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Old 09-25-2005, 09:34 PM   #1
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1956 22' Flying Cloud
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Question Belly pan corner replacement

OK so what's the trick on getting the corner belly pan to lay out. The sides are easy, its the rear and front corners that's a bugger. I have a piece of the old belly pan corner but that's it. The piece that I have shows the cuts made so the metal can over lap on itself on the corner. I am using 5052 .025 so its easy to form, but it still does not want to lay out like it did from the factory. Is there a special way that it needs to be cut? I am working on the door side rear to start, any hints? This is the second Airstream that I have restored, but I did not have to replace the belly pan the first one.
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Old 09-26-2005, 07:23 AM   #2
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what i did with my '59 was cut a piece oversized and rivet it to the center piece. then i pulled it up more and trimmed it a little closer to the actual length, then cut the tabs. on the front corners, i think i made 2 relief cuts to get the front to curve up. one longer one where the main angle change is, and a smaller one about mid curve. the important thing to remember is to stretch the pan up from the rear forward. you don't want the overlap to act like a scoop and draw in rain when you tow it.

i actually ended up doing the front corners twice, because i wasn't happy with the first round. what i had done with the first attempt (not pictured) was drill the popp-rivet holes after stretching it. the problem was, the pressure from the drill caused it to dent in a little. by the time i had gotten the whole panel rivetted in, the dent was horrible, so i scrapped it and started over.

hope this helps! good luck!

jordan
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Old 09-26-2005, 08:24 AM   #3
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I used a method slightly different than Jordan.

The slit at the corner falls right over the end of the outrigger. I worked my way from side to center, pulling the metal up and marking the slits as I progressed. You need a good supply of clecos to do this job right.

I used .032" 5052 H32 which was pretty hard. I wasn't able to get the belly to have the slack belly appearance of the original. Maybe with .025 it will look more like the original.
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Old 09-26-2005, 12:26 PM   #4
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that looks awesome, mark. i always thought mine had too much droop in it.

whatever you do, dan. get some clecos. i love those things. wouldn't leave home without em.

jordan
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Old 09-26-2005, 08:33 PM   #5
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Mark, looks great!! were your side walls on , or did you lay the pan out first and then attach the walls. I have all my new side, rear and front walls on, but the body is still floating so I could lift the body back up 10 inch's or so. That the one issue Im dealing with is sliding the metal between the wall and floor rail.
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Old 09-26-2005, 08:36 PM   #6
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Jordan, Im going to ask you the same question as Mark. I see the front sheet metal is off, how about the rest of the walls. Was the pan put on with or without the walls on?
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Old 09-26-2005, 08:57 PM   #7
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Dan,

I lifted the shell enough to clear the tabs. After I lowered the shell, I used a rubber mallet to gently tap the bellypan into place. It's a tight fit, and you must lower the front and back at the same time, keeping the shell level.
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Old 09-26-2005, 09:11 PM   #8
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Thanks Mark, I think I may have to raise the body again, but that will mean I will have to undo the wheel wells, I have already riveted them to the side walls, but whats a few more olympic rivets. Your .032 is going to be a lot stronger the my .025, but I thought it would be easer to mold since the walls were already on. I dont know why I didnt put the pan on when I had the body completey off. I put a whole new frame under it!!
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Old 09-27-2005, 06:37 PM   #9
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Understand how they are built. They are built upside down. Once the pan is on they flipped it over and dropped the shell on. The last peices installed were the side pannels.

I had the original and it was simply done by pulling up the corner and make an cut every few inches and working it tight.
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Old 09-27-2005, 07:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Clayton
Jordan, Im going to ask you the same question as Mark. I see the front sheet metal is off, how about the rest of the walls. Was the pan put on with or without the walls on?
hey dan,

my shell was completely off as well. i did restretch one of the rear corners, though when i had the rear corner skins off. i don't know of an easier way to do it right other than lifting the shell, or pulling the skins, sorry!

jordan
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Old 09-27-2005, 08:56 PM   #11
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Jordan, you are probley right. I can lift the body high enough to clear the floor. I put all new walls on it last year along with a new frame and floor. It wont be that big of a deal to relift. It was not that hard to fit the pan between the outside wall and the floor rail, the problem was just getting the pan not to bind up. I over cut a piece of metal marked were the frame ran and put a couple of rivets to hold it on to the frame, then pulled it up to the outside edge and trimed it back to were I had about 2 inches of metal up the side wall at that point I cut a few relief cuts and worked the metal between the wall and the floor rail. Everything went OK until it got to the tigest part of the bend then it would start to bow. I may try to work at it a little more before I think about lifting the body again. Do you happen to have any pictures of you replacing the rear metal. Thanks for your input.
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Old 09-27-2005, 08:59 PM   #12
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Mark, You have any pictures of the rear pan being installed ? Thank you as well for your input.
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Old 09-27-2005, 09:01 PM   #13
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Sorry Mark, I ment the front.
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