Cheaper to replace front fender?

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scgamecock

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My front drivers fender has a dent in the side towards the front that has gotten into the body line.  Would I be better off finding a good used fender or get a body man to get the dent out?  Just thinking about cost.  I'm thinking it is going to take a body man several hours to get the dent out to where if I can find a good used fender I would be better off.  I would rather not put an aftermarket fender on it.  I don't think the steel is as good of quality as an good used OEM would be.

 

73pony

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Do you have some pics of the dent? Close up? Good used rust free fender is going to be hard to come by.

 

Fabrice

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If you post a pict of the damage that would help...

I'd say, get a body man quote first, some have tooling (and experience), and would pull a nasty looking dent in no time. Something you'd stamp impossible to be done in matter of minutes...

 

Don C

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I would pull the fender and pound it out myself. It wouldn't take much hammer and dolly work to get it close enough so an 1/8" of Bondo would take care of the finish. The top dent may have stretched the metal a little, and may require some shrinking. I'm not a good bodyman, don't like doing it, but I wouldn't hesitate taking that on.

What's the worse that could happen? Getting a bodyman to finish it or buying a different fender.

 

73pony

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+1 a little hammer and dolly work and you could get that pretty good in a short period of time.

 

Pegleg

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If you check out Fabrices build thread you will see he used clamps and a block of wood to sort a valance out. Your dent is near enough to the edge of the metal to give it a try

 

Fabrice

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@Don C +1

As you consider a replacement, you take no risk...

This looks to me a perfect occupation for Saturday afternoon! :)

I'm hitting metal only once in a while, but here my amateur body man eye sees a fender that can be saved without too much troubles.

I'd start by cleaning to bare metal on both side, so you actually see and most important feel the problems.

Aside the small dent above the side marker that will work against you while pushing outward, most is a push from the inside. You can do this with soft wood, you could use the inner reinforcement as a lever for this. Gently massage from the outer ring of the dents and it will regain its pressed shape fairly easy for the most. Then hammer(s) + dolly

You could also make a buck using the other side, by simply reporting with a marker the shape on a piece of paper, then fold that paper once you have the shape and by transparence you have the opposite that you can use to cut some MDF/wood to verify the fender shape, you could even use it to reshape acting as a dolly.

Take your time, better a 1000 small hits than big ones and as @Don C says, a tad of bondo will do the rest!

 
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I am no body man my self. I have watch my friend who has 35 + years use heat , wet sponge and a dolly to work out dents. He uses less that a 1/8 inch or less of bondo. It is magic to see him work. Also, those fenders are prone to rust at the bottom. It may be good to remove the fender to see what debris is sitting there. Maybe removing and carrying it to someone you trust to fix it. Just a thought here!

 
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7173Vert

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From a cost perspective, definitely better to fix that then try to locate a perfect fender...

 

baz70

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without hesitation I would repair rather than replace that....

 

mach71351c

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Nope, To much going on their. I would replace it. I paid 100 bucks for this rust free fender. I did have to weld up the holes from body side molding and mustang emblem.

IMG_1402.JPG

IMG_1430.JPG

IMG_1440.JPG

 
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turtle5353

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Repair or replace with OEM. The aftermarket ones are much thinner and need work to fit properly. I had to make a 6 inch slice in the front of an aftermarket one to get it to line up with the fender extension properly. Then weld slice. body work. then prime.

 

JRANGER

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i would try to fix it but if all else fails you could just patch it. Find a rusty fender with that part good. Cut it out and weld it in.

If youre near Columbia TN i can hook you up with such a fender to cut your patch out of

 
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For sure fix it. The fenders have date codes in them and your car matches right now. That for sure does not look like a bad dent at all. The key is to go slow and not beat it out. Always back up the metal with a dolly. Like some have said you might need to shrink some to prevent oil can but I do not think it has been stretched that much.

You can also go to the other side and make you a template to work to. I took a round piece of aluminum about 1 1/2 dia. Drilled hole in center in lathe and pressed a felt tip pin in. The radius goes up and over the contours of the body while someone else hold a piece of thin cardboard up. The scribe line you then cut and use to shape the opposite side.

I did this back in the 70's. The preacher at the church had a 65 impala and no money to fix. It had been hit really hard in front of the RH rear wheel. I mean pushed in inches. I got inside and actually used sledge hammer and jack and got it back out what I could. Also drilled holes and used a puller. This was not a show car and not worried about the filler. I cut template from the other side and built the panel back. He was happy and car looked much better.

I would not drill holes in that you would need to weld back up to keep water out. If you know someone with the welder to put the pins on to pull that helps but you should be able to hammer that since you can get to both sides easy.

Go for it. I have fenders if you fail.

 

scgamecock

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Thanks guys. I plan on doing all the sanding, filling and priming myself. For the dents and a small rust repair I think I will take it to a local guy and pay him.

Good to know about the date code David. I want to keep it as original as possible except the paint color.

 
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