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Test Fitting Sheet Metal To See Where Your At
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Victory Lane
Picture of Tom McGinnity
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I won't be working on my car 78 this summer but was working preliminarily this past winter on a test fit of all the sheet metal I've collected over the last 13 years. I didn't get nearly as far as I wanted but in talking with Gary Bieler today about what a pain it is I realized we have experienced the exact same issues... To me that means many guys will suffer and while its all fresh in my mind I thought it prudent to share. Also I thought about what a waste it is to talk with Gary on the phone and have no pictures as a conversation reference.. I can kill two birds with one stone by posting for all to see instead of just emailing pix to Gary.. So here goes Big Grin


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)
 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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Todays conversation boiled right down to NOS.. We have pretty much dismissed all off shore stampings for obvious reasons..
The funny part was that we also concluded that NOS stuff from recent years.. lets say early eighties until now ( blue and white lables ) is NOT the same.
The best possible thing to use is rust free original factory installed stuff.. yea I know " good luck "
Here is a quickie example of what I mean. Now the drivers side fender is NOS.. well, it was NOS that came off of a failed project. I stripped it to bare metal but it had the blue and white GM sticker on it..Your can see that I am suffering with the radius as it meets the leading edge of the ORIGINAL factory door ( not reskinned etc).. Take a close look at how the peak ( where door dings occur ) is too far out even when the bottom and the top are aligned perfectly


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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Years ago I traded Bob Harris from Camaro Specialties a bunch of stuff and got this wicked old fender.. This baby is old.. The sticker is a black label stamp.. definitely late 60's

Check out the fit after maybe an hour (tops) of playing around


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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Disregard the fact that the fender is scratched and thin on paint with some rust.. believe it or not that means nothing compared to fit.. Follow the gap.. its the same and perfectly even all the way down the curve that follows the door.. past this and I'm headed towards street rod custom car fit and finish... My jury is still out about whether or not I want to do that to be honest


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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Now look at this mess.. The door is aligned perfect in the hole ( bottom lined with rocker and striker jamb to spec )..The core support is set the same as the passengers side.. Look closely and see that the top under the windshield is good good.. but then the radius won't follow the door.. take a look how the fender is touching the leading edge of the rocker and yet the gap in the top half is already too big.. if you force the bottom of the fender forward to get a proper gap at the rocker you can stick your finger through the gap at the top half!


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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I gotta run but more on this later... Cheers


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)
 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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I just realized the right side pix stink.. here are a few more


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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TOUGH area fits great


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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gaps


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
<Eric>
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That is disappointing about your drivers fender Tom. I need fenders for my car. What are the experiences with the repros??

On the repro subject. Has anyone used a repro hood?
 
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Victory Lane
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Eric,

IMO... no experience with the reproductions, but I used the newer old NOS fenders on #708 and my body man had to use every trick in the book to get them to line up... .

I think he finally had to "jack" the front end. The fit is very good now but he flat out accused me of giving him reproduction fenders to work with.


Phil@camaropacecars.com
 
Posts: 4788 | Location: Chillicothe Ohio | Registered: 05 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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I have not bought repro exterior sheet metal in a long time. A hood I bought when they frist came out was nice but the entire hood wasn't square.. I had to make the nose cocked a few 16th to compensate.. They are probably better now.
I put two Golden Legion fenders on a driver about 10 years ago.. I had to completely cut the RS part out of the front and weld in the ones from the original rotted fenders.. It was welded in wrong so the molding didn't fit and was punched wrong for those square white plastic nutserts... The fender fit great at the door compared to what I'm dealing with now.. I remember the bonus was that the top of the fender are that fits under the windshield molding was so thin and cheap you could just pull it up with you fingers AFTER paint to fit nice and snug up to the moldings roll That was actually pretty cool. The reason I won't use them on a car worth as much as our Pacecars is because they absolutely do not look correct in the nooks and crannies.. car driving down the street? fine.. Hood up at a show.. no good

Pic shows Golden Legion Fenders installed


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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aaaaaaaaahh forgot.. the repro hood was stamped too low in the center.. take a look at the center crown where it meets the wiper valance... see how low it is compared to the valance.. I killed myself trying to compensate.. no dice..


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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OK.. spent some time this morning mulling this over.. took the fender off and removed the inner fender.. The holes in the inner fender and the holes in the fender do not line up perfectly and you need to bend a few things slightly..this was obviously creating pressure all around varied zones of the fender and making it ever so slightly out of shape.. so theres one little potential problem solved

The radius of the fender is absolutely not the same as the door after careful measuring in an unbolted state.. I put the fender on the floor and had my son stand on it.. I too stood on it and bend that bitch till I could hear the spot weld creaking.. hard to tell progress because it snaps back to original.. you have to OVER bend it so it snaps back but not all the way.. this was a nerve wracking situation because if you absolutely kill it you chance crushing it out of shape forever.. As luck would have it after 3 attempts its EXCELLENT!

My man Mike here is pushing down on the bottom of the fender.. He was the best tool in the shed today! A super plush 70's shag carpet helps too checkered flag

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Tom McGinnity,


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Victory Lane
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Check that out... so here in this picture you can see at the bottom of the fender closest to the tire the fender is swooping outward.. well when all bolted up to the inner fender it doesn't allow this.. but it tweaks the math as well. So now that the top bolt, door jamb bolt and bottom rear bolt are shimmed and snugged down you can monkey with that issue


tom @ camaropacecars.com ( remove the space between m,@,c)


 
Posts: 13401 | Location: Arlington Mass | Registered: 01 May 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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