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  #131  
Old 06-02-2017, 12:15 AM
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heinke heinke is online now
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Post Drivers door – door card finished

Making more progress on driver’s door. I want to make sure the windows don’t have air whistling in around them. So, I spent some time on the internet looking for seals that would also finish off the openings. I got lucky and found some beltline trim seals for both the inside and outside that dress up and finish off where the window meets the door frame. I installed the inside beltline trim to the inner door frame using some small socket head screws.



I’m down to the final preparation prior to making and installing the door skins. I decided it was time to metal finish the inner door frame. I’ve decided to keep the inner frame and door cards in polished aluminum so it was time to remove all the scratches. The drivers door inner frame was my first ever attempt at building door so there was lots of metal finishing to do

After about a day of sanding I had everything evened up, all the scratches out and it wet sanded down to 600 grit. It looked much better. Here it is after assembly with the new door card in place.

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  #132  
Old 06-16-2017, 12:55 PM
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Post Passenger door – preparing door skin

I’ve been preparing for and making the passenger side door skin. Like everything else in making these doors, there’s a lot more work to it than I ever thought before starting.

First step was to mark and cut the inner door frame for an even gap. I used a vernier caliper with sharp points to mark cut line.



After snipping close to desired gap, a short piece of 3/16” round rod was then used to check gap. Check, file, check, file, etc.



Once the gapping was done on the frame, I then made a cardboard template for door skin. There’s a sharp turned flange at the window opening that needed to be precise to prevent wind and water entry inside the door.



Using the template, Al 5052 .063 sheet was cut for door skin. I left about ¾” extra around the edge for later fine tuning once I have worked out the tipping and hemming procedure on some test pieces.



Next step was adding the shape. This door skin curves in one way but I also gave it a very low crown for strength. The shaping/curve was done on ewheel with go-cart slick and low crown added with flat anvils. This is my first door skin so I took my time. It took the better part of a day to get the shape right. The 5052-alloy work hardens fast so the initial shaping went fast and once hardening set it, it went much slower.

Next was putting in the flange for the window opening. First the sheet was annealed at the bend line. I used a Magna-bend break for the first 120 degrees of bend. The next 15 degrees was done by hand. I should have annealed again after initial bend but didn’t. It went slow, lesson learned. I used the long bar from Magnabend held with bench vice and bricks on workbench as a fixture, holding the door skin with C clamped long metal pieces to continue the bend. After a few hours of hammer, then check measure, hammer, check, the flange was finished





After experiencing how much force it takes to bend this alloy (even when annealed), I concluded that a solid dolly backup would be needed for hemming when attaching the skin. There was a section on upper rear of inner frame where the flange angled upwards and would not adequately support the skin and dolly during clamping. I decided to weld on supporting metal in that area to build up inner frame edge.



The skin was placed on door frame for marking the edge cut line. I decided to go for ¼” of wrap on the straight edge parts and 1/8” wrap on curves. The inner frame is 1/16” (.063) so I marked the skin for trimming to 5/16” on straights and 3/16” on curves.

I had done 4 test pieces using various tools/techniques to get some experience with tipping and closing the hem with the 5052-alloy. These steps seemed to work best. I used bead roller with soft plastic lower and tipping wheel upper to initiate the flange. This left a small crease on the backside and started the bend. With the flange line now marked with crease, I then anneal door skin edge in preparation for further tipping.



I used an adjustable wrench (sometime referred to as Crescent wrench) for next stage to turn flange. In areas where required, I would tip, then use mechanical shrinker, tip, then shrink. This is the area where the inner frame was reinforced, thus thicker, so there was more metal to tip. I had to anneal this area twice more during tipping and shrinking to get it to 90 degrees.



I then placed shrinks on various parts of the edge till the skin sat flat on the inner frame. Going slow, I had the skin on and off the frame at least 20 times to complete this step.



More to come as I progress.
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  #133  
Old 06-16-2017, 02:59 PM
crystallographic crystallographic is offline
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Door and lid skins can test one's patience, Joel.
3 hints:
-- 5052 work hardens after a few thumps with the hammer, or halfway into a bend. 5052 anneals at 650F - so if your soot is too heavy you "can" overheat the 5052 (soot insulates/contains the heat) and leave dark spots on the surface - which can crack under hammering.
-- "Striking" the bend line weakens the metal along an accurate line - .
This is done by compression, a sharp roll against a flat roll. Calc. the bend radius on a test piece, lay out the sharp line, strike right on the line, anneal, and the flange comes up - right on target.
-- When flattening the flange, use a heavy flat backup bar. The mass help absorb hammering energy, otherwise the backup bounces back and dents the skin, if it is too light.
Nice work and very good to see.
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  #134  
Old 06-17-2017, 07:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crystallographic View Post
Door and lid skins can test one's patience, Joel.
3 hints:
-- 5052 work hardens after a few thumps with the hammer, or halfway into a bend. 5052 anneals at 650F - so if your soot is too heavy you "can" overheat the 5052 (soot insulates/contains the heat) and leave dark spots on the surface - which can crack under hammering.
-- "Striking" the bend line weakens the metal along an accurate line - .
This is done by compression, a sharp roll against a flat roll. Calc. the bend radius on a test piece, lay out the sharp line, strike right on the line, anneal, and the flange comes up - right on target.
-- When flattening the flange, use a heavy flat backup bar. The mass help absorb hammering energy, otherwise the backup bounces back and dents the skin, if it is too light.
Nice work and very good to see.
Thanks Kent! Your insights are always helpful and I appreciate them.
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  #135  
Old 06-17-2017, 07:24 PM
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Post Passenger door – finishing door skin

In summary, for this being my first door skin, I approached it with apprehensions but it came out good in the end. Not to jump ahead, here’s the details.

I now had the door skin ready to attach but once attached access to all things inside the door will be limited to the door card opening. In other words, the door will no longer be wide open with access from the outside. So, I wanted to complete everything that would involve drilling or measuring which would be complicated with limited access.

First was making sure the exterior door handle work. I’d already cut a hole in the skin for it but now that it’s actual location was established; I could test it out. It turns out that it activated the latch fine but would do so even in the “locked” position. I had to shorten a piece on the door handle and lengthen a linkage piece to make it so it only opened the door in the “unlocked” position. I also decided to fabricate a bracket between the backside of the handle and the steel door frame so that a push on the door handle to close the door wouldn’t have the handle pushing inward on the door skin. Given this is an aluminum door skin, I didn’t want it to get warped by aggressive door closure.

Next was to drill holes on the door skin window flange for window exterior trim/seal. There would be no way to drill these once the skin is attached.



Now I was ready to attach the skin. My plan of attack was to start at the top and work downwards. I was concerned about a gap forming in the upper back corner between the window frame and the door skin. So, I started in attaching the skin there. I secured the skin with a vice grip grip cushioned by a cedar shim and hammered over the flange to secure it.



My main tools for hemming the skin are sitting on the stool. A low crown body hammer and the largest dolly I own.



Once the upper back corner was secured, I moved to the upper front corner next. I worked down the front and back edges to about the middle of the door. Here’s the completed hem on upper front part of door.



I wanted to keep the skin surface tight all over so I was trying to avoid trapping extra metal somewhere. So, next I moved to the middle of the door bottom and attached the skin there. I then worked small sections on front, back, and bottom edges converging on the lower corners. This way no metal became trapped and the skin is tight as a drum head. Here it is with skin attached all the way around.



Once the skin was attached all the way around, I checked it with a straight edge. It still had the low crown and no apparent warpage. I let out a big sigh of relief.



The real test is how it fits on the car.



The upper front corner was low but I was able to raise it into position with a little pull. The surface match between body and door is great everywhere else. I let out a second big sigh of relief as I was sure I’d hammered the surface level all over the place during the hemming.

The door gap has a couple of issues. The gap is too wide on a good portion of the rear edge and part of the bottom. I think these are both best addressed with a little bit of filler in the door opening rather than messing with the door skin itself. I was shooting for a 3/16” gap, it’s about ¼” in these places, and so I missed by 1/16”.

My conclusion is that the inner door frame flexed in these areas while I was hammering in the hem. It’s now locked the 1/16” flex in resulting in the larger gap. For the drivers door, I’ll install some sort of temporary bracing inside the door to keep the inner frame from flexing in these areas while the skin is attached.

All in all, I’m very satisfied with how this door turned out. The door gap is an area for improvement on the next one but I think the flaws on this one will be easy enough to hide. As to the Al 5052 alloy, my conclusion is that looking at it cross eyed will cause it to work harden. Well maybe not that bad but I can say you should expect to anneal early and often if you use it. For a door skin, I do think it will be worth the extra work over Al 3003 as it does seem a lot tougher, especially in work hardened state.
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  #136  
Old 06-17-2017, 07:32 PM
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Very nice.
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  #137  
Old 06-18-2017, 05:16 AM
Gojeep Gojeep is offline
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Great that it came out so well.
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  #138  
Old 06-22-2017, 06:20 PM
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heinke heinke is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy View Post
Very nice.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gojeep View Post
Great that it came out so well.
Pugsy and Marcus: thanks for your encouragement.
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  #139  
Old 06-22-2017, 06:30 PM
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Post Drivers door – making door skin

I’m now making the door skin for the drivers door. It’s 105 F here in sunny California today so I decided to take shelter in the air-conditioned house for the afternoon and give a progress update.

The first step was to add some bracing inside the door frame to prevent frame flex. The bracing for the bottom was easy but the bracing for back took some ingenuity. I had to make sure I could remove the bracing through door card opening once the skin is attached so that added a bit head scratching to the design effort.



I didn’t show the door skin shaping for the passenger side, so I thought I’d show it here. Here’s the flat sheet laid on the door frame showing how much shape is required.



The door skin has only a simple curve to it so I use an ewheel with go-kart slick to form bends. I like to use guide lines drawn with a Sharpie as I work through the bending. When using the go-kart slick, I push the skin all the way through and then pull it all the way back holding it on the sides. I slowly add the bend checking the fit often on the door frame.



When the skin starts getting close, it hits the window frame and I can no longer check the fit on the door frame. I use cardboard templates to check bending progress after that. This now fits the template close enough for this stage.



Next up is adding about 1/8” crown into the skin. It’s easy to add too much crown so I go about this very methodically and carefully. I draw on a grid of tracking lines on the top side so I can keep my anvil tracking lines close and even. I do passes at a 90 degree angle thus the grid. I start the pass in the middle, work over to the edge of wheeling area, back across the middle over to the other edge, and then back to the middle. This way for each pass, the middle gets twice the wheeling as the outsides. The wheeling is done at very low pressure.



After the first 2 passes, I draw a box about half the size of the grid and do 2 more passes within the box still at light pressure. Using this approach and wheeling plan, the middle of the skin gets wheeled at least 8 times more than the outsides. The skin now has a nice low crown and the work hardening makes it nice and tight.
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  #140  
Old 06-23-2017, 09:14 AM
blue62 blue62 is offline
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Joel
thanks for explaining your process in making the door skin.
I can see where the reference lines would keep you on track in the wheeling process.
I am going to have to try that with a fender I am trying to make.
Your build is amazing and your work is top notch.
Keep the posts coming your builds is one of my favorites.
Dave
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