Aluminium bodywork, some interesting methods and tips.
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    Official RnS Addict 28Chevy's Avatar
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    Aluminium bodywork, some interesting methods and tips.

    Found this article the other day and learned a few things from it.


    http://www.kirkhammotorsports.com/book_aoe/aoe_18.pdf
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    Ali is easier to work with than steel for bodies.. It wheels and shapes quickly and is pretty easy to weld with gas or tig. I dont see ali welds being brittle with tig I usually tig then planish and call it done .. zero grinding, unlike MIG body repairs which definitely are brittle . Ive found that Ali mig welds are brittle too .. so more to do with the Mig process than anything else..

    Traditional body skills have dwindled in the UK as no one wants to pay for the work. There are a few folk who appreciate the skills involved but most question the value, so you end up with the classic body man in a can ..

    Ive been working on a couple of XKSS replicas that were built in Poland, They are had formed and to be honest are really very good as far as the shape and structure goes .. but like original XKs or D types there aint a uniform panel or curve on them.. some of th welding is a bit **** too but usually only seen on the underside of the panels .. Its unfortunate that the folk that hand over between £40K to £60k for these bodies depending on final spec cant spend the cash in the UK and keep the skills here alive .. The "factory" in Poland has XK 120s and C types stockpiled and a steady order book.. Back to the XKSS I was working on , fella paid £40k for each body and side by side they kinda resembled each other but loads of details differed which resulted in both bodies having a fair bit of work to make them similar.. Now I loved the rough welds and stuff they came with, I think it added character and was probably pretty close to what the originals looked like, but folk seem to have forgotten that and end up sending them to modern paint shops who burry the entire car in filler and recarve the hand built character out of it .. they really dont understand what its all about .. Probably another reason the skills are dwindling .. sad really.

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    Ali is easier to work with than steel for bodies.. It wheels and shapes quickly and is pretty easy to weld with gas or tig. I dont see ali welds being brittle with tig I usually tig then planish and call it done .. zero grinding, unlike MIG body repairs which definitely are brittle . Ive found that Ali mig welds are brittle too .. so more to do with the Mig process than anything else..

    Traditional body skills have dwindled in the UK as no one wants to pay for the work. There are a few folk who appreciate the skills involved but most question the value, so you end up with the classic body man in a can ..

    Ive been working on a couple of XKSS replicas that were built in Poland, They are had formed and to be honest are really very good as far as the shape and structure goes .. but like original XKs or D types there aint a uniform panel or curve on them.. some of th welding is a bit **** too but usually only seen on the underside of the panels .. Its unfortunate that the folk that hand over between £40K to £60k for these bodies depending on final spec cant spend the cash in the UK and keep the skills here alive .. The "factory" in Poland has XK 120s and C types stockpiled and a steady order book.. Back to the XKSS I was working on , fella paid £40k for each body and side by side they kinda resembled each other but loads of details differed which resulted in both bodies having a fair bit of work to make them similar.. Now I loved the rough welds and stuff they came with, I think it added character and was probably pretty close to what the originals looked like, but folk seem to have forgotten that and end up sending them to modern paint shops who burry the entire car in filler and recarve the hand built character out of it .. they really dont understand what its all about .. Probably another reason the skills are dwindling .. sad really.

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    Official RnS Addict 28Chevy's Avatar
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    I didn't think stainless fixings were right for aluminium, but there they are using them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 28Chevy View Post
    I didn't think stainless fixings were right for aluminium, but there they are using them.
    They work okay if you use the correct anti-seize, which I think is zinc chromate, as we used to use them on alloy yachts and power boats when I worked in a yacht marine years ago. Salt water environment will eat anything it don’t like.
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    Off the Xmas card list kapri's Avatar
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    Ian, it's like over restoring So may people looking for modern fit and finish on vehicles that were never like that from the production line. I've looked at original Cobra bodies and they are really rather primitive and crudely finished ( by todays standards ).

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    Thats what they are supposed to look like and its part of the charm . I visited the Mille Miglia museun the last couple of times I was in Italy . There were loads of over restored cars in there all coachbuilds with perfect panel work ( painted) However, one car there grabbed me by the very soul and held me there for 2 hours solid. The car was so perfect there were thousands of details on it that told the history of the car . It had a greater appeal to me than any of the cock extensions that had been deposited close to it .. Built for FUNCTION


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    Last edited by redoxide; 27-05-2019 at 00:00.

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    i really agree with that redoxide , i am totally unskilled with body work panel beating etc , but one of the things i really like driving my car is when some one says so what year is it , and i say um , last week ,and they say yes but when was it originally built and i say ,um , last week , and they wont be convinced its not old... i much prefer the patinated real life used vehicle look.
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    The late Alan Clark MP, who was a bit of a petrolhead to say the least, used to leave all the dents and scratches on his cars, as he said they all told a story. Patina is everything, and i think is really appreciated by those that really know. Another positive is that it's more usable, as you're not wound up by the thing getting scratched when it's parked up.

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