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Preparing conv body to remove from frame

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  • Preparing conv body to remove from frame

    I'm getting close to removing my conv body from the frame. I know this is a delicate undertaking with the conv. All panels have been aligned properly and I intend to weld a temporary brace from the top of both hinge posts to the rear quarter area to maintain the alignment after removal. The body will go to the paint shop while the frame and mechanicals get restored.
    Anybody done this before that might have some words of wisdom? I plan to set it back down on the rebuilt chassis, the engine and trans installed with the weight on the tires. I will then fill the gaps between the body mounts and frame with shim just enough to fill the existing gaps, install the frame to body bolts and tighten, then cut the welds lose on the door braces. Is this a good plan?

  • #2
    Lee DeLabarre has done this. I've seen pics of his operation.

    Miscreant adrift in
    the BerStuda Triangle

    1957 Transtar 1/2ton
    1960 Larkvertible V8
    1958 Provincial wagon
    1953 Commander coupe

    No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.


    • #3
      I did a TR3 once, bracing from cowl to rear quarter. On a body the size of a Studebaker, I would be tempted to run diagonal bracing from right front post to left rear quarter and vice-versa. Can't speak from experience.
      If it were my car, I would probably go for overkill: right front upper to left rear lower, right front lower to left rear upper, left front upper, etc, etc. My neurosis is showing.[:0]
      "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

      Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
      Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
      '33 Rockne 10,
      '51 Commander Starlight,
      '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée",
      '56 Sky Hawk


      • #4
        The over kill might not be a bad idea. The "X" bracing sure wouldn't hurt.
        As for Lee doing this before, I may contact him and see what problems he had.


        • #5
          Funny, I helped a friend of mine do a frame off on a '59 TR3... anyway... On a car as big as a Studebaker, i'd go overkill and do the X brace. The only thing i've seen people do in the past that they regretted, was over welding the braces to the car. Ofcourse "under welding" them could lead to bad results too. Just be careful with how much weld you put on your car, or you'll spend forever grinding it all off and the heat could misalign panels etc etc...

          Good luck, sounds like a nice project you have going there!

          Chris Salisbury
          Hutto/Austin, TX

          1958 Commander Starlight Hardtop


          • #6
            I had the x-welds done when I had my 64' ragtop lifted off the chassis
            One weld actually broke on lift-off......