Chevelle
Thanks to everyone for the welcome.
A few things, I am by no means a pro. I had never done real body work before. This was my first try. My dad used to run a small body shop years ago. He moved on to other things in the early 1990's, but had worked on a lot of these 60's and 70's cars throughout the years. He coached (baby-sat) me through this job.
I know that there are many ways to do a job like this. My understanding is that the most preferable way to fit the replacement panel would be to butt weld it with a TIG welder. You can also butt weld with a MIG, lap weld, use a panel flanging tool and flange weld and a few other creative ways to go about it.
I certainly learned a lot about the differences between the ideal world and the real world. For this job, we lapped the panels and used sheetmetal screws to fit them into place. Then went in with a MIG machine to weld the lapped seams and fill the holes from the sheetmetal screws. I orignally wanted to try to butt weld the replacement panels but it became apparent pretty early on that if you were to do that, you would need to invest a very significant amount of time in trimming and fitting your replacement panel. Gaps greater than about 1/8" anywhere along the seams creates lots of extra work.
These replacement panels are Goodmark, they are not bad. Of course I'm sure there have been better quality panels made, but these actually fit pretty well. Overall, we were happy with how things went together.
To finish this job I will spend lots of time grinding, filling, sanding, filling, sanding, priming, sanding......sanding.....and more sanding. For the back of the seam I plan to use seam sealer on the inside of the lap to keep moisture out and refinish the inside of the trunk. And then when that is all done I will do the other side...
I just want to repeat one more time, I am not a pro.......this is a learning experience for me, but here are a few pictures of the job.