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Post Info TOPIC: Body back on questions.


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Body back on questions.


The questions continue.

Given that the original body came off the chassis in a number of pieces, can anyone advise on the best way of getting my new body onto the now running chassis?

Am I best to fit the body first and then all the internal panels (flitch panels, dashboard, inner rear passenger compartment panels, etc) or should these panels be fitted loosely prior to the body going on? I'm certain the boot liner has to go on first as I can't see how it would fit with the body on. Given that, do the GRP panels that form the rear passenger arm rests need to go on before the body too?

As regards the body, which end is best to hook over the chassis first. Nose or tail??



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IMHO:

Rear parcel shelf/boot floor section/dashboard with wiper mounts fitted and height of rad to bonnet clearance  when shut are all very important!

Then level it as best you can around each wheel/headlamp and prey it doesn't look like its crabbing when you drive it down the road!!!

Best person I can think of to advise you at the moment is our Gary as he has just done all this biggrin



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Mike, you received the new body a couple of years ago if i recall correctly?

How did you store it in the mean time?

 



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Timber frame, Erik. Ian & Celia brought it up to me suitably braced for the journey and it's been stored likewise since then. Hopefully it still fits. Nothing a bit of brute force and ignorance won't cure. I tried to do similarly with the original but it was so badly damaged it just sagged like a wet blanket. The difference in rigidity between old and new is massive. Probably down to modern materials and being in one piece rather than lots of bits stuck together.

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and 50+ years of moisture....hope the new ones been stored well..........



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Ah, if stored on a timber frame you're safe I think.

What helped me a lot aligning the body on my P1 was the "string method"

I taped some pieces of string to both sides of the body from the rear light to the headlight.

This way you can easily see/check if the curve of the side is ok.

a.JPG

b.JPG

c.JPG



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I also used this for aligning the bumpers.

d.JPG



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nigel c wrote:

and 50+ years of moisture....hope the new ones been stored well..........


 Thankfully, my new workshop is bone dry. My old place probably didn't help the old body being as it was a rather dark and damp barn.



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I Know Gary is very busy at the moment but I'm sure he drop a line on here with his findings.

I do remember that I didn't fit my bonnet and till I had fixed the bodywork and then found the bracing bonded to the inner face fit the top of the radiator and that wont go down any further due to the cross member underneath.

So I cut it off, re positioned it between the hinge fixings (not a bad place for it to be IMHO), made a new extra section, glass'd it all in, filled and finished....only another lifetime lostdisbelief

When you think youre in the right area try and get someone to help you offer up the front and rear glass as well? just to see if your somewhere near and I know the roof is very wobbly anyway smile



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Yes, fitting the glass is something that's concerning me. As yet, I have no idea if the new glass will fit. The glass has been stored in my garage at home and the body is in my workshop 16 miles away. I still have the original glass and might be tempted to use them to check/size up the screen surrounds (provided new & old glass are the same size).

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I'm sure they will be close enough and "use up" the old ones smile



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The bit of glass that will show if you've done it right.....

Is the sliding glass in the window.

Any suggestion of twist in the door and it won't slide or won't fit at the top.

If you copy Erics string method, (with the doors on) you stand a chance.

F



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Ah, the doors (and windows contained therein) are off the original car and will obviously have to fit to the new body. The passenger door, window, frame etc are all in fairly good nick and the glass goes up and down easily. Driver door, not so much. This one needs a good deal of refurbishment internally. The metal work that holds the winder mechanism in place has pretty much rotted away. Needless to say, all seals and rubbers are shot. Again, with my dubious past in grp cars, getting reluctant doors, bonnets & boot lids to fit often misshapen bodies is par for the course. I've even resorted to de-skinning a door, adjusting the frame to fit and then laminating the skin back on again. A bit messy but worked rather well.

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There's a reinforcing plate buried in the GRP on the front face of the door.  My ph2 had these rotted away, so I had to rebuild the doors twice, the second time to get the glass to slide.  Painful lesson that one.

F

 



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Yes, I've already dug out some of the remains. Given the state of it, I do wonder how long the original lasted.

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I found on most Ph1 cars the near side door glass from doesn't fit the car very well but IMHO all this can be done better when the door is hung. And IMHO your best to de-skin the doors, fettle and fix the inner where they latch correctly etc, bond the door skin in the aperture, bond tot he inner frame and cut it out! You know Mike, you've been there before.

Gary did have problems with the apertures/cut off of flashing on the new shell.



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Yes, Nigel. A process I had to undertake on one of my former Se5a's. Messy but ultimately successful.

I didn't realise Gary was working with a new shell too. I guess this is on his customers car?

Come on Gary, if you read this, please give me a heads up on the pitfalls. I'm perfectly comfortable pinching other peoples good ideas.

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Hello Mike,

Apologies for the delay. I've been eating, sleeping and dreaming Peerless body shell and doors fitting these past few months, hence not at all interested in spending my down time writing lengthy replies about them, too.

The new shell is both lighter and stronger but because it's also thinner, you need to adjust all your fitting of any original internal panels accordingly, typically by 2 to 5mm in places, maybe more.

The new bootlid skin is a good fit in the aperture but I couldn't get a good fit on either leading door edge with the front wings, so the door shells had to be very manhandled to create the correct curvature for the skins. In addition, the nearside edge of the front wing where it curves at the top of the door front at the A-post had been excessively cut, so new GRP was required to make up the difference. I didn't fit a new door skin to the driver's side because the skin curvature was all wrong and short top to bottom. 

In terms of fitting the shell, it sleeves over the rear crossmember first and then drops down flush at the front with the lower crossmember. I used a beam of wood and a trolley jack to support the front valance and prevent the nose dropping until the inner flitch panels are set fully in place, followed by the front inner arch vertical pieces front and rear on both sides. Use self tappers to pin the B-post sections to the chassis uprights. These were accurately cut for the uprights on the shell I fitted but do check. Use self tapping screws to temporarily fit the door hinge D-plates to the chassis uprights. These add critical support to the shell at the screen pillars. You now have an idea if the front wings and lower sill sections have the correct curvature around the D-plate without being stressed into position.

Fit the dashboard pod and loosely fit the three thin bolts holding it to the top bulkhead crossmember. The dash pod can be shimmed up or down as necessary to fit at the screen base. Do not cut out the wiper spindle holes yet! The dash pod can be fitted/removed with the shell in place but is much easier if the upper steering column isn't protruding through. That said, you must ensure the dash pod is fitted in relation to the top column bracket.

Now mark the centre of the shell and the centre of the chassis, ignoring any mould lines in the GRP, of course. It's possible to slide the shell left or right easily on the chassis to achieve the closest fit possible in relation to the D-plates, B-post, boot corners and front registration plate chin.

Now you've got that far, fit road wheels and see if the shell sits equally over each wheel. Adjust accordingly if not. The driver's side wheel arch aperture is half and inch or so wider than the passenger side and a new inner arch panel will need modifying to reflect this. This is as original and not a shell fault.

By now, weeks (maybe months) will have elapsed, your beard grown to Catweasel proportions and you'll understand the expression 'like pinning water to the sky'. If you can, fit the doors without their mechanisms and check the wing curvature before any permanent fixing takes place. Likewise, the bonnet. There is so much adjustment from the body flex that you have to recheck everything each time a section is self tapped into position, especially in relation to inner flitch and windscreen base.

If you are re-using old inner panels expect them to encounter larger gaps where they should bond to the shell due to the thinner shell. With the exception of the dash pod, I've had to make all the inner panels new from scratch.

Hope that helps for now?

All the best,

Gary

 



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Small tip.

I didn't fit side tanks and reinforced the sill area so that it didn't flex when you sat on it to get in.

I then spent several weeks getting a fair fit on the doors.

Big mistake, that you only find after its been painted.

When you fit door rubbers the door won't close, this sill area is supposed to give a little.

Solution: check for bonnet, boot and especially door gaps with the rubbers in place.

F



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Hi Gary

Thank you so much for taking the time to provide such a detailed (and concerning) reply. It's much appreciated, particularly at this time.

I'm really surprised to read that your new body is thinner than the original. Mine is the exact opposite. I've still got a few scraps of the original lying around and they are way thinner than the new one. I guess the hand made nature of both might be coming into play on this. I'm actually concerned that some of the inner panels won't fit but for exactly the opposite reason. Strange!

I should probably have mentioned that I'm re-using the original doors, boot & bonnet. Nothing like making life difficult for myself. I'm also in the process of repairing/replacing some of the original internal panels.

My means of body and panel attachment will be countersunk rivnuts with s/s fixings in most instances in combination with Sikaflex. I think I'm correct in remembering you used Sikaflex on your own car? Any regrets or approvals?

I wasn't aware that the dash could go in after the body is on. I thought it had to be in place first. Mine is temporarily in place, again using rivnuts with repair washers but I may now take it out and wait until the body is back on. However, my steering column is now well and truly in place and I really, really don't want to take it out again. I appreciate this will make getting the dash back in difficult but, hopefully, not impossible. I assume the wiper wheel boxes don't go in until the body is well and truly fixed in it's final position.

Anyway, you've answered my main concern which was which end to fit first. A big help to me.

Thanks again for everything, Gary. Your experience is invaluable.

Mike

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Thanks, Frank. Yes, the infamous bouncing door trick. Had that on my Rochdale GT. When you say that the sills are meant to 'give a little' can you elaborate? I don't recall there being any door seal along the length of the sill so I'm not sure what would necessitate the sill giving a bit when the door closes? Am I missing something?

Mike

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no there's no seal along the bottom/the tank covers. I have a gap here that's a little drafty and have a seal glued to the underside of the door itself wink

I have put a seal all the way up the front edge and round under the dash. the dash is a very good aligner I found and supports the bulkhead well whilst you are faffing about.
Well done to Gary for the in-depth heads up....thats taken me back and the result will be that i wont sleep tonight!

 



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Hello Mike,

A few clarifications in case I lead you astray. That's Nigel's job. The dash pod can be removed with the shell on but that fitted column will make it very tricky to clear around the base of the screen pillars. Have a go before you pin down the front wings but give up if the stresses are too much. In any case, bond the dashpod to the lower screen scuttle last.

I reused the old bonnet too and there is plenty of material to fettle the fit. I removed the inner bootlid frame and morphed it onto the new bootlid skin. It now feels substantial but not too heavy.

I have used Sikaflex extensively. Brilliant stuff but messy to caulk in the tight corners. Have a box of gloves to hand. Obviously keep s/steel and alloy fittings away from each other to prevent corrosion. Unless you need to remove panels in the future for access, large self tappers suitable for shed roofing take less time, are less expensive and are guaranteed to not spin in the metal the way only a seized rivnut can.

New glass is imminent and the screens will be trial fitted using eight or so small sections of screen rubber to check the fit. The lip around front and rear apertures should be of consistent height or the rubber will be wavy when fitted. Best to check before paint and certainly before the glass is fitted.

 



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Thank you again to all for the advice. Hopefully a great help to others too.

 

Clearly, sealing the door effectively is make it up as you go along job. 

 

Gary, I'll look into the self tappers you refer to. I used to use something similar (I think) when I used to install bird netting  on the roofs of very tall buildings. There's nothing like hanging over the side of huge industrial unit with a heavy duty drill driver in one hand and a self tapper in the other to make sure you get it right first time. The ones I used to use were a bit industrial for the Peerless so I'll look around for alternatives.

 

Good tip on the screen fitting, Gary with the strips of rubber. I'll be sure to use it.

 

Bit of car porn arrived yesterday smilesmilesmile

IMG_20200520_103219.jpg

 

 

 

Mike



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is that the ali pump housing Mike? Dont get me started on this areabiggrin Go looking on the TR R forum/Morgans/USA threads. there's so much out there ideas wise. I did some tests of my own as well...all about the tolerances between the impellor and the rear face dont you know.

Re the screens. The rear can look a little alarming in the tight rads at the corners from what I remember, I got a guy to fit them in the end as they put up to much of a fight for me....and remember, back in the day  we didn't have the luxury of new ones.

+1 on the spacing/rubber sections.

i used the cladding fixings, great for the job. some come with a pre-drill bit end, then the thread and backed up with a rubber seal under the head....spot onwink (and totally non original!)



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Same alloy housing as mine. There was an issue with these that the manufacturers refused to acknowledge initially, as I discovered the hard way. Mine was supplied by Moss and they too had complained to no avail. The flat back of the housing that sits in front of the cylinder head was porous on a number of these, leading to weeping and coolant loss, which at first glance, mimics head gasket failure. I discovered mine by accident having removed it thinking I had HGF. I videoed mine leaking and sent it to Moss so they could finally nail the manufacturer. My suggestion is to tape up inlet and outlet, lay it on its back and fill it with coolant. Leave overnight and see if any has weeped through. It should be okay but faulty batches can take a while to come to light. Mine was replaced gratis and has been fine since.



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I actually have 2 of the original cast iron ones, one of which I can't get to seal to the block completely. A very small amount of coolant leaks out despite trying 2 different gaskets, the first with oil and the second with gasket sealant. Both of them have a problem with the large nut that feeds the heater pipe. Both nuts are seized in, on one, the internal thread that takes the pipe/olive is wrecked and produces another leak and on the original, the old, steel pipe that fed the heater is similarly rusted in and completely porous. I know you're probably going to suggest heat/helicoil and other alternatives but, frankly, they're 60 year old, heavy lumps of iron that I can't be bothered with (do you sense frustration building up??)

I'll try Gary's trick of testing for porosity and providing everything is sound, I'm happy.

Btw, Gary, did you use a sealant on your alloy water pump housing gasket??

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