One thing I have learned is that a car is a lot more than numbers on tags.
While correct numbers are important they are only part of the car.
There is no shortage of so called numbers experts out there that have never built a car from the ground up.
The last thing you want to do is buy a car with correct numbers and nothing else going for it.
What I have seen is that not many really know what to look for as far as panel replacement and what previous below standard repair work has been done.
I will attempt to rectify this with these pages.
Lets face it. Who really wants a car that's had more hits than Elvis and is rusty.
The below shot shows an original HQ sedan untouched (paint stripped only)
The spot welds tell you that both the 1/4 panel, beaver tail and floor pan have not been touched.
Also the lead load is still intact and untouched. The rough edges are quite normal and are a good guide to the cars originality.
All plants used a similar technique of lead loading
The spot welds on the beaver tail should be consistent in their appearance the entire length of the beaver panel.
There is one stitch weld each side of the beaver tail. It can be seen in the image below.
This is normal as is the stitch weld on the chassis rail normally only one each side of the rails approx 10-15mm long.
A good tell tail sign to incorrect beaver tail installation is stitch welds from the beaver panel to the floor pan, usually followed by proof coat. This is a poor quality trade way to speed up the process of repair.
You do not want to see proof coat. If you do, ask yourself what are they hiding?
If you notice stitch welding or proof coat on the bottom of the beaver tail take a further look in the boot for more poor quality work.
Don't forget it is almost impossible to reproduce original spot welds like the manufactures do. They built a car from the inside out, this allows them to do thing that the repair industry just can not do.
Also the size of the spot welds are unique and specific as purpose built welders are used.
I did drill extra holes in the beaver tail for rust protection purposes.
I want these cars to last as long as possible.
© 2010 Scott Wilson