I'm back and ready to go back to work. After a substantial amount of travel for work, a few crappy weekends' worth of weather, and, well, June just kind of got away from me. I'm now two years into this project, and it's finally time to get busy getting things done. I told Julia this is my priority for a while, and to demonstrate, I yanked the body off the frame this afternoon.
Everything went the way I expected it to when I designed and built my body dolly a year ago. Although I won't be using it for long with the rotisserie under construction, it will be useful for the time being to store the body in a safe way. Basically, I ust jacked the car up as high as I could, placed the side braces of the dolly under the body's rocker panels, then lowered the frame out from under it. Easy and safe enough for one man to do.
The hardest part of the project was getting the body bolts apart. After sixty plus years of holding this thing together, they were pretty set in their ways and didn't want to let go. Some broke, some came apart peacefully and others were a real fight. Getting a wrench on some of the bolts was tricky, and I have to wonder how they put it all together back on the assembly line in such tight quarters.
Once I had the frame dropped out from under the body, I just rolled it out of the garage and put it up on stands in the driveway. As big as it is, I was able to manually lift the front end to get the jack stands under it. Surprising.
Next up is cleaning up the frame so I can send it to the powdercoater and finishing my body rotisserie, which you can read about in this month's Spinning My Tires. The frame needs some repairs, especially to the rear crossmember, which is pretty badly bent from a rearend collision sometime in the past (explaining the damage in the trunk and replacement rear axle housing). Mustang Dyno has a company that does all their powdercoating called Universal Coatings. I'm going to give them a call next week and see about scheduling the job and getting some costs. I've also found a sandblaster who can strip the body, referred to me by a new friend named Scott who lives here in Cleveland and is restoring his great-grandfather's 1940 Plymouth. You can see more of his work here: http://home.earthlink.net/~sscheutzow/40ply.html. I'm anxious to get the body over there so I can finish patching it and get it into primer. Like I said, it's time to get this project up to speed. Watch me go!
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