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Technical '55 Bel Air Body Mount

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by quakerchevelle, Nov 21, 2017.

  1. quakerchevelle
    Joined: Apr 25, 2014
    Posts: 84

    quakerchevelle
    Member
    from Sin City

    So I traded for a fairly clapped out '55 Bel Air, and one of the big issues I see it having is a screwed up/non-existent front passenger side body mount (I believe that's what it's called). The frame under the car is not the original frame. We're still trying to I.D. the frame, but we think it may be of a Caprice lineage. That's another story.

    What I'm concerned about now, is how the body is mounted to the frame. On the driver's side, people have told me it is the factory body mount structure. Here is what is looks like:

    3.jpg 4.jpg 5.jpg

    Now this is what I'm dealing with on the passengers front side (for reference these are located just behind the front tires):

    1.jpg 2.jpg

    So here are my questions:

    1. Is the part on the driver's side a factory part?
    2. What is the part called, and who sells replacements?

    Sorry for my naivety on this subject.

    -QC
     
    poprivit likes this.
  2. What you have is a cobbled mess. Getting factory mounts will not help you. Because you have a non original frame. What you need is a set of custom fabricated mounts by someone skilled enough to do a proper job
     
    Budget36 and quakerchevelle like this.
  3. JOECOOL
    Joined: Jan 13, 2004
    Posts: 2,760

    JOECOOL
    Member

    There are front mounts that come down from the firewall . You may want to go to the Tri Five Forum. someone there can give you a good pic of the stock setup and measurements .My car is not here so I can't help,sorry. The caprice frame is being done some these days , mostly they leave the Caprice floor and weld to the 57 Rockers.
     
    quakerchevelle likes this.
  4. quakerchevelle
    Joined: Apr 25, 2014
    Posts: 84

    quakerchevelle
    Member
    from Sin City

    @Old wolf and @JOECOOL

    Thanks for the reply's, yeah it's a cobbled mess, but as expensive as tri-fives are these days this is the only way I'm going to able to legitimately build one.

    So is the driver's side (first set of pics) factory? And is that part called a body mount?
     

  5. henry29
    Joined: Sep 5, 2007
    Posts: 2,837

    henry29
    Member

    Yes, the drivers side is factory, yes it's called a body mount.

    here's what they should look like, found this pic on google.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. quakerchevelle
    Joined: Apr 25, 2014
    Posts: 84

    quakerchevelle
    Member
    from Sin City

    @henry29 My body mounts are definitely not in the factory location then.

    The body mounts in the red circles are gone. My firewall is mostly smooth. The "factory" mount is much shorter and located where the yellow square is in this picture. The square tube abortion is what is located at the area of the white square.
    Firewall_Just_Painted_.jpg
    Mine looks more like this:
    Firewall_Just_Painted_ (1).jpg

    So I'm assuming what the previous "fabricator" did was chop off a section of the body mount, and moved it over to fit over the new frame location on the driver's side. On the passenger's side it looks like they didn't have a factory body mount to use, so they just cobbled together some square tube crap. Then they "smoothed" the firewall afterwards.

    Look, I have no misconceptions of what this project is. It has it's issues, but ... that being said, it's a fairly straight car and has a lot of good going for it (late model frame, coils springs all around -easy to bag-, power brakes, disc brakes up front, power steering, etc). But it needs some love to get over the hump.

    What I'm thinking, now that I know what I'm looking for, is to find another body mount and chop it and do the same thing on the passenger's side as they did on the driver's side.

    Thoughts? Opinions?

    Thanks for the help thus far.
     
  7. Gearhead Graphics
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 3,852

    Gearhead Graphics
    Member
    from Denver Co

    id dig into the rest of the mounts and how crusty rusty it is before going any further. I see a lot of cobbling and rust lurking in those pics.

    If its not too crusty, yeah id chop down a factory mount to work. but theres ugly beneath that paint.
     
  8. quakerchevelle
    Joined: Apr 25, 2014
    Posts: 84

    quakerchevelle
    Member
    from Sin City

    @Gearhead Graphics no doubt about that. And like I said, I'm not trying to make a full blown Barrett-Jackson ready car. I'm just looking for something that's looks fairly cool, is safe, and fun to drive around and I don't have to worry about it too much on a day to day basis.

    Just called around and those body mounts ONLY come pre-attached to the firewall. They're called the "forward body mounts". Now, I need to find them used somehow, somewhere.
     
  9. Gearhead Graphics
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 3,852

    Gearhead Graphics
    Member
    from Denver Co

    should be easy to find used.
    I destroyed a ton of them chopping off the rears of 4doors for couches and the crushing anything else I couldn't sell.
    Id get under there with a grinder and see where solid metal is and just make something. No need for it to be factory when youre gonna chop it anyhow
     
    quakerchevelle likes this.
  10. Ghost28
    Joined: Nov 23, 2008
    Posts: 3,194

    Ghost28
    Member

    Dang I just got rid of a good firewall with the mounts. Try to find someone parting out a 4 door 55 or 56. Your frame needs to be identified.
    Hmmm Maybe the donor 4 door might have a good frame under it, might even be a seamless california frame if your lucky
     
  11. low budget
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 5,564

    low budget
    Member
    from Central Ky

    Kinda like what Old wolf said, I wouldnt worry about getting a passenger mount to match, Why bother?
    Its all gonna be custom to match that frame anyway, I can see more patch work in that floor also so your options are wide open to build it back any way you want, just do both sides the same.
    Got any pics of the rest of the car?
     
    quakerchevelle likes this.
  12. quakerchevelle
    Joined: Apr 25, 2014
    Posts: 84

    quakerchevelle
    Member
    from Sin City

    @low budget ... pretty much like your name, wanna' build it low budget. This is what I'm going for (minus the custom fins and lights) ... but you get the idea. Satin paint/flake roof, low (bags maybe), running and driving and safe, simple interior. What I'm thinking is better than a *cough* rat rod *cough* but not a full resto and not a true kustom.

    55KustomFins2.jpg
     
  13. If you look at the pictures there are several square inches of factory mount attached directly to the firewall. The better of the two mounts you have issinply tacked to a not reinforced part of the firewall. You will need to plate the area where your mounts attach. plate at least a square ft. then build a sturdy mount down from that plating. and it also needs diagonal bracing. Just clean up the firewall cut out all the rusty parts. replace with solid new sections. They can all be bought new. Then get cardboard and make patterns and transfer to steel.
     
    quakerchevelle likes this.
  14. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 6,695

    56sedandelivery
    Member Emeritus

    Those are firewall supports. Not being re-popped, so that means used if you can find them. Many guys have removed them, as in the turquoise 55 ^^^. Is it just a front clip done to the car, or did the PO do a complete frame swap? Leaf springs are stock, coils would be a later frame. Lots of rust there in the toe-board/floor area. I have a friend who deals in 55-57 Chevrolet CARS and PARTS; if you're interested in dealing with him, just P.M. me. I am Butch/56sedandelivery.
     
    quakerchevelle likes this.
  15. He has a newer complete frame under the car. I will not do him any good to find stock parts. Because if he did and installed them in the stock locations they will just be hanging out in the air. His frame is wider than a stock frame where they mount.
     
  16. quakerchevelle
    Joined: Apr 25, 2014
    Posts: 84

    quakerchevelle
    Member
    from Sin City

    Exactly. So @Old wolf stated above, it looks like it's going to be cardboard and transferring over to metal. What gauge of metal @Old wolf would you recommend for the plating?

    @56sedandelivery I will keep you in mind if I need parts. Interestingly enough, the car is about 95% complete. And what's missing I really don't need anyway. I'm going to loose a lot of the trim work and smooth the car out as it is.
     
  17. I think 1/16 would be thick enough for a plate to attach to the firewall. then 1/4 for the vertical bracing.
     
    quakerchevelle likes this.
  18. low budget
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 5,564

    low budget
    Member
    from Central Ky

    Hate to say this in a way but As long as its solid,strong and relatively decent looking under there, Black under coating (or even just black) will subdue and hide a lot of sins. All depends on how serious you wanna get or how "perfect" you want it to be I suppose.
    I personally think the bottom side needs to be black anyway if its anything less than perfect.
     
    quakerchevelle likes this.

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