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Author Topic:   Rocker Pinchweld Clamps
lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-06-2003 12:07 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Does anyone know of a place that sells rocker panel pinchweld clamps to support a body? I have seen ones as part of various frame racks and ones separately for pulling bodies, but none sold separately for body support.

Thanks,

lonewolf

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Lonewolf
1968 Coupe in Pieces

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-06-2003 10:32 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have seen older frame machines (portable) that will do this. You jack the car (uni-body) into the air and roll this device under it, then lower the car and capture the pinchwelds.

Is this what you are referring to?

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lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-06-2003 03:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yep, those are them. I have seen them in entire racks but they are pretty pricey. I am figuring I can build up what I need if I can find the parts.

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Lonewolf
1968 Coupe in Pieces

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-06-2003 06:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What was nice about those was that a pull tower was on the edges and could be moved around the frame. You could pull one side and chain the other side of the pull to the frame machine itself. No need for anchor pots or a big fancy frame machine.

Also it would be nice to have one for subrame connectors or a MUST II conversion. Once trammed and square, you know all your modifications will stay square. Mount it on heavy casters so you can move it around the shop and put screw jacks on four corners so the car could be leveled also.

Do you want me to call a shop and see if they still make them? You might be able to pick up a used machine cheaply as they haven't really been used for years.

If you do decide to design/build one...keep me up on it.

Do you need a source for the clamps?

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lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-06-2003 10:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was thinking about just picking up the clamps and building one out. One that I saw on the net was pretty pricey for just support (no pull tower, etc.).

Here is what I have going on, maybe you have some suggestions. I have a coupe that needs both rear rails replaced due to damage as well as the passenger rocker panel. From inspection, I think the driver's side is all in the correct places, so at least I have a starting point. It does look as though the car had been pulled on a frame rack at one point in time. There is a sentimental attachment to the car or I normally wouldn't think about repairing this kind of damage. Since both rails need to be replaced, I need some way to support the vehicle during this operation since the jack stands would normally go under the rails. The ability to keep everything clamped square to the world is a huge bonus.

I did see a rack on the net that a fellow built himself. The pics were actually during a restoration so the content concentrated more on the car than the rack. I asked him about it and he told me he built to support the car as the factory did during assembly. I asked a little more and never heard back. Since I don't know how the factory did that, it kind of leaves me clueless there. I have the link at work I can send you tomorrow if you want to take a look.

So yeah, I am willing to look at racks and/or just the clamps. If you now of anyone or have any contacts, please share. Either used, new or otherwise. I can't get a local crash shop to even really look at it (other than, "find another body") so farming it out isn't an option. I am also open to other opinions, advice, etc. I am not after a concours restoration but rather a driver.

Thanks for your help,

lonewolf

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-08-2003 05:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
I have the link at work I can send you tomorrow if you want to take a look.

Yeah, if you wouldn't mind. I understand your wanting to save the car...no problem here. And I understand why a regular body shop wants no part of it. They live off production and something like this would only cost them money. A specialty body shop may be the answer, but I would imagine pricey.

How is the rear floor and trunk pan?

I was watching HOT ROD TV or whatever it is called a few weeks back and they tubbed something, I thing it was a NOVA. It showed how they supported and squared the car but dang if I can remember.

I'll call down and try to get the manufacturers name of that mobile frame machine and try to get you some photos of how to go about doing you own.

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-08-2003 06:28 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Drive-On

Floor Portable-Notice Wheel Stands And Wheel Rollers

Floor Mounted-Notice Clamps On Floor Surface

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lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-08-2003 05:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here is the link. The guy does magic to this car, pretty amazing:

http://www.smcrinc.org/Tech_article_frame.htm

Check out the 68 restoration.

The rear floors and trunk pan are in really good shape. There is some damage to the trunk to cockpit sheetmetal (where the shocks stick through) but the crossmember underneath is fine. The passenger side rail is in decent shape with the exception of a location where it looks like someone attached a frame rack and tore the mounting hole. The driver side rail is pretty messed up.

Who is the manufacturer of the units in the pics below? Any of those would do the trick.

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Lonewolf
1968 Coupe in Pieces

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-08-2003 07:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Did you see how he had the body mounted on a jig? He braced and squared the rear body panel to keep it aligned while he worked on the rear rails and pans. It also became a rotisserie which is great for detailing the bottom of it.

I think the machine in the center picture would be the one to duplicate. It is easy to use and move.

-Body Rotisserie-

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lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-08-2003 10:59 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I agree that the one in the middle would be the one to build out. I think I need to add some things to it though in order to support the car while one of the rockers is out. However, I am not seeing where he bracing the rear body panel. I see the alignment fixtures for the rear rails. Fill me in on what you are looking at.

Here is my plan, let me know what you think..

1. Brace the door opening on the pass rocker panel
2. Support the car by the driver's rocker and the frame rails
3. Cut out and replace the rocker
4. Suport the car by both rockers while I work on the rails.

Ultimately, I would prefer a fixture where it is supported in multiple locations rather than moving the supports mid process. That way I drop off the supports for the area I am working on without affecting the whole thing. So I am thinking about adding screw jacks to the middle pic and extending the rails to full length of the car.

I have a rotisserie that I home built a little bit ago. Unfortunately, it attaches to the car by the bumper mounting points front and rear so I don't think it will help much.

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-09-2003 03:57 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by lonewolf:

I agree that the one in the middle would be the one to build out. I think I need to add some things to it though in order to support the car while one of the rockers is out. However, I am not seeing where he bracing the rear body panel. I see the alignment fixtures for the rear rails. Fill me in on what you are looking at.


See the square tubing leg on the rear of the jig? I suppose he squares the rear body panel and tacks square tubing between it and the jig to keep it square/level while working on the rear rails and pans. But of course, you are going to need a good string, tram and tape...

You could use this same method to hold up the front rails if you had to redo the aprons or torque boxes. Especially nice if you are doing a MUSTANG II conversion.

quote:
Here is my plan, let me know what you think..

1. Brace the door opening on the pass rocker panel

2. Support the car by the driver's rocker and the frame rails

3. Cut out and replace the rocker

4. Suport the car by both rockers while I work on the rails.


Sounds good to me. Are you think of making subframe connectors for it once squared?

quote:
Ultimately, I would prefer a fixture where it is supported in multiple locations rather than moving the supports mid process. That way I drop off the supports for the area I am working on without affecting the whole thing. So I am thinking about adding screw jacks to the middle pic and extending the rails to full length of the car.

I have a rotisserie that I home built a little bit ago. Unfortunately, it attaches to the car by the bumper mounting points front and rear so I don't think it will help much.[/B]


Yeah, I like the one in the center photo. It is heavy enough to do what you want to do and not have it take up the whole shop. You could probably just stand it on end when not in use.

Listen, I just did a quick search for those photos, and like the idiot I am, didn't take down the manufacturer's name. I will try and find the man for the one in the center. Then you just request a catalog and learn from the catalog as to how it is constructed. They will have the clamps or you can search the web for auto body supply companies for a better price.

And as you go along, you will get an idea of what accessories you want to make for it. I saw one attachment that allows you to sit a frame car on it, or devise a hold down for a frame-off. Lots of possibilities when you can do your own fabricating.

I like the stands. Maybe take some old car ramps and modify them into stands...just jack her up...put the stands under the wheels...slide the machine under it...and then lower it onto the clamps.

Sounds good to me...

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-09-2003 04:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here you go-

http://www.toolsusa.com/

FME FSY 4430-RC

The thing is only $1200.00

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lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-09-2003 01:50 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
yeah, $1200 is a bit steep since it looks like it has about $200 in steel in it. Check this one out (I can't post pics yet):

http://www.accessiblesystems.com/Subframe1.htm
http://www.accessiblesystems.com/Subframe2.htm

If I can figure out where to lock that thing onto the car, I am in business. Are there mounting points on a Mustang for this that you know of?

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-09-2003 03:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Does it work with unibodies?

The Bottoms Up Lift works with frames, body shells, unibodies, steamer trunks, etc! In the unibody case, you normally will attach to the body at the bumper mount points on the frame. In a great majority of unibody cars, our standard attachment arms allow bolting sideways into the frame rail where the bumper strap is bolted. In the rear, quite often, the bumper is bolted to a flat area across the rear end of the car.

We have unibody brackets that slip into the standard attachment arms and present a 4" x 8" flat plate (2 places, left and right ) to the rear of the car. You will need to drill these to match your particular vehicle. These brackets are standard equipment on the 2000/3000 lbs. series, but a option on the 1500 lbs. series. Some cars require 4 unibody brackets. Sub frame cars can be bolted to where the sub frame bolts in the front, or bolt to the bumper holes on the sub frame if you are not removing it.

In some unibody cases, the bumpers and there attachment points, are really fancy decoration, not structural components. I this case, it is necessary to build some special brackets that allow attachment to some suspension mounting points. We can build them or you can, depending on your capabilities. A full set of 4 brackets for a complex setup might run $100-$150. A simple set might be $50.


They say they will send out a catalog within 24hrs. I would request one and see what the attaching brakets look like.

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lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-09-2003 07:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yep. Catalog on its way. I am also going to crawl underneath tonight and take a look.

I will keep you posted.

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lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-29-2003 12:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Kultulz,

I am going to start building out the frame rack this weekend so will keep you posted as it goes.

However, what do you think about clamping a fixture to the area of the door post where the hinges bolt? This came to mind while I was commenting in another post in the Classic Mustang Forum earlier tonight. I think if I put in enough temp bracing, nothing should really shift around on me.

Cheers,

lonewolf

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-29-2003 04:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Are you worrying about the body twisting? What are you planning to work on mostly? I would be more concerned about an early MUSTANG HDTP moving more than say a FOX BODY.

As long as the hdtp body was sound, i.e. torque boxes and floor boards, I couldn't see it moving. Now if you put one up that have these defects, I would temporaily brace the door openings and tram it as I went from component replacement to component replacement to make sure it stays square as you work on it.

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lonewolf
Gearhead

Posts: 106
From: Colorado
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 10-29-2003 11:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for lonewolf   Click Here to Email lonewolf     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just want the insurance that things are not moving. I am going to brace the door openings anyway in prep for rotisserie installation. I think I might add a piece from post to post as well.

Do you think the door posts are strong enough to act as an attach point?

I have good set of Champ tram gauges and centerline gauges that I plan on using during this whole process. Most likely the centerline gauges will remain attached to the car during the enitre process unless they are in the way.

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KULTULZ
Gearhead

Posts: 384
From: Rockville, MD
Registered: Oct 2002

posted 10-29-2003 09:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for KULTULZ   Click Here to Email KULTULZ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Do you think the door posts are strong enough to act as an attach point?

I would think the hinge pillars are strong enough as long as there is no cancer or previous damage in that area.

The truth is, you can never be sure enough.

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