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49 Dodge well darn, here we go again!

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  • #31
    Its all about the journey. If we can't laugh at our self when we do dumb stuff, life wouldn't be much fun would it? I probably wasn't laughing while it was happening, but it was pretty funny when I was typing it.
    It troubles me a bit when I think us old guys may be discouraging some of the young guys because they think we have our act together and we never screw stuff up. The fact is I screw stuff up all the time, its not a matter of if, but more likely a matter of when will I do it again. I may pout for a few minutes after I screw up, but then I begin to figure out what needs to be done to fix it.

    I don't do double flairs on brake lines any more. I used to have trouble making good flairs (cheap tool didn't help), and then when I finally had a good double flair, I discovered I forgot to put the fitting on, or worse yet was when I had the fitting on backwards. Yep, pretty dumb, but I sure did it a lot, so often that most of the time after I realized I screwed up again, I would just laugh.

    Old Stuff, when I built my 39, I went though great effort to locate the battery under the bed. I even made a nice assess door to put the battery in and take it out again. Then I discovered the battery I was measuring off of was not any good. The new battery was 1" higher, and wouldn't fit between the frame and the bed floor. I ended up putting the battery on top of the bed floor and building a box around where it was sitting in the corner of the bed. Then I had to remove the door I'd built, and then weld the hole in the bed side back closed.

    We're having fun now! Gene

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    • #32
      I really have been working on the 49 lately, but there just isn't much that is picture worthy.

      I'm working on getting the front sheet metal bolted onto the truck. I've been busy designing and creating, then redesigning and recreating the inner fenders. Making them is easy, getting them attached is proving to be more difficult.

      The front nose piece is one piece of sheet metal that extends from side to side. Originally it bolted to the radiator support, and the radiator support bolted to the front cross member. Of course, with the Dakota frame, there is no front cross member anywhere near the radiator support, so using the original 49 inner structure is not going to work.

      The Dakota radiator support mounts to a pair of rubber mounts located on the front frame horns. I am using the Dakota radiator support, but I had to cut the top 8" off of it. The good news is that it still bolts to the frame, and it still supports the bottom of the radiator. I had to figure out a way to attach the nose piece to the Dakota radiator support, and then hold the top of the radiator in place. I made a couple of side support pieces out of 18 gauge sheet metal. I can bolt those pieces to the nose piece through holes in the nose piece intended to be used to mount the grille bars. Once the side pieces were bolted to the nose piece, I could weld those side pieces to the lower Dakota radiator support though the grille openings in the nose pieces. Then I added a bottom piece of 18 gauge that bolted to the nose through bolt holes actually designed to hold a lower air deflector (to direct air through the radiator). Once that piece was bolted to the nose, I could weld the ends (through the grille openings) to the Dakota lower radiator support and to the two side pieces. I now had the nose piece bolted to the Dakota radiator support and the radiator support bolted to the frame. Its going to need some more support, but its hanging the fenders as is.

      The 49 fenders bolt to the outside edge of the nose piece at the front. There was a brace that bolted to the lower 3 fender to nose holes that had the other end bolt to the frame and the original radiator support. The rear end of the fenders have a bracket bolted to the bottom edge that is bolted to the front cab mount bracket, and there is another bracket up at the top of the fender that is welded to the fender, and bolts to a bracket bolted to the side of the firewall. Along the hood edge of the fenders is a formed flange that has 4 holes in it. There is suppose to be an inner fender that bolts to these 4 bolts (I've never seen them attached). Those inner fenders are suppose to bolt to the lower rear fender bracket (that is bolted to the cab mount) and is suppose to bolt to the radiator supports at the front. There are also 2 hood latch hooks that bolt to the forward and rearward most holes. There are headlight buckets the insert into holes in the front fenders. Those buckets have an inner bracket that holds the headlight with the retaining rings and screws. As you can see, the fenders that are pretty large, don't have much support. They tend to rip the metal around where they bolt to the nose piece.

      So with my truck, I didn't get the inner fenders (probably couldn't have used them anyway). I didn't get the hood latch hooks (I can make my own). I did get the two headlight buckets, but one is missing the inner bracket, and both are missing the retaining rings and screws. I've discovered those missing parts are pretty expensive. I was wandering through our local pull a part yard and I found a modern Jeep Wrangler. The wrangler has the same size headlights as my 49 (most modern stuff is plastic lens with a little bulb). I pulled the chrome plastic trim rings and discovered these were nice plastic holders with another plastic adjuster with metal retaining rings. $14 for the pair with all the screws. I'll have to figure out a way to mount them in my 49,

      This truck will see winter use. I really don't want to cover everything under the hood with salt water spray from the tires when I have to drive it on the snow and salt covered roads. I really need to figure out a way to do inner fenders, they need to attach to the radiator support and support the fenders as well, and I have no idea how to attach them at the cab/rear fenders. To make things even more fun, its really hard to bolt the fenders to the nose when the nose is bolted to the frame. Without the inner fenders, you bolt the fenders to the nose, lift the rear fenders over the tires, then lift the front up onto the frame. Then you position the rear fenders into position, and start inserting bolts to the top bracket that is very hard to reach, even without inner fenders in place. I believe the inner fenders are going to have to be bolted in place, or at least in the correct position as the fenders & nose are put in place.

      I did have the forethought to save the Dakota inner fenders. They don't match up with the 49 fenders at all, and there would be an issue with the cab clearance at the back upper corner, but at least they match up with the Dakota frame and suspension. Plan 1 was to test fit the Dakota inner fenders. The 49 cab is definitely going to be an issue. I can't even fit the Dakota inner fender between the tire and the cab corner without modifying something. Then there is really the mismatch at the 49 fender edge. If these are going to work at all I will need to add about 4" to the outer edge of the inner fenders. And the front edge isn't very close either. The front edge of the Dakota inner fenders was rotted away, I cut them off at good metal. I'm going to have to add about 10" to the front. Lets look for another option.


      When starting from scratch its best to cut up cardboard first. If it doesn't work, you can tape it back together, and try something else, and if it doesn't work at all, its cheaper to throw cardboard away than it is to throw steel away. I started by removing the fenders from the nose piece and bolting the nose piece to the frame. Plan 2 is to make an arch about 4" above the tire. Extend it below everything at the rear, and to the bottom of the nose at the front. The outed side will set against the fender edge (I'll have to figure out how to attach it there), and the inner edge will have to come in far enough to cover the fully turned tire. Then I'll add a turn down along the Dakota frame (I'd probably hijack the inner edge from the Dakota inner fenders. I make my measurements, 16" wide, 69" long! That is a lot of sheet metal! I didn't have a piece of cardboard long enough, I had to add a 2nd piece of cardboard to make the full arch. I used clamps, angle iron, flat stock and all kinds of strange stuff to hold the cardboard in position. I had to figure out how I was going to hold it in position at the back and at the front, and how I was going to be able to bolt the fender into position and then mount the inner fender into position. I studied that cardboard and moved stuff around for a very long day. By working with the cardboard, I discovered a way I could probably modify the Dakota inner fender and make it work. Adding to the Dakota inner fender would probably be easier then building one from scratch, but it ain't done yet.

      Plan 3? Modify the Dakota inner fender with a BFH at the appropriate location. It took a couple rounds with the BFH before I got it to fit around the cab corner like I wanted it to. Once into position, it quickly showed me what had to be done next. Pull the nose piece back off and put it on the work bench I have pieces to make. Gene

      Comment


      • #33
        A few pictures to make the last post a little more clear, maybe...
        Fender mounting and fender sizes.
        1) This is the rear end of the fender, the top of the picture is the top of the fender, as it would mount on the truck. The top bracket that is attached to the back end of the fender sits on a bracket bolted to the body. (a later picture shows both the rear fender brackets on the truck) The bracket at the center on the fender is at the door edge of the fender. The original inner fenders bolted to the side of this bracket, and the very bottom edge bolts to the top of the cab mount bracket.
        2) This is the front end of the fender, again, the top is the top as it would bolt into the truck. the holes in the flange bolt to a matching flange on the fender. Those bolt holes have roughly 6" between them.
        3) This shows the tape measure at the door edge of the fender, with the fender standing on the flange where it bolts to the nose piece.
        4) This shows the tape measure at the bottom edge of the door side of the fender. The tape measure is hooked on the top edge of the fender. The bracket at the 17" mark is the bottom of the bracket that bolts to the cab mount. The hole closest to the tape measure is the one used to bolt to the cab mount.
        5) This is the body side of the rear fender mounting points. The bracket near the center of the picture is the bracket the top of the fender sits on. This bracket sticks out about 4" from the firewall. The bolts that hold the fender on come up from the bottom and pass through this bracket and screw into the bracket on the fender. To install those bolts, you nearly have to reach up from inside the fender. With an inner fender in place, access to those bolts will be difficult at best. The Dakota inner fender is sitting on top of the tire. That inner fender needs to sit back and up, to the point the top edge of the inner fender is level with the fender mounting bracket. (I'll post a picture of the inner fender modification required to make that inner fender get close to where it needs to be.
        Because of the poor design, this area of these top fender mounts on this era of Dodge trucks is nearly always rusted out. The fender bracket is welded to the fender, and always holds a bunch of stuff against the fender. Below the dimple in the lower firewall, about even with the top edge of the yellow paint is the cab mount bracket. You can see the hole in it that the lower fender bracket bolts to. I ended up adding an inch spacer between the cab mount and the truck, so there will also be an inch spacer between the cab mount bracket and the lower fender bracket. By the way, that factory indent on the lower firewall is there to clear the lower fender mounting bracket. The door edge of the fender matches the contour of the front edge of the door, and the top edge of the fender is about 1/2" away from the firewall, and it matches the top of the curve in the door.
        6) This picture shows 1/2 of what I spent my time making yesterday. What was are looking at is the back side of the driver side nose piece. The bolts around the top and left side are the bolts that hold the fender to the nose piece. The fender extends all the way to the bolt at the extreme top right bolt. There are also 2 more bolts that go straight down below the last bolt you can see on the left side. The structure vertical piece just to the right of center is the Dakota lower radiator support, access to the nut for the radiator support body mount is through the triangle hole.
        The sheet metal that is currently bolted to the nose piece has 3 purposes, it is fender support and will also be a mounting location for the headlight brackets, and the inner fender will likely bolt to this brace. This sheet metal brace is actually stepped forward 2" from where it is bolted to the flange so it will position the headlight buckets at the proper spacing to match up with the chrome headlight ring. I will have to drill 4 holes in the upper center of this piece to mount the headlight brackets, they will screw into this piece from the front. When the fenders are bolted into place, this sheet metal brace will be sandwiched between the fender and the nose piece. This piece is welded to the radiator support, but will unbolt from the nose piece along with the radiator support that will also unbolt. When I get this all done, I will probably add more bracing to both these pieces and the radiator support to make it strong. These should help support the front fenders.
        7) Look, an almost complete original 49 Dodge part! there were two of these pieces on the truck, a right side (this one is the right side) and a left side that is a mirror image. This is how the right side would fit in the truck. The left side version would have the 3 bolt side on the left side of the part. These parts are the lower nose/fender braces. The 3 holes on the outer part bolt to the bottom 3 holes of the fender to nose joint. The top of the 3 holes would bolt to the bottom bolt on the headlight bucket holder. The two holes in the curved flange would have bolted to the bottom of the radiator support. The part of the bracket I'm holding actually has about 10" of it cut off. It would have reached to the top corner of the fender and bolted into the radiator support there.
        The reason this was cut off goes way back to the first mach up of the front clip installed on the Dakota frame. That piece interfered with the Dakota frame. I cut it off there and tack welded a short piece of angle to this bracket and it sat on top of the Dakota frame. These pieces are on the list of "easier to modify to fit then it is to make new ones." The crude red marker line on the 2 hole flange, just below my fingers, is the ballpark of where the flange needs to be cut off and have a new flange added to bolt to the side of the Dakota frame. That is about how much wider the front frame horns are then the 49 frame was.
        8) Its kind of hard to see, but you can see where the paint has pealed off the inner fender, almost at the center of the pic. That 6" diameter area has been moved towards the tire about 2 1/2" or 3" to clear the lower corner of the firewall.It used to bow outward, but now it bows inward. That tire is turned as tight as it will go, and the truck is sitting on the suspension. There is at least 2 1/2" of tire clearance at the closest point. When the tires are straight, there is at least 4"-5" of clearance. I had to cut the inner fender flange to get the inner fender to lean back down. When I get done with this inner fender, that cut flange will be gone.
        9) We are looking down at the outer edge of the inner fender. The straight edge at the lower part of the pic is where the outside edge of the fender should be. I'm going to have to fill that gap, but the inner fender isn't exactly where it needs to be yet. I'm going to have to make a mounting bracket to attach the inner fender to the firewall at the top rear of the inner fender and another bracket that will mount the inner fender on the back edge near the fenders bolt on location at the cab mount bracket. Once I have the rear positioned, I will probably have to add to the front edge of the inner fender and attach it to the headlight bucket sheet metal brace. Once the inner fender is secured, I should be able to add whatever I need to the outer edge of the inner fender, and add a couple mounting tabs to the inside of the fender to hold them together. Once the inner fenders are in place, I will modify the lower fender/nose piece brace. Because of the way the frame is set up, the right side and the left side inner fenders are both different. I'm hoping when I get all done, I can lay the inner fenders on top of the tires, bolt the fenders to the nose piece, and put the front sheet metal on the truck, then lift the inner fenders into place and bolt them up without any issues.

        Today I got side tracked again! We are on the schedule to get the glass installed next Wed morning. I wanted to sand and paint around the edges of the glass pinch welds, so whenever we get it painted, I won't have to worry about a paint line edge. I'm painted the edges (inside and out) acrylic enamel semi gloss black with a spray bomb. Then when it comes paint time, we can just tape around the glass and shoot the color. The semi gloss black is almost the exact color match to the rubber window gaskets. I also figured it might be a smart idea to make a cardboard pattern for the dash metal cover, in case I had to drill holes, before the glass was maybe in the way. There are already holes in the sheet metal along the pinch weld flange, but sometimes hitting existing holes can be a challenge. Monday I'll clean up the shop a bit, and lay out the rubber gaskets so they are not still all folded up the day of the install.

        "Build a truck." they say, "It will be fun!" they say. Are we having fun yet? LOL! Gene

        Comment


        • #34
          Is there anybody out there? Does this thing work? Feels pretty lonely in here these days.

          Today was shop clean up, I need to do that every so often to collect the tools and put them back in the tool box, and to sweep the floor so I can see the cement again, at least around the outside of the truck. After the clean up, I had a little over an hour to kill, so I made one of the brackets I'm going to need to hold the passenger side inner fender in place.

          The original 49 firewall has a 1" wide pinch weld the protrudes off the firewall surface. I suspect its original purpose was to deflect water off the motor and electrical connections under the hood. This pinch weld runs across the top and down both sides a few inches from the edges of the firewall. With the inner fender in place (or close to it), this pinch weld will provide a really good location to put an inner fender brace. There also happens to be two existing 1/4" holes on the inner fender that are positioned in about the right location to bolt a bracket to. One of those 2 holes is round, and I will enlarge it to a slip through clearance for 1/4" bolt. The second hole is already an oval and is already large enough for a slip through 1/4" bolt. (pic 1) The concept is pretty simple, weld a semi flat sheet metal piece to the pinch weld that stands about 4" out at a slight angle. Then make a simple piece of sheet metal that matches the slight curve of the inner fender that will bolted to the existing holes on the inner fender. Of course, I made a cardboard pattern. (pic 2 & 3) The green dots in pic 2 are where the bolt holes will need to be drilled. Mach up of the cardboard transferred into steel and the two pieces tacked together. (pic 4) The bolts in the picture are just stuck through the holes. These bolts will have to come up from the bottom.

          These little jewels are called "U nuts" and are available at most local hardware stores for around $1.25 each, give or take. (pic 5 & 6) They come in a variety of sizes from a #4 screw up to a 3/8" bolt (and in metric sizes as well), the two I'm using are for 1/4" bolts. There are also longer versions (called extended U nuts) with more space between the end of the clip and the center of the hole. If you are going to use a lot of the same size, you can buy them in quantities of 50 for around $9 a box from Roc Auto, but there are limited sizes available. They work great for bolting fenders on and such, but I'm not sure I want to use them on something under a lot of stress, there are better things to use in high stress areas. This is what U nuts look like with the bolt in them. (pic7) You simply drill a hole in the sheet metal (a 1/4" U nut requires a 3/8" hole) slide the U nuts over the hole (flat surface towards the other sheet metal) and the clip on the U nuts lock it in the hole. To remove it, you need to lift up the lock and slide it back off.
          So, all that was left was to install the U nuts, and tack weld the bracket to the pinch weld. (pic 8) shows the piece bolted to the inner fender with the U nuts. The bolt on the right is a 3/4" long bolt, and the bolt on the right is a 1" bolt (I ran out of the 3/4" bolts). (pic9) shows the inner fender support bracket bolted and welded into place. At some point, all this will be painted. Gene

          Comment


          • #35
            It is slow indeed. I've been off line more than usual these last couple of weeks (and rushed at this point)- somewhat because of work, but mostly because our internet provider sucks. Takes forever to things to spool up half way decent and then drops 10 minutes later. I really miss not being on to see what all is happening, but will admit I do get a bit jealous when I look at stuff posted 5 years ago and see there was lots of actively going on from quite a few people.

            We hang in there Gene!
            https://www.killbillet.com/forum/30s...the-30-chevyMy 1930 Chevy truck build link:

            Comment


            • #36
              I'm here every 2-3 days I read everything that's posted. I wish that I had something to bring to the table but at this time I do not. I appreciate those of you that do and take the time to share with the rest of us.

              Comment


              • #37
                Well, today was suppose to be window day. I have a really nice installed windshield. The glass guy has never installed glass in the rear nor the two rear quarter windows on a 48-53 Dodge truck before.

                He got the center rear window in, but it doesn't look quite right, he had a horrible time with the corner windows. He got one in, but it barely fit. The 2nd one was worse then the 1st one, the rubber didn't reach to both of the vertical edges and actually had a small gap on one side or the other. He could shift the glass side to side, but it left a gap on one side regardless of how it was positioned. He pulled one of the corner windows and tried flipping the rubber inside out. He couldn't get the glass to slide into place because the rubber was binding up on the inside. We agreed the last attempt was probably the correct way, but he was stumped on how to make it work. We talked a few minutes, then I remembered that the place I'd purchased both the glass and rubber gaskets had a hot line if you were having any trouble. I had to get the number on line, and the glass guy called the help line. As the two guys were talking, it was discovered the hot line guy had never installed the rear glass on a Dodge truck either. All he knew was they have sold a lot of both the rubber and the glass and the only complaints were a couple on the way the rubber sat against the cab. The hot line guy told my installer that the company owner would be able to answer his questions, but of course he wasn't available right then. He would have the owner call my guy as soon as he got in.

                My installer and me reached an agreement, he pulled the other corner window out of my truck and took one of the glass and one rubber them with him. He was going to wait to hear from the glass company owner, but would call him tomorrow if he didn't hear from him by then. He also told me he had a couple older installer friends he would contact as well, and he would look for installation video. Then he would be back to get my glass installed correctly. At this point, it looks like Monday (the 1st day our schedules matched up) will be the next attempt. I really feel sorry for my installer. Him and his worker busted their butts trying to get that glass into place. They were at my place for over 4 hours today. They had the windshield in within about an hour, the rest of the time was spent dealing with those 3 rear windows that are still not installed. For the record, he was apologizing to me about not getting it done.

                Its kind of hard to take pictures of a glass install, not much you can see. Gene

                Comment


                • #38
                  A bummer on the adventure but what an amazing thing that you're glass installer was of that mindset- you see that less and less these days. He's the kind of guy you want to buy a cold beer for and just shoot the breeze with for a while. Happy it's him that came over!

                  https://www.killbillet.com/forum/30s...the-30-chevyMy 1930 Chevy truck build link:

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    So Friday morning I went into the shop and took a few pictures and worked on my inner fenders a bit.
                    Pics 1 & 2 are the windshield install.
                    Pics 3 & 4 are the center rear window. I believe the rubber is installed backwards (this was the 1st of the rear windows he installed). You can see how far out away from the cab the top of the rubber is. With that much of a gap, I don't see how the rubber can't hold water. I believe this rubber that is currently on the outside (pic3) should be on the inside, I believe the extra rubber probably is suppose to hold an available cardboard interior kit in place. Its hard to see, but pic 4 shows the inside and I believe that smaller rubber edge is suppose to be on the outside of the truck. When he tried to install the corner windows with the rubber set up the same way, he couldn't get it to cover both sides of the pinch welds. When he turned the rubber around on the glass on the 1st corner window, the outside fit much better, but he couldn't get that big rubber lip to sit inside the cab correctly and couldn't get the glass in place. When he gets the corner windows in to place, I will have him turn the center window rubber around as well.
                    Picture 5, This is the inner fender in the place where it needs to sit. The bracket I made earlier in the week is the shinny bracket at the top rear of the fender, the one closest to the front. In this picture I have made a temporary bracket the connects to the fender mounting bracket on the firewall. Since I took this picture, I did modify that temporary bracket so it bolts to the bottom of the fender mounting bracket. I have also made the new front inner fender extension piece that attaches to the front headlight mounting sheet metal. I have also added another small "L" shaped piece of sheet metal on the front edge that one of the outer fender bolts will pass through. You can also see a bracket at the lower front edge of the door. That bracket is the one that bolts to the bottom rear edge of the fender. Since the picture I have added another bracket the uses the same bolt that the fender bracket attaches to on the cab mount bracket.
                    The issue here is that there are only 3 places the fender bolts to the truck. One is where the fender bolts to the nose, the 2nd is that higher firewall bracket, and the 3rd is that lower bracket that bolts to the cab mount bracket. The inner fender has to attach to the outer fender along the wheel lip edge, and at the hood edge of the outer fender. This inner fender is 4" -5" away from the wheel lip edge of the outer fender, and I have no idea how far it will be from the hood edge of the outer fender. If I would have built a new inner fender, attaching it to the outer fender would have been easier, but then matching it up on the frame and cab would have been the issue. This inner fender matches the frame, and has been modified to clear the cab. My thinking was that if I can use this inner fender that already matches the frame an suspension and now clears the cab, if I can hold it in proper location, I should be able to just add what ever sheet metal I need to attach to the wheel lip, and then it would be a matter of adding a couple braces at the hood edge. I believe I have the front secured well enough to hold it into position. I believe with it being bolted to the fender mounting bracket I should be able to move that bolt onto the bracket on the fender and that should secure that well enough, and with the rear edge bolting to the same hole in the lower rear fender bracket, that should hold that end secure enough. I should be able to unbolt the inner fender from the truck, and bolt it to the outer fender, then make the fill in pieces. We will see how that works out when I try to bolt the inner fender to the outer fender Monday or Tuesday, depending on when the glass installer comes back.

                    Pic 6 shows how I clamped up the inner fender in hopes of attaching it to the truck, so I can make the brackets that I will use to bolt it to the outer fender. You can see I have already added the front inner fender extension to the inner fender where it attaches to the headlight sheet metal. You can also see I have the upper inner fender already bolted to the upper fender mounting bracket on the firewall. After this picture was taken, I added the rear lower inner fender bracket that bolts to the lower outer bender bracket that bolts to the cab mount bracket. When I left the shop Friday afternoon, both inner fenders were bolted to the truck, ready to be removed from the truck and bolted to the outer fenders. Gene

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      My glass guy was here this afternoon. I'm happy to say I now have all 3 rear windows installed correctly, plus the windshield from the other day. It was another long afternoon, but he got the job done. I bought the glass and the rubber that holds it in place from Bob's Classic Auto Glass because his ad said he had lots of years experience installing glass so if you had any trouble, he could walk you through the install. Well it seems Bob, nor any of his help, has ever installed the rear glass, especially the corners windows, on a 48-53 Dodge truck. So much for his help! My glass guy had to wing it. He had over 3 hours to get the 1st corner window in (the glass is about 12" x 10" curved). I did a few relief cuts on some interior sheet metal on the 2nd one, and it still took an hour to install. After fighting with the two corners windows, the center rear window took about 10 minutes to install. My hands hurt just watching them work. The guy and his helper are my heroes!

                      I have new door glass to install, but I've done that before. When I get to the point I'm ready to do that, I will install the door vent glass and the roll up window along with all the new weatherstripping. Those windows may be the last thing before body work. Once the hood is in place, I can slide a garbage bag down over top of the doors if the truck needs to go outside.

                      I did manage to pull one inner fender off the truck and bolt it to the outer fender. My bolt system worked out great, I need to add about a 5" wide piece between the outer fender and the inner fender at the wheel lip area. I do have another issue I need to fix before hand. By the time the cab, the nose piece and the outer fender all got bolted together, I've discovered the wheel opening on the fender is 1 1/4" too far towards the rear of center. To fix it at this point would be a major undertaking, and would cause issues with the box to cab clearance. 1 1/4" isn't much, and I thought I would be OK with it, but the longer I look at it, the more it bothers me. At this point, the easiest fix is going to be to move the wheel opening on the fender forward that 1 1/4". Since I have to cut the fender to accomplish this, I will also raise up the wheel opening 1 1/2" so the tire will clear the fender completely. If I don't do that before I make the piece to fit between the inner and outer fender, that piece would probably also be wrong.

                      Just before the glass guy got there this afternoon, I cut the 5" wheel arch off the one fender. I did the measurements and moved the wheel opening arch to where I think it needs to be and clamped it into place, it looks pretty good, but the fender is not bolted in place, and the nose piece only has the frame attachment bolts finger tight. I have decided that I need to bolt the fender and the nose piece in place so I am sure the arch is actually centered on the wheel before I weld anything. Once the fender is bolted into place, I will clamp the wheel arch into position and mark it for location. Then I'll pull the fender off, trim the edges as needed, step flange the fender and then weld it into place. I will have to make a filler piece for the back edge as well. Then I can bolt my inner fender into place, and make the filler piece between the inner and outer fender. Then I get to repeat the operation on the other side.

                      I also need to add a few braces between the hood edge of the outer fender that will drop down to the top of the inner fender, but I think I'm going to do those with both the fenders bolted on the truck. there is stuff that will fit under the outer fender and will lay on top of the inner fender. I want to be sure that when I install those braces, they won't interfere with anything.

                      Pictures tomorrow. Gene

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Pic 1, The rear windows correctly installed!
                        Pic 2, The inner fender bolted to the outer fender. The fender is laying on my steel saw horses, the black piece in the center of the pic is the Dakota inner fender and the very top of the Dakota inner fender is the rubber flap that sits against the Dakota frame. The rectangle shaped piece standing vertically on the left side of the picture is the inner fender extension that I added to the Dakota inner fender. The curved edge (the wheel well lip), just under the Dakota inner fender is the back side of the outer fender. The distance between the inner fender and the outer fender at the widest point is 5", which is right at the joint with the inner fender extension. Between the inner fender extension and the outer fender the gap is less then an inch. The entire length of the filler piece I will need to make is about 35" long, and I will probably make that in 3 or 4 pieces because of the complex curves that will be required.
                        Pic 3, This is the passenger side wheel arch that has been cut off. Pic4, This is the fender with the arch removed. You can see that there is a gap between the front edge and the nose piece. Those two pieces should be butted up against each other, but at the time of the picture, there were bolt heads between the two pieces. Pic 5, This shows the arch moved forward and clamped to the fender. As you can see there is still the gap between the fender and the nose piece. This was the point I decided I needed to have the fenders bolted in place so I was sure to get the arch centered over the tires. that was the point I stopped last night.

                        It seems that every time I want or need to do something on this truck, there is something I need to be first. I have built an inner structure off the Dakota's original lower radiator support and bolts to the original body mounts on the Dakota frame. I've added two sides and a bottom bracket so I could bolt the nose piece onto the radiator support. Then I added a pair of sheet metal pieces that will hold the headlights in place and would reinforce the edges of the nose piece and add fender support. The front inner fender extensions screw to the headlight sheet metal pieces. There are 7 bolts on each side that hold the fender to the nose piece, and that headlight sheet metal is sandwiched between the nose piece and the fender by those 7 bolts on each fender. Of those 14 bolts, 3 had bad threads. I had to fix those 3 bolt hole threads today. The required taking everything apart, making brackets to hold the U nuts, and welding them into position. While everything was apart, I ran a tap through all the fender bolt holes to be sure they had good clean threads. Then I had to bolt everything back together. With the nose off the truck, I bolted both front fenders to the nose piece using all 14 bolts. This is a 1st ever event for this truck under my ownership.
                        Two things I can tell you for sure. 1) With everything bolted to the nose piece it is a lot heavier then it used to be! 2) Access to those two radiator support body mounts is a lot more challenging then it used to be.
                        That brings us to another first ever for this truck under my ownership. The fenders are completely bolted to the nose and to the body. I even had to adjust a few brackets to get both fenders to fit against the doors as well as possible. The next task is to center the wheel arches on the front tires.
                        Pic 6 is the driver side fender (fully bolted in place) with the wheel arch cut off and laying on top of the fender. The black mark on the fender is the new center line for the wheel arch. It is centered on the wheel, thought it looks off by the picture. I can't get a good straight on picture of the fenders, the garage side space it too short.
                        Pic 7 is the passenger side side fender (fully bolted in place) with the wheel arch laying on top of it. Pic 8, This is the door edge of the fender. This gap is about a 1/2" wide at the top. I believe if I slot the rear fender mounting holes, I think can reduce that gap to about a 1/4", which was probably about what it was when it was new. This side of the truck was pretty heavily damaged at one time, the fender, the nose piece, and the door, have all been damaged. This may be as good as it gets.
                        Pic 9 shows the door edge on the drives door. That gap is also about a 1/2" at the top. To close that up I would also have to slot the holes in the top fender bracket. Adjustment on this side will depend on how close I can get the other side. I'm also not in objection to adding a 1/4" piece of metal to the edges of the fenders to close up the gap. Adding the piece might be a lot easier then trying to move the fenders back. Time will tell. I have a lot of stuff to do to just get it on the road. Gene

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Gee Wiz Gene..... you are an absolute crazy man! You just move from one thing to the other like a mad man. I love the back window set up. I've been on the garage for over 4 weeks now and anxious to get back on the truck. Talk soon.

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                          • #43
                            Crazy man? Me? LOL! I've been called that, and a few other things down through the years, so there may be some truth to that.

                            Couper, your new shop looks great! It looks like you have a lot more space and it will be a nice place to work on that truck.

                            I live a pretty simple life. My life has revolved around cars. Working on them was how I made a living, they are my hobby, and my entertainment revolves around cars. As sad as it really is, there is very little in my life that isn't car related. I possess very few abilities outside of working with metal or working on cars. Up until the last few years, anything I've been involved with outside of my welding shop and my car habit would best be described as me being an active participant. I've been fortunate enough to have been blessed with a wife for 44 years that has tolerated and understands my life style and has filled the gap for me with my 2 children and my 3 grandchildren, and all the other stuff that comes with life. I'd be a real mess without her, I probably couldn't function well as a human without her guidance.

                            All that said, we made plans with a list of stuff we both wanted to do after we reached retirement. My wife is almost 2 years older then I am. Her goal was to retire early. All the stars aligned and we were able to allow her to do so when she turned 63. She has things planned for the house, and other things, and is moving along on that list. I also had the opportunity to retire at 62, but I felt I needed to reduce my hours at my welding shop rather then just close up the shop one day, so I worked just mornings for another year. I too had a list of stuff I wanted to do, one of which was to build an old truck for me to drive around in. We have the 48 Plymouth coupe that is our fun ride. I wanted to update a few things on it so we could drive it without any issues for another 8-9 years. The goal, which I thought was pretty realistic, was to build the new truck, then redo the coupe, and we would spend our retirement doing things we have always wanted to do. That was about the point where things went south for our plans.

                            The 39 Dodge truck was suppose to be THE old truck, until I discovered it was really too small for us. Of course that didn't happen until it was almost completed and we were able to drive it around a bit. Then the trans in the 39 took a dump. I bought this 49 Dodge project as THE new old truck (I had one of these before, I know I fit in it), but I knew I would have to sell the 39 to fund this build, and it wasn't going to sell without replacing the trans. Both trucks sat outside, and the coupe went into the shop to get the upgrade it deserved. As the coupe progressed, I found a new transmission for the 39, a plan was hatched. I would install the new trans in the spring, right after the coupe was done, and then we would drive it to a few car shows. I was pretty sure I could sell it with the exposure from the car shows. The coupe was done, and the trans was installed in the 39, then the world got hit by Covid 19. It ruined our year as well as everyone else s. By July (after nearly 6 months of looking at it) I couldn't take it anymore, I decided to start on the 49. There was a lot of stuff I could do without spending much money. Right after I got started, the 39 sold, so I have nearly all the money I will need to build the 49. At this point, we are almost 2 years behind where we had planned to be, old truck wise.

                            The progress you see with this truck is pretty unusual. The reality is I'm probably working on the truck 3-4 days a week, for probably 6-7 hours a day, at most. It is a combination of a fully retired guy, with an empty, fully equipped shop, and nothing else to do. Had it not been for the virus messing up everything, the 49 progress probably wouldn't have been on near the pace it has been on. My wife and I would have been enjoying the upgraded coupe, and traveling around. We had plans to go to Kentucky, and had also talked about making a trip to see her brother that lives in Alabama, both of which would have been slow relaxing vacations cruising in the coupe.

                            So we have a new plan. I think I can get the 49 finished by this coming spring (another reason for the fast pace). We are hoping the virus thing lets everything get back to normal (or at least close to it) next year. Then we can take the trip to Kentucky and think about visiting her brother in Alabama, and do the other stuff on our lists.

                            An update on the 49 is coming. Gene

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                            • #44
                              Yesterday was passenger side fender day. The plan on the fender is pretty simple, really. Cut the arch out of the fender, reposition it where I want it to be, then weld it back in place and add a filler piece to fill the gap left open by moving the arch. I can get it nearly perfect with welding the pieces in and then welding up all the voids and grinding everything smooth, but that is pretty time consuming. I'm just going to put a few step flanges along the edges, and weld the seems. Then I'll grind off the high spots, and apply body filler to smooth it out. Yea, that's easy for me to say, I've done a lot of this stuff.

                              if your thinking the same thing as that last line I just typed, today is your lucky day! I'm going to give you a step by step on how to do it. First, I gotta do that disclaimer thing. I build drivers, I don't care if someone might be able to see where it was welded.

                              Its a lot easier if you have a tool that can make the flanges. Pic 1) This handy dandy air tool has been making flanges and punching holes for me for probably more then 20 years. I would guess them to run around $100. Pic 2 shows the business end. The open area on the right side at the bottom of the head is the flange making end. It creates a step in the sheet metal about equal to the thickness of 18 gauge metal and the length of that step in the flange is 7/16". The open area at the pic center on the top part of the tool is a hole punch. It will punch a hole about 3/16" in diameter about 3/8" from the edge of the metal. Pic 3 shows the flange making end in action (notice the tool is in a different position). Pic 4 shows the hole punch part of the tool in action. The tool is in the same position it was in for the last pic. Pic 5 shows the results of the flange making end and the hole punching end. I punched a hole in the flange to show about the depth of the hole punch. The punched hole is a good diameter to do a plug weld. Lets put it to work.

                              Before the fender is pulled off the truck, the wheel center is identified and marked. The arch is clamped into place, and the outline of the arch is marked onto the fender. At 3 or 4 different locations around the arch a pair of witness marks are made. These would be a pair of lines that go across both the arch and the fender in a straight line (about 3" long covering both pieces). When the fender is off the truck, the line around the outside of the arch and the 3 or 4 pair of witness marks will be the only thing that will keep the alignment of the arch on the fender. Be sure you can easily see all the marks. With the fender off the truck and on the bench (with the inner fender removed), the arch is again clamped to the fender lining up the edge line and the witness lines to be sure everything is right. You will notice that there is a gap between where the arch used to be and where it is now. That gap will need to be filled in, and on the other side of the arch there is going to be too much metal. The excess metal ends just past the center of the arch. The most important thing at this point is where to cut the excess off, and how much to cut off. You have a line around the outside of where the arch is going to be located. You need to draw a cut off line (I might suggest a different color marker so you don't get confused). On the side with the excess metal, Draw a line 3/8" below the arch line. Measure it often. You need to draw that line from the bottom edge of the excess metal side, all the way around the arch until you run out of excess metal. Cut the excess metal off at the cut off line. I use tin snips to do this (I have the tin snips with the big offset grips so the metal is not in line with your hands). This is a good time to measure how wide of a piece you will need to fill the gap. This is a really good time to make the cut edge as smooth as possible so the flanged edge is as uniform as possible. When I flange an edge, I want the weld to be at the highest point as the part sits on the vehicle. I still believe water will want to run down to get out. If I weld the top, and leave the bottom open, any water that gets between them should eventually run down and out. The flange tool makes a 7/16" step. On this fender I'm going to flange the edge of the fender with the step towards the inside. Keep the tool bottomed against the metal, and pull the trigger. The line where the edge of the arch is suppose to be should be inside the step on the flange.
                              Time to make the filler piece. I made my filler piece from two pieces of sheet metal, smaller pieces are easier to deal with. Cardboard is your friend. Trim the cardboard edge to fit in the flange just like the metal will fit. Ideally, there will be about a 1/6" to 1/8" gap (about the thickness of a fine point marker) -between the back edge of the step flange and the edge of the sheet metal filler when your ready to weld. Your weld will fill most or all of that gap. If there is no gap, the weld will be on top of both pieces, and will be too thin or nonexistent once ground flat. With the cardboard clamped to the step, you should be able to put the arch in place, line up your edges and your witness lines and clamp the arch into place. Now you can draw the arch outside edge onto the cardboard. Transfer the cardboard to a piece of sheet metal (if your doing more then 1 piece, start with the piece for the lowest edge of the fender). Don't worry about flanging the filler piece at this time. Remove the arch and set it to the side. Time spent making the filler piece match up as close as possible, with the 1/16" - 1/8" gap at the back of the flange is time well spent. Before you weld, make sure the areas your welding are clean shiny metal. I always use a die grinder and run across the flange and past the step, and I also clean up the top and the bottom of the filler piece. You are going to be doing a lot of tack welds, you don't want anything to mess up your tacks.Clamp the filler piece in place and weld. Pic 6 shows the filler piece clamped in place, with the step ground clean and the edge of the filler piece ground clean. Pic 7 shows the tack weld process. One tack on each side of the clamp, clamps spaced about 4" apart. Pic 8 shows the 2nd round of clamping, with the clamps splitting the gaps between the first round of tacks. Pic 9 shows the 2nd round of tacks, again, one tack on each side of the clamps. Notice the discoloration around the tacks? That is a combination of the welding gas and the stuff in the metal's pours coming out. This was ground clean metal, imaging what it looks like around nasty metal. Between pic 9 and pic 10, There have been a couple more rounds of clamping between tacks and tack welding on both sides of the clamps. This process is slow, but it keep warpage to a minimum. Pic 10 shows the progress, at this point the tack welds are about 1/4" apart, the clamps are no longer effective. From here on, there will be at least 2 or 3 more rounds, but the spacing between the welds needs to be at least 2-3 tack welds apart. You can also see that the metal is really shiny now. from here on, every round gets wire brushed (hand held wire brush) to be sure any containment's are removed. Pic 11 shows after the final round of tack welds. Wire brush it good, and tack weld any places that you think may have a pinhole. Repeat the process with every filler piece you need to add. Once your filler pieces are all welded in place, You want to sand the high spots off. Go slow and do not let the metal change color. You are only after the high spots. If the gap was correct there may be a small dip along the edge of the flange step. Quite sanding when there are no more high spots.
                              Now is the time to put your wheel arch back on, line up your witness marks, and clamp it in place. Use your marker to mark the edge of the arch onto the filler pieces. Remove the arch, and trim the filler piece edges so the marker is sitting at the back edge of the flange and flange the edges of the filler pieces. Again, time spent matching the arch edge with the flange is time well spent. Your sander will do a nice job of completing the fit. Once the flange is made its time to clean up the edges of the wheel arch and the step flange. Line up your witness marks, and clamp the arch into place. I only have 3 clamps big enough to reach the edges of the wheel arch on the fender. Pic 12, and 13 shows the wheel arch in place, notice the blue marker lines? Those are the witness marks I'm talking about. The process to weld the wheel arch on the fender is the same process as welding the filler pieces in, but with only having 3 clamps, the process is to go all around the arch with the clamps spaced way farther apart, then splitting the distance between the tacks each round. Pic 14 shows the fender with the welds ground smooth. the little gaps will be filled with body filler. You could take the time and fill the gaps with your welder, but its time consuming. If you choose to use your welder, don't do more then a couple tack welds in the same area at the same time, move around a lot, and let the metal cool to the touch between rounds.
                              Today I added the filler pieces to the inner fender. I quit tacking those joints when I got to a 1/4" apart. I will seam seal those edges and then coat the entire inner fender with that rubber liner. I finished the day painting both sides of the inner fender and the under side of the outer fender. The paint is for protection, no one will be able to see it, I did use black though. Gene

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by Gene View Post
                                Crazy man? Me? LOL! I've been called that, and a few other things down through the years, so there may be some truth to that.

                                Couper, your new shop looks great! It looks like you have a lot more space and it will be a nice place to work on that truck.

                                I live a pretty simple life. My life has revolved around cars. Working on them was how I made a living, they are my hobby, and my entertainment revolves around cars. As sad as it really is, there is very little in my life that isn't car related. I possess very few abilities outside of working with metal or working on cars. Up until the last few years, anything I've been involved with outside of my welding shop and my car habit would best be described as me being an active participant. I've been fortunate enough to have been blessed with a wife for 44 years that has tolerated and understands my life style and has filled the gap for me with my 2 children and my 3 grandchildren, and all the other stuff that comes with life. I'd be a real mess without her, I probably couldn't function well as a human without her guidance.

                                All that said, we made plans with a list of stuff we both wanted to do after we reached retirement. My wife is almost 2 years older then I am. Her goal was to retire early. All the stars aligned and we were able to allow her to do so when she turned 63. She has things planned for the house, and other things, and is moving along on that list. I also had the opportunity to retire at 62, but I felt I needed to reduce my hours at my welding shop rather then just close up the shop one day, so I worked just mornings for another year. I too had a list of stuff I wanted to do, one of which was to build an old truck for me to drive around in. We have the 48 Plymouth coupe that is our fun ride. I wanted to update a few things on it so we could drive it without any issues for another 8-9 years. The goal, which I thought was pretty realistic, was to build the new truck, then redo the coupe, and we would spend our retirement doing things we have always wanted to do. That was about the point where things went south for our plans.

                                The 39 Dodge truck was suppose to be THE old truck, until I discovered it was really too small for us. Of course that didn't happen until it was almost completed and we were able to drive it around a bit. Then the trans in the 39 took a dump. I bought this 49 Dodge project as THE new old truck (I had one of these before, I know I fit in it), but I knew I would have to sell the 39 to fund this build, and it wasn't going to sell without replacing the trans. Both trucks sat outside, and the coupe went into the shop to get the upgrade it deserved. As the coupe progressed, I found a new transmission for the 39, a plan was hatched. I would install the new trans in the spring, right after the coupe was done, and then we would drive it to a few car shows. I was pretty sure I could sell it with the exposure from the car shows. The coupe was done, and the trans was installed in the 39, then the world got hit by Covid 19. It ruined our year as well as everyone else s. By July (after nearly 6 months of looking at it) I couldn't take it anymore, I decided to start on the 49. There was a lot of stuff I could do without spending much money. Right after I got started, the 39 sold, so I have nearly all the money I will need to build the 49. At this point, we are almost 2 years behind where we had planned to be, old truck wise.

                                The progress you see with this truck is pretty unusual. The reality is I'm probably working on the truck 3-4 days a week, for probably 6-7 hours a day, at most. It is a combination of a fully retired guy, with an empty, fully equipped shop, and nothing else to do. Had it not been for the virus messing up everything, the 49 progress probably wouldn't have been on near the pace it has been on. My wife and I would have been enjoying the upgraded coupe, and traveling around. We had plans to go to Kentucky, and had also talked about making a trip to see her brother that lives in Alabama, both of which would have been slow relaxing vacations cruising in the coupe.

                                So we have a new plan. I think I can get the 49 finished by this coming spring (another reason for the fast pace). We are hoping the virus thing lets everything get back to normal (or at least close to it) next year. Then we can take the trip to Kentucky and think about visiting her brother in Alabama, and do the other stuff on our lists.

                                An update on the 49 is coming. Gene

                                That's a nice story Gene! I'm going to semi retire in 2 years when I'm 66 1/2. I'm glad you feel that way about your wife. I've been married for 45 years and my wife is also extreemly supportive of my hobby and time in the garage.

                                Thanks! I'm glad I blew that wall out....I really needed the extra space bad.

                                COVID has screwed up a lot of things this year for a lot of people..... we're all healthy and that's most important. A little behind is no big deal.....try not to push yourself too hard.

                                Your trips sound great.......lil later is better than never!

                                I'll be following along and posting once I get going.

                                Stay Well Gene!

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