Restoring a 1938 International - the Next Stage

P1010831 LH guard after abrasive wheel removed paint  rust 1121x800As with the restoration process of the cabin there were similar issues and dramas with the guards and bonnet.  The guards had been previously 'repaired' by the same person who worked on the doors.  Not taking anything to chance the primer coats and bog were removed using an emery wheel so as to not destroy the shape of the guards.

P1010834 Close up showing rusted surface that previous repairs failed to remove 1067x800It took many hours of hard laborious work which revealed that the inside of the guards were never sand blasted to remove surface rust and welds were never ground smooth where rusted areas were patched.
The guards were 'dust' blasted to remove surface rust without changing their shape, and then etch primed for correction work to begin.  The front brackets used to fix the guards to the chassis had been damaged when the guards and grille took the brunt of a collision. The rear brackets had been rewelded but were out of alignment.  There were dents all over each guard, evidence of years of hard work and misuse.  One dent in particular ran along the top of one guard for a distance of about 500mm.  Where possible, dents were beaten out to maintain the guards double curve shape and centre ridge.  When the repair work was completed the guards were lead wiped, high-filled and sanded back to attain a high quality finish prior to priming.

Damage to the running-boards was limited to surface rust underneath and contact with the rear of the guard. Also, the passengers side running-board had a depression which was easliy pressed out. However, during a trial fitting of the guards to the chassis and running boards there was a huge misalignment at the joint between guards and running-boards.  The running boards were extended and modified to match the shape of the guards.

The bonnet had lost its original curved shape from years of opening and closing with a rust affected operating mechanism. An English Wheel was not suitable to put the curve back. Warwick improvised using shaped timber battens and his press.  This exercise took many, many hours and a lot of swearing.

P1010829 Donor  grille after paint stripper used to remove several layers of paint 1067x800The grille was donated from another truck as the original had substantial damage. The donor grille was in excellent condition except for a couple of minor blemishes. It was complete with all undamaged chrome strips.  The grille was 'dust' blasted, primed and set aside.

P1020125 1067x800By May 2013 the truck was ready for trial assembly to make sure all tolerances were perfect and even. The assembly process was likened to a jigsaw puzzle.  Where do you start and which part goes gets bolted on next?  The height of the cabin and height above the ground of the chassis proved to be an issue. The car hoist was used to lift the cabin above and over the engine and onto the chassis as the engine crane was inadequate. It was a delicate but painful exercise because no one had seen how the cabin was removed from the chassis initially. After a few bloodied knuckles, a lot of wasted time due to cursing and swearing and hours of multiple adjustments to tolerances the truck was assembled in time for the 3rd Sydney Classic and Antique Truck Show 2013. The tray and chassis were in finished colors, the cabin and firewall were in undercoat and the guards, bonnet and grille all in primer.