Inner Fender Repair on a 68

Dylan

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Jan 31, 2002
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My inner fenders could use some attention. The front passenger section has the common battery corrosion and the rear passenger section had a hood hinge partially ripped out when the hood flew up. In addition to that, the tops of the inner fenders have some rust, definitely worse on the passenger side than the drivers.

I have all 4 new sections and have contacted a shop in my area. They quoted me $100 an hour and guessed I would be looking at 3ish hours per panel. At the very least, I would like to get the passenger side done but may also get the drivers. Is this a fair quote? I do not have a welder or any welding experience myself. If the task is super easy, I wouldn't be opposed to spending the money on buying myself a welder instead but assume I would need some good practice before diving in on the inner fenders.

What about the vin stamps, should I make sure they are cut out and weld back in?

I plan to remove paint from the engine bay and prime and paint after having the inner fenders repaired.
 

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ChaseRoads

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Oct 29, 2020
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this is just me, but before i paid anyone anything, i would strip those areas down to bare metal and see how it looks. metal expands a ton when it rusts and looks worse than it is. it's possible these areas can be saved and you only need a little metal work and a bolt hole fixed.
 

Dylan

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My plan for stripping the paint off the engine bay was to use an abrasive carbide attachment for drill/grinder as my compressor is too small to run air sanders. Think that'll do the job or is there something else I should consider? I've heard of people using electric variable dual action sander/polishers to sand down a car.
 

7991LXnSHO

Now I want a 10 year badge
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I like airplane strippers because of the name. It makes me laugh. Using the strongest products is not a light matter.
If you have adequate ventilation, hopefully a mask rated for solvents, and can deal with the mess, this method of automotive archeology does not remove good metal.

Grinding/sanding disks and some wire brushes will also work and make a different type of mess you should not breathe. A N-95 mask is appropriate for this kind of dust. This dust will kill your lungs eventually instead of your brain cells immediately. There may be lead in the paint you do also not want to breathe in. If you have a drill that does not burn up the brushes, it will do the job.
 

wicked93gs

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Sep 30, 2006
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3 hours per panel is a good estimate(lower than I would have guessed actually, not sure they are making very much for the work involved) I doubt very much you will find a better price from a shop.
 

ChaseRoads

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If you use a mechanical removal, make sure you cover everything. and i mean everything, or push it outside, close the garage and do it there. you will be fighting the dust for years. Look on craigslist and the Facebook marketplace for a cheap 20 gallon compressor or two. Before I got a 60 gallon, I ran 2 20 gallon compressors that I plumbed together. They ran air tools just fine.

It all comes down to what you wanna do and what you wanna spend. I personally would use the money to buy a nice compressor and a second hand welder. This is after I stripped the areas to find out how bad it is or is not.
 

Threepointtwo

Active Member
Aug 25, 2020
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Those don’t look too bad really. I had fenders much worse than those. I bought a HF mig welder and repaired the fenders myself. The welder, accessories, and sheet metal was about $300 total. I taught myself how to do it with online videos and some scrap metal. The final outcome was not concours ready but I am happy with it.
 

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zookeeper

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Aug 25, 2001
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Just remember ,if you replace those panels you loose your vin number ,if it is possible to patch the bad area do it
While you are correct, I seriously doubt there are three people working in the DMV that even know there's a VIN on that panel. Technically, the only legal VIN is on the windshield area of any car and when I moved to Oregon, the lady at the DMV actually looked at the door tag to verify the numbers, said she didn't want to lean on the paint to see the other one. Not sure what she would have said if the door weren't original to the car.
 

horse sence

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While you are correct, I seriously doubt there are three people working in the DMV that even know there's a VIN on that panel. Technically, the only legal VIN is on the windshield area of any car and when I moved to Oregon, the lady at the DMV actually looked at the door tag to verify the numbers, said she didn't want to lean on the paint to see the other one. Not sure what she would have said if the door weren't original to the car.
California requires 3 vins to register a car ,dash tag if it has it ,68 up because 67 down does not have the dash tag so the apron vins must be there on 67 down or you will have to have a vin assigned ,but that is California
 

Cool Beans

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Aug 2, 2014
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Do they make you remove a fender to prove it? The passenger side is hidden by the fender. Also, for a restoration, can you restamp the VIN?
 

horse sence

That $5 hooker turn out to be a guy
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They will make you lift a fender if the vin is not visible ,its best to have the registration done before bolting it together .
It is illeagle to restamp a vin but i believe a licensed collision repair shop can
 

zookeeper

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I lived in California most all of my life and the only time I ever had a visual VIN verification done is when bringing a vehicle from out of state. If you go into the DMV and try to be honest, they'll eat you for lunch. Do a nice job, re-stamp your VIN and move on with life if you replace a panel. Give them as little information as possible, DO NOT offer anything extra and don't try to explain old car restoration. You're car will never see the streets of California again if you do.
 

horse sence

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If you buy a car in Cali. That is not in the computer or has not had a non op it will have to be varified ,that is usually the only reason besides bringing in from out of state that one will need a verification . By the way ,you do not need a non op on a vehicle over 25 years old in Cali ,you will not have to pay back fees but DMV will try to do so ,tell them to look it up and see the look on their face ,you will however need to have it varified to register it so it is a good idea . I have 3 that i have to have verified right now .