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I occasionally watch a program called "Chasing Classic Cars" mainly just to see some of the oddball stuff that comes up once in awhile. Personally I think the guy that is the subject of the show is kind of a goofball, but that's another topic.

There was a snippet on one show that I saw where he was checking out a car for purchase by a client of his. I really don't remember what the car was, it may have been a Camaro, but that's not really the issue. One thing that he said as he was examining the car was he was looking to see if there was repair to the 1/4 panel and if so he would want to make sure the whole panel was replaced.

So my question is why is it a big deal to replace the whole panel rather than just patch the affected area? Please use the assumptions that a) We are talking about a higher end car that would be considered collectable b) The patch would be done by a competent body man, not a weekend warrior with a shovel full of bondo.
 

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I have heard people dislike this as well. I think that it stems from botched repair work that some redneck does in his back yard and then puts a nice paint job on it to cover it up. Personally, as long as it is done right, I see nothing wrong with patching. If it is done right then you can't tell that it was ever patched anyway. If anything, I would think patching would be better so that you could retain the original date code if there is one there. On top of that, as many know, most aftermarket panels don't fit right anyway. I know this isn't much of an issue with the GM crowd because GM didn't destroy their dies, they held on to them and now lease them out.
 

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There was a show on awhile back "Dream Car Garage" The were rebuilding a Hemi Challenger or Cuda-forget. but They had one of there metal guys patch up the quarter rather than replace. I dont know what they pay this uy but it was near enough!! he hand form the patch, tigged it in and when done grinding it dissappeared-simply amazing. I try to do my own work so I'm amazed when I see otheres do work with this skill!
 

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Nothing wrong with patching if it's done right. Personally I like to keep as much of the original sheet metal as possible.
 

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The one person ive talked to in person with this opinion kinda made sense to me, but i think thats just cause he wanted to convince me his way was right. he said that patching a lower quarter panel several inches up from the bottom only invites further rust and corrosion on the back side later down the road...he claims that if you replace the entire quarter, most of the welds are up high or at least not directly behind the tire to take the abuse that crap getting thrown up can cause. now, thats his reasoning, and he said it enough i think i bought it. but that said, im still going to patch mine with small patch panels just to piss him off. :)
 

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I dismantled a set of metal shelving and used one of them as stock for patching my lower quarters. I did that... hmm... 8 years ago.
The quarter is still solid where the patch is. No formed rust or surface rust.

I did, however, use quite a chemical ritual to prep and finish. Still...
 

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Nothing wrong with patching if it's done right. Personally I like to keep as much of the original sheet metal as possible.
Me too. What people I consider to be pros do on a high dollar car is mock the new panel up over the old and them cut both the old and new together so the cut line (minus the blade thickness) matches exactly. Then these brave souls butt weld one little spot at a time (stitch weld to avoid warpage) the new panel in and grind on both sides. If done right you cannot tell a panel was spliced in.

For those of us that are not that brave, a panel flanger does quite well in the right hands. Of course the repair will be slightly visible on the inside - I seam sealed mine very well and you really cannot tell unless you are looking hard for it.

Regards,

Bob
 
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