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P&K 05-20-2011 10:46 AM

Shell removal confusion
I am prepping my 70 ambassador for a shell off restoration. I have spent the last couple months compiling as much information as I can handle on the matter. I am still confused on one thing. Correct me if I'm wrong, but; the rivets under the belt line are the only thing binding the outer shell to the floor's C-channel. The channel then bolts to the frame and floor to bind the whole thing together. If I remove all the rivets holding the body to the C-channel what is keeping the shell from slipping down to the ground? In short, with all rivets out what is the body now sitting on? Do the ribs sit on the frame, thereby holding it up?

Bauxter 05-20-2011 10:55 AM

what holds the body up
1 Attachment(s)
The shell is riveted to the upright ribs. The ribs sit in the channel, which is bolted to the floor and frame.


P&K 05-20-2011 12:34 PM

Thanks! That makes perfect sense. It looks like you might have been through this before :) Any tips or tricks?

wasagachris 05-20-2011 01:18 PM

P&K you only need to drill out the rivets holding the shell to the C channel along the straight edges of the trailer. The end caps both front and rear do not need to be drilled out as that C channel actually sits on top of the floor and should stay with the shell during lifting. The C channel along the sides is actually a double C, one wraps around the edge of the floor and the other half is what the shell and the inner skins(walls) are riveted to. You will also need to drill out the rivets holding the ribs to the C channel along the sides as they will lift with the shell and the c channel will not.Of course all the lower sections of the inner skins need to come out for access to the rib rivets and the C channle bolts.

P&K 05-21-2011 11:50 AM

Yikes. So the channel along the the sides is like a U sitting on top of a C, right? I thought it was simply a U channel all around. This is good to know.

wasagachris 05-21-2011 12:14 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Here is what it looks like.

65CV 05-21-2011 07:32 PM

After reading quite a bit, I still learned a lot when we did our shell-off.

I would emphasize:

Brace it well -- the shell really is an eggshell.
Level is your friend -- before removing and especially when replacing the shell
Wind is your enemy -- there are horror stories on this forum.
They aren't all made the same way -- beware the hidden rivets.

Lift very slowly unless you are sure you have removed every single rivet!

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