Sunday, March 6, 2011

Let The Body Work Begin!

I've been looking at two dents in the roof for about four years now, and I decided that today was the day to do something about them. Their size and spacing suggest that someone made an ill-fated attempt to put a roof rack on this car. Clearly, if you have furniture to buy, you should take something else to Ikea. When we first acquired this body, I attempted to get a few different body tools into the tight space beneath these dents to no avail. This only left me with one option: I needed a stud pin welder! This is one of the better inventions to happen to the auto body industry in the last generation. You simply load a small copper-coated steel pin into the gun, press the tip into the lowest point of a dent and pull the trigger. In less than one second, you have something to attach a slide hammer to, and voila! It actually takes several of these pins to work the dent out, but it is very effective, and a lot of fun. Fortunately, I'll have plenty of chances to use it, as the body has a few wrinkles. Once the dent is within 1/16" of flush, the Bondo may be applied. I worked for most of a year in a body shop in my early twenties. I learned a few basics (mostly enough to get into trouble) but never had enough practice to get really good at body and paint work. As for the body and paint on Matilda, I've decided to give it a shot, but it is notoriously difficult to make dark colors look good. I figure if I'm patient and don't mind redoing, and possibly re-redoing some things, I may have a chance at getting it right. If that doesn't work out, I may have to leave it to the pros.

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