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Old 05-08-2009, 08:34 PM
Kerry Pinkerton's Avatar
Kerry Pinkerton Kerry Pinkerton is offline
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Near Huntsville, Alabama. Just south of the Tennessee line off I65
Posts: 7,435
Default The Art Deco Imperial Project - Part 18

Been working on the engine for a while but this week I decided I wanted to shape some metal before I leave for the Bugly meet. The door is next in line. I shrunk some 18 ga angles to match the fair curve that I lofted from the grill to the back of the door and welded them in place. To make a Burt Buck, I sheared some 1/2" strips of some 5051 aluminum (I got some from Frigo when I got the 18 ga and us it for misc. stuff.) I wove it into a grid that lays on top of the angles. At the top, I bent the strips to mate up with the armrest portion of the top of the door and tucked the strips under the door top and taped everything in place.

Some aluminum tape and here is the Burt Buck. I needed about 6 feet of tape off a new roll, the second so this tape goes a good way.

After the fiberglas tape was applied, you can see how the door side transitions from a pretty tight radius at the back of the door to a large radius at the front.

This is a fairly low crown panel all over...not a lot of shape anywhere. I was able to use 2" wide transfer and fiberglas tape.

I'm going to try and whip this out tomorrow. It LOOKS easy but it will probably kick my butt.... I'm going to try it in one piece.
Originally Posted by jhnarial
...How will you attack the top of the door?At one point on the top of the door there's a 90 degree angle.I am not sure how to do that with a English wheel....

Beats me....

Seriously Johnny, my thinking is to shape to the flexible pattern before I worry about the tip. I'll then mark the tip "line" on the back side of the panel, and work it over using a combination of the tipping wheel (probably the one in the Hoosier tipper rather than a Pexto tipper. Also work the rolls with the gokart slick, various lower dies, and some hand work. That's the plan. This and 5 more will make an even half dozen door skins I've ever done.

That said, one thing I learned in the Army was that plans go to hell with the first problem so I expect to be OBE. (Overtaken By Events)

I REALLY like the whole Burt Buck concept. It works very well, is easy, cheap, and most important, it lets me pull a rough flexible pattern that SPEAKS TO ME! Hard bucks don't. AND it lets me 'see' what the panel will look like.
Some progress on the roadster...

A couple weeks back I started on the right side door based on the flexible shape pattern pulled from the Burt buck. I quickly realized I would want to make the skin in two pieces but also quickly ran into a nasty twist.

I got lots of good input on what caused it and how to fix it but still haven't really got a handle on what the problem was...

At any rate, I worked and worked on this panel getting closer, farther away, closer etc and decided I would eventually make a new skin but first wanted to get this one as close as possible. I don't think I've ever made a panel in my VAST metalshaping experience that fought me this hard. It just wasn't speaking to me and the flexible pattern off the Burt buck was just not close enough to true surface to help me out. And there is a LOT of complex shape in the skin.

The main problem was the upper part which had a large buckle in the center. I went around and around with different approaches but finally got it to lay down. UNFORTUNATELY by this time, I had stretched the center WAY too much and had a large hump in the skin. The good news is that the skin now lays fairly easily on the door. Except for this hump...well no time like the present to see how well I could do with a shrinking disk.

In this photo, I've already some some work with the disk and you can see the scuffs.

The hump needs to come down a good bit. This contour guage is 3/4" inch high on the left side so the hump needs to drop about 3/8"

There is also a low spot on the right side but that's EASY!

Getting pretty close now. I've shrunk the area quite a bit. This is by far the most I've used the disk and the only work I've done on aluminum so I've got some questions:

1- Is there a 'limit' to how much I can shrink or can I just keep going?

2- Does the disk fatigue the metal? Can I wheel it a bit to loosen it up or is that not necessary?

I have a new favorite tool. The shrinking disk is indeed amazing! I spent about 3 hours on this skin today with the disk and it slowly came into shape. In addition, it is all relaxed and just lays on the door.

In this photo you can still see a small high spot in the center.

An hour later and it's all gone. It actually is a lot better than it looks in the photo.

Decided to move on to the door top and did the center section. I've decided against a hard 90 at the back of the door and will have a roll the whole length. Should finish it tomorrow unless my wife snags me for 'stuff'...

I was working on this as a piece of scrap just to try and get a grip on the shrinking disk. When it started to shape up, I decided to try and save it if for no other reason than I didn't really know WHY it was twisted to begin with so there was no guarantee a new skin would be any better....

Really good learning experience!

I just love it when you finish something and are happy with it. Not many better least in the shop.

Whipped this sucker!

Shaped and welded in the top end pieces. The radius to the flat 'arm rest' top changes all along the weld seam. It's really hard to hold this stuff in place. I need some of those aluminum magnets! Any tricks besides just clamps would be appreciated?

Here it is on the car. It doesn't lay in place perfectly because the flanges are not bent over. The panel behind the door top will be redone to have a radiused corner instead of the 90 degree tip that is on it now.

I'm really liking how this looks. The center portion looks flat but it's really not.

Same view from lower

3/4 rear view. You can see that panel with the 90 degree edge that will be softened.

Top 'O the door! At this point I can easily side the skin on and off the frame which is what I needed.

I think I'm going to push it outside soon and get some photos. I need to redo the front fender bondo buck first...maybe by the weekend.

This panel really worked me hard. The scary thing is that I don't really know what I did to make it get off OR get back right. At least now I will be able to make a clean flexible shape pattern for the other door. I think I have about 32 hours in the door so far. It's probably 95%

Really pumped! Starting to look like what's in my head.

Tony Sanchez pulled up in Bennett Chapman's driveway today for a short visit. He and his wife drove over from California to visit her relatives in Georgia not far from Bennett. He's coming by here Monday on his way to pick up his kick shrinker frames from Ray the machinist.

Tony's an aluminum guy as well as a master metalshaper so I'm hoping for some good insight from him. Wish he had time to stay and play a while.
Kerry Pinkerton
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