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Old 09-08-2015, 11:51 PM   #1
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1954 22' Flying Cloud
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My Flying Cloud Was Hit Today

Okay, it was a light bump at the stoplight. The shell has been off since spring, full restoration from the ground up has been in progress and today was "shell on day". Less than an hour after securing my belly pan, I was off to mount the shell located just a few miles away. The accident happened at 3pm and I thought there'd be no way I'd get the shell off its supports before nightfall. But thanks to a great dad, brother, and friend...and after a few hours sweating and tugging on things, the shell settled on nice and snug. I now have a bow in the steel bumper and it appears the best way to get it out will be with a come-along and maybe a nice big tree.

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Old 09-09-2015, 12:35 AM   #2
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Whew. Had me going there for a minute. Take the bumper off and take it to a good bodyshop with a metal brake. They'll get it straight in about 3 minutes flat. Or put it face down on a wood picnic table covered with an old blanket and whack gently with a rubber mallet. Trying to pull it straight while still installed could easily be overdone and/or damage the bolts & bolt holes.
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Old 09-09-2015, 01:34 AM   #3
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It's welded directly to the frame and is a component of the frame, so I'd prefer to avoid removal. I suppose it could be professionally torch cut and welded back on. Not sure how I'm going to go about this. They were hoping to avoid a claim, but I'm serious about getting this corrected the right way.
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Old 09-09-2015, 04:39 AM   #4
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I keep forgetting how differently vintage units were built. That being the case a come along tied to a big tree is the perfect "shade tree" fix. I'd shape a 2 x 4 and put it between the bumper and whatever you tie around it so that the pull is evenly distributed along the bumper. Sure isn't going to come out with a suction cup is it?

Paula
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Old 09-09-2015, 06:07 AM   #5
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Glad to hear that it was not a major hit. Since this a steel bumper that is welded in place I would use a come-along connected to a stout tree and a synthetic strap (the wider the better) around the bumper to gently pull out the bow. Use a straight edge to monitor your progress, take your time and the end results will satisfying. Since there does not appear to be any kinking associated with the bow I would not apply heat, or use a strong-back as part of the process.

We applied the same fix to an old Ford of ours with great results.

On a difficulty scale of 1 to 5 Rivets this is a 1.5 Rivet project.
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Old 09-09-2015, 07:10 AM   #6
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Same bend in my 60 and we used my brother-in-laws backhoe with a strap to pull it back.
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Old 09-09-2015, 07:17 AM   #7
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A heavy duty straight edge and some large clamps would give you more control less chance of bending it to much the other way.
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Old 09-09-2015, 10:29 AM   #8
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Feeling a lot better about this already, and all of the suggestions and support is greatly appreciated! Thanks guys!
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Old 09-09-2015, 11:30 AM   #9
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A heavy duty straight edge and some large clamps would give you more control less chance of bending it to much the other way.
I agree here - control is important.

I bought one of these cheap portable hydraulic ram kits years ago at Northern Tool for "rebending" stuff. It has paid for itself many times over. I use it a lot in home remodeling too)
Strongway Hydraulic Portable Ram Kit — 4 Ton Capacity, 17-Pcs. | Rams Ram Kits| Northern Tool + Equipment



I added one of these mini-rams and use it more than anything else.
Strongway Hydraulic Mini Ram — 2-Ton Capacity | Rams Ram Kits| Northern Tool + Equipment
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Old 09-09-2015, 12:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin245 View Post
Since this a steel bumper that is welded in place I would use a come-along connected to a stout tree and a synthetic strap (the wider the better) around the bumper to gently pull out the bow.
On a difficulty scale of 1 to 5 Rivets this is a 1.5 Rivet project.
Make sure and check the welds prior to and during this process... be a real drag breaking the weld and pulling the bumper off at one end or the other... That’d be a bend!
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Old 09-09-2015, 01:08 PM   #11
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well at least it wasn't hit AFTER the shell was back on...could have been worse.

I worked in auto body my first 20 years and i'd siggest getting some channel steel slightly under your bumper ID dimension cut to slightly exceed the bend.
use a come along in the center of channel and of course secure the front of the trailer to a telephone pole or tree, something that won't move.
good luck.
Otherwise have it cut off and weld a bolt on coupler .
Then you could take it to a bumper rechrome shop and they could straighten and chrome plate.
i have a 59 traveler and its the same and that is what i may do just for some bling.
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Old 09-10-2015, 06:42 PM   #12
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1954 22' Flying Cloud
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My Flying Cloud Was Hit Today

The irony in this case is that after a minute stopped at the light the girl, not seeing the low flatbed, forgot why she was about 25 feet back from my truck so she began moving forward. Having the shell on would've prevented this.

I'm going to show it to the gentleman who did the fabrication on my axle and leaf springs. He's set up with all the right equipment and I trust his handiwork. One of the best things about this project is making friendships with guys like him. All his life he's been working at the shop his grandpa opened in 1906.
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Old 09-10-2015, 07:19 PM   #13
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oh man. tool lust. I don't have a use for that ram system at the moment but now I sure want one...
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Old 09-10-2015, 08:02 PM   #14
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A few years ago I used a webbing strap and a power pole and did the same thing. I friend gave me signals and it worked perfectly. You will have to over bend slightly to compensate for the flexing of the mild steel. On another trailer with a bolt on aluminum a bumper I took it to a bumper reman facility and they did it almost instantly.
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