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Old 01-05-2009, 12:01 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Autobody Welding and Sheet Metal Fab. Tips/ Tricks

Well, Ive decided to start a thread to lend some help in the area of my expertise.
So Im gonna start a Q&A Thread.

Just bring any and all of your fabrication and welding questions (Hell, bring your answers too!) here, and I will answer them to the best of my ability.

Last edited by Ranger01; 01-14-2009 at 02:26 PM.
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Old 01-05-2009, 10:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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umm.. can I just bring you my car?

No seriously, what are some good tools to start out with? I have a 110 mig welder, and a bunch of cutting tools.

What is the best tool to cutoff old sheetmetal? I have a sawzall(to messy), dremel(to small), angle grinder(?), and a air cutoff tool(compressor has crappy duty cycle).

Also I need a good spot weld driller outer. I bought some from northern and they are poop.
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Old 01-06-2009, 11:08 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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umm.. can I just bring you my car?

No seriously, what are some good tools to start out with? I have a 110 mig welder, and a bunch of cutting tools.

What is the best tool to cutoff old sheetmetal? I have a sawzall(to messy), dremel(to small), angle grinder(?), and a air cutoff tool(compressor has crappy duty cycle).

Also I need a good spot weld driller outer. I bought some from northern and they are poop.
Hi Face, It seems like you have the right tools already to get the sheet metal cut off.
A cutoff wheel is the preferred tool to cut off old sheet metal. Your problem seems to be stemming from your air compressor. If you can afford a new compressor it will pay for itself many times over by not giving you a headache. A plasma cutter will work but they can be rather spendy, and most good models require a decent air compressor anyways. (Point- Get a good air compressor.)
A good tool to drill out old spot welds is a Pneumatic drill, with a special bit for drilling spot welds out. You can find the bit at almost any automotive supply store, they can be expensive though. The drill running from $30 to $300, and the bit running from $10 to $35. But the bit and drill will work faster and (not to mention safer) better than using a standard electric drill and a standard bit. The best bit to go for is one that is made of Carbide, they are tougher and a bit sharper.

As for welders, a 110 MIG machine will cover pretty much all of your needs. Just remember to use the safty equipment you have, and to set it up right, and you will be happy with it.

If you need any more help feel free to ask.
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Old 01-13-2009, 11:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Hello,
I found some of the same problems with my cut off saw(air) and finally started just using my grinder it works great, but make sure you get a very thin cutting blade. I found for cutting out the spot welds i use a drill bit to drill a small hole in the weld and i found a tool that has a center pin and a cutter that is spot weld size it works great it is called a rotabroach cutter by blair(3/8). I am replacing the trunk pan and quarters on my 70 GTO. I use a 110 Deca Mig and it works great only thing is the weld material is very hard and takes a while to grind off. If you practice you can get an almost perfect replacement of the part that has been removed, but it can take up to 6 hours to fab a small piece up before even welding (12" X 2"), i make my replacement piece almost a perfect fit before welding( use a bench grinder to get a perfect fit of the replacement piece) then only tack it in and keep going around the piece this is where you need patience go slow and you will have no warp problems rush and it will become a mess, you can do some grinding in between welding, but the most important thing is to go slow and keep tacking around the repair then work small beads 1" max on each side working towards the middle and waiting between for things to cool. Patience will be rewarded with an almost perfect replacement of solid metal. I also use a pneumatic flange tool to create lap joints, these can be used where you have a big enough area to get in there with the tool. It creates a step where you can overlap the sheet metal and do a lap weld or punch holes in the piece and pseudo spot weld it on. Make sure you seam seal behind welds before painting.
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Old 01-14-2009, 09:46 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Cool thread ! I gotta replace my tail light panel. Will be asking questions here. Thanks!
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Old 01-14-2009, 10:31 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I agree. Excellent thread, and should probably be moved to the special section up top! If I had a GTO that I was going to cut and weld on, I would check out the free or very cheap adult education night classes on welding (usually at local colleges/junior colleges), and I would parctice quite a bit on some like material, like an old junk fender, etc. Also, "How to" videos are out there, even some on youtube are really helpful.
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Old 01-20-2009, 09:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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How do you fix this:

Driverside rear doorjamb


Passenger front doorjamb


Passenger windsheild frame


The spots like these with a bunch of bends are what scare me.
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Old 01-20-2009, 09:22 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I agree. Excellent thread, and should probably be moved to the special section up top!
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Old 01-21-2009, 08:22 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Wow, Face, that's pretty rough! That window channel (Heck the whole car! ) is going to be a challange!
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Old 01-21-2009, 10:20 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Face,

I would suggest finding a donor car with less rust and then making 1 car from the 2. There is a junk yard about 15 miles from me that has 5 or 6 66/67 lemans and tempest on their lot. The cars are rough and I don't know the price(s),

Good luck,
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