Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

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Justin Rio
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Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#1 Post by Justin Rio » Tue Apr 26, 2022 5:55 pm

Progress thread for a very late production 1959 sunroof coupe.
srcou5.jpg
As found and purchased several years back.
srcou4.jpg
Usual rust and of course, then some more.
srcou3.jpg
All that you would expect to find in an old 356 with a large hole in its roof.
srcou2.jpg
Stripped back to shell at this point and ready to head to media blasting with its sister project #17 convertible D.

More update shots next.

Thanks for looking.

Justin

This project is actually much further up the road than I show here as I add entries. If you'd like to see more up to date progress you can find it here: https://forum.abcgt.com/forum/main-foru ... sis-108625
Last edited by Justin Rio on Sun Jul 24, 2022 2:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#2 Post by Justin Rio » Tue Apr 26, 2022 6:22 pm

S-R59 001.JPG
Freshly blasted and primed shell as it was delivered to me.
S-R59 002.JPG
A lot of old collision damage lurking under that red paint.
S-R59 003.JPG
The severe deformation in the battery box shows a good hit at some point in the distant past.
S-R59 005.JPG
No surprises in here.
S-R59 004.JPG
Some lateral rearward chassis rust but the rear seat pan was in amazingly nice shape.
S-R59 010.JPG
A few odd places of localized rot where the old sound deadener formed a reservoir.
S-R59 006.JPG
The rear of the body by contrast was in pretty good shape.
S-R59 007.JPG
Again this was a very late production A-car so a few T5 features were beginning to show up like this reverse light embossment.
S-R59 008.JPG
Rust repair entries up next.

Thanks for looking.

Justin

Eric Huffman
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#3 Post by Eric Huffman » Tue Apr 26, 2022 6:58 pm

Going all out and it looks to me like a car well worth it. 59's have always been my favorite year for a 356.
Last edited by Eric Huffman on Wed Apr 27, 2022 8:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#4 Post by Puygranier Antoine » Wed Apr 27, 2022 6:48 am

What a cool project, looking forward to the next update !

Antoine

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#5 Post by Justin Rio » Wed Apr 27, 2022 4:04 pm

Thanks guys. Its nicely optioned and with what is considered a "project car" these days its way ahead of the game.

New panels from Trevor's Hammer works:
A-SR COUPE 001.JPG
Christmas morning
A-SR COUPE 002.JPG
new nose section
A-SR COUPE 003.JPG
left door will need reskinning.
A-SR COUPE 006.JPG
New battery box unit and upper closing wall.
A-SR COUPE 007.JPG
A clean look at that pretty new nose.
A-SR COUPE 004.JPG
rear inner wheel house closing panels.
A-SR COUPE 005.JPG
both doors will need new bottoms.
A-SR COUPE 009.JPG
Nothing prettier than shiny new panels.
A-SR COUPE 011.JPG
Gave the new nose a quick test fit. Things were looking up almost immediately.
Thanks for looking.
Justin

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#6 Post by Puygranier Antoine » Thu Apr 28, 2022 12:57 am

Now that is some clean metal to start with 8)
Antoine

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#7 Post by Justin Rio » Mon May 02, 2022 5:28 pm

New parts and panels really opens up the possibilities Antoine.

Prepping left door for metalwork starting with a baseline fitment before the shell is dismantled.
IMG_5470.JPG
Car arrived with hinges mounted and shimmed "correctly" I can only assume? I'd know for sure here in just a little bit.
IMG_5469.JPG
Bottom of the original numbers matching door of course in need of replacement.
IMG_5474.JPG
Door hinge mounted and seats in nicely. This secondary body shop damage pretty much sealed its fate. These giant holes could pass for bullet holes but no its some geniuses way of pulling out old accident damage instead of just removing the door panel to get at it from behind. These old "repairs" drive me crazy especially when it means the demise of an original panel.
IMG_5475.JPG
Rear gap is great with a nice transition off the top to the quarter window opening.
IMG_5476.JPG
Lower gap runs slightly tighter. Bruce Baker has said this is normally found from the factory.
IMG_5477.JPG
Front gap also just as nice. So for sure, factory and undisturbed.
IMG_5479.JPG
Original rockers have been rubbed a couple of times but are otherwise in surprisingly nice condition. These will be carefully removed and reinstalled eventually.
IMG_5481.JPG
Original door frame mock up next to check for clearance and contour fitment with the body opening; no issues.
IMG_5480.JPG
Gap between the air deflector and B-pillar also noted. These are all the things I wanted to record as my baseline factory fitment before I began cutting and changing anything.
IMG_5482.JPG
Next I set the striker and latch to finish off my established fit so I'll know just how much the door might have changed once all the metalwork is complete.
More later...
Thanks for looking
Justin

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#8 Post by Justin Rio » Tue May 03, 2022 5:05 pm

Taking a close and detailed comparison of Original and new to determine left door reskin plans.
IMG_5483.JPG
Trevor's new door skin is a beautiful piece and ideally I'd hate to cut up something so pristine but I needed to find out if using it whole or only a section of it will give me the best and most accurate end result for the least amount of work.
IMG_5484.JPG
Everything below the door handle line is obviously going but whether I use it all rested on how accurate this top cap area and details match up with the original.
IMG_5487.JPG
At first glance this cap contour and its shape is very nice and seems to match up well with the original but upon closer comparison things began to deviate.
IMG_5485.JPG
At its widest point the original is coming in at just shy of an inch.
IMG_5486.JPG
The new one by contrast is a full quarter inch wider.
IMG_5484.JPG
The entire run in general is wider than the original. I've been down this road already when I reskinned the door on my coupe. The new one was also wider and by the time I had the skin seat properly that additional width was encroaching into the glass, not to mention you'd never get the Chrome base trim to fit. I had to section it and remove the excess which means this will be an exact repeat if I decided to use the new skin as a whole. Preserving the original top section was now beginning to look like the best option.
IMG_5489.JPG
As the comparison went I also began to notice that the trough contour just below that ledge runs very crisp and defined all the way across the door.
IMG_5495.JPG
By contrast that trough contour washes out at the middle of the new panel.
IMG_5494.JPG
Looking for more confirmation I set the skin in there to see how well it aligned and if was really short or too tall in there. It actually fit pretty well.
IMG_5496.JPG
Here's that trough profile that washes smooth highlighted in green. Its a very subtle detail and most people would never catch it but once its in paint that's going to give a humped profile in the paint reflection. If anyone did catch it they'd probably chalk it up to a swatch of bondo that wasn't carved out completely. Anyway, its no big deal but it was another reason to preserve some of the original.
Last edited by Justin Rio on Tue May 03, 2022 5:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#9 Post by Justin Rio » Tue May 03, 2022 5:06 pm

IMG_5497.JPG
Measured and compared the handle recess and it seems to be fine. This gives me the green light to cut higher eliminating more old damage.
IMG_5493.JPG
Preliminary cut line is about here. What I like about it is its on a crowned face which will end up being much more stable without the risk of oil canning. The weld joint is also high enough and will be hard to detect from the back side but still low enough to get at and work from behind after all the welding. Most importantly this will preserve all those original contours and details that already fit this car. The factory rear view mirror placement also left alone. Again, either way I go I am still suck with a long seam weld down this door skin so why not save as much original metal as possible and save some aggravation along the way.
IMG_5491.JPG
This approach will also saves me the additional work of file shaping this tiny closing pieces around the door frame.
IMG_5492.JPG
Let these sleeping dogs lay.
IMG_5500.JPG
Doesn't get me completely past all the old sin but what remains above that line should iron out fine.
IMG_5501.JPG
Melting away the lead in preparation. Not a lot used here surprisingly.
IMG_5513.JPG
Old skin removed to reveal how far the rest of the rot goes. More on that up next.
Thanks for looking.
Justin

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Dan Kalinski
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#10 Post by Dan Kalinski » Wed May 04, 2022 11:16 am

Beautiful work, Justin!

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#11 Post by Puygranier Antoine » Thu May 05, 2022 12:44 am

Wow, beautiful work, thanks a lot for sharing !

Antoine

George Krompecher
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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#12 Post by George Krompecher » Thu May 05, 2022 12:23 pm

Justin, one question for you:
In my '59 the front latch part where the hook catches is missing. Is that the original piece in you car here?
Would you have close-up pics, for me to see what I need to replicate?
Attachments
S-R59 003.JPG
S-R59 003.JPG (48.55 KiB) Viewed 724 times

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#13 Post by Justin Rio » Thu May 05, 2022 1:58 pm

I've only shown the door cut open by this point but Thank you guys, its very much appreciated.

It is an original catch housing for the safety hook George. Here are some detailed shots:
Con-vert 021.JPG
Con-vert 032.JPG
Undisturbed original example below:
carrera 937.JPG
547 577.jpg

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#14 Post by George Krompecher » Fri May 06, 2022 12:34 am

Merci beaucoup Justin.

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Re: Late 1959 S/R coupe project # 108625

#15 Post by Justin Rio » Fri May 06, 2022 4:11 pm

Anytime George.

Left door structural rot:
IMG_5519.JPG
No great surprise, this layered corner is pretty well advanced as the outside gave a good indication.
IMG_5515.JPG
It'll need a new lower rolled flange for the inner closing wall.
IMG_5516.JPG
Constructed a little different from the T1's I'm used to seeing but nothing that can't be copied.
IMG_5517.JPG
I'm going to try my best to avoid removing the hinge and stopper assembly as I have a clear shot at it from the other side with the skin removed.
IMG_5518.JPG
It appears solid just under the upper rivets so no sense disturbing all of that if I don't have to.
IMG_5520.JPG
Starting with a conservative cut line. I'll have a better idea once I get this corner out of the way but hopefully I won't have to go much further than this; famous last words.
IMG_5543.JPG
Begin grinding and peeling the two sandwiched layers of metal inside this housing.
IMG_5544.JPG
Also began squeezing it back out square.
IMG_5545.JPG
A lot of spot welds holding these in but the rot helped the removal along.
IMG_5572.JPG
Housing peeled clean and ready for an acid bath once I remove the rest of the door bottom. That next.
Thanks for looking.
Justin

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