Body work

My first voyage into doing my own body work! I can do mechanical and electrical troubleshooting and repair and painting, but I’ve never really done any body work.

I bought a cheap set of body hammers and dollies from Harbor Freight a couple of months ago, but I’m just now getting to the point of working on the body. So far, the rear panel is the worst part of the body (straightness, not metal replacement). I started by using my angle die grinder (with an 80 grit twist lock disc on it) to remove all of the primer that was on the area and about 2″ past the repair area. I hammered out the left corner almost perfect – it only needed a little filler.

I mixed up a small amount (about golf ball size) of Bondo and spread it out fairly smooth. I also put a little on the snap screw holes that I welded up last week.

After it cured for about 30 minutes, I grabbed the DA sander with 80 grit paper on it to smooth it out. After 2 coats, I had it about as smooth as it would get (with me doing the bodywork). There are still some waves, but they will be hidden by the spare and gas can.

After I put the first coat on the rear panel, I found another place at the battery box that had a small dent. It wasn’t really accessible, but I was able to get a little of it popped out. I added a couple of coats of filler to fix the rest of the area.

The local sheetmetal dealer STILL didn’t have any 18ga metal, but had some 20ga. He gave me a price of $28 for a 6″x26″ piece! I had to pass on that deal. I called a friend that had plenty to spare, so I will go pick that up in the morning. I should be able to get the passenger side patched tomorrow and maybe even get it mudded and primed!

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