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Discussion Starter #21
Thanks for the photos.
My real confusion and question of cause was the one above the p/s tail light.
 

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I see now. I was reading the photo captions wrong.
Of the area above the tail light I believe that may be a seam between panels. My passenger side had an open 1/4" crack there that was filled with seam filler.

Photos show both sides, P/S first.

B5F1013E-379F-4B98-9C34-3B2889396915_1_201_a.jpeg
B041187F-FF6A-48FC-8919-BCC8061E1B7D_1_201_a.jpeg
 

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Discussion Starter #23
So condensation on the in the inside drips down in there causing the rust?
 

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Not sure. The seam sealer cracked over the years and opened up or may have been never properly sealed to begin with. I was lucky that the car was stored in a heated barn since 2001 and the climate was hot and dry for most of the year. (Sacramento Valley)
 

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Discussion Starter #25 (Edited)
The weather cleared up today and I got some time this afternoon to go ahead and raise the body. My plan worked perfectly. My guess for mounting the chains for a close front-to-back balance was pretty darn close. The front was only heavier by a little bit. There isn't a whole lot of tension on the come-a-long at all.





I rolled the frame underneath the canopy for a place to dismantle it. I'll also take a wire wheel to it to get the dirt and undercoating off before I move it out into the yard for blasting.


I was looking and thinking about buying a rotisserie for the body. It sure would be easier to clean up and work on the underside of the body and be able to roll it outside for any blasting I do on it. Otherwise I guess I'll put it on sawhorses where it is now and work from underneath. I don't know though, this may be the last body-off restoration I do.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Some photos of underneath:



 

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The wheel well rot looks typical for a "northern" car. I would patch as you are doing rather than splice lower quarter panels which other members have done. The rot in the lower quarters is also typical if the car saw winter salted roads. The trunk rubber seal could also leak and water runs into those pockets. The seal was non-existent on my '68 Lemans.........and so was the trunk floor because of it.

Doing frame off is a lot of work and time. With my '68, the passenger compartment flooring wasn't too bad as it had factory undercoating. So all I did was use a wire brush on a drill to knock off all the loose undercoating and clean up the dirt. Then I used a coat of POR-15, let that dry a couple weeks, and rattle can black to seal it. In my opinion, you can get too wrapped up in trying to get the car "perfect" and then because it is "perfect", you worry about every little detail and really don't want to drive it much for fear of getting it dirty. I say rebuild it and wear the heck out of it and enjoy.
 

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Well Done. Those body braces worked perfectly. Will surely consider this method when I am at that point.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
The wheel well rot looks typical for a "northern" car. I would patch as you are doing rather than splice lower quarter panels which other members have done. The rot in the lower quarters is also typical if the car saw winter salted roads. The trunk rubber seal could also leak and water runs into those pockets. The seal was non-existent on my '68 Lemans.........and so was the trunk floor because of it.

Doing frame off is a lot of work and time. With my '68, the passenger compartment flooring wasn't too bad as it had factory undercoating. So all I did was use a wire brush on a drill to knock off all the loose undercoating and clean up the dirt. Then I used a coat of POR-15, let that dry a couple weeks, and rattle can black to seal it. In my opinion, you can get too wrapped up in trying to get the car "perfect" and then because it is "perfect", you worry about every little detail and really don't want to drive it much for fear of getting it dirty. I say rebuild it and wear the heck out of it and enjoy.
I know exactly what you mean. Only problem is that I'm a little anal and go overboard sometimes. But if even if I overdo it, I won't be afraid to drive it. I WILL have my fun with it and if I unexpectedly get caught in a rainstorm, so be it.

Well Done. Those body braces worked perfectly. Will surely consider this method when I am at that point.
Thanks. Yes they really did the job. Probably stronger than it needs to be. It was a lot of drilling though. Welding might have been quicker but it will be quicker to take it apart this way when that time comes.

I few new photos today. I removed the rusty motor mount bracket from the firewall. The heater core must have been leaking a long while before it was detected. I'm glad they reproduce these. It would be a pain to repair it.



I am thinking at this point that the underside of the body will be fairly easy to clean up with a wire wheel so I'm thinking it might be overkill for me to buy a rotisserie. I raised the body a little more and put my 12 ton jack stands underneath on top of blocks. It's off the floor 35" and I can work on it from a sitting position with it raised that much.
I did leave just a bit of tension on the hoist to act as a safety.


Removed the wheels:
 
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Discussion Starter #30
I got the frame all torn down and ready to start cleaning up:



I did find that the frame needs a bit of attention in a couple of places. The body mount location under the rusted bracket will need to get a small patch. Amazing what a leaking heater core can cause.

Also have some rust under the transmission crossmember mounts. It's gone a little thin and I will need to correct that too. Both sides look about the same.

I'll do the patching before I blast the frame.
 

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Discussion Starter #32
great thread! thanks for sharing.
Thanks! If you haven't noticed by now, I love to take photos. Photography is been of interest to me since I was a kid.

I've done a couple of things since my last update.
Yesterday I completely disassembled the rear axle and did some parts organizing.

This afternoon I started with a wire wheel on the frame and got almost 3/4 done. I'll turn the frame upside down to do the bottom side. This is a good amount of work but is a necessary step before blasting. It has undercoating on it and that has to come off first.
 

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Wow Roger1 you are rocking and rolling right along.
If you keep up this pace you will be driving the GTO by next spring.

Thanks for sharing your progress with us. 👍
 

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Pictures are great and really appreciated. I have done the same thing with my '68 build, a ton of before, during, after photos so you can see the progress.

I would add that you might want to let us know what some of the equipment is that you use for the job. You wire brushed the frame - I know a hand drill with wire brush attachment wouldn't do the job you have done. Power tools, air tools, wire wheel type, etc.. Knowing what tools to use for the job can make things easier because there are always options, and sometimes they work, but are not as efficient as another person's technique. (y)
 

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Discussion Starter #35
Good idea Jim and here's what I used.

This shows an assortment of wire wheels I use. I only used the cup on what I did yesterday. The twisted wire wheels are the only type I've found that will hold up for doing this kind of thing. Also, it's essential to use a face shield, N95 or better face mask, leather gloves and heavy clothing when using these wheels.

I stripped the quarters and filler panel with using the same tool and stripping discs you see here. I used up 2 of them with what I've done so far. I order all my stripping discs, cut-off discs and roloc discs online from a place called Roarke Supply. They carry quality stuff at good prices.
 

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Great pics , Roger , and much hard work underway! Very Impressive!
This will turn out well I can tell already
Thankz & Keep em coming 🤨
 

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Discussion Starter #37
Wow Roger1 you are rocking and rolling right along.
If you keep up this pace you will be driving the GTO by next spring.
Thanks for sharing your progress with us. 👍
Ha! I don't think I get get the car done quite that quick! Seriously, I've been telling people it will be about 2 1/2 years. There will be some times I take a month or so off of working on the car and I hardly ever work full days on it.

Got a little more done today. I got the frame repair done:

First I used a carbide burr to ream out the hole to the edge of the compromised area. I used one of the old rubber mounts to mark the circle.

I then cut a patch from some old sheetmetal the same thickness as the frame:

I used a grinder to get the final fit for the patch and beveled the edge a little. I then tacked it in place and then welded all the way around:



I then smoothed it out using an 80 grit roloc disc:

I then marked the hole and drilled it out. Drilled it a little smaller than needed and again used the burr to get it precise. Done.

I decided that the rails where the transmission crossmember mounts was not compromised enough to need any repair. It looked worse before I wire brushed the frame.


While I had the welder out, I repaired the broken stud on the p/s parking light housing. I broke this when I removed it from the front panel and laid it on the welder at the time to remind me to fix it later.
 
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Discussion Starter #38
New Update.
Things done since the last one:

1. Finished using wire wheel the top and sides of the frame, turned the frame over and finished the bottom as well. Ground off factory welding spatter on several places around the frame with a Roloc disc. It is ready for blasting.
2. Finished with the wire wheel on the rear axle. It is ready for blasting as well.
3. Removed the ball joints and bushings on the front control arms and all the bushings on the rear control arms.
4. Wire wheeled and scraped all the under coating off all the control arms. All are ready for blasting.
5. Cleaned up the mess!




 
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New Update.
Things done since the last one:

1. Finished using wire wheel the top and sides of the frame, turned the frame over and finished the bottom as well. Ground off factory welding spatter on several places around the frame with a Roloc disc. It is ready for blasting.
2. Finished with the wire wheel on the rear axle. It is ready for blasting as well.
3. Removed the ball joints and bushings on the front control arms and all the bushings on the rear control arms.
4. Wire wheeled and scraped all the under coating off all the control arms. All are ready for blasting.
5. Cleaned up the mess!




Looks good, I know how much work that takes.

Did you plan on adding a rear sway bar? This would take into consideration your lower control arms seeing you will be installing new bushings. You have the option of buying a kit that can be added/welded into the lower control arms for sway bar attachment or purchase new lower boxed control arms already set-up for the sway bar.

I might also consider adding the factory style upper & lower control arm braces - just a little insurance and stiffens up the rear frame a bit by tying the two together. These were installed in 4-speed cars from the factory, but can be a good addition to any frame. Two different lengths so get the ones for your year - 1964-1967 & 1968 - up.

65-GTO control-arm-bracket.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #40 (Edited)
Thanks for the info Jim. I'm definitely interested in things I can do to stiffen the frame. And, this is a good time to make that decision. I'll be checking this out soon.
The seller of my car had purchased a new rear sway bar but never installed it. I was planning on using it. I'll check out the boxed lower arms. Are there any negatives? I've heard before that the factory designed these to flex.

I have decided that I want to buy a GForce transmission crossmember. They are very beefy. That will also help with frame stiffening. Not only is the factory crossmember flimsy, it mounts in rubber at the frame. I'm scratching my head as to why they did that on these cars.
 
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