Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

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Justin Rio
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#31 Post by Justin Rio » Sun Jun 26, 2022 4:07 pm

New door skin fitment:
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Capped and now slowly figuring out best adjusted position on the shell frame. Then it all has to fit in the car.
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Of course the initial fitment is very crude and misaligned.
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Small series of trimming to the flanges and repeated test fits slowly made it better.
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I debated about whether I was going to use Trevor's step flange or not. As the fitting progress it just seemed to be holding things up.
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I decided to cut free. I was very unsure about it as the cutting went but
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Once I laid it back over the frame everything seemed to fall into place. It was the right way to go.
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Remembering a Bruce Baker warning about door handle height discrepancies I set about making sure this cup is in the right spot.
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Both original doors to this car have the center of the handle coming in at center to that mount screw hole in the jamb. This wasted T2 door I have here highlighted perfectly what Bruce was warning about. Its a factory door but notice how it is almost a quarter inch lower than the marked position of the doors for this car.
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Flanges on the frame side were fine trimmed, test fit and repeated until they slid together in good alignment.
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With the door handle height established I could now fully commit and tighten up the skin flanges more and bring them over center.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#32 Post by Justin Rio » Sun Jun 26, 2022 4:09 pm

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Best way I had to achieve this without messing up those initial bends.
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Thankfully turned the trick with no distortion to the outer surface.
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Rear vertical flange was carefully pecked over next. Skin was then mounted onto the frame for the first time in its best adjusted initial position. Mounted to the car next to see what I ended up with.
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Just three cleco's and off it goes.
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Its very close. Edge of the new section carries on the line of the upper original edge and the door gap remains pretty good.
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Initial rocker gap is promising too.
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Forward gap is still factory but devoid of lead so a lot of wiggle room up here. Lower corner is hanging loose BTW.
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Quick look inside to show how all of those previous repairs are going to represent to anyone nosey enough to look in here.
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More fine tuning and prep yet to go but its starting very close. A great relief.

Thanks for stopping by.
Justin

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ScottBerry
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#33 Post by ScottBerry » Sun Jun 26, 2022 5:37 pm

Excellent work and patience as always Justin.
1960 356B (110196) restoration project in progress
1968 912 Restoration Complete

Puygranier Antoine
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#34 Post by Puygranier Antoine » Thu Jun 30, 2022 12:39 am

Gaps are already looking excellent !

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#35 Post by Justin Rio » Sun Jul 03, 2022 2:36 am

Thanks Scott, great to hear from you...long time. Hope you're still making headway on your coupe.

The door still had a long way to go at this point Antione but I was trying to keep it as close as I could along the way.
Thanks again guys.

Justin

Prep work for final skin install.
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Sanding and prepping the inner surface for a good coat of sealer.
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Also began pecking out the remaining damage while its easy to get at.
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A little picking and filing leveled it closer but I can only take it so far until the new skin is fully attached.
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As for the skin prep itself I needed to harvest this original backing plate for the door handle.
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Final hole location for the handle was etched from the original to position the old plate.
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Original plate was acid dipped to remove all the old rust that was on the mating surface. Plate in final position and ready to weld in. A lot going on at once and more yet to do before I can close this door shell up for good but its on its way.
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Plate installed
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Opening up the hole in the skin. I wanted to procrastinate on this one but now was the time while I have clear access and could see how far I needed to take it.
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One more pre-installation chore complete.
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As final skin installation got closer I decided to take the weld joint a little higher still to get past more of that old damaged section.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#36 Post by Justin Rio » Sun Jul 03, 2022 2:39 am

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Usually I like to save more of the original but that new profile is so nice and we're only talking about two more inches. Also the length of the final joint is an inch+ shorter going this route. Most importantly I'll still have access from behind when the time comes to pick and file the weld joint. I lose the original side mirror holes but I marked and pre-punched them back in the new section first. Notice the downward angle of the holes; the owner told me that original Aero mirrors have a limited pivot angle so the mirror was offset to compensate for this.
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One more careful cut with the fear of removing too much as it went.

Prepping for sealer and paint.
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Need to get a good coat of primer and paint on the inner surfaces before I close this door shell up. Etching the new metal with some 100 grit to give the sealer something to hang onto.
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Initial coat of epoxy applied to both sides.
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Between coats some heavy drip check was applied to the joints I wanted to seal out.
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Not all the joints however. This long run here is better left to drain if any water finds its way in behind there.
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Sealed out the reinforcement plate as well but I now realize I should have left the bottom of it open to allow any potential future moisture in between there to escape. I'll razor blade the bottom of it out on my next visit. Sometimes you can go too crazy with these joint sealers and inadvertently cause the damage you were trying to prevent by trapping water and not allowing it to escape.
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Final coat of epoxy after seam sealer.
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Also dumped some epoxy straight into those openings(green arrows) and sloshed it around for some additional coverage in behind there.
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A quick scuff and a coat of flat black next. Then the new skin will be ready to go on for good.
Thanks for looking.
Justin

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#37 Post by Justin Rio » Tue Jul 05, 2022 4:57 am

Final top coat:
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Finally time to Begin fitting the skin on for good.

Figuring out final skin location and frame preload.
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Frame remounted on the car once again but this time with the latch mechanism to help me get a complete picture on how well or not the edge of the skin will fit in this opening.
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Without the skin there is a ton of flex across this frame. As it stands now the lower corner here sticks out a bit too far.
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With the lightest of persuasion of pressure that corner comes in and the upper corner comes back out even at the top. All is right again. As I fit this skin I not only have to make sure fits in the opening of the car but I also have to set the skin so it will preload the frame with this needed twist as I set and weld it on.
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Its not a huge deal but it is something I have to keep in mind and shoot for versus just blindly tacking and welding this skin on in its relaxed position on my table. Otherwise after the fact, I'd be fighting to get the attitude of the end of the door right with car and once that skin is welded its not going to be very cooperative. Anyway developing that correct union between these two up next.
Thanks for looking.

Justin

Justin Rio
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#38 Post by Justin Rio » Tue Jul 05, 2022 4:46 pm

New door skin finally mounted.
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Pretty much had the skin in its best adjusted position here. Set screws in the lower corners lock the frame in the preloaded twist or tension that I need so corner edges of the door line up with the body.
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Forward corner of the rocker sags a little but it still needs to be removed to repair the longitudinal so I'll have my opportunity to clean this line up against the final finished shape of this repaired door.
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But before I could lay down my first tack weld I noticed this really strong crown or bulged at the center in relation to the rocker. The rocker is slightly bent inward but the threshold line is still straight and the center of this skin was hanging out way too far.
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Once I dismounted the door and removed the skin my straight edge highlighted the problem. The lower flange is bowed at the center. I checked some original examples and the best I can tell is that there is some slight bow in the factory flanges but not this pronounced. As more confirmation the new repair section for the right side isn't this curvy.
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A little hammer work to reduce some of that excess curve. Always something.
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After a few more rounds of trial and error I was finally able to tack it on. I finally won.
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The entire upper run is a slight overlap and I was in no mood to remove it one more time just to get that last fine trim in.
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But first began joining old with new permanently at this upper rear corner and would work my way forward to chase out any potential "bunching" along the way.
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Decided on zip wheeling the excess on a very steep approach angle versus straight on to reduce the gap width of the final joint.
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It really turned the trick as once they were pushed into level position I had a close gap. I also had angled edges which seem to blend together really nice on this convex surface.
Last edited by Justin Rio on Tue Jul 05, 2022 4:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#39 Post by Justin Rio » Tue Jul 05, 2022 4:48 pm

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I took it in stages and ground back to each of my initial tack welds then carefully set and tacked these small runs into final position then repeated the process. At this point I just have a little more to grind out at the front but she's almost there. Much to my great relief this joint is holding the shape I need so far.

More later...

Thanks for looking.
Justin

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#40 Post by Justin Rio » Thu Jul 07, 2022 3:48 am

Skin welding continued.
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Entire upper run all tacked in. Placing a lot of tacks in first then once close enough I'll zip-weld between the spots.
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This area felt right with the forward run still overlapped but now that its all level this area felt a touch high now. Zipped the tacks and reset it ever so slightly lower. A few years ago I wouldn't have bothered and just would have seamed it right up thinking I'd correct it later. Heat distortion aside if you "lock" or set the material in the wrong place to begin with its only going to get harder to correct after the fact. Just one of those hard knock lessons you pick up by failing at it few times first.
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After that adjustment I welded and finished this rear corner and edge first.
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This run will have some rollers in it before its all over for sure but hopefully I'll get it all ironed back out.
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process repeats all the way down.
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This long upper weld joint fully stitched and ground.
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A great relief to get this one in the books and with minimal distortion.
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A quick pass with a body file highlights the irregularities. Nothing serious
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will pick and file this run right after I have the back side ground smooth. I'm going to hold off until the rest of this skin install is complete.
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moved onto crimping down the flanges.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#41 Post by Justin Rio » Thu Jul 07, 2022 3:50 am

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Door skin jaws crimp down only so tight so once initially set I followed it up with a hammer and dolly to draw the flange even tighter still.
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After crimping down the flanges the door was reinstalled (again) and as you can see it grew a little and closed up the bottom gap. I'll compensate for this change when the rocker is reinstalled. Par for the course...
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Gap aside still Very happy with the initial shape and transition off the rocker; the straight parts anyway.
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Not all good news of course as strong crown or bulge remained on the more forward section. I didn't get it all on the first try before the skin was installed. Some of the rocker is bent here but its more than that as there is just a general bulge in the lower skin in this area.
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Block sanded the area to highlight that troubling high spot. The bulged areas center highlighted with the marker.
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The skin is snugly against the bottom frame flange in this area so I know for sure its shape is translating through the skin. Tried carefully hammering it but with no real change.
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Its not much just a couple thousands high but just enough to piss me off. My foremost concern through this problem was not to F-up that beautiful new skin as I chased this.
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I left it for the night and came up with trying to carefully apply pressure while tapping the bottom flange to try and get it to collapse a touch the following day. Didn't work and I was running out of options.
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I tried to avoid it but I ended up relief cutting this section of flange to get it in so that unwanted crown would relax. Really hated to do that but
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That turned the trick. Hard to tell with the damaged rocker but the general shape of the door is now there. It sure wasn't much as this area was brought in literally only the width of my cutting wheel but it gave me the contour I needed in the end. The remaining loose ends coming up next.

Thanks for looking.
Justin

Justin Rio
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#42 Post by Justin Rio » Sat Jul 23, 2022 7:27 pm

Last of the loose ends:
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Moved onto stitching up the forward vertical joint.
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Most of the vertical run welded up and dressed smooth here.
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Then it was onto finishing out the lower forward corner.
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Lower corner complete.
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Gas weld details replicated as found on the original section.
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Moved to the rear corner to heat and roll it over tight. Relief shape not quite right.
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Referred to this original.
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Horizontal flange continues onto the edge and since this will always show a small patch was added for the right detail.
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Welded and dressed. The vertical flange will eventually be smoothed over in lead as originally but I'm not soldering just yet.
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That long relief cut along the bottom fully welded and dressed. This officially capped off my welding duties on this door shell.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#43 Post by Justin Rio » Sat Jul 23, 2022 7:34 pm

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Remounted on the car to see what I finally ended up with.
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Like the rocker the front fender shape suffers from old accident damage which will be repaired to work off of the shape and contour of this door.
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leading edge is original so I maintained factory gap which won't require a ton of lead.
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Fender also suffers from rust too so this leading edged section will need to be cut open and replaced but again it leaves me open to reshaping it to suit the "new" door without the need for a lot filler to be right.
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At least now I have a finished and committed closing panel shape and size to build around.
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What is left yet to do is lead soldering and the planishing on that upper weld joint; all bodywork related from here on in. A long road to get here and I did savor the view from this tiny plateau but its now time to start down into the next valley.
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Right door shell repair next.

thanks for looking.
Justin

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#44 Post by Justin Rio » Sun Jul 24, 2022 2:16 pm

Begin Right door repairs:
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But one more detail to add. While messing with the right door I realized I had forgotten to add the drain holes in on the left door. Drain pictured above the original for correct shape and location.
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I was very concerned about stabbing the skin with the drill which is why I should have punched these before the skin but it worked out especially up here where I had to relief cut.
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Back on the right side door. Mocked up on the car with frame to confirm a base line fit and finish before I begin cutting.
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Like the left side the door fits beautifully being the numbers original.
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Forward gap also nice.
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Frame fitment also noted in case something doesn't fit or look right after the repairs.
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Looks nice to begin with and hope to preserve that.
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Old accident damage and rust have thrown this alignment off; so much so that it collides and binds up here. So glad I tested it before hand just in case it continues to give me clearance problems.
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Again this was the baseline and confirmation fit I needed to establish first since I was not the one who took this car apart. All set. Cutting the rot out of this door next.
Thanks for stopping by.

Justin

Justin Rio
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#45 Post by Justin Rio » Sun Jul 24, 2022 5:47 pm

Right door cutting:
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Save for the bottom and that forward dent with poor removal attempt this original door skin is in nice shape.
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Will have to perform the dreaded lower repair section run but I want the weld joint as low as possible. This cut line doesn't get all the rust holes but I fill the ones on that back edge as it goes.
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While the skin is nicer than the left door was the rust on this side is touch more advanced than on the drivers door.
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Just an observation. Doesn't make a whole lot of difference as the required repair to the frame will be about equal.
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Began prep work by removing some lead. Disturbing only what I have to so I stopped just above the dent.
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Skin Sliced first.
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It all has to go so I took the bottom with the skin section out in one shot.
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Off; Almost a rust free door here. :D
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Rust is slightly higher and more advanced than the left side just as suspected.
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A concern with having this joint so low was ample access to get at the forward lower tray to clean and repair the lower hinge mount as was done on the other door.

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