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Going Kustom!! 1953 Packard

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by ShortyLaVen, Jul 11, 2013.

  1. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Some of you may be familiar with my Packard, but I don't think I've posted any pics of it in the last year or so... It's come a long way so far, and its just startin to get good! I figured it was 'bout time for a legit build thread since I've never done one before.

    For those that don't know, the beast looked like this when I first acquired her. In this photo I have already mounted the new BFG Silvertowns (which were free! SCORE! til some punk freshmen slashed one the first day I parked in front of my home... wasn't personal, everyone in the neighborhood was hit) You'll have to excuse the poor photo quality, its just the technology of the time:rolleyes:
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    And then after a year or so of work it turned into this, which is how I drove it for the last two years of high school...
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    And then, my senior year, I repainted it after dropping in the new (to me) motor and getting it rolling again...
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  2. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Which brings us to now....
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    This past week I brought her in to class at WyoTech to get some of the good stuff done. Basic plans are to fix a few problem areas, then french the headlights, nose, deck, and fill in some trim holes. I'm thinking of moving around some of the stock trim to clean up the look.
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    So first things first, starting with the front end. I restored the headlight buckets by sand blasting them clean, then hitting them with etch primer and some trim black. Slots were cut in the ends of the adjustment screws and access holes drilled in the back.
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    Pretty simple to mount from the inside of the fender, just simply screw it back in from the back side:D.. I'm contemplating weather or not to shave the little nubs on the flange to allow the to sit flush, or rock the tunneled look. As of now they sit maybe 1/4" or so deeper than stock.
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    And then I decided I just wanted to go for the RAT ROD look!
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  3. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    JUST KIDDING:D

    It looks as though the car was in a collision at some point.. Both front fenders, more so on the passenger side, are pushed in on the edge of the grill opening. There is evidence of previous "repair", i.e. somebody beat it back out with a ball peen and then welded the cracks up with a MIG. Sweet! Because the inner fender is spot welded to the fender, both pieces are kind of locking in each others damage. To remedy this, I pulled out as much as possible on the car, and then removed the fender and will separate the inner fender to work each piece separate.

    I don't know if you can really see in this pic, but this whole are was beat out from the inside with what I can only guess was a ball peen hammer, possibly a large river rock. With a lot of hammer and dolly work and a few shrinks or twelve, and its coming out pretty good. It will definitely need some lead, but thats OK with me. It's just my daily beater, after all!
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    While the front wrap is apart I'm going to take the opportunity to clean and detail the suspension and get rid of all that 60 years of mud, dust, and road grime.. This is what fell out on its own, just from movin the fender around....
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    Stay tuned... More to come!!!! after these important messages...
     
  4. lookin' good man! it would take alot for me to grind up that nice seaweed flame job, but either way, this thing's gonna be sweet!
     

  5. StLouisSled
    Joined: Feb 9, 2008
    Posts: 119

    StLouisSled
    Member

    Keep her goin....I'll be watching!
     
  6. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 27,050

    Jalopy Joker
    Member

    Cool - great work
     
  7. Great to see some young blood working on a classic instead of a rice burner.
    Keep it up. Looking good!
     
  8. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Thanks for the kind words!! Not a whole lot of visible progress tonight so far, but I manage to get one of the broken bolts out clean!!! we all know what an accomplishment that is! hahahaha!!

    flamin' ace- The flames are just a quick rattle can job I did a few weeks ago for a car show, nothin spectacular.. But when all the body work is done she'll be repainted in a similar scheme. Instead of using solid green, though, I'll use the same '57 Pontiac color as the roof..

    Also, the headlight rings my buddy Skunk sent me came in today!! Turns out the headlights are at the perfect depth to work with the Ford rings.. More to come!!
     
  9. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Made a little more progress last night. I just about finished the hood, welded up the holes and stripped it. Also got the fender worked out and ready for lead.

    To fill the hole I stamped out some blanks with the Whitney punch, and drilled the holes out the same size, in this case 15/32", and TIG'd them in. My teacher taught me a neat trick for this.. The punch slightly dimples the blanks, so they fit it the hole easy. You hold your dolly behind the hole, set the blank in there, and hammer it. This flattens out the blank, and slightly stretches it so it holds itself in place! Pretty simple, but I would have never thought of it on my own.
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    A little bit of hammer and dolly work, a little bit of grinding, and its pretty well ready for skim-coat of glaze!
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    And here's the hood just about all stripped down. I wasn't going to go this far, but when I started to feather out the paint around where I was welding I found a LOT of surface rust under the original primer..... Better to stop it now rather than wait!
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    The thing I hate about working on your project in school is that, while you get to use all the fancy equipment and gain knowledge from the teachers that wouldn't otherwise come up, it takes all the fun out of the weekends because all your waiting for is Monday so you can get back at it!!!
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  10. Normal Norman
    Joined: Aug 9, 2006
    Posts: 510

    Normal Norman
    Member
    from Goshen IN.

    Hey, I'm lovin' it! Looks great so far, coming along nicely, keep up the good work. N.N.
     
  11. dang... I wish I could do rattle can jobs like that. anyway, i love that idea with the hole and blank. i might be joining you at wyo tech too!
     
  12. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Right on! What campus? I'm at Sac, but they're pullin the rug out from under us here real quick.... "not making profit" they say......... But terrible administration aside, the teachers are all fantastic. I went through the collision and refinishing course before "street rod", I haven't had a teacher yet that I didn't learn from. If your not scared of student loans, I would absolutely recommend it. I think Wyoming and Pennsylvania are the only two campuses that offer "street rod" and "chassis fab" now. Good luck to you, man!!
     
  13. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Lots of progress!!!! One side is just about done, the other will be done tomorrow.. Brazed them on with the TIG welder, and eased the transition with a little bit of polyester filler. I don't have any pics, but I also drilled a small hole at the base of the headlight opening on the fender to allow for water drainage.

    Here it is all brazed up.. VERY tedious work... I went 1/2" at a time, jumping back and forth to the other light, and opposite sides of the ring.. probably a good 8 hours or so with the TIG, and I have some pretty neat welding flash on my lily-white forearms to prove it:D It could be done faster, and could just as well be welded, but I did it this way to avoid distorting the fender as mush as possible... Same reason I went with polyester rather than lead. (filler gets a bad rap, but when used properly its really amazing stuff!)
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    And in filler.. Bondo boogers are my favorite!!!!!!
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    If all goes smoothly, she should be in primer by the end of the week, and then its time to flip 'er around and start on the rear fenders and deck lid!
     
  14. StLouisSled
    Joined: Feb 9, 2008
    Posts: 119

    StLouisSled
    Member

  15. lookin good man! keep on truckin'!
     
  16. that sucks to hear about Sacramento, that's probably where i would have gone, i'm still kinda lookin around at tech schools, i wanna go to wyo, but my parents say it's way to far away (I live in Alabama.) I might just go to one of the more inland campuses, but i have a while to think about college so who knows? i think the one in long beach has a street rod class too, which is what i want to take.
     
  17. 40StudeDude
    Joined: Sep 19, 2002
    Posts: 9,461

    40StudeDude
    Member

    Discuss with your mom and dad that sooner or later you're going to have to leave home...unless they want you around when your 45 years old, and the best time to leave home is when you are 18, get out on your own and learn how to live on your own.

    I left home when I was 17, after graduating high school...never had any regrets about that and learned how to live on my own...there is nothing in the United States that's too far what with cell phones and the internet...

    R-
     
  18. Barn Find
    Joined: Feb 2, 2013
    Posts: 2,317

    Barn Find
    Member
    from Missouri

    Anybody who drives a flaming '53 Packard to high school is OK in my book. Keep up the good work!
     
  19. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Thanks for the props everybody!!! I'm pretty stoked on how its coming out.. Just can't wait to see it all one color with the lights installed to see how it really looks.

    flamin' ace- 40StudeDude speaks the truth, best to get out as soon as you can! Like him, I left right out of high school. Literally the next Monday after graduation my bags were packed, and me and my girlfriend hopped in the Buick and made for Sacramento. No regrets!!

    Also, from what I've been told, only Laramie and Blairsville offer any elective classes. Long Beach only has the regular automotive course and all the electrician stuff..... Truth be told, if your wanting to go for auto mechanics, I would rather go to UTI. I've had friends from both, and the general consensus is UTI for mechanics, Wyo for autobody.... But like with anything, you have to take from it what you want. Whatever you do, get out there, and get an education!!
     
  20. el Scotto
    Joined: Mar 3, 2004
    Posts: 4,437

    el Scotto
    Member
    from Tracy, CA

    That is too rad!! :D
     
  21. Thumper
    Joined: Mar 7, 2005
    Posts: 1,610

    Thumper
    Member

    Hell yeah...Rock On young man...Rock On...:D
     
  22. plywude
    Joined: Nov 3, 2008
    Posts: 699

    plywude
    Member Emeritus
    from manteca ca

    Fory,,, good read so far but wanted to warn you that a brazed panel won't hold bondo or lead very good, I learned that lesson a long time ago after doing fab,prep and paint to have the braze not hold the bondo or lead screwed up a lot of work.......
     
  23. chevy54man
    Joined: Feb 7, 2013
    Posts: 1,683

    chevy54man
    Member
    from NC

    Hey love your car and you're doing a great job on her!
     
  24. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Very good point! This is absolutely true if you are using true brazing rods. I should have mentioned I used silicon-bronze... It doesn't have the same problems as regular brass or bronze rods. You can even paint right over it with no problems. I'm sure it also helps that it's TIGed, so there's worry about flux contaminating your paint later on...
     
  25. Yeah imma be outta here sooner or later:D. I wanna have my own kustom paint and custom work shop. so Im gonna go wherever i can learn to be the BEST at that. plus, for some reason i think my mom has this thing against california (I know, crazy right?) so that may be part of it. but im gonna go wherever I can learn, no matta what. anyway, get back on that car and keep us updated!
     
  26. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Update!!!!!!!!!!!

    Today she went in primer!! Looks so good, I'm way stoked with how it turned out! Now just have to hit the hardware store or some shinny new stailess bolts for everything, just cause. Oh yeah, and maybe wire the lights up....

    Here it is in etch...
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    [​IMG]
     
  27. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    And in primer...
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  28. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    And a few more for posterity...

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    [​IMG]
     
  29. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 650

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    These pics are kinda bad, my camera-that-makes-phone-calls died so a buddy took these pics with his phone and sent 'em to me. I'll take some better ones tomorrow. But you get the idea..

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  30. theHIGHLANDER
    Joined: Jun 3, 2005
    Posts: 8,224

    theHIGHLANDER
    Member

    Tell this to the car I'm working on where it seems to want to shed nearly everything I apply to it. I expect serious failure down the road. Is this something that Wyotech recommends? I love what you're doing, but this is wrong. Thin wire, less heat, take your time, much better alternative than silicon bronze. I'm not alone in this thought either. I wish you the best, but...
     

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