Pin It

A Little Morning Stretch

Now that we have determined the roof needs to be split laterally in order to align the b-pillars we have to get as many of the moving pieces locked into place as possible. I like to start from the front and go rearward. First, the A-pillars on the roof seem to be about 1” too narrow and don’t align with the car, this is the reason for the pie-cut on the upper corners of the windshield surround. Keep these to a minimum, when it is time to weld this back together this is a really tough spot to hammer and dolly. One cut is plenty, you may have to get a friend to assist while you pull the sides apart (like a wish-bone), taking care not to pull too hard.

A little morning stretch

The lateral cut across the roof to align the pillars.

With the A-Pillars in place we will set the side window profile by tacking a bar in the window opening. This locks the window shape in place, allowing us to cut the roof laterally and slide the back half away from the front. At this point we’re ready to cut, I( like to use a 3” or 4” cutoff disc on a rotary air tool. This is slow but precise and doesn’t take a large kerf out of the metal. Before pulling the halves apart I will tack some bar stock to the underside of front half of the roof edge. I will use this as a guide, allowing the rear part to rest on it while we position, when we are in place I will tack on the rear to this bar also to hold the edge in place.

With the skeleton of the roof in place and the B-pillars now aligned, I have no support for the roof skin and I am seeing quite a bit of sagging in the center. I cut some strips of metal and “cleco” them to the sides of the skin to tie things together more. Clecos are cool little clamps that work by drilling a 1/8” hole through the 2 pieces of sheet metal, you place the cleco through the hole and it pulls the pieces together tight. With the roof basically in place I can now scribe a LONG piece of sheetmetal for a filler and begin to tack it in place. The entire 10 foot seam will be hammered form the bottom on each weld, this will keep the shape as we go.

Looking for a Custom Car Builder in the Midwest?

If you have questions, ideas or would like a quote for building or chopping your own car please feel free to email me any time with the contact form on the sidebar. I will gladly quote full builds or complex one-off parts to assist you in your build. I’m here to help, so lets go!
Adam Beck logo