1967 MGB GT Body and paint

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1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Tue Mar 08, 2011 8:31 pm

As most of you know, my '67 MGB GT was rear-ended a while back. After a lengthy insurance battle, we're finally getting to work. I took the car mostly apart today, and body work will begin this coming Monday.

Here's a photo of the accident damage from my previous thread...

Image

And here is the car as of this afternoon...
bgt.jpg
MGB GT
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I'm planning a couple modifications during the bodywork segment of the project. First, I'm getting rid of the seams between the front fenders and cowl. I'm also getting rid of the ones along the top of the rear fenders. If you've seen my MGC GTS up close then you will understand what I mean.

The second modification is to revert the car to the early style door handles, which were a pul handle instead of a push button. I've never been crazy about the look of the push buttons, and wonder why M.G. ever went to them. To accomplish this modification I will have to cut the door handle holes larger in the door skins, and drill two holes to secure the handle. We will then fill the old smaller hole where the small end of the push handle mounted, and drill a new one nearby for the rubber pad the pull handle rests on. The pull handle itself needs to be modified as well, where it touches the door latch actuator.

Monday morning I will be removing the last of the glass and trim, and then we get to work! :hammer:

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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Jimmy » Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:35 pm

Would you believe that it was a legal requirement to have the new, "safer" door handles?
By the way, had you not had that obtrusive roof on your car, that Suburban wouldn't have been able to hit anything...its bumper might've cleared a Tourer's trunk lid.
In baseball, running into someone is apparently a "collision".
But doing the same thing in a car somehow makes it an "accident".

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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by gorms68 » Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:25 pm

Jimmy wrote:Would you believe that it was a legal requirement to have the new, "safer" door handles?
By the way, had you not had that obtrusive roof on your car, that Suburban wouldn't have been able to hit anything...its bumper might've cleared a Tourer's trunk lid.
That is until it reached the back of their heads :hammer:
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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:59 pm

I don't think the handle had anything to do with it, but rather the latching mechanism. The later latch had the anti-burst feature, where the early one was merely a pin, as found in the MGA and others.

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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by max71 » Thu Mar 10, 2011 7:51 am

Why did you have to do all the disassembly? Wasn't that included in the paint bill? Or do you save a good bit by doing it yourself? You pulling the glass and gasket, right? Or having them do it?

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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Thu Mar 10, 2011 10:28 am

I'm trying to save money so I can afford the paint job! The glass will come out, but we're going to hire someone to do it. I don't want to mess with that trim and risk bending it.

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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Jimmy » Fri Mar 11, 2011 10:07 am

Steve Simmons wrote:I don't think the handle had anything to do with it, but rather the latching mechanism. The later latch had the anti-burst feature, where the early one was merely a pin, as found in the MGA and others.
Seems to me that the pull handles went first (they could catch on something), then the un- shrouded pushbutton-mechanism (those could be activated in a collision or rollover).
We are simply very fortunate to have such a caring government looking after us and our automotive well being.
In baseball, running into someone is apparently a "collision".
But doing the same thing in a car somehow makes it an "accident".

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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by tannyo » Fri Mar 11, 2011 11:42 am

Jimmy wrote:
Steve Simmons wrote:I don't think the handle had anything to do with it, but rather the latching mechanism. The later latch had the anti-burst feature, where the early one was merely a pin, as found in the MGA and others.
Seems to me that the pull handles went first (they could catch on something), then the un- shrouded pushbutton-mechanism (those could be activated in a collision or rollover).
We are simply very fortunate to have such a caring government looking after us and our automotive well being.
Of course you could lock the doors while you drive. Then if your car does role over the doors won't open and any emergency personal will have to break your door window to get at you. If that happens, a broken door window is probably the least of your problems. :)

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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Jimmy » Fri Mar 11, 2011 7:20 pm

Uh, you have to break a window to get out, or to have emergency crew get you out?!?
If they're too stupid to just reach in a grab my carcass, I don't want them to help me.
This reminds me of the joke about the mechanic that was trying to unlock the passenger door and the customer pointed out that the driver's side was already unlocked - to which the mechanic replied "Yeah, I already got that one".

Oh, wait. That's right...those who drive an MGB station wagon can't just exit the vehicle due to that vast expanse of metal on top, where the open air is supposed to be.
Yet another reason to drive the more enjoyable Tourer, I suppose.
In baseball, running into someone is apparently a "collision".
But doing the same thing in a car somehow makes it an "accident".

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Re: MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Wed Mar 30, 2011 10:46 pm

We're finally making progress on the car. The paint is currently being stripped and the metal underneath assessed. Unfortunately we uncovered some really bad repair work by a previous welder. There is an ugly panel welded on the lower right-hand door, which was smothered in filler to hide it. The right rear fender also had the lower half replaced, presumably for rust repair, but the seam was left overlapping and rough. There was also some poor repair work done behind the rear bumper but that's hidden so I don't much care.

The REAL mystery however is why a strip was replaced on the left-hand door just below the window. I've never seen an MGB door in need of metal replacement in this location. :? It will need to be properly repaired as well, obviously.

Lastly, we've removed the fender beads from the front fenders and rear fins in favor of welding these seams. This will give a cleaner look, and more importantly eliminate two common breeding grounds for rust.

Not quite as pretty as it once was...
stripped.jpg
MGB GT being stripped of paint
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Ugly patch panel on right-hand door...
rh-door.jpg
Right hand door
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Lazy welding job on rear fender...
rhrr-fender.jpg
Rear fender
rhrr-fender.jpg (26.34 KiB) Viewed 11533 times
Lower right hand corner, obviously left rough because it's hidden...
rhrr.jpg
Lower right hand corner
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Front fender to main cowl seam without beading...
seam.jpg
Front Fender Seam
seam.jpg (36.98 KiB) Viewed 11533 times
Rear fin welded and being smoothed and shaped...
rear-fin.jpg
Rear fin
rear-fin.jpg (23.17 KiB) Viewed 11533 times
Left hand door showing mystery patch...
lh-door.jpg
Left hand Door
lh-door.jpg (36.78 KiB) Viewed 11533 times

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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Martin Keller » Thu Mar 31, 2011 8:13 am

Hi Steve,

Left hand door patch mystery....maybe the Brits were running low on steel for the door skin when they made your car and could not stretch it any further and needed to add some to finish the door... :jester.
That sure is a strange repair. If it was under the wing window I would understand it as the doors are prone to cracking their and the fact that a mirror or mirrors might have been removed from that area under the wing window.
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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Mon Apr 04, 2011 3:32 pm

The body nightmares continue. The left rear fender is worse than the right! It has the same horizontal line except that it isn't even aligned correctly. Bondo and side molding hid the horror. The left rear corner is even worse than the right as well, and we discovered another huge patch panel on the other door down near the bottom. The left fender also had some significant damage just behind the top of the door jam so that will need to be smoothed. I think the metal guy at the shop is cursing the day this car came to them. The good news is that there is almost no rust on the car, even in the seams where the paint was cracking. The cracks were due to the poor body work and lots of filler.
rear.jpg
Rear view
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under.jpg
No rust
under.jpg (55.77 KiB) Viewed 11508 times
Thanks to Nate, I have a replacement set of doors so that will save quite a bit of time / money. After sucking the spiders and leaves out of the doors, the first task was to modify the door handle openings to take the earlier style that I so much prefer. I don't know why they ever went away from these handles but I'm sure it had something to do with money.

This modification doesn't require much, but it's a difficult job to get the opening just right and there isn't much room for error. The later doors were never meant for this handle. Long story short, you have to enlarge the handle opening, cut off the trigger from the handle, install an adjustable bolt in its place, fill in the forward hole for the old handle, drill a new hole next to it for a rubber buffer pad, and drill two small holes in the door jam area to secure the new handle. You also need to cut back the stiffening plate that is welded to the door behind the latching mechanism, and relieve the handle slightly in this area, to prevent the chance of it hanging up. It's pretty tight in there.

Normally I don't like doing permanent mods to a car's metalwork but this wouldn't be a hard job to return - just one small patch and fill three tiny holes. I can't imagine anyone going back to the old style of handle anyway.
hole1.jpg
Old hole
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hole2.jpg
New hole
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old-handle.jpg
Old handle
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new-handle.jpg
New handle
new-handle.jpg (37.11 KiB) Viewed 11508 times
Yes, I know the new hole looks crooked but that's part of what makes it difficult. The two holes are actually angled slightly differently so you can't use the old one as a guide. You also can't use an old roadster door as a pattern for a GT door because the early roadster door is unique and totally different in every dimension from a GT door.

Onward and upward! :)

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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by gorms68 » Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:49 pm

Looking good Steve. Glad you have the car in a shop that can handle the unexpected issues you have uncovered. Do you still need a bonnet?
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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Stewart » Wed Apr 20, 2011 3:26 pm

update?

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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Thu Apr 21, 2011 2:23 pm

Chris, not sure yet because it's for the '65, which is on hold... again. If you're going to get rid of it, let me know first though, please!

Update: Not much progress. I was out of town for two weeks and I came back to find the car was not in primer like it was supposed to be by now. Apparently a guy with a Stingray Vette was desperate to get his car back so they moved him to the front of the line. It was sprinkling on the day of the show so he didn't take the car anyway. :x

The car's condition as of Monday...
IMAG0893.jpg
Bare metal MGB GT
IMAG0893.jpg (43.01 KiB) Viewed 11463 times
On the bright side, this cool Lincoln was in the shop while I was there...
1.jpg
Lincoln
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2.jpg
Lincoln
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3.jpg
Lincoln
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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by gorms68 » Thu Apr 21, 2011 3:11 pm

Steve I have three bonnets now, two hanging on the wall, one loosely fitted to the GT. I plan to keep the best of the three for the GT. The other two will be available to sell or for that future project down the road. You can have dibs on one of them.
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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Tue May 03, 2011 9:03 am

Not a lot to report, but the new doors and hatch are in place and are being fitted to the car. One door had been opened too far at some point in the past and was damaged, but that has been mostly repaired. The right rear lower quarter panel was replaced during restoration and it was welded poorly, and protrudes way too far from the lower sill, so the door sits way too far inboard. I have no idea how they got the old door to line up but this panel will have to be cut off and re-welded properly. The left rear quarter is also welded poorly and will have to be cut off and fixed also.

The new rear hatch is starting to fit beautifully now that the hinge area oft he rook has been straightened. The right side still sits slightly too high, so the body will probably be pulled up slightly there to get it aligned just right. There is also evidence that the left rear pillar was slightly bent as I had originally feared, but it's all metal so it can be pulled easily. The shop will be fitting the rear windows soon to make sure it's all fitting properly.

As the car sits now
IMAG0988.jpg
MGB GT in body shop
IMAG0988.jpg (62.36 KiB) Viewed 11432 times
The right rear fender sitting proud at the bottom of the door jam
IMAG0994.jpg
IMAG0994.jpg (49.25 KiB) Viewed 11432 times
Some of the poor welding on the left rear quarter, in the lower door jam
IMAG0998.jpg
IMAG0998.jpg (61.42 KiB) Viewed 11432 times
Left side, note more poor welding along the seam of that rear quarter, and nearly repaired door skin
IMAG1000.jpg
IMAG1000.jpg (58.6 KiB) Viewed 11432 times
The hatch installed and mostly fitted
IMAG1001.jpg
IMAG1001.jpg (57.15 KiB) Viewed 11432 times
The gap on the right side which still needs to be addressed
IMAG1003.jpg
IMAG1003.jpg (74.31 KiB) Viewed 11432 times
Typical rust holes on most MGB GTs, where the fin meets the rear window and rain gutter
IMAG1006.jpg
IMAG1006.jpg (70.47 KiB) Viewed 11432 times
Right side, note the poor fit of the fender at the bottom of the door, and the crappy welding along the seam.
IMAG1007.jpg
IMAG1007.jpg (46.64 KiB) Viewed 11432 times

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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Larry Kluss » Tue May 03, 2011 9:31 am

Looks like good progress to me, Steve. It will be quite nice and properly done when finished.

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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Thu Sep 08, 2011 9:32 pm

Finally in primer!
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MGB GT
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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Jimmy » Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:30 am

Primer?
It looks just like the color it was before.
In baseball, running into someone is apparently a "collision".
But doing the same thing in a car somehow makes it an "accident".

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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Sat Sep 10, 2011 1:31 pm

Good. Then if I scratch the paint, it will be easier to buff out. The primer is actually lighter and much more silver than the paint itself.

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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Jimmy » Sat Sep 10, 2011 2:08 pm

Perfect. Lighter equals better performance, right?
That's yet another reason I don't like black cars.
In baseball, running into someone is apparently a "collision".
But doing the same thing in a car somehow makes it an "accident".

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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:09 pm

PAINT!!! :drive
Attachments
paint1.jpg
MGB GT Painted
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paint2.jpg
MGB GT Painted
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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by gorms68 » Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:38 pm

Looks like primer :devil:

So how long before your are driving the GT again?
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Re: 1967 MGB GT Body and paint

Post by Steve Simmons » Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:58 pm

Bastage! :lol:

I should be driving it daily again by next week. The shop is going to install the trim, front and rear windows. Then I'll have to install bumpers, door mechanisms, side glass, etc. Plus I need to finish the pull handle mod. I figure I'll be picking it up by the weekend if all goes well, and then get the final bits installed over the next day or two.

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