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Old 07-17-2015, 01:55 PM   #1
fordman
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Default 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

what suggestions and guidelines can you give me about installing front fenders and grille? the engine, chassis,body, exterior & interior, painted has been assembled, grille is standing by, along with the hood in a raised position.

now I plan to install the completed and painted front fenders and grille.

I'm listening....

thank you,

fordman
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Old 07-17-2015, 02:17 PM   #2
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

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Originally Posted by fordman View Post
what suggestions and guidelines can you give me about installing front fenders and grille? the engine, chassis,body, exterior & interior, painted has been assembled, grille is standing by, along with the hood in a raised position.

now I plan to install the completed and painted front fenders and grille.

I'm listening....

thank you,

fordman
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KUBE's Famous '40 Front-End Alignment Guide.

I received so many requests for tips on aligning the front sheet metal on '40s I was knocked to the floor! We all know that the factory alignment was usually quite poor. It's true there is (was) little room for alignment when these vehicles were new.
Please understand I remain in the learning process and am certain there are various ways of properly aligning the sheet metal. However, the way I'll describe has worked for me on numerous occasions with wonderful results.

I start the front sheet metal alignment only when I am completely satisfied with the door alignment. If you're restoring a convertible, it's a MUST that the top be completely installed and functioning as well.
Running boards are not on the vehicle at this time. It is FAR easier to install them later and adjust the rear fenders to the boards.
It is (in my opinion) imperative that the hood be installed and aligned to the cowl prior to any fenders/grill work is installed. Take your time at this step. It is important that you have good hinges and springs. There should be no wear at any of the pivot points. If there is, the alignment will not last.
Be careful that the gap is even from side to side both along the top (between the hood and top of the cowl) and each hood side has the same amount of gap between it and the cowl. The height of the hood should be even with the cowl. Remember that a persons eye will be drawn naturally to the side of the vehicle and especially to the straightness of the trim and body line. It is imperative that these lines are straight! Bottom line-the hood MUST BE CORRECTLY aligned. Take your time and get it RIGHT! Before moving on tighten all attaching points. You should not have to readjust the hood.
Prior to installing the fenders I elongate and enlarge the four clearance holes that will be used to bolt the fender to the lower cowl. * Also at this time enlarge the four holes in the front of the fender that the grille will later bolt through. *
The grille should be a complete assembly PRIOR to installation. This is important as there is no allowance for adjustment within the grille assembly. Originally the stainless strips at each side of the grille (Deluxe only) were stapled to the sheet metal louvers. Doing this makes the installation a bit neater and positively easier. On concourse vehicles be certain to use round staples. Flat staples were not used in 1940.
Now it's time to install the inner fender panel to the respective fender. Prior to this installation enlarge the clearance hole at the bottom (near center) of the inner fender panel. * This hole will be used later to bolt the inner fender to the frame directly next to the brake hose bracket. Be certain to enlarge the correct hole. Of the two holes in this area one will contain a grommet while the other is intended as a clearance hole for the fastener. There is a caged nut on the inner frame to accept this bolt/washer assembly.
Bolt the inner panel to the fender at the top using the special flat carriage bolts. Tighten all securely. On concourse vehicles a thin webbing material is required between the fender and inner panel.
Now's the fun part!
WITH HELP, install a fender/inner panel assembly. Loosely install the nut/bolt assembly through the 'Y' brace to the inner panel. Install (snug-not tight) the four bolt/washer assemblies at the lower bottom of the fender to the caged nuts within the cowl. Now install the other fender.
Again, WITH HELP, using the eight nut/bolt/washer assemblies install the grill assembly between the two fenders. Again, snug-not tight.
Now's the (not) fun part!
There is no easy way to do the remaining aligning. However, patience is a must! Do not be surprised if this takes two, even three evenings. I tend to 'walk away' when I become frustrated.
Slowly and methodically push/pull/tug on the fenders and grille assembly until you are somewhat satisfied with the alignment. Keep a careful eye at the horizontal gap between the hood and the grille (top) as well as the vertical alignment of the hood to grille.
Tighten the bolts at the grille/fenders just a bit more at this time. Recheck all the gaps. If you remain satisfied move on to the four bolts at the lower fender edge/cowl. Tighten these a bit more too. Do the other fender.
Continue to recheck all the gaps after tightening each area. **
Tighten the bolt/nut assemblies at the 'Y' brace. Again, check all of the gaps to be certain nothing has moved.
If you remain satisfied with the entire alignment it's time to tighten all fasteners securely. If you are not satisfied you should be able to push/pull at the fenders as thus far the attachment points are only snug. Remember, "snug-not tight"? This allows the sheet metal to be moved a bit in to place and hold it there prior to firmly securing the fasteners.
If this tightening causes the fenders to pull in too much it is practical to install a thin washer between the fender panel(s) and brace. On rare occasion (reproduction panels) I've found it necessary to enlarge this hole (inner panel) just a bit.
Lastly, install the lower radiator air deflector. It may be necessary to enlarge a hole or two in this pan. Not to worry-all are covered by the proper fasteners.


* I enlarge the holes to 1/2" and elongate approximately 1/8" on either side of each hole. The elongation should follow the curve of the fender. Remember that all these holes will be completely covered by the correct body washers.
**If any gap should change after a specific area has been secured you know with certainty which area caused the effect. You may need to elongate a hole or two in that area a bit more. There should be NO binding at any attachment points."
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Old 07-17-2015, 08:48 PM   #3
19Fordy
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

Here's "Kube" and more. Remember, the search box is your friend.
https://www.fordbarn.com/forum/showth...nt+sheet+metal
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Old 07-18-2015, 08:49 PM   #4
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Unhappy Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

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Originally Posted by fordman View Post
what suggestions and guidelines can you give me about installing front fenders and grille? the engine, chassis,body, exterior & interior, painted has been assembled, grille is standing by, along with the hood in a raised position.

now I plan to install the completed and painted front fenders and grille.

I'm listening....

thank you,

fordman
I'm doing the exact same thing, I was going to post a picture but my da.. computer decided not to cooperate.
I fallowed the directions on Fordbarn, (as best i could) and its still BEAR. Especially at my age. (79)
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Old 07-19-2015, 12:24 PM   #5
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

is there a picture?
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Old 07-19-2015, 01:31 PM   #6
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

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is there a picture?
Looks good. Don't tighten any of the fender bolts until you get the grill and grille sides installed.
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Old 07-19-2015, 01:44 PM   #7
hope
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

Yeah i know, i've had them more than "snug" so i'm loosening them.
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Old 07-19-2015, 02:10 PM   #8
JonC
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

I have a good tip for you I learned doing my 40 P/U.... Drink each night after you pull your hair out each day, it lessens the pain. And the real one if measure from the cowl and triangulate a center point where the grill should be center. Measure a lot and keep bolts loose until they can be snugged up together, and good luck.
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:29 PM   #9
hope
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

I thought i was well prepaired for this, but there is sooooo much miss match and wrong gaps that its texting my patience.

I'm already taking my time, but the way i work is already"Slowwwww, so if i want to get it done i have to keep at it the best i can.

I suppose it could be because i've done a lot of work on the hood, and the fenders that could have distorted the metal to make a bad fit.

OH! by the way, i do a "LITTLE" drink to::<<you know>> help out LOL.
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Old 07-20-2015, 12:13 PM   #10
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

Agree with what has been said. Take your time! Work on it until you start to go crazy and then STOP and wait for tomorrow. Been there, done that. Can take several days. Drinking helps. The good news is that if nothing seems to fit up correctly, then you have genuine 40 Ford parts.
Just an opinion
Floyd
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Old 07-20-2015, 01:02 PM   #11
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

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Originally Posted by JonC View Post
I have a good tip for you I learned doing my 40 P/U.... Drink each night after you pull your hair out each day, it lessens the pain. And the real one if measure from the cowl and triangulate a center point where the grill should be center. Measure a lot and keep bolts loose until they can be snugged up together, and good luck.
Jon, You offer great advice.
As many of these I have done, I wonder how it is I have any hair remaining. My "instructions" may (or may not) make this process sound as if the reality is an easy one for me. Rest assured, each car gets me a little deeper in the bottle and with a little less hair remaining on my head.
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Old 07-20-2015, 02:05 PM   #12
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

I didn't say what i was drinking. There is a very big assortment of liquids available: coffee, juice, water, gatorade, ect., and other adult refreshments. LOL
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Old 07-20-2015, 02:28 PM   #13
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Default Re: 1940 ford installing front fenders & grille

I had my '41 pickup front end on and off for fitting more times than a new brides PJ's, lots of practice for shiney paint time!
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