>A fellow in a big F-150 with a
>trailer ball backed into my '54 Chevy pickup, bending my front bumper out
>of alignment with the bottom of my grill and putting a huge dent in the
>nose-piece of the grill.
This is a very common 54 injury. I've purchased several junkyard grilles
and they have all had pushed in noses. I'm beating one back into shape
right now, and it isn't easy.
First the sides have to be hammered in, then the center has to be hammered
out. The metal gets work hardened by the hammering, so you have to anneal
it periodically with the torch before hammering further. Made my arm sore
Sunday afternoon, and it's only about half done.
If I didn't like metal work (and wasn't cheap) I'd definitely buy one. I
actually have a new one which I use as a pattern in working on the others.
This is not a good first project for learning bodywork.
Even if the nose is replaced, the lower pan to which it's riveted will
probably need straightening too. Often there's a little deflection in the
nose wings. Don't settle on the repair bill until the shop has had the
grille out and carefully inspected it by eyes and fingers.
Chances are, you'll have to repaint the entire grille, not just the nose,
because the nose does not just unbolt. There are several rivets holding it
to the bottom and sides, and usually a bit of scratching and pounding is
involved in disassembly.
54 3100 (mostly all there)
54 3100 (mostly not there)
55 1st 3100 (mostly rust)
Los Angeles, CA
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