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How to make a tube grill in 2 hours!!!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Joe T Creep, Mar 21, 2005.

  1. Joe T Creep
    Joined: Jan 1, 2003
    Posts: 1,145

    Joe T Creep
    Member Emeritus here's the deal. I leave for Vegas thursday early AM. I work all week long and I have a few precious hours to get some stuff done on my 60 Oldsmobile before the next hectic days of work start. I have my car painted and doing great, but no grill. It had this odd Moon tank/stock grill setup when I got it.

    Its diffrent and kinda cool, but not what I really wanted on it. So I figure, what the hell. Ill try to make myself a grill!!!! Let me start out by saying that I DONT KNOW WHAT THE HELL I AM DOING!!!! I am not a welder. I have done some light stuff around the house and on some of my cars but thats it. Only ornamental stuff. I sure as hell wouldnt ride around in a car that I did some welding on somewhere that was important/safety related. I love doing this type of stuff, but just because you liked doing something dosent mean that you are any good at it and I admit this fully so if you want to tear apart my methods/techniques SAVE IT. I had 2 hours and whatever I could find in my garage to make this happen. I hope maybe someone else will get inspired, not by my methods, but just by seeing something like this and giving it a try.
    Anyhow..... My friend Jai came over to help me also. Always good to have someone to bounce ideas off of or throw things at. He's good for both. Heres what we started with.

    There were two uprights with screws in them that used to hold the old stock grill and these would serve perfectly for the grill mounts.

    I found some spare metal angle iron and a mix of solid/tube steel that was 1/2 inch wide.

    I started out by cutting approx 6 inch long pieces of the 90 degree angle iron and drilling them to fit the old grill mount holes as brackets for the tubes.

    I then fitten them in place and measured from the brackets to the center point of the peak of the hood as close as I could with a string taped from the hood to the bumper as a guide. I also allowed for the space on the opposite side of the bracket closed to the headlights. I then cut all my tubes and layed them out.

    Right about this time my garage dog, that I swear is an old hot rodder reincarnated, came out to see what all the noise was about. He's always under cars with me and he runs around inside my 34 Ford truck like a dog possessed.Here he's trying to help eyeball where the grill tubing will be mounted. Good to have a dog friend in the garage.

    I took the ends of the tubing and ground them flat at a mild angle so that both together would try to match the hood peaking.

    I then welded them together on the backs of the points. I decided not to weld the front because it wouldnt look as smooth after painting and trying to grind it all down well in the time I had available was just not possible.

    After they were all done we tack welded in the top bar to start things off. Then we welded the bottom bar. For the top and bottom we used the bolt mounting points on the brackets as a guide. After the top and bottom were in place, we centered the middle bar and also tacked it into place. It did take a couple of retries to get the spacing and rotation and centering down. It is still not perfect, but it looks decent and like I said I didnt have the time for perfection.

    We pulled the grill off and I welded all the bars onto the brackets solidly on the bench. After cleaning up a few welds with the grinder, it was off to the paint shop.

    Just before putting the grill in I found an old Devil hood ornament that I though would be cool to mount behind the grill with a little red light on it.
    Made a quick bracket, wired it in just as darkness fell and installed the grill.

    I have to say I am damn happy with it. Not bad for a couple of jackasses that dont really know what the hell they are doing on a time constraint. If you see me in Vegas or anywhere else please say hello and take a nice look at the grill from a few feet away. Dont get to close because then you'll know how much I really suck.


    P.S. I also have never attatched this many pics before so please bear with me. I suck there too.
  2. Joe T Creep
    Joined: Jan 1, 2003
    Posts: 1,145

    Joe T Creep
    Member Emeritus

    Heres some more pics.
  3. Joe T Creep
    Joined: Jan 1, 2003
    Posts: 1,145

    Joe T Creep
    Member Emeritus

    And the rest.... Please dont kill me Ryan.
  4. 57JoeFoMoPar
    Joined: Sep 14, 2004
    Posts: 5,021


    Man, it looks good. Low buck and confidence inspiring, well done. Looks great in the car.

  5. xadamx
    Joined: Apr 18, 2003
    Posts: 1,170


    Cool...and fast. Are you going to put something behind it at a later date, like some sort of cool mesh? Looks good...

  6. I like it. Not bad at all for two hours work. I would say that xadamx's idea of adding some mesh behind it would add to the look and fill out the grill better. That or add a few more bars to it, but that's just my $0.02
  7. Looks pretty good! I agree with Adam, though...add a little blacked out mesh behind it and it'll clean it up real nice and make the grill(e?) stand out more.
  8. 50Fraud
    Joined: May 6, 2001
    Posts: 9,878


    Grille looks really nice. I'd suggest moving the devil out to the top of the bumper, where he can face forward and be seen more easily.
  9. SnoDawg
    Joined: Jul 23, 2004
    Posts: 1,013


    Looks good. Great Garage Dog I see he is already lowered.

  10. Tuck
    Joined: May 14, 2001
    Posts: 5,651

    Tech Editor
    from MINNESOTA
    1. Early Hemi Tech

    that lowrider dog is a CORGI, I have one too...

    we've always had corgis in the family haha they RULE.

    cool tech by the way--- but the dog is cooler...

    heres killer haha-
  11. buzzard
    Joined: Apr 20, 2001
    Posts: 4,335

    Alliance Member

    Looks good.

    I could use the left over of that stock grille, if you're going to scrap it. I need it to fill in some space on the '58 Chevy I used a '60 grille in. relay from VLV should be pretty easy.
  12. I think it looks great. I might even try it on Wed. before I leave for Vegas.
  13. JonnyRockets
    Joined: Mar 8, 2005
    Posts: 482


    Look Great! Nice,simple clean lines!

    And love the DOG!
  14. Lowriding dog, Elvis, (in the background) will follow me and sit next to me when I work at home (or bbq, smoke, or fry a turkey :D), Mudbone, the Basset Hound/Black and Tan mix (in front) is easily distracted by smells and will wander off.

    You can't separate them (they howl), so Elvis doesn't get to go to the barn very often.

    GF has taken to describing Elvis as "a chopped and channeled beagle", he's a AKC Basset Hound.

    In order for me to bring me back on topic, if you have an opening that leans back or leans forward, look for an '87 Buick LeSabre for a grill pattern.
  15. Joe T Creep
    Joined: Jan 1, 2003
    Posts: 1,145

    Joe T Creep
    Member Emeritus

    Thanks guys for all your responses. I was actually thinking about some type of mesh/additional background but I couldnt find anything in my garage and because of the time restraints Ill have to do something after I get back from Vegas.
    Yeah the dog is a mild custom. I'll do some more work on him after Vegas also.

    Hey Buzzard, the grill parts are yours. Lets figure out who I can get them to in Vegas and you are welcome to em.
    Thanks again everyone.
  16. buzzard
    Joined: Apr 20, 2001
    Posts: 4,335

    Alliance Member

    Awesome, thanks. I"ll pm you as soon as I figure out who's gonna pick 'em up. Post a pic of the whole car, if you have it, so they'll know who to look for.
  17. mikes51
    Joined: Oct 4, 2001
    Posts: 2,195


    People have been known to rip the screen door off of their houses to make mesh/grills.
    Just kidding.

    Great job on the grill! That's what it's all about.
  18. Joe T Creep
    Joined: Jan 1, 2003
    Posts: 1,145

    Joe T Creep
    Member Emeritus

    I have the 2 side pieces and i think i have the 2 small in between headlight pieces. Whatever I have is yours.

  19. Car looks great...I had some of them lowered dogs too
  20. low springs
    Joined: Jul 10, 2003
    Posts: 2,499

    low springs
    from Long Beach

    very nice car...where you at the Big foot lodge this Thursday for St. Patty's day?
  21. 215slowpoke
    Joined: Dec 17, 2004
    Posts: 578


    good job man, nice looking car.
  22. graverobber63
    Joined: Sep 8, 2004
    Posts: 4,133

    Alliance Vendor

    Good post- that grille really suits the car!
  23. Joe T Creep
    Joined: Jan 1, 2003
    Posts: 1,145

    Joe T Creep
    Member Emeritus

    Yes I was. Someone there gave me a bunch of crap about not having some type of grill so I had to squeeze in making this one. I'm happy with it. Say hello sometime. Lie to me and tell me how good it looks in person. : )
  24. Chuck R
    Joined: Dec 23, 2001
    Posts: 1,347

    Chuck R

    You did good. Great design and creative use of what you had on hand. The fact that you got it done in 2 hours, is just icing on the cake.
  25. Joe T Creep
    Joined: Jan 1, 2003
    Posts: 1,145

    Joe T Creep
    Member Emeritus

    Thanks to all you guys for the nice words. I like the fact that it came out as good as it did and I am interested to see just how well I could do if I took my time and did a really good job. I probably will get that chance when it falls apart on the way to Vegas.... LOL
  26. luckystiff
    Joined: Mar 20, 2002
    Posts: 1,465


    you got the basics so now you either gotta:
    a) add more tubes. i usually do the same space between tubes as the tube size. 1/2 tube, 1/2 in gap/ 3/4 tube 3/4 gap. measure out your grill cavity and figure what size and spaceing works best. also is you do it like this it looks best to start with a 1/2 gap between the grille surround and the first tube and between the last tube and the surrounds bottom. now that you know what your doing you can make a mock up out of scraps and then make one out of the same size stainless tubing using your mock up as a guide. alot cheaper than chrome.


    b) add some sort of mesh behind it for a background. also very easy.

    i've been asked to to a tube grille buld tech week for a while but i don't have a digital camera. i'm actually working on a 5th mock up for the buick because i'm way to ocd for my own good. 3/4 tubing stands out a bit better than 1/2 in my opinion. the one for my buick is the most pain in the ass one i've ever built because it has multiple peaks to follow. anyhow looking good now just carry through with it...ken....
  27. Bummer
    Joined: Aug 19, 2009
    Posts: 115


    I just joined this site and I´m wondering why can´t I see your photos of the grill you made? Is the topic so old that they are taken off?
  28. sad but i cant see anypics ?
  29. Probably because it's been over 4 years since the post was started. C'mon guys, that's what the little date and time is for above each user name.
  30. wallace
    Joined: Aug 7, 2009
    Posts: 51


    For some reason I cant see the pictures but Its funny that I was thinking of doing my own grill last weekend because my original is fucked. I cant really weld but I work with welders so Ill machine them somthing in exchange.

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