Saturday, June 6, 2009

Just Because Its Not Original, Doesn't Make It Custom

There are custom things added to cars. Things that make sense and add to the lines of the car, for example these Packard taillights.

And then there are those, like reverse lights added under the headlights, that detract from the vehicle.

When I removed the light it left three holes. Two of which I knew I could fill with MIG. The other needed to have some sheet metal cut in the shape and size of the hole and welded in.

I have never done anything like this before, but I have seen it done on TV. I got a piece of paper and I traced the hole.

Then I went back to my busted up fender that I practiced my welding on and cut out a small piece of metal and then cut it to the shape of my tracing.

I sanded all of the green house paint off. It is a small piece of sheet metal and I knew it would be nearly impossible to hold into place. So I grabbed a small nail and tack welded it to the patch piece. This way I had something to hold on to.

After a few touch-up trims, the piece fit well.

I didn't want to have the metal overheat and warp since I was working with such a small piece. So I made a series of tack welds spread out until they eventually joined.

I filled the two small holes next to the big hole and ground everything down. As you can see, it is not perfect, but the patch is strong and a very thin coat of putty will make it look really nice.