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Thread: Door ding!

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    Jedi Knight nevets's Avatar
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    Door ding!

    Took the wife out for lunch in the Healey at a nearby cafe and parked the car in a remote corner of the lot, where there would hopefully be little traffic. Came out only to discover a door ding on the left front fender. I should have known better given that it's a touristy location with lots of SUVs loaded vacationers and kids.

    The paint is unmarred and if I could only get to the other side of the fender, I might be able to gently tease out the dent with a wooden tool. I am reluctant to remove the fender for fear of causing additional damage. Plus I imagine that mounting it back on is no day at the beach either.

    Any advice would be appreciated.
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    Re: Door ding!

    I have a similar one on my 59.
    I don't think it is that difficult to loosen the bottom of the fender in order to get access to it. There is a local paintless dent removal guy that I will have work on it. They can do magic.

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    Yoda HealeyRick's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Ptobably one of those New Yorkers Boy, that would get me so mad. I agree with PHulst. You can release the bottom of the finder by three bolts. I'd take it to a Paintless Dent Removal place. They usually have some long tools that will be able to reach the dent from the bottom of the fender and winkle it out. It's a lot easier on newer cars with their paper thin sheet metal.
    Rick

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    Obi Wan AUSMHLY's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Have an experienced PDR (Paintless Dent Removal) professional work on it.
    It may be hard to find a PDR guy that will work on 50s/60s sheet metal. So many PDR guys pass, only wanting to work on newer cars, where the sheet metal is more manageable.
    Here's what he's up against. Thick metal. The curve makes the metal even harder to manipulate. Access and leverage. PDR guys do not want the panel off the car, for when it's on the car, they'll figure out access and leverage. Most likely he will use a heat gun to soften up the paint so it doesn't crack in the pushing process.

    How do I know such things. It's what I do for a living, 23 years now.
    Too bad I don't still live in MA, West Yarmouth.
    PM me it you like.
    Last edited by AUSMHLY; 09-12-2019 at 05:07 PM.
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    Yoda Gliderman8's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Don’t know if it will work but no harm trying...
    Put a suction cup over it and see if it will pop out.
    Elliot
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    Obi Wan AUSMHLY's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Quote Originally Posted by Gliderman8 View Post
    Don’t know if it will work but no harm trying...
    Put a suction cup over it and see if it will pop out.
    Nope... no suction cups, no toilet bowl plunger, no lasers, no hair driers, no hot water, no heat of any kind followed by dry ice, no magic pixie dust lol.

    If you want to waist your money, buy one of those glue pull systems. Not only will you waist your money, it may even (most likely) pull the paint off!

    PDR professionals do use a glue pull process, but the glue we use, the mechanism we use to pull the tabs are different. The heat gun we use, we're able to dial in the temp we need for the condition. We (I) know to test the temperature of the surface and use the appropriate glue. How long to leave it on before removing it etc.

    Not like the ads you see at 3am, where the pops-a-dent works with one pull and makes a "pop" sound. Bada-bing, bada-boom, dents gone, one glue pull. Hey, I'm a pro, where do I get one of those...LOL (Because my system is a lot more complicated and I never hear "pop".) Gotta love the marketing.

    Seriously, don't fall for the cheap glue pull ads. Not only does it not work, they don't explain the entire process. They don't tell you IF you get a good pull, it'll make an out dent. How do you now repair that? We use a Delron tapper to tap the highs down. The glue pull process; it's a lot of glue pulling, tapping, pulling, taping. We use a refection board to show us exactly where to place the tab and where to tap the highs. Do you get a reflection board and do they explain how to use it? Oh, that's not in the kit? Hey whatssupwithdat.

    Almost all PDR guys will prefer to use metal rods. It's a lot safer then glue pull, where there's always the chance of removing the paint. Glue pull is the last resort, if we can't get a rod to the area or get there, but no control leverage.

    Well that's PDR 101.
    Last edited by AUSMHLY; 09-12-2019 at 10:22 PM. Reason: because I can :)
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    Yoda Gliderman8's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Quote Originally Posted by AUSMHLY View Post
    Nope... no suction cups, no toilet bowl plunger, no lasers, no hair driers, no hot water, no heat of any kind followed by dry ice, no magic pixie dust lol.
    Well that answers that
    Thanks for sharing your expertise.
    Elliot
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    Yoda tahoe healey's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Ausmhly did my Porsche 15+ years ago. What an experience. I watched him work for hours. Meticulous and tedious work. Roger is a perfectionist. He had a truck full of weird tools and he knew how to use them. Very satisfied. So if he says "don't", then don't!

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    Jedi Knight nevets's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Thanks for the good suggestions guys. Think I will start with the bolts at the bottom of the fender, take a close look and test loosening them. I'll also research local PDR resources and NO way will I try glue or suction. A small part of me wants to just live with it, but if I don't do something it will bug me every time I look at my car.

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    Yoda HealeyRick's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Quote Originally Posted by nevets View Post
    A small part of me wants to just live with it, but if I don't do something it will bug me every time I look at my car.
    If you're like me, it's the first thing you'll notice every time you look at the car and you'll just get p'oed all over again when you see it. Think of fixing it as an investment in your mental health. PDR is surprisingly affordable, too.
    Rick

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    Obi Wan AUSMHLY's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    A PDR guy will not go through the bottom of the fender. He would have to lay on his back to get the dent rod up to the top of the fender. Because he's eyes are down there, he can't see the dent anymore. If he moves to get his eyes on the dent, he no longer has controlled leverage of the rod. Exact placement of the rod tip, keeping it there, pushing hard enough to move that thick metal, that's asking a lot.

    Better access for leverage, sight, control is higher in the fender by the wheel. But Healey's have that metal wheel well there, and there isn't enough room to slide the rod between that and the fender. An option would be to drill a 1/2" or 3/4" hole in the wheel well. There's the controlled leverage. He now has eyes on the dent, can control his body to provide power to the rod. When finished he'll have a rubber plug made for that hole. You can paint over the plug later. Or possibly make a hole at the back of the fender, next to the door. Shortest distance, best leverage, best control. Or glue pull depending on how long you've had that paint on the car.

    Go to Yelp and find a some experienced PDR guys. They'll want to know the year and model and see photos. Some guys will turn the job down because of what I've explained. The ones that will take it on, make sure you tell them, you're concerned about cracking the paint or seeing push marks when they're done. Make sure you qualify the guy. If he cracks the paint or makes it worse, will he pay for the body shop to fix his attempt? An experienced guy should have this conversation with you. Dents on older cars are much more difficult and it takes an experienced guy with a lot of patience to tackle them. PM me if you like. Or fly me out and I'll do it. When I take on the really difficult dents the other PDR guys turn down, I tell them, you know the difference between me and the other dent guys who turned this job down...I'm not smart enough to turn it down. lol
    Last edited by AUSMHLY; 09-13-2019 at 02:09 PM. Reason: added yelp info
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    Re: Door ding!

    By unbolting the bottom of the fender, my thought (on my car) was that it would then open up the space between the inner (wheelwell) and outer fenders, allowing access to the dent. Right now that space is very small.
    Your thoughts?

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    Obi Wan AUSMHLY's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Best of luck with the repair.
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    Jedi Knight nevets's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Thanks for the additional info. And yes, HealeyRick, I know exactly what you mean about mental anguish every time I look at the car. I've been avoiding taking the cover off the car for that reason.

    Ausmhly, regarding getting eyes on the dent...wouldn't the PDR guy use a flexible scope to help navigate his tool? Not sure how I feel about drilling a 3/4" hole in my wheel well, but I certainly understand your reasoning. BTW, in case you're considering a fall vacation, New England is lovely this time of the year.

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    Yoda Michael Oritt's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Perhaps the only thing worse than a dent made by some non-caring jerk is a self-inflicted wound. I recently achieved one of these while changing out the water pump on my car: I was leaning into the engine compartment from the right side while tightening up the nuts and my gut pressed too hard on a socket I inadvertently had left on the hood surround which left a small impression in to the aluminum sheet metal--this despite the fact that I had a padded blanket in place. The dent is outboard of cylinder #2 and very close to the fender beading so fortunately it is easily accessible.

    Though I was tempted to attack it my self I think I will call a professional as it would really **** me off if I made matters worse.

    Best--Michael Oritt
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    Obi Wan AUSMHLY's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Quote Originally Posted by nevets View Post
    Ausmhly, regarding getting eyes on the dent...wouldn't the PDR guy use a flexible scope to help navigate his tool?
    No, not that complicated. We'll figure out how to get to it with a flashlight if we want to look, or simply by feeling around with some dent rods.

    I meant, if a guy is laying on his back with a rod going up the fender to where your dent is, he can't see the dent because his eyes (view) is down there. If he's kneeling to be able to now see the dent, he doesn't have any controlled power to push on the rod, because his hands are down at the ground. He's not using his body to help with power.

    If you don't want a hole drilled anywhere and that's understandable, then pushing with a rod is a no go. Glue pull if your paint will allow it. Risk is paint may come off. Don't want to take that chance, then either live with the dent or have a body shop work on it. A good body shop WILL/SHOULD blend/feather into the adjacent panel if it's too close. Don't believe the we will "computer match" the paint. In different lighting conditions you'll see the slightly different color. If you decide you want a body shop to repair it, have PDR guy try and glue pull first. Paint stays, done! Paint comes off, you were going the body shop method anyway, for a lot more time and money

    Example, small dent in the center of the door, painter does not have to paint the entire door. He can feather the spray out before it reached both door edges. But if the dent is really close to the edge, like where your dent is, he doesn't have enough room to feather to that edge. So he'll feather into the adjacent panel. Never paint right up to the edge. Now with modern paints, the "base coat" is a term for the color. All colors are flat. The the clear coat (gloss) is prayed over that. So blend/feather the base coat, but clear the entire panel. Clear can not be feathered.

    Example: Here's a dent I did a couple years ago. If this was repaired at a body shop, they would feather into the fender because there's not enough room to feather to the edge of the hood.
    DSC02307.jpg DSC02309.jpg
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    Jedi Knight nevets's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Ausmhly, Thanks for the additional info, very helpful. I'm not brave enough to risk the glue & pull technique. I'm also not keen on the bodywork /touch-up paint route. My experience with painting is that a perfect color match that looks right in any light is nearly impossible (as an industrial designer, I spray painted many appearance models and prototypes). I plan to discuss the dent with a PDR technician, once I locate one, and then decide what to do next. First, I may explore loosening up the bolts at the bottom to see what that reveals.

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    Obi Wan AUSMHLY's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    Quote Originally Posted by nevets View Post
    . First, I may explore loosening up the bolts at the bottom to see what that reveals.
    It will reveal it's pretty dirty in there...
    Good luck with what ever you choose to do.
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    Yoda tahoe healey's Avatar
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    Re: Door ding!

    If you have Hagerty insurance or on of the other good companies you might see if they will do a complete fender repair and repaint.

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    Re: Door ding!

    Quote Originally Posted by tahoe healey View Post
    If you have Hagerty insurance or on of the other good companies you might see if they will do a complete fender repair and repaint.
    Replacing the fender? No no no, for reasons I explained.
    64BJ8 phase II

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