Quick question: where can I get reasonably priced sheet metal for making my own patch panels? Iíve gone to heating and AC places but they only carry galvanized sheets. They have sheet metal at Home Depot, but it is a small selection and high prices. Also, what gauge of sheet metal should I get for Model T body work?
Try sheet metal shops that do commercial ductwork. They will have it, or can get it.
Depending on how much you need....McMaster Carr is a good source. You can order on line.
Also, Eastwood Company. eastwood.com
On one of our tours we went to a factory that reproduced early panels, one thing I found out was that body sheet metal is a special grade of it's own, can't remember the spec's maybe a panel beater could chime in?
Talk to your local body shop.
They are probably paying to have someone haul it away.
The best and usually free sheet metal is at your local appliance recycler. The pieces from and old dryer, or refer are easy to handle and store. I cut the center of a side and leave the rounded corners, just wanting the flats.
This metal is the right gauge and very workable. It welds easy either by brazing, tig or mig. My local recycler lets me used my electric shears and cut couple of pieces as I need then and the best part they are free.
The question was asked what gauge is used for Model T sheet metal. I believe its either 18 or 20 gauge in most body panels and fenders. Somebody correct me if I'm wrong.
Running boards may be a little heavier.
IF you can them to answer the phone, call Howell's sheet metal in Texas. They make it and sell a LOT of T sheet metal parts.
I too use appliance side panels and, much to the chagrin of my wife, will pick up appliances by the side of the road, strip off the sheet metal and dump the rest . As an added bonus I occasionally find decent electric motors to run some of my belt driven equipment. It doesn't get cheaper than that!
Val, Fred Sanford would be proud of you!
cold roll steel in kc & Joplin steel co.'s. get about $50.00 for a 4 ft x 10 ft of 20 gage .that's what you need for body repair.charley
Depends on the model and the location of the panel but 20ga. CRS A-366/A-1008 will cover most Model T body panels. It welds and works easy. A 48"x96" sheet weighs about 48 pounds. Don't go over the 1008 (.8% carbon) or it gets harder to work and can crack on bends. Do NOT use galvanized steel unless you strip the zinc off of it before welding. Zinc poisoning can ruin your weekend.
Check to see if there's a Reliance Metal Center near you. Most carry a huge stock of various gauges. They only sell full sheets but it beats having to strip paint or enameling off used panels. Also, you know what you're getting.
As mentioned. Body steel is special stuff. Heating, air-conditioning, ducting material is poor quality. It warps more when welded, has hard spots and shapes badly. I also have used old appliance metal. While not as good as true body steel, it is pretty good stuff.
True, good, body steel is pretty difficult to get anymore. I used to go straight to the Pittsburgh Des Moines Steel supply in Santa Clara CA. I could buy a pickup load of material there for less than the sheet alone would cost me at the local retailer. PDM would always apologize about their "minimum charge" after I had added more angle iron and box tubing for projects I hadn't even thought of yet. I would keep thanking them and telling them it was still cheaper than the retail place two miles down the road. I doubt they are even there anymore. Sad state in this country these days.
It is pricey, but I am fortunate to have a retailer nearby that carries good quality sheet steel. They cater to some of the local artist's trade. You might want to look into that in your area.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
i never stripped the zinc off. How would i tell if i have zinc poisoning?
i cut the patch panels out of an old car hood with the air chizel. use the bit with the 3 fingers, i forget the name, but it rolls up a strip in the middle. the edges are clean and straight, you can cut odd shapes, and its free. get a hood behind your local body shop.
The symptoms are nonspecific but are generally flu-like including fever, chills, nausea, headache, fatigue, muscle aches, joint pains, shortness of breath, chest pain, and cough. A sweet or metallic taste in the mouth may also be reported along with a dry or irritated throat which may lead to hoarseness.
Symptoms of a more severe metal toxicity may also include a burning sensation in the body, shock, no urine output, collapse, convulsions, shortness of breath, yellow eyes or yellow skin, rash, vomiting, watery or bloody diarrhea or low blood pressure, which require prompt medical attention. Flu-like symptoms will normally disappear within 24 to 48 hours. It often takes 4 days to fully recover.
Kep, listen to what Ken K. has posted, It ain't fun!!! Been there and done that!! Dave
I might mention the steel you find behind body shops is there for a reason. The metal is harder and thinner and referred to as high strength steel or HSS. It's not very easy to work and can fatigue and crack where you do work it. It can also crack at the weld junction so pieces should only be spot welded unless you use gas welding or relieve the stress in the panel.
If you can find a piece in the right shape, by all means use it but it not easy to form without a press and dies. That's why it's in the scrap pile. It's easier, and cheaper, to simply replace the panel.
Thanks to everyone who responded. I did some internet searches for suppliers in the Springfield, Missouri, area and came up with several companies. So when the time comes, I make a few calls.
Yes, I know about Howell's Sheet Metal but I occasionally need to make a small patch to fix rust-outs. I'm planning to do some body work on a 1914 Touring when I get my garage setup for it. I'm also planning on helping my dad do the body work on a 1927 closed cab pickup and there are no new panels available for it.
In years past, my dad always had lots of Model T body parts laying around. We would just cut a piece out of another panel when we needed to patch something. However, we have reached to day when original Model T body panels are getting scarce.
The TT-CC has three center panels in the rear. Those are 20ga. but the rear corners are 18ga. I've made those rear panels, the seat side panels (with bumper cups) and the floorboard risers.
Rick try one of these vendors CHR Metals is in your area Speedy metals has good customer service