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Hood Repair - Front Edge

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I bought a hood to use as an art project on my car. I should explain that my car has a hood in decent shape already so this is an extra hood. My plan is to straighten and prep the art project hood for painting with blackboard paint with the idea that people can draw on it with chalk at get togethers and events. I was thinking I would remove it from the car and set it up on a stand of some kind so kids can access it too.

So the art hood has a pretty big dent and a much smaller dent on the front edge. Since the front edge of the hood skin has a reinforcing panel behind it, there is no access to bump the dents back out. I have access to a stud welder, but I am not sure that would be able to pop the dents back out. As an alternative, I could drill out the spot welds holding the reinforcing panel to the skin of the hood. This would maybe allow the reinforcing panel to be bent out of the way to get at the back side of the skin for straightening. This does not have to be perfect, but I want to repair it if possible.

Your thoughts are welcome regarding how to move forward!

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I used Bondo, drywall screen, high-build primer and wet-sanding, a lot of work. Came out fairly good but your idea about removing the reinforcing panel and beating it out is probably better, unless you can't get it smooth enough and still need Bondo.

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If you have access to a stud welder and a slide hammer, go with those first. They will minimize any filling you have to do and you'll get some skill in metal bumping.

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drill some holes then screw it in and pull it out. get it in the ballpark and fill it in with bondo

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Edited by hr369
too many sexual innuendos

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Stud welder is the way to go. It will take a number of close welded studs and work from the outside in towards the center of the dent. If the metal is good and not thinned out by corrosion a stud welder should work fine. Drilling holes is a bad idea because this area of the hood tends to get water up into the structure and the holes will rust from the back side if you don't weld them closed. To drill out the spot welds and open the structure up will require a lot of drilling because you don't want to stretch the pieces to get access because they won't go back the way you want when you try to reassemble it. You will probably have to do some filler work because this is a very hard area to work on and it will be very difficult to get it perfectly smooth...

Charles

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Ok, I should be getting together with a buddy (recently retired, so the best kind of buddy) who has a stud welder. So far I have the hood stripped and mounted on the car so we have a good anchor to pull against. On the bad side, I am taking more abuse than usual at work for the appearance of my car. Will return with details soon I hope and will work from the outside of the dent toward the center.

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The stud welder and slide hammer worked great! Patcon's advice above was spot-on. After I got the metal pretty close with the stud welder, I used a body hammer to shrink a couple of areas and shape the leading edge. It did not really take that much filler. The blackboard hood got rolled out for artists at the Sacramento Datsun monthly pizza night (last night). Thanks for the advice!

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