Sunday, February 22, 2015

Sanding is/will be my life

Although my non-Studebaker life has been interfering a bit, I did finally get a chance to spend a little time in the garage today. So what does that mean? More block sanding.
That bit of foam in the door is to keep it from wriggling--I need to replace a worn striker plate on this side.

A more experienced body man could likely get away with using a nice bit of guide coat (typically a powder in a contrasting color to help identify high and low areas as you sand) and careful technique to maintain a style line, but for us amateurs, a bit of blue painter's tape will help keep us from sanding it away completely. So on went the tape. Once I'm done getting the area above the line nice and flat, I'll put tape along the top side of the line, and then sand from the bottom up.

You always find things you don't expect when working on an old car, and today was no exception. When I was sanding the top side of the driver's door, I noticed that one of the braces in the window channel had cracked. It is hard to tell in this picture, but:

Should be fairly easy to fix with a couple of quick little welds. I'm glad I noticed it now instead of after I had shiny paint on the car and was wondering why the window kept rattling.

Sunday, February 15, 2015


Here's my first, quick pass of blocking the top portion of the driver's side fender. Hard to tell in the picture, but it looks pretty good. Only a couple of very small low spots, and the high spots barely got into the thin layer of glazing compound.

If you look carefully, you can see the Xs formed by the sanding pattern. That will disappear at higher sandpaper grits.

This is tedious stuff, but it needs to be perfect--we've all seen those freshly painted cars with the little waves in the paint when you glance down the side.  Effort here will go a long ways to preventing that bad effect.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Let the fun begin!

My nifty new collection of sanding blocks arrived!

I have a basic set of auto body sanding blocks, but the Studebaker is pretty curvy. My rectangular-shaped blocks just weren't cutting it on those high-crown fenders. More tools were required.

The neatest in this lot is the big purple one at the top left of the picture. It has metal rods that are removable so you can adjust the flexibility of the block to match the contour of the car. This, and the fact that it is 21-inches long should really speed up sanding.