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Getting started on body work



I stopped by American Auto Painting & Body to check in on progress and discuss some issues that they've run into that I'll touch on in a sec. 


But first the good stuff.


They have begun to strip the body down to metal. Luckily they haven't uncovered a ton of Bondo or any unexpected rust. The body is really straight and relatively ding free for it's age. 






They've also been able to remove the old nose and hang the NOS replacement clip I  bought from @m-tuner - thanks Bruce! They had to clean up some minor dents on the clip from it having been stored and moved around over the years, but otherwise the clip was installed without any issues and looks great. 




They've also started to do some dent removal and patching. 




Now on to the not so good stuff.


At some point, the rear was bumped hard enough that it bent the internal trunk supports, specifically the center one between the spare well and gas tank. This caused the surrounding metal to buckle a little. They need to go in and straighten that all out. I'm already having them go in and replace the spare tub and some rust on the gas tank surround, so they address this while they're in there. 




The big surprise and the reason they called and asked me to drop in: fender fitment. I had purchased 1 driver and 2 passenger aftermarket fenders from WN.


Unfortunately, none of them fit. The gaps are completely off by more that a 1/8 inch up by the nose and close to a 1/4 by the doors, and the panel bolt holes are no where close to the frame bolt holes. Not good quality at all. For anyone considering these for their build, don't waste your time and money. Get OEM sheet metal instead. Lesson learned.




Luckily for me, the body guy says he can salvage my original fenders and used the WN ones to patch the rust on them. Whew!


That's it for now. Hope to post an update on the body work in a couple of weeks. 




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Looking good, James.  Bummer about the fenders.  I have a set of  fenders I got from Restoration Design which I think uses the same source as the WN fenders.  I wonder if they're as geometrically challenged...

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I also got a set of sub-standard WN fenders.


The mounting flange was mis-shaped, and the mounting holes never lined up - I made a paper template from the old fenders' flange (what was left of it from rust) - and trimmed accordingly on the new WN fenders. Also had to drill out the blinker holes and reshape them with a hammer and dolly to more closely match OEM. In order to get the gaps with the doors correct we welded on some washers around the mounting holes.


If you've got the money - buy the OEM stuff, but if you're on a tighter budget prepare for some labor if you want proper fitment right out of the box.

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My 1972 2002 tii is in the same state ,the hardest thing to do is getting the gaps correct in metal, I worked 1 month just on the driver door gaps being a rear quarter was installed wrong in the 1970s I ended up leading the front of the quarter at the door to match the passenger door gaps , quality takes time,  how much do you want to spend  Bruce

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