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Discussion Starter #1
OK, I have inspected most of the 66's birdcage and the following photos are by far the more severe of the damage:

Hre's the front passenger side hinge pillar (lower)



Here's the driver's side:



How much work will be required to fix this right? The bottom rails seem to be in very good shape on both sides but the lower pillars... well, you see them. :lookinup: Do I need to cut and add metal? What's required here?
 

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DC Crew
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I'm no expert, but I would hit those areas with a media blaster to get all the surface rust away so you can really assess what the damage is. It's hard to see the welds or cracks behind the flaking rust.

Clearly that birdcage is trying to return to iron oxide...
 

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I'm gonna agree with Pat on this one.

You need to blast the questionable areas to allow an accurate assessment of the degree of repair required.

There are a couple of companies that specialize in replacement sections of the metal components of the corvette frames and body cages. I have seen them at Carlisle but can't remember names at the moment.
If and when the names come to me, I will post again.

One of the down sides of getting old.
You suffer from CRAFT disease (Can't Remember A ****ing Thing)




:D :D
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well, I guess a trip to Harbor Freight Tools is in order. I'll get a portable sandblasting unit and about 50lbs of sand. Or should I use gleass beads or something else for this job?
 

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DC Crew
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Islander said:
Well, I guess a trip to Harbor Freight Tools is in order. I'll get a portable sandblasting unit and about 50lbs of sand. Or should I use gleass beads or something else for this job?
Sand should be fine. But, do not use it on anything else. Other media (plastic, baking soda) are the best for paint and other delicate surfaces. But, you can zap all the rust you want with sand. Make sure you start at the lowest pressure.

:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I have a question: are the hinge pillars supposed to be square (perpendicular) to the bottom u-rails or should they have a slight lean to the rear end of the cage? Mine have a slight lean back but the cowl fiberglass section is square to the rails, can anyone comfirm this either way?
 

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DC Crew
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Islander said:
I have a question: are the hinge pillars supposed to be square (perpendicular) to the bottom u-rails or should they have a slight lean to the rear end of the cage? Mine have a slight lean back but the cowl fiberglass section is square to the rails, can anyone comfirm this either way?
This I do not know. After you sandblast snap some new pics and we'll find someone who knows. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'll be sandblasting this week-end. BTW, the pillars do slant backwards at a slight angle (someone mentioned they measured 87 degrees, 3 off of perfectly square.
 

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DC PIT CREW BOSS
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64vette said:
.One of the down sides of getting old.
You suffer from CRAFT disease (Can't Remember A ****ing Thing):D :D
Is that an advanced stage of CRS (Can't Remember ****)?
 

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Islander said:
I'll be sandblasting this week-end. BTW, the pillars do slant backwards at a slight angle (someone mentioned they measured 87 degrees, 3 off of perfectly square.
Glad to hear you got an answer on the slant. I look forward to seeing some pics when you are done blasting the heck of it!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
OK, I did not get to blast but I did clean up the areas quite a bit, here is the passenger's side pillar, it's a little bit fuzzy but you get the idea:



Here is the driver's side pillar, ate straight through, left behind some weak metal:



I think the thing to do, which will produce the best result and give me the peace of mind I want, is to remove the birdcage from the body and repair and rust-proof it. It won't take that much more money and I'll still have plenty of time to complete this project in. Besides, 10 years down the road I wont be fretting about the birdcage falling apart. Here is a picture of what I plan on doing. I will cut the floorpan from one side to the other right at the pillars to remove the cowl area and then I will attempt to separate the rocker panel bonds to the floorpan (those are the arrows along the bonding seam). I have several repairs to make to the underside/rear of the tub so it will be easier to do with the body out in the open. Any ideas or feedback would be nice. :)

 

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DC Crew
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That metal looks thin from the factory. If it were me I'd sandblast it... then double-wall it and lay down some great welds.
 

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I gotta agree with Patrick here. You can rust proof it at the same time. I have a rough 55 Chevy I'm working on and the nice thing is it is all single wall so you can get to the bad areas without disasysmbleing (I butchered that:D)everything on your way.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
You two mean repairing the cage with the body on or sandbasting and repairing it with the body off?
 
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