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#627534 - Tue Mar 09 2010 09:02 PM Patch panel and cab corner install
Doug5558 Offline
Wrench Fetcher
Registered: Wed Jan 27 2010 08:42 AM
Posts: 163
Loc: Converse, TX
I just unpacked my welder and I got these great panel clamps that I ordered. At some point I'll order the cab corners and patch panels to start. My question is, how do you measure them out to cut? I've seen where people place the new panel over the old and use a Sharpie to mark out the lines. I assume you cut on the scrap side of the line. What thickness of cutting whell do you use? Have a .040 wheel. I'm going to practice first. I've got plenty of scrap. Input please!
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#627641 - Wed Mar 10 2010 07:43 AM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: Doug5558]
Pete52 Offline
Shop Shark
Registered: Tue Jan 06 2009 10:40 AM
Posts: 1688
Loc: melrose pk. il.
When I cut out old stuff to replace with a patch panel I outlined the patch with a sharpie than on the frist cut ,cut it maybe a 1/2 inch below the line , one trick is to get the patch to fit tighter and have a closer fit so you want to make the final cut "mark" as close to the new panel fit as it will be when your done .

that cut off wheel is fine

Practice is the key and common scense

Pete
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#627707 - Wed Mar 10 2010 12:54 PM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: Pete52]
crenwelge Offline
Shop Shark
Registered: Sat Jan 19 2008 01:15 AM
Posts: 4380
Loc: Fredericksburg, Texas
It is not as simple as marking and cutting. The initial cut is simply that, but I cut it a little lower the actual line will be. I use a nibbler where I can to prevent distortion from heat. I make a jig to get a reference for the bottom of the corner panel. I then remove as much metal as needed to get the proper fit and gap to weld. The little clamps are nifty, but they are not a fix all. The patch panels are not always the same contour as as the parent metal. You will want to weld in small stitches to prevent warping. Quite often you will have to bend the metal a little between the stitches to be a proper match. Time you spend aligning the two pieces will greatly reduce the amount of grinding later on. Practice a lot on some junk first. Weld 2 curved pieces together and then grind and then lay a something over the splice with the same curvature. With practice and patience, you can make a patch you can be proud of.
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#627931 - Thu Mar 11 2010 07:30 AM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: crenwelge]
Doug5558 Offline
Wrench Fetcher
Registered: Wed Jan 27 2010 08:42 AM
Posts: 163
Loc: Converse, TX
Thanks for the ideas. I'll probably wind up winging it on the cuts a little more because the cab corners are so rusted that the have collapsed. The cab was on the ground when I bought it. I have abit to drill out some of the spotwelds. It's a 3/8 spotweld cutter. I think it may be a little big. Do you use the cutters?
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#628246 - Fri Mar 12 2010 07:57 AM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: Doug5558]
Doug5558 Offline
Wrench Fetcher
Registered: Wed Jan 27 2010 08:42 AM
Posts: 163
Loc: Converse, TX
Has anybody ever heard of leaving the inner cab corner out? I saw an article on a old truck magazine website that said they had left them out. If so, is there some type of patch that would go in to fill the odd shaped hole so you don't have to listen to the road go by?
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#628248 - Fri Mar 12 2010 08:21 AM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: Doug5558]
truckernix Offline
Registered: Sun Mar 24 2002 12:00 PM
Posts: 8305
Loc: Bracebridge Ontario Canada
I wouldn't leave the inner corner out. They all go together to form a strong structure. You will want the cab sitting exactly as it will be on the truck so that it isn't distorted. I always try and use only as mutch of the patch as needed. If you mees up and have to do another fitting, you can buy a new patch but not a new cab.
_________________________
1951 GMC 1 Ton Flatbed -- It is finally on the road and what a great time I have driving it!
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#628348 - Fri Mar 12 2010 01:44 PM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: truckernix]
KC in NH Offline
Wrench Fetcher
Registered: Wed Jan 20 2010 11:12 PM
Posts: 142
Loc: NH
I take a different approach. I only use as much of the patch metal as I have to, as others have stated. Then I work the patch metal to have the same contours as the body, next hold the patch in place and mark the outer edge. Cut the body about 1/2" shy of the mark. At this point using clecos I attach the panel along the very edge. Using a end post grinder and a cut off wheel I start cutting through both the patch and the truck removing clecos and tacking as I go. You must be carefull to get the metal in the same plane as you advance. I stay about three inches behind the cut. After all the cutting and tacking is complete I skip around mig welding the seam and the cleco holes until it's all one piece. Grind the welds and more times than not, the resulting fit up requires no filler
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#628366 - Fri Mar 12 2010 03:29 PM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: KC in NH]
enigmaT120 Offline
Shop Shark
Registered: Wed Feb 17 2010 03:05 PM
Posts: 121
Loc: Falls City, OR
KC I would love to see a video of that technique.

_________________________
Ed Miller
'58 Apache short Fleetside half ton Napco
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#628417 - Fri Mar 12 2010 06:00 PM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: enigmaT120]
Brad Allen Online
Shop Shark
Registered: Mon Sep 18 2006 12:00 PM
Posts: 3319
Loc: Salt Lake City, Utah
Here are some pictures of mine when I did it. I Tig welded mine in but KC in NH's procedure is basically how I did it.

http://community.webshots.com/photo/2373924850102454676QqDeNK
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#628427 - Fri Mar 12 2010 06:47 PM Re: Patch panel and cab corner install [Re: Brad Allen]
Donn Offline
New Guy
Registered: Tue Feb 09 2010 06:35 PM
Posts: 7
Loc: US
Super pictures Brad
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