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1975 Ford Granada Coupe - 1023 hours of work - Rebuilding all the mechanical bits

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Managed another days work on the car today.  Squeezed it into the fabrication shop and set about making the sill closers.  Ryan also joined me and continued fitting the rear quarter panel on his SD1.


The front closer which also finishes off the the bottom of the A post had completely rotted away on my car.  To find out what used to be there I went and had a look at a mk2 Granada we have in for restoration.


Then using that as reference I made up some plates and mostly completed the closer at the front end.  I included the hole at the front but kept it smaller.  It will be used for cavity waxing.



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Made some more progress today.  Made up a new closer for the rear of the sill which also forms the bottom of the wheel tub.  Access is very bad so I'll finish the welding and grinding later.


Next is another notorious rot area.  The front of the chassis legs under the bulkhead attracts moisture and often rots out.  The legs are made in two parts and overlap each other so the moisture sits between the two layers and blows off the outer skin around the spot welds.  Its a bugger to dismantle but if the inner part is intact repair is easier.


Thankfully the inner is still solid.  I welded up any cuts I'd made into it and it welded fine without blowing out.  The outer part will need to be remade so for now i've applied rust treatment to the area and used compressed air to drive the treatment into the seams.


Another notorious area is the reinforcer plate that has the rear outrigger welded over the top of it.  There are voids in it which hold mud and water which blows the floor off the top of the plate.  Lift the carpet behind the front seats and look for evidence of the floor tar being pushed up in the corners of the floorpan.


Apart from two small holes the plate is ok.  The remains of the floor are still attached to it and will take a while to remove.

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All those areas had gone on my mk2, looks very familiar!

I did my sill end closers out of lots of little bits all welded together (as I lack your skills, tools and patience!).

Although I did get off lightly with the rear suspension reinforcer plate, mine wasn't too bad by comparison.

My front chassis sections were treated in exactly the same way your doing yours so at least it seems I did tackle it the right way in the end. That inner metal section is much thicker steel than normal and mine was just dirty and a bit pitted. Cleaned right up with a wire wheel in the grinder and I absolutely flooded it all with Dynax S50 wax afterwards.

I remember cutting out the blistered outer skin and wondering what was the best way to sort it.

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I try to match steel thickness with whatever I've cut from the car.  Most of the steel I've used so far is either 1.2 or 2mm thick. Some areas I will make thicker if i'm not sure what was there.  We buy the metal in sheets from a local supplier and so far it seem like decent stuff.


A lot of the small patches are cut from leftover repair panels from other cars we have finished with. Reason is some of the complex curves and shapes I need for my car can be found in these bits which save me some time.  A number of the repairs for my A posts are made from sections of a sill for a Mk2 Golf.  Some of the kickwell panel repairs are made from bits for a Talbot Express.

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After a break from the car over Christmas I'm back at it again.  Still sorting out the drivers side at the moment so went ahead and remade the floor in the back corner.  This is not as easy as it first appears due to the curves and shapes in that part of the floor.  This is a well known rot area on Granadas so I've made it from some thicker steel.


From underneath I check the welds have penetrated properly and then clean up.  Looks nice but it will all be hidden eventually.


The outrigger and various other bits are checked for fitment.


Then managed to get the first bit welded on before I ran out of time.  This had also blown out and needed to be repaired before fitting.  Its not a very good design as you end up with multiple layers of metal near the back wheel which constantly throws water, mud and stones at it.  I will be emptying plenty of stone guard and cavity wax into it.



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I was hoping to get the outrigger finished today, but I ended up finding more rust in the chassis leg.  A small plate had been welded onto the leg and covered up with sealant and stoneguard.  The plate was still solid but it's existence means bad things lurk beneath.



So as expected the rot in the leg was quite bad and spread over a larger area.  This is where the rear part of the leg finishes and laps under the leg for the floorpan.  I've cut out the rot and set to making replacement templates from card before moving to steel.


The repair recreates what was originally there and is made from some 2mm steel and some help from the metal folder.  The welds further up the leg are due to a cut I made to help dress out a nasty dent in the leg.  You can see the dent to the right of the first picture, I guess the car was dropped on an axle stand in the past .  I painted the inside of the leg with POR15 as much as I could and will weld everything back together next time.


Then I get to do it all over again on the other side!

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I've been using POR-15 everywhere I go.  Really impressed with it and am now on the 4th tin.  I painted all the front end panels with it last year and I haven't seen a single blemish.  Had I used primer the whole thing would be blistering and would need going over again.


It isn't cheap but I wouldn't use anything less.  I certainly don't want the bugger rusting again!

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hi I know this may sound a bit cheeky

I am in the process of doing my bosses mk1 coupe and was wondering where you got your panels from

as we are have trouble tracking then down

I will be needing quite a few parts as this is 1 of 4 Granada,s he owns

mk1 coupe

mk1 saloon

2 x mk2 estates

as you can guess they will all be requiring most panels


keep up the good work on your project looking forwards to seeing it done

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The panels I've got came with the car excluding the front slam with I bought from Expressed Steel via ebay.  Panels for these are very hard to find and when you do see them they are very expensive.  Checking ebay once a week is probably the best way to track them down.


Expressed Steel do offer a limited selection of reproduction panels such as floor and sill sections but nobody is producing any external panel work.  They do however keep hold of genuine panels when they can and may be able to help you.


Good Luck

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Another day in the workshop completed.  Started out by spot welding the two parts of the chassis leg repair together and tacking it into place.


Then after cleaning the tacks down I welded the repair into place making sure the welds penetrated the various layers of steel.


Then I painted the area with POR15.  Over that I've applied tigerseal to the seams where the factory sealer used to be.  I did this while the POR was wet so hopefully it will stick even better.


Finally I cleaned off the old paint from the new outrigger, painted the inside and then welded it onto the car.  I need to clean up the welds but thats this area sorted.  I'll be moving to the front and doing the same to the chassis leg and repairing part of the floor next.



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I've got the week off work.  So the obvious thing to do is go straight back there and carry on with my car.  Got quite a bit done today and will be continuing tomorrow. I must be mad...

First I finished cleaning up the welds on the rear outrigger and painted the area.


Next I moved up the front and worked on making the chassis leg repair.  


I made the repair using the same methods as before and drilled plenty of holes for puddle welds.  Set the welder to as much power as the inner section could stand and welded the repair in.  Its very important to get this area strong again as its structural.


Then I cleaned up the welds.  This is probably the longest part of the process as you have to take quite a lot of care not to weaken the repair.


Next up is the floor where the front outrigger goes.  It got damaged whilst removing the outrigger but there is also some rot in the seam for the bulkhead.  I'm just going to cut it out and replace it with some new stuff.  Something of note is that the seam is the wrong way round on Granadas.  The bulkhead laps under the floor instead of over it.  This exposes the seam to mud and water thrown up from the road whilst driving along.  


I've made up the repair and will weld it in tomorrow.



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Continued with the car today.  Made some good progress so I will enjoy the rest of my week off at home.  I'll most likely be back with the car again on Saturday.

So to begin I welded in that floor repair I made yesterday.  I used panel clamps and panel screws to hold it in place as the floor has a slight curvature in this area.  Care needs to taken whilst welding as the floor will warp from excessive heat.  Its also a challenge to get the old metal to weld to the new stuff.  


Next up I trial fitted the outrigger.  I'm using the original as I don't have any replacement front outriggers.  Its perfectly solid and cleaned up fine.  I remade some parts of it which were damaged during removal.


With the outrigger painted inside and the floor that will no longer be accessible painted I welded it on making sure the welds were good and strong.  Then the welds were cleaned back.


Next I cleaned back the floor between the two areas I'd been working to make sure there was no further rust.  Thankfully there wasn't so this will get the POR treatment to tie this area up.


Next up is the big hole I'm sure you've noticed.  Not too long before my ownership the car was worked on briefly.  During that time the rust prone gearbox mounts were removed along with the rotten floor sections they attach to.  The floor was then repaired with fresh plate and it appears there were several attempts at doing it.  This side has had the new plate removed and the other side still has an attempt hanging on.  I may be able to save the other side but obviously this side needs a new plate.  First I rolled the car over and reinforced the new flange I made for the chassis leg.  The welds were then cleaned back and a new plate cut and tacked into place.


With time running out I painted the floor up to the chassis leg.  Amazing what a sense of achievement you get from a lick of paint.  Apart from a few bits to tidy I can now say the underside on this side is now complete!  


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Finished up the two plates in the floor from the top side yesterday.  Takes a while as you have to be careful as the floor isn't very thick.  Something I do where possible to find pinholes in the new weld is to position a torch under the repair and move it along the welds.  I then re-weld and grind any affected areas..


Found a few  pinholes and an area that was a little too thin for my liking so continued fabricating, welding and grinding until I was happy.  I also took this footwell back to bare metal to check for any other rust.

It takes years to get the experience to make a seamless repair on somthing like this.  What I've done is apply a thin smear of chemical metal along some of the welds.  This smooths things out and stops you from grinding down too far and leaving the repair too thin.


I'll give the area some sanding and a lick of paint next time and hopefully it shouldn't be obvious that the floor has been repaired.

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Today I spent many hours grinding and cleaning up welds inside the drivers A post & floor.  Its fantastically boring but has been on the list for a while now.  I also looked for and welded any pin holes I found along the way.


The access is a bit difficult but I managed to get most of the work done.  I would get some room if I removed the pedal box but really I'm fighting with the mount for the dashboard which part of the car and can't be removed.


Once finished I applied some smears of chemical metal to a few areas just to even things out.  Then a thick coat of the usual stuff has tied the area up very nicely.




The A post is looking really good now and the floor repair came out well.  This is what it used to look like.


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Had a good day today.  Managed to get quite a bit done on the car...

First job was to finish up all the grinding in the floor on the drivers side.  Its a very messy and boring job but its got to be done.  I also took the rear part of the floor back to bare metal and coated with POR.



Next was to protect the chassis legs, especially where they had been repaired.  You can see inside its bare steel so I poured in some POR.


Then using compressed air the POR was sprayed deep inside hopefully covering up all the bare metal.


Then I went about sealing the seams in the floor & A post again as per factory.  Little trick to get sealant to look like the original stuff is to use a piece of scotch brite to smear the sealant.


With that done I've moved back to the rear arch.  Its quite bad at each end but the seam where it meets the inner is also rotten.  I've cut off the whole of the outer and will then repair the inner.  Using an air saw makes for less mess and a neater job.



The reason for the rot is the sealer trapping the moisture under it.  The original sealer never stuck very well.  In between the inner and outer ford also put in a bead of 'special' sealer which was supposed to melt when the car was baked in the paint shop.  That stuff didn't really work and also traps moisture and stale air in the wheel arch.



Plenty to do here so keep an eye out for more updates.


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