The Fake Jaguar Thread

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Mostly just poor welding when the chassis was modified.

I think the MIG was set too hot, and the welder tried to weld too fast. He made lots of lumps, skips, pits, pinholes, slag inclusions, and just plain missed the joint.

Then they spent a lot of time grinding the lumpy welds down, but never repaired any of the defects. They were probably having enough trouble that they figured that this is as good as it was going to get.

The argon blasts that stuff right out, but some spots I had to go over more than once.
Again, your attention to detail is amazing.
Many thanks. It’s easier when you don’t have to make money doing it.

. . . they spent a lot of time grinding the lumpy welds down, but never repaired any of the defects. . . .

This really is an assumption on my part. I have no idea how many defects they might have actually repaired, but only how many they left behind.

It looks to me like they went over this one time, too fast, and didn’t bother to make it better.

But that cold metal can hide a lot of history. The carpet hides the rest.

I went over this whole patch where the shifter used to be. There was a lot of garbage in the original welding, so it doesn’t look great, but structurally it’s much better now that I’ve blasted it out.
Well the last week was a total bust as far as working on the car. I had to do a lot of cleanup after the recent rains and once everything got dried out I put down some new tarps and tossed the old rotted stuff.

I put up new welding curtains to keep the wind off the boat yard while I’m working, and I put up an extra curtain between the house and my work area to divert any rain.

It doesn’t rain much here and so houses tend to get the absolute minimum footage of rain gutters. Our house only has gutters along the front of the house and garage and one side of the garage. That means 3/4 of the house doesn’t have any gutters & downspouts.
This is my next victim, but she’s been long covered up under a tarp. The ‘47 Plymouth has not been driven for 30 years.

Maybe I will live long enough to put it all back together again. This was in 1985.
Well I’ve been spending a lot of time taking care of the house and my wife but I did manage to get to work on the car for a little bit today.

I clamped a little tube as a guide and got my fake sawzall, with a special offset blade, up inside the tunnel.


I managed to trim off the ragged rusty edge with reasonable ease.

Now I need to clean some more rust out of here & patch over all of this.
Again I played housemaid most of the day but I did get out to pick up my new steel channels.

I’m going to box them together like this.

I had these custom-made to match the pressed panels I’m going to lap-splice onto them.

But I’m not going to do anything more with these at the moment. I need to get that tunnel patch installed tomorrow.

So those channels are 3.5 inches deep with 1 inch legs, & made from 0.105” mild steel. I went a little thinner to save weight. The big panels are 0.140” and the welding should be no problem.

By the way, these are 8 feet long and for two of them I paid about $256 With tax. They were made right here in town so I picked them up myself.
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This little stud and it’s twin were the heater control lever pivots. Now those things are gone forever along with the heaters. I’m going to bob these off on both sides, and weld up those slots in the tunnel.

This box is made from 0.050” steel, and it was once pedestal base from an ENCAD pen plotter. It is going to become my mid-frame crossmember.

To do that I’ve got cut it and take a section out. Here you can see I’ve cut it through twice and then flipped it over and I’m starting the third cut. This is my harbor freight sheet metal Nibler and it goes through this very well.

So after taking out the center section and bobbing off all the unnecessary flanges, I have these two sheet-metal channels.

If I put them together it looks like this and you can see approximately where I will have to make a hole for the tunnel to go thru.

I want to use a chemical de-ruster on this.

Izzy came out to see me today but all the work with the nibbler scared her away. Little Izzy is the shop cat. Izzy is 19 years old and she is a tough cat. I rescued her at the office one day and gave her to my wife. She somehow rode 12 miles up the freeway under the hood of my bosses truck, and survived the ordeal.

She is named Izzy because the first question my wife asked me was “Is he a boy or is he a girl.”
Those heaters were always useless, about as bad as a Jeep CJ. I like the way you doubled the cross member you fabricated. It will be interesting to see where it fits in.
My heaters are sitting at the local Volkswagen junkyard right now where they will probably remain until they rust into the earth.

Even when the heater was working, (which meant that you had a good thermostat and you were probably going uphill with a load,) The heat exchangers were just very heavy!

Throwing those things away allowed me to add another 25 pounds of steel to the frame. And up front as well, which will help to balance the car as the heater boxes make the car more tail-heavy.
So this crossmember will end up getting skinnier. I’m going to split the top & the bottom and overlap them as well so when I get done this will have four parts to it.

Right now it’s 6 inches wide and 9 inches tall and I want it to be 3 inches wide and 9 inches tall. Not only does it take up too much room, it’s not a very “compact” section. In engineering terms, if it’s not “compact” it means you made it too thin for its overall size, and it will tend to wrinkle and buckle rather than to bend smoothly under load.

Even at 3” x 9” with double walls, it would still not be considered a real compact section, and to act as one it will end up having some little gussets and reinforcements and other bits that you will see as I put it together.

This crossmember is actually a very critical part of the frame. It will serve to take all the forces from the central tunnel, (after I cut the front of it off,) into the frame rails and floor.

It is also going to allow access into the tunnel by virtue of a “door.” It will have access holes and reinforcement tubes and doubler plates where I mount the brake master cylinder.

It must carry an intermediate steering column bearing. This was originally sort of nonexistent, and the loose steering column was mounted to the plastic body with a u-bolt and carriage bolt, like this.


The steering column went through the big hole and all the wiring went through those two holes above the steering column hole. Except for all the wires that went to the original Volkswagen fuse panel screwed to the big rectangular hole.

In the middle you see the electrical cut off switch and the other rectangular hole which was for the radio. I deleted the radio.
Once I had too much steering shaft movement in a 62 Chevy II after I had removed every thing but the tube and shaft. The housing I removed that contained the factory three on the tree and signal helped stabilize it all. I was cutting all the weight I could. With that gone I stumbled upon an idea in my head of greasing some rope and filling the gap between the tube and shaft with that and it worked great to remove the play. 😎
The mighty nibbler can cut a very straight line, and it makes short work of this job.

And here it is all reduced to 3 x 9

In order to assemble this I will have to cut the hole for the tunnel and all four pieces will have to slip onto the assembly from above and below, because I cannot cut the tunnel and slide them over the end.

How I’m going to make this car square is by welding on the tunnel. Depending on how much and where I weld, I can get it to bend in any direction. There will be a series of temporary wires and junk braces.

When the frame is tacked together, I will be able to measure what I have and start squaring it up. Once it’s all more or less welded up, I will cut off the tunnel.

Then I will do any final squareing up before I weld in the floor.
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After I did all that welding on the big tunnel patch, I put my pedal assembly back in the chassis so I could check the cable clearances etc.

I will have to take it back out, and I also took the shifter out. I disassembled it to check everything and clean it and it seems just fine.

I knocked about 6 coats of black paint off the shifter, and discovered it is actually threaded tubing welded to a machined ball.
I’m going to shorten this but I thought it was made from solid stock, and thus I will have to actually cut a piece from the middle and weld it back together.
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I put an aftermarket chrome shifter in my 68 Beetle. Usually that means beefed up rods, Heim joints, adjustability, and etc. In the case of the VW because of the design, it was strictly a flat bar chrome shifter and custom handle with no performance upgrade.
. . . I will have to actually cut a piece from the middle and weld it back together.

Well that was utter rubbish. I must’ve been half asleep when I wrote that.

This shifter is a painted steel tube, and all I have to do is cut it off wherever I like and thread a stud into it. The tube is swaged down at the factory, so they did not have to do anything like that.

I might eventually buy a chrome shifter but it’s low on the list of priorities for this vehicle. I will just Chop this one and put a Custom knob on it.
I put an aftermarket chrome shifter in my 68 Beetle. Usually that means beefed up rods, Heim joints, adjustability, and etc. In the case of the VW because of the design, it was strictly a flat bar chrome shifter and custom handle with no performance upgrade.
My Experience with custom shifters is that I could never afford a really good one, and all the cheap ones are absolute garbage.

I once sold an old car with a genuine Spark-o-matic shifter in it, and the buyer got it stuck in second gear. He drove it from Reno into Stockton like that, then abandoned the car.

Later I told him that all he had to do is stick his arm under the car and shift it into neutral.

He complained about the fact that I didn’t tell him that.

I complained that he wasn’t smart enough to figure it out.
I spent some time with the wire wheel and the grinder smoothing off the bottom of the pan, often where I had made a bunch of weld’s filling up unnecessary holes. Holes that I had drilled thinking to myself, “yeah… I’m gonna weld these up later.”

And so I am, two years later.
But the change in time has made the afternoons dim and I am relying on artificial light.

I really was not thinking when I put the shock absorbers back on. I had to take them back off to put the safety stands in.

I was happy that I’m not going to have to re-weld hardly anything from the bottom. After grinding, most of the welds came out pretty enough.

When I cut the bottom off of the tunnel, and inverted this frame, I removed some of the internal stiffeners for access.

It is so limber now, I can grab the head of the frame and twist it like a clock spring.

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