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Found 16 results

  1. It seems like more often than not, I start these blog entries with a statement about how “it's been a while since I posted/did anything/blah blah blah”. This one is no different. If you want to get to the car progress skip to the mug shot of Shop Manager Poncho. Its been a while since I posted an update, but I have excuses! The last one was February and now it's July, which makes me feel like a lump. But! I did continue to work on the car for a portion of the time between now and then. Recently though, we moved out of our rental with a one car garage and into our first home which has a detached 2 car garage! Most of my weekends in March and April were consumed with house hunting and mortgage chores so I didn't get much done. We moved in the first weekend of June and have been setting up things ever since. The house is mostly unpacked and the garage is coming together. I inherited a 4 stroke leaf blower and weed wacker from the previous owners and bought a Cub Cadet. That brings our cylinder count up to 30 not including the '02 in Maine. There is a slight sag in the center girder of the garage so I have plans drawn up for replacing it with a W8x24 I beam and other goodies. Once the I beam goes in I will be able to utilize the area above the garage as a nice doghouse for when I'm in trouble storage area. The small workshop in the back will suffice for now. I got some pegboard from Lowes for 10 bucks so that will help with organization for now. It's so much more space than what I had. It's a great size (for now). Also, I got a great Craftsman 33 gallon compressor for a six pack of IPA. I think the seller just wanted to show off his awesome garage and new shop air system... Obviously I have plenty of plans for the new place, after the I beam goes in, I'll be running a 220V line from the garage sub panel and picking up a AC/DC TIG welder. I have my eye on an Everlast PowerTIG 200DV right now. They are a great bang for your buck from what my research tells me. Don't tell my wife. So last time I ended with my installation of the rear driver fender patch panel. After that panel went in, I moved on to the driver rear quarter patch and learned a few more things during and after the installation. Most notably I found that you want to planish the weld spots with the on dolly method kind of heavily, but not too heavily. If planishing was making grits, you'd want them to be “al dente”. When you tack weld the panels you add a little material then cool it rapidly which causes the metal around the weld to shrink. By planishing the weld, you flatten the tack weld out and effectively add metal to the shrunken area of the panel releasing the inward dent you just created. This is obviously an acquired skill, one that I don't fully or even half-ly(?) possess yet. It's like golf - how hard can it be? The panel went in nicely using the same weld, planish, grind technique. The old one had about a 1/4" of Bondo on it. This car has clearly been well damaged over its lifetime. I had a little warping so I tried to planish it out with limited success. Then I tried heat, which was the completely wrong thing to do. I was on a role so I figured, why not? And found out quickly why I should not. The patch panel warped even further and took me even longer to get it back to a point I was somewhat happy with. I moved to the front of the car and pulled out the HVAC panel that goes between the engine bay and the heater core. It's welded to the inner fender wings in a few spots and welded to the center hood release bracket in a few million spots. Once I got it out, I began cleaning it off and finding some pitting and holes in the panel. I will be cutting them out and welding in new metal. I'll have to replace some of the metal on the hood release bracket because there is so little metal left from where all the spot welds were. Then I started looking at the very first welding repair I did to the car, the passenger inner wing which connects to the frame rail. It looked gross. I hated it. It came out. Along with that I cut out the passenger frame rail that I fabricated. There was just too much distortion from rust in the engine area. I couldn't justify leaving it there. So I cut it out and destroyed it, effectively making it impossible to undo what I had just done. I fear that I'm turning into my father by keeping everything. To combat the transformation I destroy anything I think I might need in a year or two so that I am forced to throw it away. Anyway, I purchased a new passenger frame rail from W&N. They were having a sale, and with the flat rate shipping they do now, it was over $100 cheaper, not including shipping, than from our North American suppliers. The new one came in and I started fitting it up, checking all of the chassis dimensions from the nice binder W&N sent me with all the exploded views, chassis dims, and badge placements. I guess they feel sorry for you once you spend a certain amount of money with them. I was pretty shocked to find that everything lined up within their plus/minus 1mm tolerance from the factory. I was able to breathe a sign of relief. I started remaking some patches that I had done with the flux core because they looked absolutely terrible. I was able to use the bead roller to make a similar contour to the factory passenger foot well. I have to make the bottom part of the passenger inner wing again unless I can source a donor for that area. If you have one available please PM me. That's pretty much where I left off. It was hard to keep moving when I knew I was going to have to pack it all up and move the whole project. I just started slowly packing the garage instead of working on the car. Now we are comfortably settled in at our new home so work on the car is starting to come around again. Hopefully more updates coming soon... P.S. Good on you if you got the My Cousin Vinny reference.
  2. ok, photo heavy post coming up! i'm trying to catch up on documenting the body work/welding that occurred on the old 1602, so this should bring it mostly up to speed. lets get down to business. the nose needed a lot of work, particularly towards the bottom. here's the drivers side after the welds and then after grinding: and heres the passenger side: ok, lets move on to the trunk! it was bad. I did my best. I think I preserved at least 15% of the original spare tire well, but it is all solid steel now! that stupid thing took me like 40 hours. You'll notice in this photo too there is a patch in the rear of the drivers side rear wheel well, and I kind of remade the bottom of the arch that goes over the wheel well. not my best work, but structurally sound and rust free! I had to do the same thing for the passenger side rear wheel well. there was also a patch I needed to do towards the middle of the shock tower, which you can see in this photo: and the surround of the gas tank was pretty much gone, so I ended up replacing most of that with by mad fabrication skillz as well. you can also see where the new lower rear fender has been welded in. what you cant see is where a new lower rear bumper skirt thingy has been welded in too! ok, so this is a lot of work. make sure to take a drive in another classic vehicle that you've finished rehabilitating, if you have one. this will help to remind you of why you're doing all this: and then get back to work. the rear left fender was very bad, and the wheel patch you get from wallontesch wasn't going to cover it! this photo also shows the new inner wheel fender welded in place: and here's the whole bottom side of the passenger side fender from the door back all welded back together: now do the same thing, but on the driver side! and heres the final result of the drivers side fender replacement: and with that, we'll call the welding mostly complete for now. sheesh
  3. First, thanks for all the productive comments in my last entry. Please keep them coming! I don't know if I should be grateful for that link to MP&C's tutorials or if it is an “ignorance is bliss” type of scenario. Regardless of the situation, that Garage Journal thread has been a complete time suck but incredibly motivating and answered my previous questions about master auto body technicians – Yes it can be made perfect. This guy does it with all his panels. Here is the link, again. After reading pages and pages of the thread, trying out different things then venting my frustrations to my loving and patient wife; she hit me with a very stark remark. “Comparison is the thief of joy.” Truer words, one might say. And I am most certainly one who would say that. Not to make this any longer, but here are a few pictures from our trip to the 24 hours at Daytona. It was a much needed trip out of dodge to a warmer, sunny (read bitter cold and rainy) place. This is my 4th or 5th outing to the 24h race and it never disappoints. The M12 was not in the E21, I looked. She looks good in a red 356 right? One thing that has changed that I was bummed about is that you can't stand next to the fence at turn 1 of the tri-oval anymore. That was always a religious experience. There was a new BMW “art” car by Baldessari. I put art in quotes because it was far from an art car if you ask me. If you go, make sure to get the garage pass, it is well worth the extra 25 bucks or so and will satisfy all your late night hunger for fast and furious race car repair. Anyway, that was just a few pictures. I started piecing the driver side rear wheel well back together. Taking advice from the comments as well as the Garage Journal thread, I took the time and filed the wheel arch panel to fit without gap. This took a few hours but it was well worth the time. I first cut the panel long then roughed it into shape slowly pausing to make sure that when I removed metal in one area I would not be creating a gap in another. I took my time filing the panel down to shape. I made indicator marks on the body so I fit the patch panel up the same way each time. I finally got it to fit up very well with great consistency in the contact between the panels. I neglected to mention that I did all this because I found rust between the original panels eating into the inner and outer fender. Throw away the butt welding clamps! Or only use them for test fitting a panel. I will never use them for the actual body sheet metal welding process anymore. Here is what I found. When using the butt weld clamps you have to bridge a gap, albeit small, with filler. This causes a huge heat dump into an edge of metal. The heat has only half of the material to dissipate into since it is not contacting the other panel yet, thus you have a very good chance of burning through the panel not to mention almost 100% chance of warping. To account for this, you may turn your heat down on the welder (#1 on my Hobart), and maybe turn up the wire feed. However, if you butt the two pieces of metal together the heat can dissipate into both panels making it less likely to burn through the panels. With the panels butted together I had my welder set to #3, a whole 2 clicks up on heat, with a slow-ish wire feed. The slow wire feed kept the weld proud low but the weld penetration remained complete. I did not burn through the metal once. I used the spot weld, planish, grind method outlined in the Garage Journal thread with good results. Honestly, I wasn't sure what I was doing or looking for at first. I slowly started to understand the on dolly, off dolly planishing techniques and how they actually work, or don't work. The process, as I understand it, goes like this: 1. Fit up the patch panel snugly and tack in place. I don't know how far to space the tacks, but I tried to space them about 6 inches apart and had what I think were good results. 2. Planish the panel to fit the contour of the body. I noticed that the wheel well patch panel does not have the same contour as the original body. The vertical curve, or “the hotdog” as I was told it was called, is not present in the patch panel. 3. Grind the welds just proud of the sheet metal. I only have a 4 1/2” angle grinder so I used a old cut off wheel that was worn down so it was easier to control. 4. At this point, I double checked my panel alignment and did little adjustments as needed. 5. Weld another spot weld over the last set of spot welds. I did about a 50% overlap of the previous spot weld. This is a long and tedious process, but the time consuming nature of the process has a secondary benefit of making you wait for the weld to cool whilst (I sound like a bloody Brit!) staying productive. This tends to keep warping down to a minimum. After all the weld was completed (it took me an entire day) I took my 120 grit flap disk and started taking off what was left of the weld proud. I did notice some low areas especially in the lower back corner of the patch panel. I thought heat would be necessary but I was able to pop it out with the hammer and dolly. I applied pressure to the low spot from the inside of the trunk with a dolly that closely fit the desired shape of the body panel then, using the off dolly technique, I planished around the low spot. I could not believe how well the low spot was lifted. I am every bit of a novice at this and it worked very well for me. By no means is it perfect but I lifted about 95% of the low spot. Apparently you want to leave the on dolly planishing for the final small adjustments to the sheet metal distortion. On dolly will stretch the metal, so if you are not close to the final desired shape you might want to avoid on dolly planishing – from what I understand. Also, for Valentines day the lady got me a bead roller! It's pretty cool. I will be reinforcing it with some square tube or angle iron. It came with six sets of dies so I made a little hanger for the dies that are not being used (top right of the picture). I will say this is addicting work. I never thought I'd be this far into a project like this. It's a great learning experience. Cheers, Pete
  4. I would like to ask that if you have a question or wonder why I didn't do something a certain way, or even better, some tips on how to do something better, please put them in the comments or PM me. My method is usually try to figure it out and if I can't Google it. That doesn't mean I thought everything through properly and I'm always looking to learning more. So: Four months and (some) progress! Thank god I’m doing this before kids. Its difficult to find time but determination and drive is still strong. I am fearful of needing to tell someone “Oh that? That’s the project car I never finished.” Please do not misinterpret this as a “Well it looks like that’ll work, let’s move on”. When I left off, I had tipped the car on her side and scraped the entire underside down to bare metal. A task accomplished much easier with the car on its side. And if you are going to be welding, you might as well weld up an errr, car tipper(-er?). After it was scraped and wire wheeled, I prepped for POR15. I purchased: 1 Gallon POR-15 40104 Cleaner Degreaser 1 Gallon POR-15 40201 Metal Prep 1 Quart POR-15 45404 Semi Gloss Black Rust Preventative Paint 1 Quart POR-15 45904 Top Coat I read the directions and put down some plastic so that after I degreased and etched the underside of the car I could rinse it out of the garage. After degreasing and etching, I scuffed the underside and began to apply the Rust Preventative Paint in a thin coat as directed. I applied two coats in two days. I used about ¾ of the quart for the parts that I painted. I did not paint the wheel wells or the trunk portion past the diff mounts. I would suggest buying 2 quarts to cover the entire underside plus front and rear wheel wells. Buy the crappy paint brushes. It's not worth the hassle of trying to clean them after this stuff. Just throw them out and move on with your life. I didn't realize how thin of a paint it was. I was expecting a thick epoxy, but it really quite thin and runs quickly if too much is applied. Shop Manager Poncho thought it turned out pretty well and gave me an 'adda boy paw shake. I then purchased 3M Ultra Pro 8300 Auto Body Sealant to seal up all the welded joints on the underside. I think it was about $25 a tube. It worked pretty well and uses a standard caulk gun. 3M instructs the user to really press the sealer into the joints with your finger. I believe they suggest waxing your glove so the sealer doesn't stick to it. I did not do this and it did stick to the glove which became frustrating and tiresome pretty quickly. The weather got too cold so I have yet to put on the POR 15 Top Coat over the paint and seam sealer. I'll do this when the weather warms up again. The car is high enough off the ground where it won't be a problem. After I sealed as much as I could, my friend down the street came by and we flipped the car back right side up. I welded a saw horse for the front frame rails that picks up the front sub frame bolt holes so the car won't slide off. I built a wooden support for the rear that slides into the rear diff ears. A 2x6 fits perfectly right in. The car now sits about 38” off the ground. Then I got back to the body work What I have learned about sheet metal and bodywork is if you’re not willing to do it all again, you shouldn’t be doing it. It is not easy and the only way to learn is the hard, arduous way. I welded parts on, then cut them off because I didn't like the fit. I have found that the seam between two sheets may bulge out, sink in or stay perfectly tangent or co-linear. The latter of the three was very rare for me. What I found was that if the seam is going to either bulge or sink, you would rather have it sink. If the seam bulges you will be grinding the weld until it is pretty much gone in order to get the body lines correct. In most cases you will grind through the weld way before the body lines return to their correct contour. If the seam sinks, then after the weld is ground to or below the body line, it can be filled with a light coat of body filler. I am not sure what a master auto body specialist would do, I assume all their welds would be perfectly tangent to the body lines and they would just do minimal skim coats of body filler. I am no master auto body specialist. Also, A body hammer and dolly block kit is very useful and really helps out. I have the GearWrench 82302 kit I welded on the passenger rocker patch panel with good success and the lower rear quarter patch panel. Going slow is key. If you move too fast and put too much heat into the metal, it will distort. I thought I was going slow enough and I wasn't. I ended up cutting the rear panel out and welding it back in because the seam bulged out. This is not the time to run a long bead. Short penetrating tacks followed by ample time to cool. I am currently welding in the passenger rear wheel arch pretty successfully. I am getting a sink in the seam in some places, it isn't too bad and can be filled easily with a light coat of filler. My goal is really to keep the need for body filler to a minimum and have good, quality welds holding the car together. I also replaced a patch in the spare tire well. It was a little tricky but actually came out well. I did this while the car was still on its side. It was difficult because it curved around from the bottom up the round wall. After I cut out the bad metal, I hammered it flat - what we call a flat pattern - so that I could replicate the piece from new metal. I tacked it in then began massaging the metal around the bends, tacking it in as it started to line up. I wish I had more to report, but thats about it. Back to the garage. No rest for the weary! Well, maybe for the shop manager. Cheers, Pete
  5. Even though a car looks good when you get a hold of it, gremlins often lurk underneath. Considering these cars were not galvanized, rust is unavoidable, even on a desert car. I was preparing to clearance the rear wheel wells for the flares, when I started poking around. Go looking for trouble and you'll find it. After the screw driver went into the rocker a couple of times, I knew I would have to get into them a repair the rust. I also ended up repairing a rust spot on under the driver's rear quarter that had formed under the sound deadening material, literally on the vertical body panel. Upon Further investigation. The first cuts and inspection. My body working tools are pretty crude - a grinder, welder, body hammers, etc. - but they work. I hand formed some new rocker panels and welded them in, after making sure the rust was not further into the rockers and rust encapsulating the rockers since I was in there already. Patching the rocker near the front door jamb. Metal finishing. and more metal finishing What else is lurking under there? The fenders revealed their secrets after removal and making the cuts for the flares. closer inspection or the rear area of the fenders. Making a template for the patch. The result shot with some zinc weld thru primer. On another note, a great replacement for the hard to find body mounting screws used to attach the fenders and brake reservoir, is to go to a salvage yard and pull the Torx bit body mount screws from the fenders of e36's, e46, and many modern BMW's. They are usually in good shape, can be scuffed and painted to match your car's body work, are cheap if not free. (The salvage yard I go to just gave them to me, and have the same depth and thread pitch as the originals body mount screws. I think they offer a cleaner look too.
  6. A question was posed to me once a few years ago: If you could fly, be invisible, teleport, be a billionaire, or have your dog live as long as you, which would you choose? I’d choose my dog every day of the week. There is something so emotionally childish about losing a dog. Especially one that you don’t really consider a dog, but a true, full, meaningful part of your life. Almost more than a family member, more like an extension of yourself. Not to be political, but I always wondered how you could take a soldier’s dog, one who probably saved his/her life countless times, at the end of a soldiers tour. You want to guarantee PTSD? That’s one way to do it. I don’t care how old you are, how tough you are, if you have a bond with a dog, your reason, acceptance, and composure are reduced to toddler levels when they go. On December 7th we lost our beloved shop manager, Poncho. It was a day I always knew was coming, but one that I knew I would never be ready for. Every night in the garage I would take a few minutes from working and sit on the floor. Poncho would wander over and lie down on my lap, rolling over to sniff my apron or paw at my chest for belly rubs. I knew that when he left us I didn’t want to be able to say “I never knew how good we had it”. I took these little breaks on the floor every day so to remind myself that I knew exactly how good we had it. We had the best dog ever. The whole neighborhood knew him. The other dogs, the three walking ladies we’d see every morning, the kids that would run up to hug him. He was never on a leash. He stopped at the curb and waited for me to cross the street. He’d wait till I said “go say hi” (when he could hear) to run up to other dogs. He was a champ. Loved by all. Losing him has been a part of life that really truly sucks. The only good that I can see coming from it is the ability to rescue another. We have taken a few months to get ourselves together with the new baby, but we plan on rescuing one or two boxers in the fall time frame. Adopt, don’t shop. And not just puppies, old dogs need homes, too. Poncho loved steak and he got plenty of it in his old age. So instead of cheers to Poncho, eat a good steak. That's what he would have wanted. But have a beer with the steak, too. When I left off last, I was stripping down the driver side door. I finished pulling the paint and layers upon layers of Bondo to find a clearly damaged door… This car just keeps giving. There was a line about mid-height that extended the length of the door. It seems as though it was a glancing blow by a car backing out of an adjacent parking spot. Pulling all the Bondo left me with an intact but badly oil canned door. I worked on the low spots that I could, and after getting them up, I noticed the oil canning wasn’t getting any better. I tried my hand with a small propane torch, but it wasn’t hot enough to get the metal to shrinking status. I picked up an oxy-acetylene setup and was able to put some tension back in the door skin. The door is still not perfectly smooth, in fact it’s a long way from it, but I am headed in the right direction. I will work on getting it as close as I can, but if I go for perfection, I’ll never get to drive the car. The first video shows the door and all the oil canning prior to heating with the torch. The second video pretty clearly shows where I shrunk the metal with the torch to tighten up the door skin. The line can be seen in the both videos pictures just above my middle and ring finger. I did some work on the nose as well. I thought it was an early nose because of the bumper holes being the slots and not the big squares for the later modes, but I was wrong. Somebody jogged the metal and spot welded a patch over the square cutout then Bondo’d the hell out of it. I ended up cutting it out and rolling a new patch panel on the English wheel. I filed the patch panel to have as close as a line on line fit as I could. I practiced a little fusion welding (no filler just the TIG torch) then went at the patch panel. It came out ok. There were areas where I needed to use filler and other areas where the fusion welding went well. The hardest part was making sure it contours were saved after welding... I'd be lying if I said it looked great, but I'll give it a 6 out of 10. Not sure why I left the little part of the slot open. That was foolish on my part. I will close that up. I had to do some hammer and dolly work. It will require a little body filler but hopefully not too much. I'm on the hunt for more body hammers, especially fender hammers that can let me get into some tight places I can't reach with my current set. I started sanding the nose above the kidneys to get to bare metal and wouldn’t you know! More Bondo! I guess they rear ended something or something backed into them because there were pretty heavy dents. After getting it back down to bare metal out came the hammer and dolly. There was a lot of heavy strikes in this area to get it back into shape. It didn’t take too long to get it pretty close to good. It also looks like they drilled holes in the metal to shove the Bondo through so they had some mechanical grip. Why wouldn’t the previous owner/repair shop spend the 30 minutes with a hammer and dolly and use just a skim of body filler? Below the kidneys? More dents and Bondo. It’s pretty tiring finding all this damage. I still have another square bumper hole to fill and the dents to pull on the bottom of the nose, but hopefully I can get that back on the car soon. I am on the hunt for a pair of good fenders. From what I’ve read, the BMW fenders have lost some of their quality over the years and I may be just as well getting aftermarket ones for a fraction of the price. Hug those pups. Give them some steak. And love them more than you ever thought you could when they get old.
  7. I'm Jerry Callo! You will all be happy to know that Shop Manager Poncho turned 98 last March and is still kicking, as well. Skip to the picture of Shop Manager Poncho If you want to get right into the build updates. But I had some pretty great distractions. I was hell-bent on not being dormant on the FAQ for this long, but it happened. Life happened. It's still happening! 15 whole months without a blog entry. Work on the '02 has not stopped. However we did get into some other things during those months. But first - Benchmark abrasives is running a promo for flap discs. https://benchmarkabrasives.com/collections/flap-discs/products/4-1-2-x-7-8-t29-zirconia-high-density-flap-disc-mixed-grit-10-pack promo code: FREEMIX Just pay for shipping. Discs came in 2 days. 10 discs for 10 bucks. Anyone buying flap discs knows this is a great deal. The distractions from the '02: In September 2017 I rode my first dirtbike. Instantly hooked. 4 days later I bought my first dirt bike. 2006 Honda CRF450X. Still hooked. Quite possibly the most fun I have ever had. This took up most of my weekends, so work on the BMW slowed. That October we decided to trade in the Abarth while it was still worth something and get something that is utilitarian and safe for a growing family. We ended up with a Colorado Z71 Duramax Diesel – to haul the dirt bike of course! (and trailers full of cars). So far I have 11,000 miles averaging 27mpg doing both. Great buy, most fuel efficient car we own and pretty comfy. Last November I took a metal shaping class with Robert McCartney of McCartney Paint and Customs and another metal shaper, Pat Brubaker who is out of the mid-West. Robert's shop is in Southern Maryland and runs a class every year. It wasn't cheap but it was some of the best education I have received in a long time. These guys are incredibly skilled and talented. I hammered, rolled and bent up a lower patch for a driver side fender. I liken it coding. The immense logic is what is confusing. The difficulty is in its simplicity. It took me 2 days to make the panel. The instructors said it would take them just a few hours. July 2018 – picked up a Porsche 356, Pre-A. Wait, what? Yup. And it's pretty much complete. It was outside for the last 30 years well wrapped under tarps, but now its in a nice dry garage, up on stands. Floor needs to be redone and a bunch more, but this project does not get touched until the '02 is registered and on the road. This is my way of ensuring I do not have 2, half done projects and no money. It has also been a direct motivator to keep moving on the '02. October 7th, 2018 I became a dad! She is awesome and perfect and will be a great shop assistant, President, F1 Champ, MotoCross Champ, plumber, electrician, welder, CEO, accountant, or whatever else she wants to be. I. Am. Stoked. I picked up some extra tools in that time as well. I found a Harbor freight English wheel on craigslist for 200 bucks. That was well worth the money. That has made metal shaping so much easier. The anvils were not machined super smooth but they do seem to be true. I took them to work and buffed out the rolling surfaces to a semi mirror finish. 4130 is tough steel, so the buffing took quite a while. This makes working with metal much easier and the finish much nicer. It makes the panel closer to paintable right off the bat because I'm not stuck trying to planish out all the little marks from the manual and hammer bends. I also picked up an Everlast 185DV AC/DC TIG welder from Home Depot. They carry them online. I have the Home Depot credit card so I bought it with a few other things and got 24 months 0% financing. I also asked them to match the sale price on the Everlast website and they did. So I got it shipped to my local HD for free, and it even came with a pedal, which is a rare win, apparently. I got a great No. 2 Arbor press from a a guy near Baltimore and a bunch of ball peen hammers and big chunks of steel both stainless and carbon. I've been using it all. On to the build updates! I'll try to detail out the progress on the '02 without too much lost information. Last post was about the driver side rear quarter patch panel and the new shop. In my haste to do more visual body work, I put off replacing the inner fender on the rear driver side wheel well. That was a really poor decision. It was very difficult to fit and weld in the inner fender once the outer fender was already in place. This took a lot of extra time and was, honestly, a deterrent for getting in the garage. I did finally get it welded in, and with pretty good results, but it wasn't easy, or fun. Work inside out, not outside in. Once that was done I moved back to the front of the car and welded the upper firewall back in. I filled a few holes in it, welded it back in, and moved on. I cut off some metal on the support bracket that goes from the upper firewall back to the heater box cut away, so that had to be replaced as well. Next up was round two on my first repair, the lower part of the passenger inner wing. I cut out my original, flux core repair panel along with my homemade frame rail. I had a new frame rail from W&N so I decided to use it. I positioned my new frame rail per factory specs and tried to fit up my sub frame to double check. No good. Aligning pins didn't line up. I knew that the car had been in an accident or three, so I wasn't too surprised. The front sub frame had damage, but its pretty stout, so I didn't think it was warped. A closer look however proved that it had racked about a 1/4”. which is quite a bit. Grice was nice enough to pull one out of his stash for me. A quick check with the new, color matching sub frame proved a good fit. Frame rail aligned, subframe holding square, I started plug welding the frame rail to the passenger floor pan. Once that was in I moved to mocking up a patch panel for the inner wing. First out of cardboard, then transferring the rough template to 18 gauge sheet steel. I cut it out roughly with an angle grinder, then did more detailed work with my throat-less shear. Fit up was difficult because there were a lot of compound curves in this lower area. The English wheel proved to be a good investment. Trimming and fitting took a long time. I rolled in a structural feature to match (somewhat) the factory look with my bead roller. I filed down the patch panel to get pretty close to a line on line fitment, then trimmed the bottom and added 1/4” holes for plug welds. I had an old 1/4” drill bit so I ground the tip flat. I used this to clean out the paint under the hole for the plug weld. This helped ensure I had no contaminants in the weld. The panel was then welded in and welds ground smooth where possible. Thankfully, that was the last of the structural repairs. Next was to fit up the nose. In order to do that, I wanted to get the fenders and doors on to make sure it will all line up before anything is welded in. I put on the fenders that Jim (jgerock) gave me and put on the doors. Initial fitment looked pretty good. There is something funky going on on the passenger side. I'm hoping it's a door hanging adjustment. Bottom of fender collides with door when opening it. More investigation required. There was a huge dent in the driver door that I forgot about. I ended up bringing it down to bare metal and used some heat to get 80 percent of it out, I made a weld on slide hammer and pulled as much of the rest out as I could. Looks pretty good. Will need to do some Bondo work to get it right. There was a small crack near the top of the door, where another dent was. I hammered out the dent then TIG'd up the crack. Smallest tungsten I have is 3/32”. 1/16" would have been better, as I likely wouldn't have burned in the undercut at the edge. The door skin was covered in Bondo and was still pretty warped. I decided to pull the paint on the door. I am using paint stripper on the door skin. If I keep it away from seams and holes I should be able to eliminate any residue issues when it comes to paint. I found that after pulling the Bondo, the door had a better shape. I'm not sure why. It still needs working but its a start. A shrinking disk will be useful, or a terrible idea. Work continues!
  8. The team at Diamond Hills Collision Center works out the dings and dents of Clarion Builds’ 1974 BMW 2002, bringing the body back to like-new condition, and follows that with a complete factory-quality paint job in the 02’s correct Fjord light blue color. Want to learn more about why Clarion Builds chose to restore the iconic BMW 2002? Want to be part of the adventure? Visit http://www.ClarionBuilds.com Today! Check out more Clarion Builds videos:
  9. Can't remember who was looking for a cheap rotisserie but this guy in my Z club used two cheap Harbor Freight motor stands modified. Car has been in it for 9 years now. He says he's climbed in it to weld and such. He plans on putting bigger casters on it to wheel it up on a trailer to transport for paint. Just an idea.
  10. peterman

    Inner Wing

    Hi Guys, Looking for passenger inner wing. I would take a driver inner wing if you have that, too. I really need the lower half, but if you have the whole thing, that would be good. Thanks, Pete
  11. So I just picked up a 74 tii w/a sunroof. It's either the verona or inka that looks like the Colorado now :-( I can't park this in my garage so I'm willing to spend a few dollard getting a superb car cover. What do you experts recommend? Vox Also I'm going to get the car painted in the next few months but I want to enjoy it for at least 3-4 months. Who do you guys recommend in the SF Bay Area for paint, body and mechanical work? Thank you guys!!!
  12. Can anyone provide recommendations for good body work? This would be a small project; I've accumulated a couple of dings on my 2002 that I'd like fixed. In both cases, repainting and re clear coating may be required. Preferably North of Boston, but I'm willing to travel further.
  13. So, my '72 tii is in the shop for its bare-metal paint. The guy doing the work said he could easily put $300 into fixing the door (bought used "not bent" for $50) or I could get a new, OEM one from BMW for list $575 minus club discounts, etc. (maybe $475??). Having worked with a few OEM replacement panels, the fit and quality of the new stuff seems to be somewhat lower than original. Can anyone tell me if a new door from BMW is a drop-in replacement, fits "as is" without massaging metal?
  14. About a year and a half ago I finally moved into a house with a proper garage which, living in the San Francisco area, is a major accomplishment. The first thing I did was tear down my 2002 to repaint it. I painted it about 8 years ago but outdoors and on a very limited time frame. Suffice to say, it was not the best result but there were encouraging bits and I learned a lot. This time around, I've been able to achieve what I would describe as a highly professional finish. Please allow me to share what I've learned. There is so much written online about how to paint your car, but I've found that things tend to be a bit hodpodge. There is nothing complicated about this work, it is really just labor and having the right tools. In this blog, I'll walk you through painting a single panel and try to condense things into a simple, easy to understand process. I'll skip rust repair (I've spent the past 16 months doing that) and assume that you have gotten to the point where you've got a bare panel laid out in front of you. Some people will say not to strip off all the paint. I highly disagree with this opinion unless you know what's underneath (you painted it before!) For this trunk panel, I didn't do anything special except weld up the trim holes and then fill them with Eastwood's lead free body solder. I like to go over the panel with 120 grit on DA sander. In this case, the panel had been repainted several times (I bought it used) and there was plenty of surface rust underneath. To treat this, I soaked the entire panel with POR-15's etching mix and let it sit until the rust is converted. Then I rinse the panel with some water and then carefully wash it with a mix of baking soda and water. The baking soda neutralizes the acid. After this, I give the panel a blast with 120 on a DA again. For the next entry, we'll spray some epoxy primer!
  15. Due to structural rust I am about to rebuild the rear rocker/qtr-panel area and rear subframe mounting area on my '02. I am doing the welding and fabrication myself, with a MIG.On one side rust is only visible from the top (under the seat), but the other side it also shows through on the underbody and the subfrrame is completely rusted off the mounting pad. I am concerned about maintaining alignment of the subframe mounting pins if I have to fully remove the mounting pads. (However the area where the pin goes through the body is in good shape on both sides.) I have searched the archive and websites on this, have not seen much specifics. I would like to hear from someone who has done this particular job before--any hints/tips/tricks/cautions/photos and other insight would be very helpful. Thanks in advance
  16. I am in the midst of a euro bumper conversion. I have replaced my rear, square tail, US bumper with a late euro long bumper (see attached pic). I can't seem to figure out exactly how the sides of the bumper attaches to the body of the car. I can see some sort of bolt is required as per Real OEM: http://realoem.com/bmw/showparts.do?model=2211&mospid=47129&btnr=51_3327&hg=51&fg=17 But I can not tell what the spacer is supposed to be. Do you have a better photo of what your car uses and what the part actually is? My2002Tii.com 's great write up actually doesn't mention this part.


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