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Can a "current vehicle" body shop do a good job on a classic?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by FormerFueler, Nov 6, 2010.

  1. BulldawgMusclecars
    Joined: Jul 15, 2010
    Posts: 508


    maybe if you're the man from Nantuckett!!!:D
  2. redlinetoys
    Joined: May 18, 2004
    Posts: 4,301

    from Midwest

    No offense, but this is kind of a silly question... I see body shops screw up both new and old cars ALL the time, and I also see them do a nice job on both.

    You either pick a shop with a known reputation where you have seen the work come out of the shop and know that the people that are there now (management on down to the clean up guy) are still there, or you pick a random shop with no reputation and cross your fingers (and the latter can just as easily be a new car collision center OR a hot rod shop).

    Good luck on the choice that was made. Hope it turns out well.
  3. Gremlinguy
    Joined: Oct 29, 2009
    Posts: 496


    I am a combo man at a local Collision shop here in CO. Used to work at a Restoration/Custom shop but due to the poor economy had to go back to Collision. As our shop does quality repairs that I would put up against any other shops, we also kick out award winning restorations. Just gotta find the right shop with the right crew and the right ESTIMATOR/OWNER.
  4. 29AV8
    Joined: Jan 12, 2009
    Posts: 222


    All body shops anymore just want bolt on insurance jobs. most dont really want to get into stuff really labor intensive.. just my 2 cents
    Joined: Aug 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,222

    from Colorado

    For you guys that bad mouth body shops,go pound salt in your ass! You have no clue what your talking about. I have been a body man for 35 years and built many award winning street rods and customs.I work in collision shops to pay the bills.Like others have said on here ask other old car people about the reputation of the shop and when you talk to the owner of the shop ask to see other work done by them on classic cars or street rods.Talk to the guy that is going to work on your car .The guy saying on here they can't paint them to match and the new paint peels ,bullshit! Our paint is superior to the old daze crap paint.The shops have mixing stations in house that can match any paint color and the quality of the paint is awesome. Yea sure there are shops out there that I wouldn't have work on a classic car.That is why you ask for reputation proof your car will get fixed right.Like said by someone else on here any self respecting body man would be proud to do a job like this,it's a break away from the piece of shit new cars.
  6. it's all about experience and quality. young or older can do it, IF they can prove to you they've worked on older cars and you can get in contact with the guy that had the work done.
  7. FunnyCar65
    Joined: Mar 11, 2007
    Posts: 2,075

    from Colorado

    Couldn't said it better myself.
  8. I fully agree.If a man takes pride in his work whether it is digging a ditch or building a custom car or even fixing someones else junk job.It will be done to the best of his ability.
  9. skidlid
    Joined: Feb 4, 2007
    Posts: 248

    from motor city

    Its true a body shop is in business to make $$$ just like any other business , body work is very labour intensive especially if done properly, Get references if you can usually a group of hotrodders will know who the go to guy for body work/paint work are, if the body guy doesn't paint the cars he will have an awesome painter he always uses...somebody who is honest and does nice work takes pride in his finished product..There are really skilled people working at all kinds of shops and some for different reasons than others..Example being there's a elderly german guy that works at a dealership thats local to us...the body shop is always full , the cars that are lined up to paint are from other shops thats how good he is and thats his reputation...
    I worked for free on a part time basis for a guy from Creative Customs for years ..They have put out some really nice customs. The amount of labour invovled in doing beautiful metal work and sanding, block sanding, paint sanding, to polishing or clear coat polishing is extremely labour intensive...If a body guy is good he takes his time to make it right...We've had a lot of guys say to my mentor Denis..Its going to cost what?? But after doing my first couple hot rods and seeing the prices of good materials and good quality paints and clears....Wow it sure adds up in a hurry and thats just the materials We're talking hundreds of man hours sometimes..........Point is when you see something that is straight, all the doors , trunk, and hood seems all line up, open and close properly and the paint is flawless, you can guarantee that guy, or group of guys put a little piece of themselves into it....Thats Pride
    My hats off to all the body guys out there its a tough job , but man I love the fact that Denis took a lot of time to teach me a lot of things that otherwise I wouldn't know,so that I am able to do it on my own....Even the odd compliment!!!
    Point being there are skilled people everywhere you just need to talk with people to find out who they are...Heck you should have asked around on the Hamb for the name of a good local shop..
    Besides Honda or 57 chev...I would jump across the shop to have my hands on that and work on it...and I'm sure that goes for everyone I know!!!
    Good luck with the Chev, I hope it turns well for you!!!!!!
    Thats a rare piece!!!!!
  10. Swifster
    Joined: Dec 16, 2006
    Posts: 1,449


    With ANY shop, it comes down to the body man and the painter. Here in Central Florida, I've had cars fixed in both types of shops. And I've had both do beautiful work, and I've seen both butcher jobs as well.

    Just so everyone is clear, Hagerty, Grundy and other collector car policies don't cover 'restoration'. They also handle repairs on a flat rate basis. While they will negotiate labor rates over normal shop rates, no one pays whatever a 'restoration' shop wants. I've had two Hagerty cars repaired at a local Chevy dealer with no problems.

    Now, I'm not suggesting your first stop with a '32 roadster should be your local Ford dealer, but your local body shop could probably do the work with no problem. As mentioned at least once before, a problem is the shop underestimating the damage or repair. If an insurance company is involved, this usually gets worked out. But on a customer pay job, this can be problematic.
  11. mrforddude
    Joined: May 30, 2010
    Posts: 134


  12. aerocolor
    Joined: Oct 7, 2009
    Posts: 1,196

    from dayton

    I manage a GM collision shop and we do most of the old car repairs for several insurance companies when necessary. My guys are very capable of repairing old tin. It actually pays better and is simpler to repair than newer cars.
    Todays body techs have to be skilled in not only metal but also electrical, mechanical and trim along with having to solve drivability and software issues. Multiple systems such as electric steering, air ride and SRS(airbag) systems demand training and certification on all makes so an old car is a welcome break from what they see every day.
    As far as refinishing goes, I would like to see any other shop that is equipped any better than a typical dealership or modern facility to deal with paint issues. Try panel painting one of the new tricoats the automakers are throwing at us now.
    I`d put my people up against any restoration shop in the country for fit and finish. It`s all about personal pride and equipment. Someday reputable collision repair will be recognized for the craftsmen they are and not for what someone saw from Jersey on a 20/20 news investigation. Give me a break!
  13. BigBlockMopar
    Joined: Feb 4, 2006
    Posts: 1,360


    Some shops only have 'tools' running around...

    It's a '57 Chevy, not something really rare or anything.
  14. prost34
    Joined: Mar 28, 2009
    Posts: 347


    I run into this all the time when i try to hire bodymen to help in my resto shop,,theres bodymen and then there are restorers,same thing for painters,,a production painter is not the same as a custom painter,i help out a local high production body shop every now and then when they get a custom paint job,they have 100k paint booth and equipment,4 painters and none of them can paint candies,pearls or fades,,:D,i have a old 3500.00 booth and can,,,my point is ,most bodyshops take old cars as fill ins when its slow,the minute they get some collision or quick production work the car gets shoved in the corner,your deposit goes for other cars and the car ends up being a regreat for both the shop and the owner,,,( i am lucky,i use collision as fill in and the restos as my bread and butter),,,,research,research,research,,,,,,most bodymen are better salesmen then bodymen,,,i see and hear the horror stories everyday of cars pulled out of shops,money spent just to redo the entire car,,
  15. autobodyed
    Joined: Mar 5, 2008
    Posts: 1,943

    from shelton ct

    like what, a set of american wrenches and sockets?:confused:
  16. fatstax
    Joined: Sep 15, 2010
    Posts: 52

    from cobourg

    i know lots of my friends who took cars to local body shops and had to wait years for thier cars to get done, or got turned away due to the nature of the job they wanted done.
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2010
  17. In a production shop the older car is more likely to be a time filler, and stay in the shop for a longer time than would a modern car. Many/most production shops can do good body and paint work; but they usually are used to handling easily replaceable parts and sheetmetal, and that can lead to poor management of the hard to find parts that a hot rod or custom will likely have. I have found that a big problem for a production shop is in the shop's management of all the rare and hard to find pieces that are taken off and need to be carefully and securely stored until time for reassembly. The longer a car is in the shop, the more likely it is that critical and even non-critical parts seem to find legs. Loss of parts that have taken a long time to find is a potentially great source of animosity between the car owner the shop owner. I will always go to a rod and custom painter for my rod and custom body and paint work in the future. I have a favorite body shop for my regular cars; but they just are not where I would take a hot rod again.
  18. seetz
    Joined: Jun 26, 2008
    Posts: 195


    what's so special about this job? chevy used the same trim clips for ages, the front clip is mail order from a thousand vendors, and if it was restored 15 years ago he should have the paint code. so that means unbolt, bolt back, paint, ready. I know this is a little simplified, but it's not like you got a one-off custom, you know
  19. hotrodladycrusr
    Joined: Sep 20, 2002
    Posts: 20,763


    Big Olds' body and paint work was done in a regular collision shop in Hartsville TN called Volunteer Auto Body. Like many others have said it's the skills of the people that really matter.

  20. Can a bald barber cut hair?? I have owned and managed both types of shops , most owners are reluctant to turn inexperienced help loose on any car let alone a 75000+ collector car.. The owner of a car like this has some clout, if you can own a car of this caliber most people would assume he has the money to hire a good attorney if he is not happy with the repairs...........
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2010
  21. fatstax
    Joined: Sep 15, 2010
    Posts: 52

    from cobourg

    so you hired a bald barber? how did that work out? ill bet he had a comb he would never "part" with. i think a body shop would even be less inclined to paint sombodys car who would sue them if it didnt meet thier impossible demands. im sure most body and paint shops would paint your car no matter what it is, but the finished product will only reflect whats underneath. i would imagine some shops would give you the we dont want to do it price to either discourage you or make a good buck on the job. i have always painted my own stuff at my own pace cause i know what i want. thats olds paint job is dope.
  22. Bert Kollar
    Joined: Jan 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,044

    Bert Kollar

    A buddy of mine is a dealer bodyman and he just repaired a quarter panel by gluing it on to make his time. That is typical in the shops today. Beware
  23. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 6,899

    from Oregon

    It depends not only on the shop, but the guy doing the work, and the shop owner. The owner of the shop I use does almost nothing but new cars because as he put it, "It pays the bills."
    He also loves to get old classics in whenever possible, as long as the owners are not in a hurry. He has one guy there that he always puts on any classic steel, and the owner personally paints them. He's also very reasonable on his prices for this work, as it's a labor of love. He owns a couple hotrods himself, and knows that type of work wont keep his shop busy, but it's a lot more enjoyable and a change of pace for him.
    He also encouraged me to drop by as often as I liked when I had him do my car. Said he didn't mind customers coming around to look at progress, and even called me when they were going to do anything major that he thought I might want pictures of.
    Joined: Mar 30, 2010
    Posts: 3,253


    if not happy with it tell the insurance man . Don't pay then bitch.
    good luck .
  25. Next time you wreck your classic or rod tell your adjuster you want to paint it and see what he pays you. I am always amazed how many part time painters have all the answers. I recently had my 36 plymouth roadster damaged at a show by someone without insurance. My insurance company would not let me fix it and yes I build and sell classics cars for a living , the most they would pay me was 60 percent of the estimate-my 500 deductable. I knew of a production shop 35 miles away and contacted them about the repair they agreed to fix my car.Nearly a month later my car was returned better YES BETTER than before the damage. Sometimes you are better off to wait for the results before passing any judgments...........
  26. big bad john
    Joined: Aug 11, 2010
    Posts: 4,727

    big bad john

    ......I would check out a few shops first.....most owners take a lot of pride in restoring old cars..also take a lot of pictures of before and after......would also ask fellow hotrodders where a good shop is.....My all your research.....good luck
  27. 57Custom300
    Joined: Aug 21, 2009
    Posts: 1,363

    from Arizona

    Thats the same with the mechanical end of it also. The bosses used to cringe when an old car came in. Being the oldest guy in the shop, they use to send them all to me. I used to drag my feet on those just to see em sweat.
  28. hotrodladycrusr
    Joined: Sep 20, 2002
    Posts: 20,763


    If you had Grundy or Hagerty they do allow owners to repair the car themselves if they want and will cut the check for the damages directly to you. No deductable involved. check their prices out, you might be pleasently surprised.
  29. I do not believe that these Insurance companys offer dealership policies. I think if you call Grundy or Hagerty you will find that if you repair the car yourself you are paid only a percentage of the original shop or adjusters estimate.........then you are correct they will issue the check directly to the policy owner....................
  30. brad chevy
    Joined: Nov 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,627

    brad chevy

    If the repairs are being handled by the insurance company it still has to be accepted by the owner,so if its shoddyass work,don"t accept it and then bitch later.One good thing he had the coverage,and as said earlier tri-5 Chevy is a unbolt,bolt up job not rocket science.

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