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Repairing My 69 Bumper

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  • Repairing My 69 Bumper

    I should be working on Foam Car, but this dent has been bugging me ever since I got this 912 about 3 years ago. It has been there for years, as POs did not want to ruin the "original" paint patina of the car. But, someone repainted the front fenders and trunk lid so that logic did not make sense.

    Bumper was pretty easy to remove once you knew where the bolts were. The dent is almost dead center and will be a chore to dolly out of the 15 ga. metal.


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    Bumper was to unwieldy to work on without clamping it down. Borrowed Foam Car tools and used an old pallet to fixture it.


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    Getting the deco nuts removed was a chore, as the bolts are just carriage bolts and half of them started turning. Not sure if these bolts are original, as 356s all used T nuts as far as I know. SIC does not carry the carriage bolt, but has a superceded T nut.

    Phil

  • #2
    Phil. Thoes stupid carriage bolts are correct. You can not clean or lube them enough to keep them from turning in the aluminum trim slot. I took a circular spot weld cutter, made a jig to clamp it into the back of the bolt, to hold the head solid.

    It's a real pain, they are also hard to put back, since the slot is stripped and ther is no room for adjustment. I made some shims fromTIG rod, to lock the nuts into the deco when pitting it back. Use a soft aluminum rod 8-10mm Long, locate the carrage bolt and softly tap it into the slot a one above and below the carriage bolt to hold it, torque slowly until the seal seats.

    Good luck
    Pushed around since 1966.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for the info and tips John

      Presto(actually about 2 1/2 hrs.) and the dent is out. Had to use quite a few of my body tools to lift and shrink the deepest area. But, it is out and sanded with 180 grit in prep for a skim coat to blend in with original paint.

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      I decided not to strip the whole bumper as it has the original paint and the area under the deco will be good to try to get a color match. From what I have found so far, 1969 had a unique metallic silver paint code and my local PPG store has not been able to find a formula. Anyway, I put a skim coat of finishing filler to blend in with the old paint.

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      Needs to be finish sanded.

      Got the original fasteners cleaned up, less the flat washers, which I will replace with spring washers. The original nuts are nyloc. I ran a tap through them and the nyloc is not near as tight, but maybe too loose so will use the spring washers. I think the combination of the nyloc and rust on the exposed threads is what makes removal and install difficult.

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      Got the deco trim straightened out fairly quickly, so hopefully this bumper will be back on the car by weekend to enjoy the fall driving season.

      Phil

      Comment


      • #4
        Looks good Phil. Simple quick repairs like this one can be a nice diversion away from the slog of the life long 356 projects we've got going.
        Justin Rio

        Comment


        • #5
          Be sure to fill and seat the aluminum channel in the deco. I have a clamp with a two forked end. I presses the spot weld remover teeth in to the head to hold the carrage bolt. Put the socket between forks. I filled the rounded damage section of the deco, with a short pice of welding TIG rod to keep them from turning and used a primer on the heads after installed. Heat the deco rubber with a heat gun or hair dryer as you put it back in. It gets flexable at about 140F, I set the bottom first and lead the top by about 2"" as I pressed it back in the grove. I used a nylon trim pry bar to insure the top was completely set, once it cools it's hard to get the bumps or wrinkles out, a little heat goes a long way. Also white cotton Micky Mickey gloves keeps from burning your thumb pressing the rubber trim in
          Pushed around since 1966.

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          • #6
            Thanks for those additional tips John. I have decided to strip the whole bumper, as there are many stone chips and some surface rust along the bottom. Will take a little longer, but while I have it off, might as well do what needs to be done eventually anyway. I have been trying to find a paint match for several years with no luck. 1969 appears to be a one year only paint code. So I left the bumper with the local PPG paint expert and he is going to get a match. I also decided to replace all of the rubber except the original deco inserts which are in good shape. Ordered what I need from International Merc.

            Regarding the carriage bolt slots, I "peened" the loose one down and that got them back to same as the good slots. I also bought 10 #10 carriage bolts which are about .004" larger square than the metric ones. This should aid in tightening and removal, plus they are all plated. In the meantime, I can get my stripped bolts replated for the next caretaker.

            Phil

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            • #7
              Well, the bumper has already been repainted. 1969 was a one year only metallic silver. Took it to local PPG store and they matched as close as they could. As there were many stone chips, rusty scratches on the bottom I decided to strip the whole bumper. Took about 5 hours. I left one area of filler behind the passenger guard as the support bracket on the back side prevents dolly access. Decided to strip that filler off, as paint shop probably wants to use their own filler. Surprise:

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              These dents worse than the one I started this project on. So, had to remove the inner bracket and got the dent roughed out:

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              Will do some more hammer/dolly work to get it as smooth as I can, then patch up the bracket where I drilled/ground through all the spot welds and weld it back in.

              Phil

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              • #8
                This radiused edge is 1/8" low at it's worst. Need to figure a way to raise it up

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                After sleeping on it, I turned it upside down on the floor and whacked downward best I could with a ball peen hammer. Took about w hours, but finally got that radius up pretty even. Took another 2 hours to smooth it out. About as good as I think I can get it

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                Got the bracket repaired from removing spot welds and ready to pplug weld back on
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                Phil

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                • #9
                  A lot of effort and time spent there Phil. Nice job!
                  Justin Rio

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                  • #10
                    Just when I think I am close this happens. I fit the bumper guards. The undamaged side looks like this:

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                    The damaged side looks like this:

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                    Radius is not tight enough. Marked the area needing work:

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                    Back on the floor with the ball peen just along that one area. Then slapper and various dollys. Finally got it to fit better, not perfect, but the trim rubber will fix this:

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                    I think the whole radius is a hair low, so will have to raise a tad with filler, but at least it won't be 1/4" like before.

                    Phil

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                    • #11
                      That all sounds just about right Phil. Congratulations on reducing the amount of filler needed yet again.
                      Justin Rio

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                      • #12
                        Used Evercoat metal to metal filler here as the guards will put some pressure on it:

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                        Made a sanding block to get the radius blended into the top flat surface and the front curved surface. Still needs a touch more filler in a couple spots, but finally about finished and ready for paint:

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                        Phil

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                        • #13
                          About ready for paint. Got it pretty smooth and block sanded down.
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                          Phil

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                          • #14
                            Wow, can't believe it has been a month. Took the bumper to the painter back then and he has been busy with car/deer accident repairs. Picked it up today:

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                            Painter did a nice job. Got new rubber from IM and installed that along with all the trim:

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                            Painted the brackets and waiting for them to harden before installing.

                            Phil

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                            • #15
                              Turned out great Phil! Did you shoot it yourself?
                              Justin Rio

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