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Old 11-11-2019, 07:12 PM   #201
Vic1947
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

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Originally Posted by mongocanfly View Post
yep....the easiest way to find something I misplaced is to buy a new one...then the old one mysteriously appears outta nowhere...
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Originally Posted by Ol Blue K20 View Post
Nice smooth firewall. The column looks good too...I thought I was the only one that had that problem with lost parts.
Misplacing a part is only half the story. The thing that really gets me is how I can drop a small piece of hardware and it just vanishes into thin air. It may or may not reappear at a later date, but at that moment it's gone as if it never existed as soon as it leaves my fingers - no matter how far out I extend the search radius.
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57 Chevy Wagon - California Dreamin'
Crusty Rusty Leaky Squeaky 67 Consigned 4/2019 Shipped somewhere across the pond
Silver Streaker "Mecum'd" 4/2013 Gone to Texas
Maybelline - my '57 Ford 2dr Sedan "Mecum'd" 3/2016 Destination unknown
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Old 11-12-2019, 04:07 PM   #202
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

One of the design elements I'm planning to use is a knockoff of the Project X 57 Chevy grille bar. When the guys on HotRod Garage removed it to make way for a stock bar, I got a closer look at how it was made and realized I'd never be able to duplicate it, since it was CNC'd from a single block of aluminum as I'd suspected. I don't possess the programming skills, machining capability or the bankroll to make it happen. So I'm taking the poor boy way out...

I decided to use the grille bar that came with the car as my starting point. The chrome on it was blistered and it would have to be replaced anyway. So the plan was to cut away the round turn signal portion of the bar and replace it with a couple of pieces of flat stock formed to follow the curve of the bar.

I've had some Muggy Weld zinc rod for a long time and never used it so I figured it would be perfect for working with the pot metal. My first attempt was with 1/8" thick 5052 and was a spectacular fail. Called the guys at MW for advice and they said my flux was way too old to work. So I ordered a new bottle and when it arrived, I tried again, but with no luck. So I switched gears to something I knew would work - ultra formable 260 brass. The zinc rod took to it as easily as it did the pot metal.

I cut out the lower half on one side of the parking light bulge and fit the .094 brass stock I'd formed into the opening. Soldered both sides then cut away the top half and repeated the process. Took it slowly in steps and used a wet washcloth clipped to the previously soldered areas to sink away the heat. The last thing I wanted was to have the whole mess get too hot and fall off.

Once all the seams were soldered inside and out, I used a small air grinder, a bastard file and a D/A with 80 grit to prep it for All Metal. The picture with the yellow tape shows the cut line for the final width. Now I just need to repeat on the other side.
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57 Chevy Wagon - California Dreamin'
Crusty Rusty Leaky Squeaky 67 Consigned 4/2019 Shipped somewhere across the pond
Silver Streaker "Mecum'd" 4/2013 Gone to Texas
Maybelline - my '57 Ford 2dr Sedan "Mecum'd" 3/2016 Destination unknown
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:01 PM   #203
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

that turned out good Vic..!!!!!,,,are you gonna chrome plate it?
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Old 11-13-2019, 12:34 AM   #204
Vic1947
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

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that turned out good Vic..!!!!!,,,are you gonna chrome plate it?
Thanks, Greg. According to the folks at Muggy Weld, the Super Alloy 1 can be chrome plated, but it requires a slow copper charge before the nickel and chrome. Right now, I'm leaning towards wrapping it or painting it body color. The lower half of the bar will need some work to correct the profile. I have limited options to do that. Lead or Lab Metal would require heating the part beyond what the SA1 can stand. So I'll probably use All Metal filler to get the shape I want, then decide.

There's a guy in KS I talked to a few years ago that does spray chrome. Don't know if he's still doing it, but I remember he wanted to do 100% of the filler and prep work himself to guarantee the job. IIRC, he wanted around $750 to do a bumper, not including the prep work. Irrespective of cost, I have a hard time handing off a half finished part to someone and trusting they can complete it the way I see it in my head.
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57 Chevy Wagon - California Dreamin'
Crusty Rusty Leaky Squeaky 67 Consigned 4/2019 Shipped somewhere across the pond
Silver Streaker "Mecum'd" 4/2013 Gone to Texas
Maybelline - my '57 Ford 2dr Sedan "Mecum'd" 3/2016 Destination unknown
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Old 11-16-2019, 07:22 PM   #205
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

The grille bar is ready for epoxy primer and filler. I sent a text with some pictures of it to the sandblast guy not too far from me. He wanted $250 to blast the remaining chrome off it. Took a pass. Instead, I used the DA to remove most of the chrome/nickel and then stuck it in the glass bead cabinet to rough up what was left. It hung out the end of the cabinet, but I draped a towel over the opening and it didn't make too much of a mess. Just some copper and pot metal left now. Epoxy will bond to it with no problem.

I did some research on spray chrome and I'm tempted to give it a try. The videos make it look easy (as you'd expect). They say the reflectivity is about 95% of actual chrome. For just the bar, which sits in the center of the grille all by its lonesome, it might just work.

I also got started on the bumper bullets. I used the plasma cutter to remove the centers and then a carbide burr in a die grinder to get up to the line that was stamped in them. I put one up in the mill and used a boring head to open it up the rest of the way to fit the light (Dakota/Durango lamp). Next up will be to figure out how to attach the bullets to the bumper.
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57 Chevy Wagon - California Dreamin'
Crusty Rusty Leaky Squeaky 67 Consigned 4/2019 Shipped somewhere across the pond
Silver Streaker "Mecum'd" 4/2013 Gone to Texas
Maybelline - my '57 Ford 2dr Sedan "Mecum'd" 3/2016 Destination unknown
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Old 11-17-2019, 06:48 PM   #206
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

After carefully marking the new smoothie bumper, I took a deep breath and used a 3" hole saw to open up the necessary clearance for the new parking / turn signal lights. Normally, I hack away without regard to the consequences since I figure a Sawsall, welder and grinder will fix anything, but in this case I really didn't want to buy another bumper. 3" was probably overkill, but I had plenty of room and there wasn't any need to conserve the space. My current plan is to weld some threaded tabs to the bumper bullets (which will require chroming anyway) and drill holes into the bumper for the fasteners. Mulling over the best location for said tabs but the photo with the arrows shows a couple of potential spots.
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57 Chevy Wagon - California Dreamin'
Crusty Rusty Leaky Squeaky 67 Consigned 4/2019 Shipped somewhere across the pond
Silver Streaker "Mecum'd" 4/2013 Gone to Texas
Maybelline - my '57 Ford 2dr Sedan "Mecum'd" 3/2016 Destination unknown
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Old 11-18-2019, 07:25 PM   #207
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

Here's a look at how I fastened the bumper bullets to the smoothie bumper. I made some small threaded tabs and marked their location inside the bullets. Then I drilled two slightly oversized holes for the 1/4-20 fasteners that attach on either side. Mocked up the final location by threading the fasteners into the tabs and then set the bullet down in place. Used the MIG to tack the tabs to the bullets then removed the assembly and TiG welded the tabs more securely.

As you can see, the tabs draw the bullets down firmly in place and provide plenty of clearance for the backside of the lights. Found the correct pigtails for the 899 halogen lights on eBay and got them on the way. Still a long way to go before wiring, but that should give me more than enough time to misplace them.
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57 Chevy Wagon - California Dreamin'
Crusty Rusty Leaky Squeaky 67 Consigned 4/2019 Shipped somewhere across the pond
Silver Streaker "Mecum'd" 4/2013 Gone to Texas
Maybelline - my '57 Ford 2dr Sedan "Mecum'd" 3/2016 Destination unknown
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Old 11-19-2019, 10:41 AM   #208
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

Looking good Vic! I've been gone too long and had a ton to catch up on. You've done quite a bit since the last time I checked in on your build. Nice work! Keep it up.
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Old 11-28-2019, 12:22 PM   #209
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

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Looking good Vic! I've been gone too long and had a ton to catch up on. You've done quite a bit since the last time I checked in on your build. Nice work! Keep it up.
Thanks, Duane.

And Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

I know I have a lot to be thankful for.
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Victor
57 Chevy Wagon - California Dreamin'
Crusty Rusty Leaky Squeaky 67 Consigned 4/2019 Shipped somewhere across the pond
Silver Streaker "Mecum'd" 4/2013 Gone to Texas
Maybelline - my '57 Ford 2dr Sedan "Mecum'd" 3/2016 Destination unknown
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Old 12-04-2019, 12:04 PM   #210
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

Happy Thanksgiving! I gotta come by and check on this!
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Old 12-05-2019, 10:48 AM   #211
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

It's all looking great. I vote on the chrome paint on the grill bar. That way you can tell us how it works and your thoughts on the process.
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Old 12-05-2019, 11:51 AM   #212
Vic1947
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Re: 57 Chevy Wagon - Californa Dreamin'

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Happy Thanksgiving! I gotta come by and check on this!
Thanks, Chip! You know you're always welcome whenever you're in the neighborhood. Reminds me, I need to give your ole dad a call.
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It's all looking great. I vote on the chrome paint on the grill bar. That way you can tell us how it works and your thoughts on the process.
Hey Dale, thanks for weighing in on the chrome paint. I think it will be better than body color. The combination of pot metal, brass and zinc weld ended up being impossible to chrome conventionally. So we'll see how this compares to the real thing.

Speaking of which, picked up the front bumper bullets yesterday from the plating company. This is the first chrome they've done for me. I've mainly had them do zinc plating previously. I thought they turned out really nice. Chrome can be a bit of a crapshoot so it's a relief they did a great job.
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Victor
57 Chevy Wagon - California Dreamin'
Crusty Rusty Leaky Squeaky 67 Consigned 4/2019 Shipped somewhere across the pond
Silver Streaker "Mecum'd" 4/2013 Gone to Texas
Maybelline - my '57 Ford 2dr Sedan "Mecum'd" 3/2016 Destination unknown
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