Tag Archives: Metal Working
For the past two years we've been sponsoring the Street Rodder Road Tour and our Eastwood Summer Classic has been the kickoff event for the eastern leg of the tour. Recently we just inked the deal to once again become the official tools sponsor of the 2013 Street Road Tour build. This year the guys at Honesty Charley's Garage will be building the 2013 road tour car. The base car this year is a 1951 Ford that's in less than ideal shape.
While at the 2012 SEMA show Brian Brennan of Street Rodder Magazine and Street Rodder Radio interviewed myself about last year's road tour car and we covered what's going into the 2013 car. We've already sent a large care package down south to Honesty Charley's Garage for the 51 Ford, and I'm sure more will be on its way soon. They'll be fabricating patch panels and performing some custom metal work on the car with our Pro Hammer and Dolly Kit, Economy Bead Roller, Versa Bend Metal Brake, Panel Beater Sandbag, and Plastic Metal Forming Mallets, and much more.
Even though we're "officially" the tools sponsor of this car, the team asked our help in the fight against rust. Since they need to treat and seal many rusty areas on the car, they asked us to send them some of our innovative paints and chemicals. We were happy to oblige. They'll be sealing up and protecting hidden and boxed areas of the '51 Ford with our Internal Frame Coating, and treating just about the entire car and chassis with our famous line of Rust Encapsulator. You can be sure that the car will be free of ANY rust or corrosion; these guys mean business!
Once the crew gets a little further along on the build they'll need to reassemble the car and turn it back into a roadworthy vehicle. For those mechanical projects they'll be using the full line of Eastwood Hand Tools. They'll be some of the first professionals to get their hands on our new ratchets, sockets, screwdrivers, ratcheting wrenches, aviation metal snips, and anything else a serious "wrencher" needs in their toolbox!
Check out the full interview at SEMA at the link below. Some of the great personalities in the classic car and hot rod community today stopped by to visit Brian Brennan including Troy Ladd from Hollywood Hot Rods, Corky Coker of Coker Tires, and Brian Downard of Lokar Performance, so it's definitely worth the listen!
Watch this space as the build really is just getting started for the 2013 Road Tour Car. We'll be sure to give you some insider information on this years car as things progress!
Time and money seem to always be the deciding factor in how long a project takes to complete. After preparing Pile House for a chop my time ran thin and it took longer for me to get to cutting the roof than I'd like; but I'm sure everyone can relate when life gets in the way of a project!
For removing the roof I used a reciprocating saw and an Angle Grinder with a cutting wheel, but there are a number of different tools you could use. It all really depends on the vehicle you're chopping. I've seen others use a Body Saw, Electric or Pneumatic Metal Shears, portable bandsaws, hacksaws, Plasma Cutters, and even an oxy-acytelene torch! No matter what your method, you need to make sure you make controlled, precise cuts. I use the reciprocating saw to cut areas like the tops of the doors, the A-pillars, and the door jams where the metal is boxed. The long cuts through the sheet metal were done with the angle grinder.
With the roof cut off, we set it on the ground and cut 3" out of the rear of the cab and enough out of the front pillars to get the roof sitting at an angle I liked. From there I began slowly welding the back of the roof on. The backside needs to stay in the same position as stock (unlike a car where most of the modifications occur towards the back of the roof). I'm choosing to use the Eastwood TIG 200 on low amperage to make the welds. When the welder settings are dialed in correctly and using small .030 filler wire, I can keep the heat-effected zone low, and hammer the welds flat with the Hammer and Dolly Set. In some places there will be no grinding (nearly impossible with a MIG!) necessary. This project requires me to be crawling around the bed and cab making short stitch welds on the roof. There isn't a good spot to position the TIG 200 foot pedal during this process, so I switched the controls to the finger switch on the torch. This makes out-of-position welding much easier. The more comfortable you are when welding, the better your welds will be.
Now with the roof back in place, it's pretty obvious that I'll need to split the roof in half to move the front portion to match the A-pillars and add a filler panel to the gap. On classic trucks I like the factory rake of the pillars, where-as on coupes and sedans of the same era angled pillars can really help make the car look like it's going fast when sitting still. Once I get more spare time and an extra set of hands, I'll start cutting the roof again and get everything sitting where I want it to, then more welding and hammering can occur. Stay tuned, I'm just getting started!
We often brag about how great our local automotive enthusiast scene really is, but we are really lucky to have our retail outlet here at the Eastwood headquarters so we get to see in-progress and finished vehicles rolling through the lot on a daily basis. The other day I wandered outside after the retail outlet called to let me know a nice little Ford street rod rolled into the lot. I stopped outside and instantly recognized the Blast From the Past Street Rods "Shadow Rod" truck. Blast from the Past has been one of the top street rod shops in the area for years, and they've been long time customers. We've even used their shop and cars for testing and photo shoots in the past. So we're no strangers to owner Bill and his crews' creations.
This truck is a based off of a Shadow Rods body that is a modernized replica of a '27 Ford. Bill and crew at Blast from the Past took this body and gave it their special touch to give this rod a really cool custom look. This truck has been given the full treatment with every part painted, new, and detailed, it's no wonder it gets so much attention at every event they take it to!
While I was snapping pictures of the shadow rod, I had a chat with Bill (owner) of Blast from the Past. He decided to cruise the truck out to Eastwood to pick up some new consumables for his Versa Cut Plasma Cutter he purchased a few months ago. Bill explained that he had Snap-On and Hobart plasma cutters in his shop previously, but after his snap-on malfunctioned and the repairs were close to the cost of a new plasma, and his Hobart died on a Saturday, he ran down to try out one of our Versa Cut plasma cutters. Bill and his shop aren't new to Eastwood products, but they were still surprised by how well the plasma performed and he mentioned it blew their old snap-on plasma away in performance (and of course cost!). Judging by the bag of consumables that Bill had in his hand, they are definitely putting the versa-cut through its paces!
As always it was a pleasure to see a nice custom rod like the shadow rod roll through our lots, and we hope you enjoyed the pics. Planning to hit the Eastwood Retail Outlet in your ride? Shoot us a message and we'd be happy to shoot some photos and give you a little feature on our blog!