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Joined: Jul 2020
Posts: 53
G
Gib70 Offline OP
'Bolter
Fellow Stovebolters; I am looking for your collective wisdom on overcoming some challenges I am having in restoring my cab. Pictures included... First picture is front shot of new, complete floor and repaired toe board. After carefully centering floor front to back and making sure that is was level left to right, I spot welded floor to toe board along the line where they meet. I did not do the recommended seem welds (yet)... just the spot welds. As you can see, I have not yet ground down any welds. Next step (second picture) was to turn my attention to the back of the cab. I cut out the patches that were at each cab corner (they were not butt welded). I have the back of the floor cleeco'd to the bottom of the cab and also to the rear seat riser. I also used the original bolts and plates used to connect cab to shackles, as you know, they attach to the back of the rear seat riser. (Next picture) as you can see, the bottom of the passenger side hinge pillar fits snugly to the side of the floor assembly (the term rocker panel never made sense to me). While I have replacement for the lower hinge pillars, I think I will leave this side alone, maybe weld it closed at the bottom, then clean up and prime the area. (Next picture) The problem I am struggling with shows up on the river's side. There is a (say quarter inch) gap between the bottom of the hinge pillar and the side of the floor (ok, rocker panel, I guess). As a consequence of the driver's side hinge pillar bottom not hugging the rocker panel tight enough, as you can see in the next picture, the corner patch does not completely overlap the inner corner of the rear of the floor where the inner corner is supposed to be spot welded to the outer corner patch. Now I know I can make the corner patch fit... remember, it has not been trimmed to fit the hole in the cab so it is just overlaying cab skin at this point. Now comes the issue that I have been noodling over... the driver's side lower hinge pillar. I have a replacement and my current intention is to only cut the bottom of the hinge pillar as little as possible to replace the rusted metal. That will still leave the gap to fill between bottom of hinge pillar and rocker panel. How best to do this? I already shaped a piece of steel that I can weld to the side of the replacement lower hinge pillar piece to fill the roughly quarter inch gap. Other options... I could free up the back of the floor from the cab and nudge the back of the floor over to the driver's side maybe 1/8 inch or so, even though the front of the floor is welded to the toe board. Of course, I braced everything before cutting any metal so as to preserve door openings etc, so I do not dare to change the dimensions of the driver's side hinge pillar to more closely snug it to the rocker panel. Just for history sake, the driver's side outside cowl has that classic crease that indicates that the driver's side door was violently driven into the outer cowl at some point in the past. That might have something to do with the origins of this driver's side lower hinge pillar gap. Finally (last picture)... those door opening braces are the key to building my rotisserie correctly (don't look at any of my welding). Why I was blessed to inherit Kevin Hansen's original braces I will never know, but I am forever grateful. If and when I get my cab off the rotisserie, I feel obligated to pass them on.

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1952 Chevy 3100
Joined: May 2015
Posts: 6,671
Housekeeping (Moderator) Making a Stovebolt Bed & Paint and Body Shop Forums
Pat,
On the driver's side hinge post, double check the distance between the hinge mounting bolts between the two sides. The FAM has those dimensions. It may be that your cab has spread a bit on the front. You should be able to pull it in before getting things welded completely, but it'll be impossible afterward (don't ask how I know that blush ).

Otherwise, looks good. Your pic of the rear pillar meeting up with the repop rocker is pretty typical. The fit is less than optimal. I think that's why GM called out for welding the rocker along the front of the rear pillar and rear of the front pillar.


Kevin
Newest Project - 51 Chevy 3100 work truck. Photos [flickr.com]
#2 - '29 Ford pickup restored from the ground up.
First car '29 Ford Special Coupe
Busting rust since the mid-60's
If you're smart enough to take it apart, you darn well better be smart enough to put it back together.
Joined: Jul 2020
Posts: 53
G
Gib70 Offline OP
'Bolter
Kevin; Please help me understand a little better what your advice implies... this is what I have done and observed since your last post. I "uncleeco'd" the back of the floor from the cab, and repositioned the back of the floor so that I have equal spaces on both sides, between the bottom of the hinge pillars and the sides of the rocker panels. The space between bottom of hinge pillar and sides of rocker panel still seem too large for a simple seam weld. That makes me think that perhaps the pair of hinge pillars might have spread apart a little over the last 70 years. You assert that there are FAM specs that could enable me to validate that such a spread might be the case. Could you help this FAM-challenged soul by being more specific about where in the FAM I might find such specs? Now I still have the cab on the rotisserie with the original cab door spaces firmly preserved with appropriate bracing, so there is no way to try fitting the doors at this time. That makes me NOT want to "pull together" the two hinge pillars so that the gap between bottom of hinge pillars and sides of rocker panels are easy to seam weld. I tend to want to preserve the original cab door openings even though I cannot attest to perfect fit of doors to cab door spaces when I disassembled the doors from the cab. I realize that I can weld more metal to the inside edge of the bottoms of the hinge pillars so that they do, in fact, come close enough to the sides of the rocker panels to enable a solid seam weld. The point is, there are many ways to "fix the gaps". As always, thank you for your considered advice.


1952 Chevy 3100
Joined: May 2015
Posts: 6,671
Housekeeping (Moderator) Making a Stovebolt Bed & Paint and Body Shop Forums
Pat, FAM Section 1, Sht 1.07 has the cab checking dimensions. The centerline of the bottom hinge bolts on the A pillar should be 29.45 inches from the cab centerline (or 58.9 inches between the two bolt holes). The bubbled items 14-32 reference the door opening dimensions given on Section 1, Sheet 63.02. I thought there were also dimensions from the cab center for the latch pillar also, but I'm not finding them right now. If your dimensions check out OK, I would be more inclined to put a sheet metal shim between the rocker and pillar and spot weld thru all three thicknesses, then run the weld bead along the interior edge at the rocker/pillar interface.
Hope that helps.


Kevin
Newest Project - 51 Chevy 3100 work truck. Photos [flickr.com]
#2 - '29 Ford pickup restored from the ground up.
First car '29 Ford Special Coupe
Busting rust since the mid-60's
If you're smart enough to take it apart, you darn well better be smart enough to put it back together.
Joined: Jul 2020
Posts: 53
G
Gib70 Offline OP
'Bolter
Kevin... I finally figured out why I was thinking back of the cab and you were talking front of the cab... in this whole conversation, I mixed up LOCK pillar with HINGE Pillar. The front of the cab seems fine... it is the LOCK pillars that have the gap between rockers and bottom of LOCK pillars... forgive my ignorance... anyway, I am confident that I can bridge the gaps between bottom of LOCK pillars and sides of rockers. Again, thank you for your patience with this rookie, when it comes to working on a vehicle, even the terminology is new to me.
Thanks.


1952 Chevy 3100

Moderated by  klhansen 

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