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Old September 10th, 2009, 01:28 AM   #1
Dungbug58
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Default Dung Beetle II Begins!

I started a thread about this project already, but I'm too lazy to search for it right now, sooo... I'll start a new one!

Last April I picked up a '64 body for $150. It's been cut for a V8 and the passenger quarter has been poorly patched, but overall it's in decent shape.

Sittin' on sawhorses next to my house:



And then, five months later...



BOOM!!! The body magically appeared in the Street Rod shop at Wyotech Blairsville! Due to circumstances beyond my control, I now only have a week and a day to get this sucker put together. It'll be an interesting challenge, that's for sure!
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Old September 10th, 2009, 01:40 AM   #2
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Day 1, Tuesday, September 8

I got right to work welding in the new rocker panel that came with the car. Whoever did the "repairs" before only riveted it in place!

The next step was to install a nice jungle-gym of bracing.




After that, the first was made:



Three of the awesome dudes who are helping me out (left to right): Joe, Craig, and Gary. Yes, I know this pic is cheesy as hell!

And then we have me measuring out for the cut lines:

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Old September 10th, 2009, 02:12 AM   #3
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Day 2, Wednesday, September 9

First thing, I got all the cut lines laid out in tape.





Finally, the scalping began! I did most of the cutting, but I handed the Sawzall off to Gary long enough to take an action shot:



...And the result:


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Last edited by Dungbug58; September 10th, 2009 at 02:18 AM.
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Old September 10th, 2009, 02:40 AM   #4
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

With a little more cutting of the pillars, I was able to set the top back down and get a rough idea of how the chop will look:




Before:


After:

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Old September 10th, 2009, 07:27 AM   #5
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Cool, good luck on the time frame and keep us posted.
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Old September 10th, 2009, 07:53 AM   #6
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

A week and a day??? WTF-are you auditioning for chop cut rebuild or something??

Good luck on getting it finished!!!! At least you have a nice shop with all the goodies to work on it with.
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Old September 10th, 2009, 08:30 AM   #7
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Yeah John, time isn't always something students have plenty of at Wyotech to get their own project finished. First you have to get your comps done and passing before you can even get your project in the shop. The problem with second phase comps is that there are a bunch of them and some guys had trouble getting through them in a timely manner. I managed to get my car into the shop before I was done with my comps but the friend that worked with me on my chop was done a couple days sooner than I was and I let him get started by gutting the car.

No doubt it's a great place to do a project like that though, they have anything and everything you need there. I'd be happy with a fraction of the stuff that was there to use.
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Old September 10th, 2009, 08:42 AM   #8
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Yeah, that was what happened to the guy that was working on that Ghia wagon out in Cali. I'm sure it's tempting to get radical with a project when you have the shop. You have to start in with a very structured and well thought out plan to pull off something like that in such a short time, especially when it's obviously going to require a good bit of fabrication.

Where's the popcorn!!
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Old September 10th, 2009, 08:50 AM   #9
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Yeah, I had close to 2 weeks to do the chop and I had that in place within a week, I did the rag top clip in about 2 to 3 days but that was because the one I had gotten for it needed a bunch of rework and straightening. The oval was in whatever remained before it was time to clean out the shop and move the car. I had everything done with the exception of some inside finish welding to mine.

But you are right, if you don't have an entire plan before the car is in the shop, they all fall short unless you've got a crew of students to help. I didn't want any more than the one that helped me and another that stepped in later on because as you well know, when you get too many on a project, hardly anything gets done. It's easy to think that if you have 10 guys to work on a project that you'll be able to get 10 times more done but I seen it there that you end up getting half what you should get done.
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Old September 10th, 2009, 10:17 AM   #10
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

too much talking, not enough workin
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Old September 10th, 2009, 11:10 AM   #11
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Kewl. What size / make V8 is going in?
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Old September 10th, 2009, 01:01 PM   #12
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

How big of a slice are you taking out of the rear quarters?
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Old September 11th, 2009, 12:21 AM   #13
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Hey, thanks for the interest guys!

Yeah, I was really lucky to get this thing in at all: at first they told me I didn't have time, but with a lot of brown-nosing on my part I convinced the instructors to let me try. I had to give them a written plan and show them some of my design sketches before I could even move it into the shop, and now they're really interested to see if I can do it.
I'm finding that two guys helping me at any given time is working out quite well. I expect to get the body and roof all tacked together in the time I have left at Wyotech, but then I'll have to finish the rest of the car at home.

V8Super, sorry to disappoint, but I'm not running a V8. The previous owner was going to put a Chevy 454 in the car-- he even had a homebuilt chassis with the mounts and everything-- but I didn't get my hands on that. I'll just be running a 1600dp for now but ultimately I want a Corvair Corsa turbo mill.

Stay tuned, I'll have Thursday's update-- with pics-- posted Friday afternoon.
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Last edited by Dungbug58; September 11th, 2009 at 12:38 AM.
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Old September 11th, 2009, 07:01 AM   #14
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dungbug58 View Post
I expect to get the body and roof all tacked together in the time I have left at Wyotech, but then I'll have to finish the rest of the car at home.
Welcome to my world E! Hopefully you'll actually finish yours at home. Mine gets some attention here and there but I took some time a month or so ago to start reworking the whole windshield area. I just don't like late model windshields on a chop top. They definitely allow you to chop further by an inch or better but the appearance of a late model cowl and windshield frame just doesn't do anything for me.

Let's see those sketches E!

Oh, I'm curious if you are still going with the hardtop chop? I'm not much for those but if Jay had his input on it I'm sure that helped your cause in getting it in there. He really kept after me to do it but I just don't care for the look.
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Old September 11th, 2009, 12:30 PM   #15
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Day 3, Thursday, September 10

The first order of business was to lay out the cut lines in the body, and then let Gary and Craig have at the outer skin with the trusty cutoff wheels:



Ten inches less quarter panel:


And then I had to address this:

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Old September 11th, 2009, 12:39 PM   #16
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

After that mess was taken care of, we got back to the disection:



In this pic you can see how we offset the inner and outer cuts to match the inner structure back up:
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Old September 11th, 2009, 12:46 PM   #17
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

A.J asked for sketches, so here they are:




Apologies for the bad quality of this one. I don't have a scanner so I had to photograph it:
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Old September 11th, 2009, 01:34 PM   #18
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BattleBug View Post

Oh, I'm curious if you are still going with the hardtop chop? I'm not much for those but if Jay had his input on it I'm sure that helped your cause in getting it in there. He really kept after me to do it but I just don't care for the look.
Yup, still doing it. I'm not a fan of the hardtop look on full length cars either, but with 10 inches or so out behind the doors, I think it has really nice proportions.
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Old September 11th, 2009, 03:05 PM   #19
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

I'm with ya on the proportions E. You may make me a believer with the way you are doing it. Nice going! Very cool on the pics as well but I will give you a word to the wise on one of them, do your research on the cowl steering if you decide to run with it. It's not bad to set up but getting it to work is the real challenge. Mine is set up and hooked up but I'm torn between having a bad steering box or something is just out of whack. Right now it's not working real good and I'm going to change to a different box to see if it will work any better. Not many have done it here but I see a few running it with success. I'd like to hear your thoughts on it if you've given it much thought yet. Oh, and if you are going to try and hook it up to the quarter, you gotta have an extra wide axle. Otherwise it needs to be down in the wheel house.

Keep up with the pics, you've got a great project going there.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 02:07 AM   #20
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Day 4, Friday, September 11

Exciting day today!!
We cut the car in half first thing, and Craig and I cleaned up the edges:




And then, after some careful fitting, Gary and I took turns tacking the beast back together:



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Old September 12th, 2009, 02:34 AM   #21
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

The rest of the day consisted of a lot of trial and error fitting the roof. I took a lot of pics of the process, but they all look pretty much the same, so here's just what it looked like at the end of the day:


To make positioning the roof easier, I went ahead and removed most of the b pillars. The Dung Beetle is definitely taking shape now!



The C-pillars require a little bit of creative tweaking to line up perfectly. Last thing I did before cleanup was lay out the lines for pie cuts on the quarters:




It's gonna kill me having to wait all weekend before getting back to work on this thing!
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Old September 12th, 2009, 04:38 AM   #22
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Very cool! so are you going to have b pillars and window frames?That's already a pillbox slit of a window!

I really like how you're making the car fit the roof, rather than altering the shape of the roof to fit the car. Very ambitious chop
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Last edited by HeidelbergJohn4.0; September 12th, 2009 at 04:47 AM.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 05:06 AM   #23
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

I think he told me that he wasn't going to be around today John so I'll answer your question for him, at least part of it. There won't be any B Pillars, he is doing a hard top chop but he hasn't mentioned what is going to happen with the door area of the A Pillar and window frame top.

Very cool though. This should make a great tech bin piece once finished.

He went to the Steeltown Shakedown with his Street Rod class for a field trip today. We never got to do that when I was there...sheesh! Ha ha ha, Maybe he'll have some pics from it.
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Old September 12th, 2009, 02:08 PM   #24
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

Just got back from the Steeltown Shakedown. It was a good time, but we saw everything within about 3 hours, so they let us duck out early. There were some sweet rides, and I got some great pictures, which I'll post as soon as possible. I also bumped into SteveVw with his volkstruck-- great meeting you Steve!

John to answer the rest of your question, I'll be welding the top of the door to the roof and a-pillar, and only the lower part will open (like a convertible.) Yup, visibility is gonna be very limited indeed, but still within legal limits in my home state. Vermont law requires that the windshield and door glass be at least 6 inches tall-- mine will be 6 1/4, so I guess I'm okay!
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Old September 12th, 2009, 02:12 PM   #25
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Default Re: Dung Beetle II Begins!

What about the door glass? or are you gonna run without?
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