Tag Archives: antique cars

Sunbeam Tiger Hood Scoop

This post covers one of our smaller projects and a nice custom.  We enjoy taking a break from the larger projects in the shop, especially when granted artistic freedom.

As with many of our projects, big or small, we were referred by a current or previous customer.  This customer is associated with the vintage/ classic car rally circuit and was looking to modify his original Sunbeam Tiger hood to integrate a hood scoop that looked as though it was pressed at the factory.  He supplied the drawing and a couple of photographic influences and the rest was up to us.

The Sunbeam Tiger is probably most famous for its staring roll in the TV series ‘Get Smart’, created by Mel Brooks and Buck Henry. The main character, Maxwell Smart, drove the vehicle to Control each week where he was given his assignment. Agent 86, er Maxwell Smart, received attention where ever he went, thanks in part to the stylish vehicle that accompanied him.

The Sunbeam Tiger continued the long tradition of putting a large American engine in a small European car. Others, such as the Nash-Healey,  Facel Vega, and perhaps most successfully the Shelby Cobra, had done this before.

Follow the pictures with the captions as they tell the story of this custom build best.

Sunbeam Tiger hood before scoop and jig building

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Here’s the design/influence supplied by the customer.

 

First port of call is designing and mocking up of the jig.
First port of call is designing and mocking up of the jig.

 

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Progressing on building the jig.

 

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This jig is complete and ready for some ‘jig chasing.’

 Beginning of hood scoop build

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Outer jig is clamped to sandwich the hood material. Then the hood material is ‘blocked’ out with a domed wooden mallet to the shape of the base of the jig.

 

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Progressing onto using nylon ‘chasers’ of varies diameters to continuously drag down and stretch the original hood material.

 

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‘Jig chasing’ is now complete.  Peak depth is 1.75 inches.

 

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Showing the face side that requires metal finishing and the hood scoop peak to be made as the original hood material has reached its elastic limit before tearing.

 

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Making of the peak with guidance of the customer’s drawing and my artistic interpretation.

 

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Overview of the fabrication.

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Showing the face after jig chasing.

 

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During the metal finishing process.

 

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Metal finishing continued.

 Custom hood scoop completed

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From metal finishing to the final stages of using highlighting fluid to check how the finished product looks.

 

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Looking pretty sleek.

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A new 1.75″ opening should help out the cooling issues of the Sunbeam Tiger engine.

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Completed Sunbeam Tiger custom hood scoop!

 

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Custom hood fabrication: 1938 Chevrolet Pepsi Truck Custom Build Part 8

This is part eight of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one. In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build. In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail. In post four, we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders. Post five takes us through the panel restoration of the original inner grille housing panel and a custom touch of deleting the cowl vent panel.  Post six takes care of the lower cowl metal and left hand front fender.  Post seven covers the toe board panel, door lock upgrades, and mainly the upgrades to the inner fender support panel; this panel has to be heavily modified to take the new location of the hood side panels.

 

This post shows how the custom hood was created to open by pulling forward instead of the original butterfly design.  This was done at the request of the customer and since the engine will be all new and custom it’s more practical for access.

Original Chevy truck hood

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Butterfly style hood from original truck.  Patterns are taken from this hood, so that it will have the exact same shape when closed.

 

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Custom jig created to fabricate the hood support and custom opening mechanism.  Cardboard pattern for the front nose.

 

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Custom support fit checked with the cab and grill.  You can get an idea of how the hood will look opened here.

 

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A view of the hinges that will move the hood.

 

Aluminum nose shaped from a flat sheet.

Aluminum hood nose shaped from a flat sheet.

 

Marking out the pattern for the main body of the hood.

Marking out the pattern for the main body of the hood.

 

Rolling the form into the hood blank.

Rolling the form into the hood blank.

 

Cleco'ing into position with the nose section.

Clecos holding the main hood piece into position with the nose section.

 

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More clecos in place, to get ready for welding the sections.

 

AC TIG welding of the 2 sections complete.

AC TIG welding of the two sections is now complete.

 

....and to complete this section,metal finishing.

….and to complete this section, metal finishing of the weld.

This is part eight of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one. In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build. In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail. In post four, we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders. Post five takes us through the panel restoration of the original inner grille housing panel and a custom touch of deleting the cowl vent panel.  Post six takes care of the lower cowl metal and left hand front fender.  Post seven covers the toe board panel, door lock upgrades, and mainly the upgrades to the inner fender support panel; this panel has to be heavily modified to take the new location of the hood side panels.

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Inner fender support panel modification: 1938 Chevrolet Pepsi Truck Custom Build Part 7

This is part seven of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one. In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build. In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail. In post four, we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders. Post five takes us through the panel restoration of the original inner grille housing panel and a custom touch of deleting the cowl vent panel.  Post six takes care of the lower cowl metal and left hand front fender.

We look at few areas of restoration and customization in this post.  First, the toe board panel, which is a simple repair back to stock, followed by the ‘B’ post door lock upgrade.  We installed a modern system that will involve electric door poppers and a remote key fob.  We kept the original exterior door handles for a vintage look.  The door handles will therefore be a fixed item, non-pivoting.

Last, we take a look at the inner fender support panel; this panel has to be heavily modified to take the new location of the modified hood side panels.  Since the hood side panels are now a separate entity to the hood, they needed to be built a lot stronger.  They are now stand alone panels, where as before they took added strength and support from being joined to the upper hood via a hinge.  The hood side panels sit in position with the aid of two location pins that are welded onto the inner fender support panel.
Stay tuned for future posts on all the custom modifications in this area.

 

Toe board restoration

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Toe board taken out of the floor and in need of repair.

 

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Restoration of toe board is complete.

 

Door latch upgrades

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The original door catch and lock system.

 

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Modern locking system grafted in.

 

Alterations to support hood modification

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Inner fender panel custom build.

 

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Left hand lower cowl section repaired with simply made tooling.

 

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Custom inner fender build to meet and match hood sides.

 

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Another view of the fender meeting the custom inner support panel.

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Hood side modification in progress.

 

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Building and customizing the hood side to sit in place, without being supported by the top of the hood.

This is part seven of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one. In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build. In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail. In post four, we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders. Post five takes us through the panel restoration of the original inner grille housing panel and a custom touch of deleting the cowl vent panel.  Post six takes care of the lower cowl metal and left hand front fender.

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Front fender and cowl restoration: 1938 Chevrolet Pepsi Truck Custom Build Part 6

This is part six of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one. In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build. In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail. In post four, we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders. Post five takes us through the panel restoration of the original inner grille housing panel and a custom touch of deleting the cowl vent panel.

This post takes care of the lower cowl metal and left hand front fender. The lower cowl repair involves making simple tooling to jig chase the in the raised style line. We also cover another means of simple tooling in another post. The latter photos show more fender restoration making years of abuse and bad repairs right.

Chevy truck cowl repair photos

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Decay in the front of the cab.

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New sheet metal grafted in to replace that spot, continuing the detail from the rocker panel.

 

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Metal finished to completion.

Front Chevy truck fender restoration

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Just to give an idea of what poor condition these fenders were in.  Of course most front fenders we see need a lot of work.

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Completed fender restoration

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This is part six of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one. In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build. In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail. In post four, we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders. Post five takes us through the panel restoration of the original inner grille housing panel and a custom touch of deleting the cowl vent panel.

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Cowl vent removal: 1938 Chevrolet Pepsi Truck Custom Build Part 5

This is part five of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one.  In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build.  In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail.  In post four, we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders.

This post takes us to original panel restoration of the inner grille housing panel and a custom touch of deleting the cowl vent panel.  These cabs do get hot inside in the summer months so a cowl vent opening was practical in designing this cab back in the 30′s.  Fast forward to 2013 and we have AC and therefore we can afford to remove this feature, since the owners had concerns the vent would become a rain trap.  Check out the seamless restoration and rebuild in the photos below.

 Chevy truck grill housing panel restoration

Years of decay are evident here.

 

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Brand new metal formed and tack welded on.

 

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The final product ready for another 60 years of service.

 

Chevy truck cowl custom modification

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Original cowl opening with cut lines mapped out.

 

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Cut completed, and new sheet metal shaped and welded in.

 

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After metal finishing, the truck cab looks just as though it was never a feature!

 

This is part five of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one. In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build. In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail. In post four, we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders.

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Front fender restoration: 1938 Chevrolet Pepsi Truck Custom Build Part 4

This is part four of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one.  In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build.  In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail.  In this post we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders.

Metal finishing the right hand front fender was our first choice when restoring the truck, since the fenders are going to stay stock, non-custom this was an easy choice.

We went through the standard procedure of media blast, then scraping the remaining filler off.  We repaired all tears, splits, and the perimeter, followed by metal finishing to completion as shown in the photos.

Chevy fenders before restoration

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Fender after media blasting.

 

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This section is heavily clad with body filler also known as ‘bondo.’

 

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Evidence of cracking was apparent when the truck was in paint, even more so now after media blasting.

 

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Scraping to remove the bondo.

 

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A close up of the damaged area.

 

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Surface of the moon?!

 

Metal finishing process

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The metal finishing process begins.

 

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Taking down the ‘highs’ and picking up the ‘lows.’

 

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Hand filing in process.

 

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Ready for final clean after filing stage is complete.

 

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Lower rear section of the fender shown here was done as a second part of this restoration.

 

Final Chevy fender restoration photos

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Here’s that second part completed.

 

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Ready to hang.

 

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Completed as good as new!

 

This is part four of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one.  In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build.  In post three, we cover the chassis and drip rail.  In this post we show you the process of metal finishing the fenders.

chassis (Large)

Chassis and drip rail: 1938 Chevrolet Pepsi Truck Custom Build Part 3

This is part three of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one.  In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build.  In this post, we cover the chassis and drip rail.

Newberry Motors assigned a chassis builder in Ohio to build a custom chassis for this 38 Chevy truck to take a non-original 350 engine, transmission, and rear air bags.  It is nicely done and we give credit to the builder.
The latter pictures in this set show the removal of the drip rail at the customers request.  Although there isn’t an ‘off the shelf’ replacement drip rail available, if needed our shop could have fabricated them.

Custom chassis for 38 Chevy truck

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The chassis.

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Drip rail removal for custom restoration

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Original drip rail, you can see some deterioration here.

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Once removed, you can see what’s under the primer.

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Work begins on the drip rail to remove the contour.

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Continuing to remove the contour and fill in the holes.

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In the process of metal finishing the drip rail area on the truck.  You can see how smooth the new contour of the cab is from this angle.

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All done, now repeat the process for the passenger side of the cab.

This is part three of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one.  In post two we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build.  In this post, we cover the chassis and drip rail.

Thanks for checking this out!  We have lots more posts upcoming on this custom truck restoration!

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Front End Parts: 1938 Chevrolet Pepsi Truck Custom Build Part 2

This is part two of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one.  In this post we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build.

The sheet metal was media blasted and primed before we arrived in Newberry, Michigan, for protection from the natural elements.  Per the client some areas will repaired in a custom fashion, i.e. the cowl vent will be smoothed out, since we are installing AC, and the drip rail will be deleted, both giving a sleeker look.  The other areas shown below will be rebuilt to original specifications.

Chevrolet Truck front end before metal work restoration

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The cab after complete disassembly, media blasting, and primer for protection.

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The drip rail to be removed, just a bit rusted.

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The belt line.

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The front corners of the Chevy cab need some attention, this is the driver side.

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Passenger side of the front cab.

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The cowl vent will be modified to accommodate the modernization of the Chevy truck.

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Another shot of the cowl/ front of the cab.

Chevrolet Truck grille housing before metal work restoration

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The grille housing.

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Top angle of the grille housing, where you can see some heavy decay.

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Angle from the bottom of the grille housing.

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The grille frame.

Chevrolet Truck fenders before metal work restoration

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A front fender, these always seem to need lots of attention.

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Another angle of the Chevy front fender.

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And finally, driver side front fender.

This is part two of a series of posts on this highly custom 1938 Chevrolet Truck restoration, for the introduction to the project see part one. In this post we look at the individual truck parts that make up the front end build.

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Mercedes Unimog Custom Fabrication: Part 3

This post is a follow on to the introduction of this Mercedes UNIMOG, Part One shows photos of the unimog at delivery, and photos of the first stages of Module 2 fabrication.   Part Two covers the Module 2 roof fabrication,  and the Module 1 door inner structure reconfigured to take out the wheel arch.

This post takes a look at bonding the outer skin to the inner structure on module number 2.  The bonding agent we use for this application is Lord Fusor Metal Bonding Adhesive (Slow)-112B, there is medium and fast cure times also available.  The slow application allows us to adjust and set in multiple areas, especially in a large square footage situation like our body side on the Unimog.

Moving onto the roof structure shown in the second picture, all ‘top hat’ sections were welded up and ready to take the roof skin that  is shown held into position with clecos in the third picture.  Again, we used the Fusor 112B two-part epoxy on the surface of the top hats and the inner face of the roof skin.  As a side note, for preparation to use this bonding agent, the metal area to be bonded must keyed with 36 grit discing pad or courser, then wiped down with acetone for a clean long  lasting bond.

 

Unimog roof fabrication

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Bonding inner structure of module 2 to outer sheet metal skin.

 

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Inner module 2 roof structure shown here awaiting outer sheet metal.

 

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Module 1 & 2 roofs are held into position with clecos.

Floor fabrication and bead rolling

These last photos take us to the Module 1 floor where the bead roller was working full time.  A floor of this size needs two guys, one at each end of the 5-foot panels.  After marking out the blank sheet metal and making a custom guide for our Baileigh bead roller, we set to task cranking the beads out.  The 18-gauge sheet metal was then spot welded to 16-gauge sheet metal with our ProSpot PR10, which can handle welding two pieces of eight plate comfortably.  The 16-gauge sheet is then MIG welded to the under floor cross members, making for a super rigid structure.

The access panels are made using the same procedure, but are easier to handle due to size.  To close out the beads, we chased down the ends to square them off, which gives a pressed panel feel.

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More bead roller work with the entry transition step into Module 1 from the cab.

 

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Module 1 floor after spot welding.

 

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Module 1 access panel creation with the aid of our bead roller.

 

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View of module 1 interior showing ‘A’ and ‘B’ post close out panels and transition steps to the Unimog cab.

 

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View of the module 2 built in roll cage.

 

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Close up of floor details.

 

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Nose Rebuild: 1953 Porsche 356 Cabriolet Part Two

Part two on this 1953 Porsche 356 Cabriolet, takes us through the nose rebuild, after an accident back in the day crushed the hood rain gutter and a portion of the upper nose.  The introduction post on this Porsche 356 restoration shows pictures of how the Porsche came to us, then after dismantle was complete, and then after the body was media blasted.

First, we removed the inner panel damage, recreated the cut out area, and then grafted in seamlessly.  Next we metal finished the area, just like we would complete outer sheet metal repairs.  Second, we formed the hood gutter shape, with the aid of a shrinker/stretcher, then again weld and metal finish.

Once these areas are honed in, we advanced to the glory part, making the outer skin.  Since we have experience in Porsche 356 builds, creating the correct profile from the latter part of the hood down to the upper nose section comes naturally.  Using our  plannishing hammer to create shape in a blank piece of 12″x8″ steel, with profiles on hand, makes for an easy task.

We then cut in the section, using clecos for multiple fitments and defining, before TIG welding everything together.

 

Photos of the damage to Porsche 356 front end

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What we see here is damage from an accident ‘back in the day.’

 

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Plan view of the front end damage.

 

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Internal panel damage was also result of the front end accident.

 

Porsche 356 nose restoration begins

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Surgery begins: first we cut away the damage in question.

 

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Grafting in new material on the inner panel.

 

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New section shaped on the plannishing hammer and held in position with clecos.

 

 

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New panel section TIG welded into place on the Porsche body.

 

Completed nose restoration photos

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