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Old 09-18-2019, 11:56 AM   #1
walkerlakeprinter
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Default Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

I'm wondering how to line up all the body bolts to the holes in the frame when lowering the body. Is it better to start lining up the cowl bolts and working back? I started at the rear crossmember and put bolts into the body stands on the rear bumper arms, and am having trouble getting the cowl bolts lined up. Should I leave the back bolts out so I can move the body easier forward and back and side to side? I'm sure someone has some good tips.
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:17 PM   #2
Mike Peters
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

Leave body bolts already installed loose and use tapered punches to line up remaining body to frame holes. Tapered punches are a must have tool for lining up stubborn bolt holes.
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:19 PM   #3
walkerlakeprinter
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

What size/length of tapered punches and where would I get them? I'm 13 miles from the nearest hardware store but I can look there if I know what to look for.
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:45 PM   #4
Mike Peters
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

Just one short and one long punch will probably work OK. Any hardware store should stock them. Sometimes an undersized bolt can be used to line up bolt holes. Insert the punch in the bolt hole and pry over for alignment. Good luck!
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:50 PM   #5
alexiskai
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

You may also have luck asking for a "drift punch," I think that's a more widely-used term.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Klein-To...6343/206377465
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:50 PM   #6
john charlton
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

In England the ideal tapered punch is a "marlin spike" this is used to splice wire and also hemp rope . This is an essential tool as I heat mine up which make a neat hole in the webbing during installation of the body . It would be available from Ebay/Amazon etc etc . Check yachting supplies .Mine is 8" long, taper from a point to 7/8" max dia .this seems ideal .

John in lovely high pressure sunny evening Suffolk County England
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:52 PM   #7
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

Thanks, guys. I will head to town and see if they have something I can use.
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:56 PM   #8
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

You could also use 4 long bolts or steel rods that loosely fit the diameter of the body bolt holes. Place them in the corners of the body and as you lower the body use them to help keep the body in line with the frame holes. As long as the frame and body are true (not bent) they will align into place.
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Old 09-18-2019, 02:05 PM   #9
walkerlakeprinter
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

Thanks! I found a 6" tapered punch at an auto parts store in town. I tapers from 3/32" to 1/2". Probably needs to be longer, but with the other idea above it may work. Body should fit on the frame fine, since it is the same frame and body I separated 10 years ago.
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Old 09-18-2019, 03:32 PM   #10
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

I placed the tapered punches at the opposite corners of the body and lined them up. Was able to drop the body down without any problem. Body was lowered using two screw jacks on each side of the body. The jacks were on concrete blocks near the center of gravity. The body was sitting on two land scape timbers at the front and rear which were supported on the four corners by stacks of concrete blocks. As lowered the body, would move concrete blocks, and wooden shims until everything lined up with the punches, then dropped the four corner body bolts in place. Mine was a fordor.
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Old 09-18-2019, 04:28 PM   #11
walkerlakeprinter
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

I have the coupe body lifted by a chain hoist with lifting straps through the closed door frame. I went to town and bought four 3/8" x 10" bolts. I will put them through four of the frame holes and see how everything lines up. Stay tuned.
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Old 09-18-2019, 06:58 PM   #12
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

Success!!!
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:01 PM   #13
walkerlakeprinter
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

I have Bessie's body back on her frame. Using longer and smaller diameter bolts, it was super easy to get everything in place. All I have to do now is put the washers and nuts on the bolts and tighten them up. I will have to tweak the driver's side body stand at the back a bit to line up two holes in the crossmember. Another task for another day. Thanks to all who helped steer me in the right direction on this. Model A people ROCK!
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:04 PM   #14
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

I was wondering if everything would be lined up for the larger proper bolts, but my body-to-frame bolts all slipped into place, only requiring a light tap with a hammer for a couple stubborn ones.
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Old 09-20-2019, 10:42 AM   #15
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Default Re: Any good tips to lining up body bolts?

Looks like your heading the right way. Now you'll need to install the hood and start the fitting of the body. Start at the cowl and work your way back. Adding shims as you need them to get everything to align.
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