Thursday, December 6, 2012

Rocker panel replacement preparation

I had to remove some pictures as I submitted a replacement procedure for the rocker to CJ Pony Parts.  You can see them and my write up there. Complete Rocker Installation

So I have been trying to take as much advantage of the mild weather we've been having here and been working on getting this part of the car taken care of.  I have had to do some repairs to places where the rocker has to be welded to and dealing with fitment issues.  Stupid panels won't fit without some tweaking first.  Overall the rocker panel fit pretty well right out of the box.  Although some of the dimensions were a little off to the original that came off the car.  At the end of everything, I did manage to get it fitted and looking right.  The real test will come after I remove the bracing and put the door on for gap fitment.

A pillar and cowl side panel seems to line up pretty well.

Initial fitting, looking down rocker.

Fitment issues at the quarter panel.  Uh oh.

Here is a good look at the gap between the quarter and the rocker.  Also you can see the brace just above the rocker attached to the B pillar.  It actually is supposed to fit between the two panels that make up the complete rocker.  It won't fit correctly until I drill out the spot welds and do some strategic trimming of the panel.

Here is the area drilled out and separated using my tools of destruction.

Had to fab and weld on a new flange at the front of the A pillar.  First time I have used these butt welding clamps I picked up from Harbor Freight.  Much cheaper than other places I have seen and I think they work awesome.  Welding this in took absolutely no effort at all.

Here is the finished product.  I think it turned out well.

Same thing needs to be done to the B pillar.  I know it's hard to see, but there is a flange missing.

After welding is done and ground down.

Needed a new flange for the quarter panel.  I have a patch for the quarter that covers pretty much the whole thing.  It came from the previous owner.  He just cut off the bottom flange.  Wish he hadn't done that, would have made things easier for me.  I am still going to try to make the panel work, and if I screw it up, I can still do a full quarter replacement.  Anyway the part you are looking at is actually for a 64-66.  It is about an inch and a half too long for a 67.  I didn't feel bad about buying this to see if I could get it to work because it only cost me a couple of bucks and they don't make one for a 67.

Back side of panel.

Area that I am going to patch.

Checking size.  I do have a little extra on the patch for some trimming to fit.

Comparison of old metal and new patch.  Everything measured up well.

Fitted and ready for welding.

Welded in.  The area at the back, near the wheel arch, isn't welded.  There was a really bad patch job done to the wheel arch using a lap joint and brass brazing.  Good thing I was already planning on replacing that area.  Everything around the joint was COMPLETELY rusted out, and filled with a bunch of bondo.   I just needed good metal down here to weld the rest of the quarter to and the rocker.

Here is the fitment of the rocker.  Everything lines up now that I have made the necessary adjustments.  Next week if the weather stays agreeable, I should be able to get it welded in.  Next on the project list is to finish up the torque box and possibly get the toe pan fitted.  The cowl side panel will wait until I take off the cowl, the left rear apron, and part of the firewall that needs to be patched.  This side of the car really took a beating from rust.


  1. Nice work Grant. You definitely have your work cut out for you, no pun intended. It's a pain to fix someone else's screw-ups. Those weld clamps are great. You'll appreciate them when you get to your floor butt welds. Keep it going!

    1. After all the stuff that I have found, I am no longer surprised with what shows up. All I can do is make sure things get done properly. As for the floor, it is actually starting to look like I might see that point sooner than I previously expected. That will be a major milestone for me. Unfortunately I have to replace the rear frame rail and torque box first. :(

  2. Nice work on those patches, Grant! Can't wait to see your solution to the rocker fitment.

    1. Thanks Alex! After the slight trimming I had to to do to get the B pillar brace to slide properly into the rocker, that end of things actually fit pretty well without to much bending and I didn't have to misshape anything. Unfortunately at the A pillar, the patch that I welded in is a little too stiff to work it properly and I think I am going to have to cut it up to get it looking right. :(

  3. Hi Grant! Very interesting project on the most wanted body style you have there. One sunny day you'll overcome the rust inevitably.

  4. I hope so, there are still a lot of repairs to go. I will definately keep going on it.