Forming Panel Work

Paint, body preparation and modification, interior work and electrical
Garvice
Posts: 137
Joined: 01 Sep 2012 16:03
Location: Australia

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by Garvice » 16 Mar 2013 14:56

Thanks guys. Joel, I do have a shrinker and a stretcher but they are baighleigh copies so I find myself only using them on flanges as they are only good for about an inch deep. The lazze one is nice, but outside of my budget when I bought mine. A Chinese copy of one of these
http://www.machineryhouse.com.au/S226

Byron, you should give it a go on some scrap sheet. You will surprise yourself at how easy the chasing is. This type of panel work (mdf cutout to get a step) is what I will use to make the floor recesses.

HudsonMC
Posts: 461
Joined: 30 Mar 2010 05:56
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by HudsonMC » 18 Mar 2013 09:58

A few questions on shrinking...

1. You heat it up and hammer it. What exactly is happening? Are you thickening the metal around the bend?
2. Should you heat it up to orange and hammer, re heat, hammer, always trying to keep it orange? Or is it more forgiving than that? I'm thinking, like, blacksmithing.
3. I've seen people cut sections out and weld seams together to get curves instead of shrinking the metal. Is there a curve radius or angle factor for deciding between the two methods, or is one better than the other?
4. What's the difference between what you've done (the torch and hammer) and the professional tools you've linked?

Garvice
Posts: 137
Joined: 01 Sep 2012 16:03
Location: Australia

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by Garvice » 18 Mar 2013 13:58

Hello Hudson,
1 The metal is thickening where you shrink. What helps me understand the process is to not think about metal like a hard rigid object. Rather think of it like a flowable material. You're flowing excess length into a thicker material.

2 No, try to never take it to orange. All you want is the metal to change to the blue colour. Now, you actually don't need to heat the metal in order to shrink it. I have seen lots of guys shrink with the same process and not require heat. That takes more skill though and more knowledge of how the metal will react. Using heat helps get the metal soft and more compliant to flow. Taking the metal to orange will harden the metal, also try to avoid cooling the metal quickly with water or air as this will harden the metal.

3 I don't believe one is better then the other ( I had to make one cut on the bottom corner of that quarter). If you have an oxy then the cutting and shutting method leaves you with a panel that you can still nicely dress (so I've read/seen demonstrated in videos). With the Mig I find the weld a little too hard to dress further with a hammer. It always surprises me how far you can shrink. What does end up happening though is that the metal gets thicker and therefore becomes harder to work. I don't think there is a limit, but practically, the cutting/shutting method is often quicker for tight radius'.

4 Both shrinking methods take excess material length and shorten it by thickening the material. The tools do this cold (also possible with a hammer and dolly but take time/practice), where as this method uses heat. I also find the tools leave fine marks/wrinkles where you pull the metal together if you are not careful. Personally the tools are just another method, they are not necessary, but I find them helpful for certain things (especially stretching as I'm still working on that). I also think that the manual method gives me more control of how the curve forms.

Finally, if you are having trouble shrinking, start by clamping both ends of your work piece to stop the metal from going back to the original shape. I found this helpful when first starting.

Feel free to ask further questions if I have missed anything.
Last edited by Garvice on 18 Mar 2013 15:47, edited 2 times in total.

HudsonMC
Posts: 461
Joined: 30 Mar 2010 05:56
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by HudsonMC » 18 Mar 2013 14:24

This is such a great thread. Thanks for sharing your knowledge.

Garvice
Posts: 137
Joined: 01 Sep 2012 16:03
Location: Australia

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by Garvice » 19 Mar 2013 02:38

No worries mate, you're welcome.

HudsonMC
Posts: 461
Joined: 30 Mar 2010 05:56
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by HudsonMC » 21 Jan 2014 12:11

I'll add this to the cool videos thread too, but you guys have to see this: http://jalopnik.com/watch-the-most-stun ... 1505802218

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Bike papa
Supporter
Posts: 708
Joined: 09 Jan 2012 07:43
Location: Las Vegas

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by Bike papa » 23 Jan 2014 06:58

Cool to see you sharing your techniques and tools. While I'm not an "accomplished panel beater". I've never been afraid to bang on some metal when the opportunity arises.
Nice work on your car

BP
1971 Datsun 510 2 door
08 VW R32
69 BSA 650 Firebird Scrambler
Too Many Bicycles

Garvice
Posts: 137
Joined: 01 Sep 2012 16:03
Location: Australia

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by Garvice » 01 Feb 2014 22:09

Thanks for the video Hudson. Far beyond my skill set though.

No worries BP. I'm not an "accomplished panel beater" either. I just gave it a go (think the attitude/patience is half the battle when doing metal work).

Cmac
Posts: 291
Joined: 26 Oct 2006 17:03
Location: Sacramento

Re: Forming Panel Work

Post by Cmac » 02 Mar 2014 08:20

Here is another great link for sheet metal work.

http://www.garagejournal.com/forum/show ... p?t=182565

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