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1959 356A S/R coupe project chassis # 108625

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  • That's coming together nicely. Once primered up those shouldn't rust again.
    jjgpierce@yahoo.com

    Comment


    • Thanks John, much simpler unit than what you're building.

      2/10/18

      Begin prepping the front end for repair.

      Soaking the head liner frame in acid to remove that old scale and while it bathes I'm moving onto the front.
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      Blasted hard in the front at some point in the distant past and hastily repaired.
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      Battery box suffered too and was pushed out a bit too far into a nice convex shape.
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      Center section was removed, beat back out too far all the while lopsided; gas welded back on and entombed behind a lot of lead. The gas welding and lead tells me its a really old repair.
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      Left headlight area also suffered another good one. I think this was separate and came later as there are no signs of lead filler being used here. Really knarly with a lot strikes from a pointy hammer. Once you imagine a nice coat of bondo over this area it is amazing they got a headlight unit to bolt up again but I think that was their only objective and certainly not with a headlight seal.

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      A headlight unit does go on but it "looks left" as its sitting in there. Between this and that lumpy over stretched center section the "finished" face of this car in filler and shiny new paint must have looked like some of those old gals that get addicted to bad plastic surgery.

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      Began removal by extracting the head light buckets first. Much easier to do this now than wrestle with it loose on the shop floor. Learned that lesson already.
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      Both buckets removed at this point. Staying conservative with removal for now so I can plan ahead a little. I'm going to cut the center section out roughly along those old weld joints first to expose what lies beneath little better.

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      Zipped off
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      Confirmation this was the original section by the emblem holes. Beaten badly and very heavy with lead filler.
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      Knew this was all toast under here before hand but I wanted to see about the trough section first before I cut it all free. A few ideas as it went which I'll share next.
      Thanks for stopping by!
      Justin
      Justin Rio

      Comment


      • The headlight buckets look to be OEM with original spot welds. It's interesting that the left headlight bucket wasn't damaged with all that pounded metal around it. It doesn't look like it had been removed previously. Weird
        jjgpierce@yahoo.com

        Comment


        • The Buckets are both original and correct the left side had never been out but it really should have been removed for a better result. That bucket did suffer some slight damage but nothing too serious surprisingly.

          2/11/18

          Where to make the cut..

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          The initial plan was to take it at the factory joint
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          and install the full nose section.
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          However the more I starting looking at where the old collision damage wasn't in and around that factory joint
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          The less sense it was making to cut anywhere near these areas. This section in particular from fender to nose was still pristine and absolutely beautiful. It would be huge mistake to disturb this I began to see.
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          A little less unmolested surface area on this side
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          but what I was most interested in was the trunk lip and the transition up to the headlight. Some light irregularities here and there but otherwise still very nice and its still the factory panel built and fitted to its hood. I could see already I'd save a lot of hours and heartache if I left this alone.
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          Besides I've already experienced the challenge of fitting this new nose when I installed this panel on the coupster.
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          The trough profile is already hinting of alignment issues then there was the skin profile shaping I had to wrestle with. Preserving what's already here was looking more and more like the smart play.

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          By carrying Trevor's weld joints over to the original it almost perfectly preserves what I want to keep and what should go.
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          I could actually cut a little lower and save more of the original metal on the outer here but it must intersect into the bucket hole to work.
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          Again can't salvage as much on this side but cutting along the tape still preserves the transition in and around the hood saving a ton of ceremony.
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          Basic plan now set. More cutting coming up next.

          Thanks for looking!
          Justin
          Justin Rio

          Comment


          • JOP

            Comment


            • Justin,

              I think you made the correct decision. That trough between the headlight and hood looks pristine and is hard to get correct when installing a new nose. It took a bit of metal work to get it looking correct on my nose transplant Great work!

              JP
              jjgpierce@yahoo.com

              Comment


              • Justin

                That old rule ' measure twice cut once' is so valid and although in your particular case its ' measure, think, compare, inspect, and estimate probably 10 times before cutting you are on the right track to save much more work. I just looked at that new front nose and thought a few cuts and that old battered front would be gone.

                This new approach I didn't see coming, thats where your experiences of the past five years counts. With those excellent photo's I can now see exactly where you are coming from.

                The under front of fenders on my car where all the great shape is are also pristine, that area seems to have always been fine on all the 356 cars I have been involved with.

                Roy

                Comment


                • Thank you Per! Its a win-win all the way around. Its less trouble maybe slightly less welding and saves more of the original metal.

                  Thanks John, I remember you installing your nose so you know exactly what I mean.

                  Roy, I didn't see this approach coming either, it just evolved as I went. The spark was the dreadful thought of cutting through those flawless sections that the factory welded together all those years ago. Then the wrestling with the new section trying to get it that line again. Like the saying goes: If it ain't broke don't fix it"
                  Thanks again for the confirmation on this approach you guys!
                  Justin

                  2/12/18

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                  Before I could commit to my final cut line I had to melt the rest of the lead off to see what was going on under there.
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                  Of course the old gas weld went up a lot higher than I thought. Had to adjust my final cut line to get past this old sin.
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                  Went as low as I could possibly go on this outer line before the wrinkles started. Trevor's joint line represented by the tape so I was able to preserve a bit more.
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                  Again trevor's line is the tape. I'm saving a little damage here but I can always cut it back if I can't get the shape I'm after. Just more options.
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                  Decided on an angle cut here which saves a little more while getting me past the old weld joint.
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                  First cut. The top of that fender is so pretty; would have been such a mistake to cut into it.
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                  While nothing saved laterally the preserved inner contours are really giving me a head start.
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                  Scratched the surface
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                  Now onto removing the underlying mess. front wall first
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                  Onto removing the sides of the battery box next. She's cleaning up little by little.
                  Thanks for looking!
                  Justin
                  Justin Rio

                  Comment


                  • Mark Erbesfield
                    57 356A
                    65 911
                    68 912
                    73 911S
                    66 Toyota Land Cruiser FJ45LV
                    79 450SL Dad's old car

                    Comment


                    • 2/15/18

                      How much has the beam been moved? Since I first saw how hard the front had been hit a worry in the back of my mind is how far back if any has the front beam been moved? I took some time to carefully study it for deformation behind the front beam to get a better idea.
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                      The right side of the battery box is the wrinkliest so I started with this side. The obvious is the bottom lip.
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                      It looks to have been struck downward with a hammer so I can't attribute all it to the crash. The damage to the other side will better explain this.
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                      However this upper deformation highlighted in green is definitely from the accident. It has obviously moved but those wrinkles can't be worth more than a few MM's at worst and there is no deformation any where else. Very localized.
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                      Most the energy spent itself in between the beam and the bumper bracket mount. We talked about this T1 to T2 change here.
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                      By contrast the left side show no deformation behind the beam what so ever. That slit confused me but
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                      once you look at it from this side you can plainly see its the work of pneumatic chisel. I can only guess at some point it was decided the car was going to be clipped but they quickly changed their plan. Much like the beginnings of the hammered bottom deformation to the other side.
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                      Deformation to the box wall on this side is also much less severe and further confirmation of the integrity of this left side.
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                      More confirmation is minimal bulging of the inner overlap panel in and around the beam.
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                      Right side by contrast bulges quite a bit. I can get a Cellete bench here in a few months to confirm just how much it may have shifted. I'll come up with a few measurements with the rear beam to see how out of square it might be. Anyway since it is localized it doesn't stop me from other rust repair duties to the rest of the chassis. The battery box will just be the very last thing is all. But the upshot is I don't think its as bad as I feared.
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                      Cutting and cleaning the sides away next.

                      Thanks for looking!
                      Justin
                      Justin Rio

                      Comment


                      • 2/21/18

                        Quick break from cutting to finish out the last of the sun roof assembly mock up.
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                        had to round up some small screws to attach the headliner frame to the lid first.
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                        Making sure everything was centered in relation to the lid before I crimped the tabs over.
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                        Crimped. I later realized I jumped the gun as the eventual headliner material must wrap under these tabs but I can relax them back open a bit later.
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                        Time to fit it all together on the car. Corners were removed and lateral tracks unscrewed to allow the liner frame in.
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                        slipping frame in
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                        On the lower track.

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                        Now I know why these tracks were not formed and left to "spring up".
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                        tracks and corners back into position and sliding the lid forward to mate the two.
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                        Mock up complete.
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                        Lid assembly locks over and clears
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                        Also retracted fully with no clearance issues.
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                        Still not able to get a consistent engaged gap on the leading edge.
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                        I can wiggle it into position with a screw driver but can't get it to "park" consistently and even every time. Maybe the rubber seals have some thing to do with it
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                        or those rubber foot mechanisms at the back?? Anyway the whole assembly is at least in and functional.
                        back to cutting...
                        Thanks for looking!
                        Justin
                        Justin Rio

                        Comment


                        • JOP

                          Comment


                          • Hey Per, Thanks

                            Yes, I'm still working on one. Definitely, it would take a huge foot print in my little shop so it would most certainly have to perform some sort of double utility while not in use for its intended purpose.

                            2/26/18
                            Finally had some time to catch this back up.
                            Battery box prep and planning from last week.
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                            Right wall roughly cut(the easy part) but still need to clean all the flange areas.
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                            Upper closing wall embossment shapes a little rough.
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                            As luck would have it I have this remnant section to donate that just eliminates the damage.
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                            Will graft this in before its all over for a cleaner repair.
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                            After cutting the right wall out I had a closer look at the left side and began thinking about options.
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                            By the time I drill all the spot welds and unearth all the flange remnants to prep for the new wall, then install the new wall, plug weld and dress. I think I'd shave a lot of time if I just iron this side back out. I'l also be saving more original metal which I like.
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                            The bracket housing will have to come off but its looking more like the way I'll go.
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                            While working in and around the car I noticed a pocket of advanced rust on the upper right side of the trunk wall.
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                            Another surprise repair, who could have guessed?
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                            Leaving the battery box for now until I can confirm any front beam shift on a bench. Moving onto getting the body prepped for the rotisserie next so I can begin floor and longitudinal repairs.
                            thanks for looking.
                            Justin
                            Justin Rio

                            Comment


                            • 2/27/18
                              Prepping shell for hoist.
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                              Tunnel is hanging by a thread so for ease of repair and new floor installation I've decided to remove it.
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                              Leaving the conduits in for the moment so removal of the tunnel just required separating it from the three cross brackets and the gas weld at the forward end of clutch cable tube.
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                              Not very pleasant work lying on your back but I eventually got the tunnel free.
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                              Lower flange back here needs some repair but not sure whether that includes the conduit area just yet so I'm leaving them in for now.
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                              So much nicer to repair this tunnel out of the car.
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                              So encouraging to see remains of the original flange still there but whom ever removed the floor got too aggressive and has ground them back paper thin so their shot so the entire run will be replaced.
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                              Decided to recycle my holding jig from the coupster project. Perhaps unneeded since this one has the triangulation of a roof but both longitudinals have been opened so I want some extra protection and peace of mind from any slight twisting potential until I get the longitudinals closed back up.
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                              Besides this gets it off my floor and keeps me from tripping over it and scobbing my shins . Fixing and installing it next.
                              Thanks for looking!
                              Justin
                              Justin Rio

                              Comment


                              • Hah!! Looks very similar to where you were a year ago on the Coupster!
                                jjgpierce@yahoo.com

                                Comment

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