Emergency Surgery For an Ol’ Hinge Injury
First impressions can be deceiving indeed. The term “hidden damage” is perhaps most commonly used by collision repair professionals, but garage hobbyists, rodders, and restorers of ol’ pickup trucks are not exempt from such surprises.
Recently while peelin’ the fenders off a ’55 Second Series Chevrolet truck, we found ourselves confronted by underlying ugliness, which was no doubt the result of a front end collision. The discovery did not come as a complete surprise. Upon initial inspection, before any disassembly had begun, minor damage to the ol’ truck’s front framehorns was apparent. Lifting the truck’s cab, however, revealed more serious damage. The still-diamond-shaped frame showed evidence of previous repair, which extended well under the cab’s floor.
While my partner Mrs. Rotten and I have built a few trucks, it’s never been without help from our friends. The needed frame repair was beyond our personal capabilities. So, while the truck’s still-rolling chassis gets the onceover twice at Color by Woz and Dave’s Wheel Alignment (both located in Riverside, California), you’re all invited to our ol’ familiar comfort zone—the garage, where we’ll be tending to the cab’s crash-related issues. This will include the “hidden damage” that we could not see before the truck’s disassembly.
Brothers Truck Parts
Harbor Freight Tools
Ed Martin Garage
Color by Woz
Dave’s Wheel Alignment
01. At first. the ol’ truck’s fenders obscured our view of this caved-in section of cowl
02. For the initial “rough-out” of the deeply dented cowl, this U.S. General football do
03. Before any serious thumpin’ could take place, the truck’s cab was secured on a set of
04. Notice how the hinge mounting area of the jamb is puckered outward? That’s a direct
05. For the job at hand we’ll require a proper G-clamp, the closest available body hamme
06. So the idea here is to let the G-clamp do the work for us, while using ol’ part numbe
07. While this ain’t exactly rocket science, or even rocket surgery for that matter, the
08. With the aforementioned custom-made dolly held firmly against the inside of the prev
09. The lowermost door hinge bolt holes use factory spot-welded caged nuts. Here a coarse
10. For quick cleanup of the freshly cut slot, a not-so-shiny, older Central Pneumatic d
11. This method is far less likely to remove thread metal like a sharp tap probably woul
12. In light of everything our original door hinges have been through, we’ve opted to st