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worst body work found on a car you bought

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by LOWLYDE, Jul 10, 2010.

  1. A buddy bought a '54 Chevy 210 about 20 years ago. The car had been "restored" and was mildly hot rodded. The car looked great from every angle. The interior was new tuck and roll, and was done across the border in Mexico not longer before my friend got the car. Mechanically, the car was great! BUT, the body was another story, The driver side "A"-pillar had a big crack laterally, about seven inches long. Odd place for a crack! He sanded it down. More. Bondo. And more sanding. Suddenly, there was crushed aluminum cans, paper, and a LOT more mud! There literally was NO metal in that A-pillar from one inch up the pillar, to where it meets the roof!!! The "body guy" went to a lot of trouble to fix what could've been done easily, with that same part cut from a donor car and grafted in, instead!

    Poking around the car later on, he found several places on that car that were in a similar state. He ended up finding a truly straight '54 in north Texas, brought it home and transferred all of the interior and mechanicals from the first piece of shit to the new '54, and ended up with a great ride.

    The only body parts off the first car that were any good at all were the deck lid, hood, and the passenger door. Everything else was junk, even the roof!
  2. cowboy1
    Joined: Feb 14, 2008
    Posts: 914

    from Austin TX

    I had packing foam (like the one you get with your new TV) packed in my rockers and then filled in with bondo.
  3. ST. 515
    Joined: Mar 29, 2008
    Posts: 384

    ST. 515
    from TEXAS

    I had a '58 Chrysler with a lot of filler, and it also had small bugs living in the bondo. It was so hard that a few taps on the interior panels and it shattered like glass.:D


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  4. big creep
    Joined: Feb 5, 2008
    Posts: 2,945

    big creep

    :eek:wow! looks like someone went apeshit on that panel with a hammer! damn!

  5. junkyardjeff
    Joined: Jul 23, 2005
    Posts: 8,239


    When I was putting a 65 galaxie back togather (back in 1978) after I mangled the front sheet metal, a friend wanted to practice doing some body work so I let him tackle one of the quarter panels while I was repairing the front. A few months later the rust came back and when I redone it I found out he stuffed leaves in the holes and bondoed over it,I cut the rust out and fixed it right but someone pulled out in front of me the next winter and the car was totalled.
  6. ARTEMIS1759
    Joined: Jan 16, 2010
    Posts: 82


    So, here is my story. Not my car but I was working in a parts store in a Goodyear tire store and one of the mechanics came out and said hey gotta come check this out. I go into the bay and a customer wanted him to put side pipes on a 56 Pontiac street rod. The car had the paint all the way under the rocker lip and when he started drilling for the mounts realized there was nothing to mount to since both rockers were formed out of putty, lol. He told the owner and fabbed some other mounts since the guy knew about it already.
  7. UnsettledParadox
    Joined: Apr 25, 2007
    Posts: 1,107


    the paint started to crack and over time the cracks got bigger then one morning i come out and find a chunk of bondo on the ground and this rusty mess where it came from....great, no wonder the bumper fit a little funny on that side!!

  8. Lowriders Art Gallery
    Joined: Apr 9, 2010
    Posts: 612

    Lowriders Art Gallery
    from Montana

    While working at the Body Shop I came across a few interesting ones. Kid comes in with a 70 Chevelle he just bought. Complaint - trunk lid won't shut properly. Opened trunk lid and noticed bolt heads on the inside of the quarter. Some one had lag screwed a 2x4 to the quarter and mudded over it. Note - Bodymen say mud not Bondo. Worked on a 57 Bel Aire one time that had the wood treatment on the quarters. A 2x4 is almost two inches thick, and it has to be smoothed over. That's some thick mudwork.
  9. cwayne
    Joined: Dec 24, 2009
    Posts: 220


    After the bondo was blasted off it wouldn't even make a good parts car. but couldn't talk the owner out of fixing it up, so he came up with a lot of $$$$$$ and it still didn't come out like it should..

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  10. THE_DUDE
    Joined: Aug 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,601


    Shit man thats how the all start out lookin up here. You poor California guys got it easy
  11. Dynaflash_8
    Joined: Sep 24, 2008
    Posts: 3,035

    from Auburn WA

    Heres what i found under some plywood on my "restored" 62 Falcon Ranchero


    AFter some work

  12. zzford
    Joined: May 5, 2005
    Posts: 1,823


    About 25 years ago, I was at a local bodyshop. They were fixing a 70's VW van that had been hit hard in the drivers side, behind the drivers seat. The side was pushed in about 10" for the length of the side. The "body man" split the damage lengthwise, overlapped the panels then brazed them back together. This was followed with copius amounts of bondo. To get the repair flat and straight, the body man stapled sand paper to an 8' 2x4. Then he and another guy used the 2x4 like a 2 man saw across the panel. When the van was done, it looked good. I do believe it had a pronounced port list, however.
  13. 62rebel
    Joined: Sep 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,839


    first (OT) car i bought as an adult; '68 roadrunner.... beauty of a car, sharp as a tack, shiny as new money... (1983).... sitting in it, farting around waiting for my wife to leave work, notice a crack in the paint by the quarter window. WTF? start picking at it... it's not even filler putty, it's bathroom silicone sealant, smoothed into a split and painted over. i start getting REAL nosey about the rest of the car.... it's got this shit EVERYWHERE. around the windshield, back window, taillights, then i find the trunk floor is mostly imaginary..... years before Year One had anything
    to repair them.

    turns out the car lot had a real good deal going with Earl Scheib locally.
  14. junkyardjeff
    Joined: Jul 23, 2005
    Posts: 8,239


    I forgot about the plywood floors in a 59 olds I bought,I just bought it for the motor and trans.
  15. Kerry67
    Joined: Apr 11, 2005
    Posts: 2,606


    I did not buy the car but years ago I looked at a 67 Cougar that the owner wadded up balls of tin foil and then covered them in bondo and used them to fill in huge rust holes and dents on one quarter panel. There must have been ten pounds of the stuff on there. Then he did not even bother to smooth it out at all. It was hilarious and I wish I would have taken some pics. The ad that I responded to said it needed some minor finishing on the body.
  16. butch nassau
    Joined: Nov 29, 2008
    Posts: 205

    butch nassau


    This goes waaaaay back.

    In 1958 Bondo was a new product and body men didn't know much about it.

    I was working on a fender-bender 1953 Dodge 4 door r/r lower fender panel prior to the car getting repainted.

    As I dug, and dug, and dug out the old Bondo I came across what had been used as filler...the body man had underestimated just how much Bondo he would need.

    He had bought a gallon.

    It looks like halfway through the job he saw he was going to run out of Bondo.

    So what I dug out of the center of the bodywork was the actual Bondo can.

    He had flattened it and stuck it in as a filler and used the remaining contents of the can to Bondo over the can.

    At least he took the label off!
  17. MissFortune
    Joined: Jul 23, 2010
    Posts: 44

    from Lemont, IL

    the paint comes off my '56 Olds next year so i can get a new look from what the PO did. he patched only 2 places that I know of; passenger side rocker panel (did not do a very good job..the other rocker is gouged so i am getting those replaced anyway), and on the inside edge of the hood, just about where it meets the bumper. i will admit i'm pretty scared of what i am going to find when the paint comes off...because, (even though it's not body work) for what it's worth, he fixed a crack in the top radiator tank with bondo. it blew on me 2 weeks ago and the car has been down since while i am trying to get a new radiator. really, bondo on a rad??

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  18. rosco gordy
    Joined: Jun 8, 2010
    Posts: 648

    rosco gordy

    A 55 chev shorty ISCA sweepsakes winner found the whole car including the roof was pop rivited hey got em through the show season but what a mess to repair
  19. banditomerc
    Joined: Dec 18, 2005
    Posts: 2,363


    Melted off 3/4" of lead packed on to my '47 ford! if you don't know the first thing of metal repair you will fall into making the same age old blunder of piling on the filler...lead or bondo!
  20. prost34
    Joined: Mar 28, 2009
    Posts: 347


    i bought a real nice 66 nova station wagon,red mako style paint job,figured it was easier to media blast the car instead of sanding it (seeing i own a media blast booth and pot),after media blasting it there was nothing left,and i am a bodyman,,,silver tape and a slick mud guy,,,:mad:
  21. KSLeadslinger
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 70


    Back in 85 I went to work in a body shop, one day a little old man brings in a pretty nice looking 67 plymouth 440. Gold, 383, auto with a console & a/c. Shop owner tells me the lt & rt quarter's have some rust showing up and I should give it a "used car special", translated that is grind out the bubble, fill it with bondo, prime & paint. So I start to grind into the qtr of this thing and found that the shop had already done this 3 times before I had got there...yep, you could count the layers. I am still shaking my head over that repair.
  22. ooops
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2010
  23. 296 V8
    Joined: Sep 17, 2003
    Posts: 4,666

    296 V8
    from Nor~Cal

    I once had a 72 Ranchero GT
    Got it running and started doing the body work. Found a giant hole and dent in the ¼ just behind the door that was covered with two plus inch’s of filler.
    The next time I saw the guy it came from he got a verbal ass wuppin.
  24. carcrazyjohn
    Joined: Apr 16, 2008
    Posts: 4,844

    from trevose pa

    Damnit I never bought a car That had any bodywork done on the car ,It was always a full restoration for me.
  25. Kensey
    Joined: Sep 25, 2006
    Posts: 737

    from Pittsburgh

    Woooh. Non of my work showed up on this post! Yet.....
  26. billygoat67
    Joined: Jul 13, 2007
    Posts: 341


    wasn't in one i bought but one i worked on. when i was in high school i and my brothers did alot of work on other peoples cars in our garage at home after school and on the weekends.
    there was a 60,s olds convert that we had to touch up for a guy, started grinding on the rust and it was awful hard ,turned out after we opened the trunk that they had filled the trunk full of cement in the wells next to the quarters. no wonder it sat awful low in the ass.
    saw alot of newspaper stuffed in holes and bondoed over, pizza boxes and even the great silver tape. a guess anything goes back then.
    but if you think about it they tought you in school to just fill the hole with screen and fill it over.
    we liked the metal patch welded in alot better.
  27. mayerst
    Joined: Mar 3, 2008
    Posts: 23


    My thoughts exactly.
  28. indyjps
    Joined: Feb 21, 2007
    Posts: 4,896


    no one's found beer cans cut open, flattened and riveted in? Ive seen that in progress quite a few times, just walked away
  29. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145


    I've seen everything from old socks to shop rags to plastic shopping bags mudded over...or the pop cans siliconed into the floor, and when he ran out of pop cans he split the silicone tube and slapped that in...back when I was 16 I bought a '71 Chevy C-20 for $1200, fresh copper paint, low miles (34k miles, it was an old farm truck)...I brought it over to a friend of the family's house to take his daughter out on a date and he mentions "I used to own a truck just like that, but the damned thing was rotten"...I told him "Lanny, your insurance card was in the glovebox, but just how rusty was it when you owned it?"...later that year I found out...I drove it all winter long, and one day the cab corners couldn't take the frozen slush hanging on them anymore and both fell off...the entire cab corners on both sides were molded from spray foam, mesh and bondo...a few weeks later I threw some firewood into the bed and the bed floor exploded it was a mess of galvanized tin and 1/4 inch of bondo...the entire bed and learn, I guess...a buddy of mine's '49 Plymouth was getting the pink house paint stripped off by us when I found an inch thick slab of bondo in the rear fender by the bumper...since we didn't have any body tools handy I went to the scrap pile, found a tie rod, cut it and shaped it and whacked the fender back out in 10 minutes well enough that it only took a tiny skim coat of filler in a couple spots to fix it right...I mean, come on, I'm a novice using a tie rod end in 10 minutes to fix a fender you spent half an hour piling bondo into...what the fuck?...
  30. Was looking at a buddy of mine's newly purchased El Camino. He put it up on jack stands to fix a rusted tail pipe. He got to looking at the frame rail and it didn't look quite right, so he got to poking around. It turns out that someone had stuffed a tennis ball into a rotted out hole in the frame rail, then covered it using a cut out lid from a soup can that they had JB Welded into place. Then they shot undercoating over the "repair". Would never have noticed it, but the guy had put the JB Weld on over top of the original undercoating and it did not stick.

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