Monday, February 25, 2008

Begining Assembly

I started the assembly on the body by building the middle and rear supports for the rear deck. I then built the front support ( the one with the doors for accessing the bolts to the fender rails). I attached the large metal bracket at the rear that holds the rear main posts. I braced the rear posts in the proper position from front to back by bracing from the post to the fender rail (as seen in the picture. In order to hold the posts at their correct angle ( about 85 degrees from horizontal), I attached the lift gate header in position, then adjusted the posts from side to side until the angles taken from both sides, with a large bevel gauge, matched exactly. I made the cross brace from 1/4" plywood that was bolted through the center and screwed to both posts and the back cross support for the rear deck. This arrangement held everything real well while I built the rest of the rear quarter panels
I positioned the rear door latching post(the post that the door latches on as opposed to the hinge post) based on a number of points transferred from the original parts . I used the rear doors I had built along with the top rail of the rear quarter panel to accurately position the latching post. It is a good idea not to permanently fix anything until you are sure it is in the correct location. I had 95% of the car assembled before I drilled any of the through bolts that fasten the main joints together.
The structure of these cars is designed in such a way that the overall frame is joined with typical mortise and tenon type joinery that is held together with 1/4" or 5/16" bolts and blind nuts. This framework is then made rigid with the mahogany panels screwed around the perimeter at 2 1/2" to 4"on center to the frame.

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