1963 Avanti

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Another typical repair needed for most Studebakers is the front lower air-scoop. Here you can see the crack created by running over an object. The lower air-scoop is cracked on it's leading edge...this is very common. The 2nd photo shows that I have ground out the slot where the crack is.... and prepped it for reinforcement and filling with USG Metal-Fill.

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Next, is the repair required to the upper drivers door hinge area. First, I cut out enough of the inner panel to allow sufficient access to the repair area. You can see that I have repaired and strengthened the area with sheet metal. What you cannot see is that behind the hinge panel (the underside of the exposed repair area)  is another heavier (16 guage) sheet metal plate that extends 1"-2" beyond the cracked fiberglass area in all directions. It is moulded to fit snug against the inner fiberglass- and is riveted in place. Because the hinge mounting plate must "float" in a sheetmetal "pocket" to allow for door adjustment, I could not simply fiberglass over the crack and hope it held. The 2nd and 3rd photos show how I reinstalled the piece of inner panel I removed for access to the repair area. First, I layed out a couple layers of fiberglass cloth on top of a piece of plastic sheet....and soaked them in fiberglass resin. Then I roughed up the underside of the removed original fiberglass and "glued" it to the cloth layers. Once cured, I removed the new panel from the plastic sheet, and trimmed the fiberglass to fit- leaving a 1/4" flange to allow me to glue the patch back in.

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With all of the major body repairs completed, the undamaged parts of the body were ready to be prepped for new paint. This last set of photos illustrate the body being completely sanded for paint adhesion. This was done with 320 Grit sandpaper and a DA Sander. The car will then be "blocksanded" with 400 grit watersanding paper- and all edges done with red Scotchbrite pads.

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