As previously posted here,
I discovered that we had front end separation when I began prepping our shell for removal almost two years ago. Not to retread the same ground as previously mentioned in that thread I discovered front end damage, but didn't know it had a name and put it on the back burner of things that would be done when it became time to reconnect the shell.
That time arrived a couple of weeks ago with the help of masked family and friends. The shell was set, but not riveted in place. Particularly because I want to get the front and rear hold down plates in place first.
It was at that point that I also asked for some forum help. Thanks to several members and links to similar repair threads along with PMs, emails and photo sharing I got lots of really helpful assistance.. Plus I have a fellow local restorer, ArgosyJeff (aka Jeff. :-)), who is an invaluable resource when it comes to metal fabrication. I was also fortunate to get some good advice from Colin Hyde. Colin told me I would only need 1/16" thick steel plate for the hold down plates. Jeff whose done this with his Argosy agreed. It was Jeff who inspired me to add a hold down plate to the rear end as well.
On Thursday June 4th, I ordered and picked up two 10" x 36" x 16ga (approx. 1/16") from a Local Metal Supermarket Store
. I like them because they cut the steel to size which saved me the trouble. The cost was $56.08 including tax.
Phyllis and I spent the weekend drilling out rivets on the front center panel and cleaning old vulkem from around the bottom of the shell where it needs to be riveted and where the Banana wraps, side wrap and bottom trim will be attached.
On Monday June 8th, 2020 Phyllis and I made some strong headway on our front end separation repairs. We were lucky and blessed to receive and entire days worth (about 12 hours) of help, guidance and tool assistance from Jeff. Thanks to his confidence, a nice metal break that he made for his Argosy repairs and electric metal shears we were able to make the bends to both two hold down plates, one for the front and a second for the rear and cut out the aluminum pieces we'll need to repair the front end separation damage. Thanks to Jeff's knowledge and mad skills we made templates and cut out aluminum to reinforce the front quarter panels and the the lower half of the front center panel.
At the end of the day, the hold down plates needed to be painted to help prevent or at least reduce galvanic corrosion, and all of the aluminum patches Jeff and I made plus a few others I still need to make all need to be riveted in place, but Phyllis and I are already in get the process of getting that done. Stay tuned.