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What gauge metal sheet to use for body repair

Discussion in '40- & 55-Series Tech' started by slickrock, May 10, 2010.

  1. I moved my rear axle back and had to open up my finders. I hate it. The wheel well is just too big now so I am going to get some steel and redo the openings following the origional wheel openings but don't know what the best gauge of steel is to get and some experience from someone that has done this would help.

    Thanks.
  2. Poser

    Poser Oh...Durka Durka Durka. s-Moderator Supporting Vendor

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    19,624
    Location:
    MN
    Where is the metal you removed from your tub?


    Take that to a sheet metal supplier and match it up. :idea:






    :meh:
  3. Trollhole

    Trollhole THC Moderator Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    18,603
    Location:
    Mauldin, SC
    18ga is a little thin and 16ga is a little thick. I would use 16ga even though it's harder to work with.
  4. chicago

    chicago SILVER Star

    Messages:
    9,516
    Location:
    Reno, Nevada
    Ive been using 18 ga on the past 2 rigs ive built.
    I think the stock steel is 20 ga?
    16 would be a BITCH to work with if you needed to bend anything IMO.
  5. Fast Eddy

    Fast Eddy SILVER Star

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    Morgan Hill, CA
    I've always thought you could cut out a big section from each side with the wheel well offset, and switch the two sides with very little hacking. Maybe too late, eh?
  6. LC_Hamma

    LC_Hamma The Anti-Leafer SILVER Star

    Messages:
    2,829
    Location:
    Dallas, Georgia
    I always use 16 ga. It's easy to work with, bending, curving & it rarely warps w/ careful spot welding, unlike the stock material. The best method I've found is to strike on the 16 ga. & let the weld mat'l. DRIP DOWN onto the stock panels. I'm too impatient when it comes to thin metal :D
  7. FJforty

    FJforty

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    1,047
    Location:
    Spokane,Wa
    Last edited: May 10, 2010
  8. In a perfect world, the metal would be left over from cutting the wells out and I could j swap sides, but because of some damage and fender flares, it wasn't worth keeping the scrap to try to rework it.

    It sounds like 16 gauge would be my best bet since I will not have to make any bends. My two welders are a 110 flux core and a 220 Arc welder. If it is too thin, these are not the best options for body work, but what I have to work with. I might burn through everything with 18g with the 220 (I think there are special rods for thin materials I might give a try) and have to be careful connecting to the stock metal. As there are welders with way more experience than I do, this is a lot of help.

    THanks for the advise. I have never done body work before so this will be a learning experience.

    FJforty, read your thread yesterday. Doing great work.
  9. shelfboy1

    shelfboy1

    Messages:
    2,999
    Location:
    erie pa
    ive used 14 gauge for years strong easy to weld and easy to form .on my own rigs i use 1/4 " plate no worries off road.takes many years to rust and the extra weight in the winter works wonders.

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