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1968 TR5 Restoration 8 - UPB 4F – Dave McDonald

Late May 2020 - July 2020

Body Shell and Panel Repairs

The estimated time for the car to be away for the floor and sill replacement welding and much more was for a total of 4 weeks.

Floor pans and sills and B post

Apart from the floor and sill replacements themselves it was necessary to repair the bottom of the front footwell panels to provide something to attach the floors to.

Other major repairs were inside the bottom of the “B” posts. During dismantling of the car, when unscrewing the seat belt securing bolt at the bottom of the O/S “B” post the metal felt very “crumbly” and started to distort. I ended up simply ripping out a totally rusty section, including the seat belt anchor, as shown in Chapter 4 of my Blog. This had to be rebuilt.

Offside "B" post detail

The N/S “B” post wasn’t nearly as bad but the bolt head sheared off and had to be removed by the welder and benefited from some localised reinforcement.

Nearside “B” post detail

All four outer wings had corroded at the bottom where they lap over the sills and had to be cut away and off the shelf repair panels were used to rebuild them.

Front wing bottom repair section

The bonnet has started to suffer minute cracking in the side flanges near the back corners, which I understand is a common fault. These areas were reinforced as photo below.

Bonnet corner strengthening

Additionally, the front valance which when I dismantled the car I was surprised to find was loose and just bolted in place, was welded in correctly and the wing closure fillet panels were welded to the wings correctly. One side fitted well, one side was a challenge to fit.

On top of that several small areas of corrosion were cut out and re plated.

I visited the welder near Warrington to see progress once through his work. It was at his request, to view the doors. The door skins were in reasonably good condition but the frames along the bottom, particularly on the nearside, were badly corroded. They had been repaired by Jowett Man in the 1993/94 rebuild, quite well, except that he hadn’t left the drain holes open. Over the intervening 26 years water has entered past the window seal, stood in the door internally and rotted them through. All was not lost as I had a pair of very sound doors from my 1968 Californian TR6 which is my race car and now has fibreglass doors on it. I took those good TR6 doors with me and we agreed to use the TR6 N/S door. It transpired that the TR6 O/S door had a bit of damage that had been filled. He agreed he would repair the original TR5 O/S door bottom which wasn’t quite as bad as the O/S.

The car has had a Surrey top on from new but I will have a soft top on so the required captive nuts were welded under the cockpit rim of the rear deck to fix the back retainer bar to.

With all this completed I collected the shell and panels again on 15th July 2020, total 7 weeks after delivery.

Dave McDonald – 28th Dec 2020