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Panel Alignment


paime
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I'm about to start a chassis swap on my 90. The easiest way to do it would be to lift the body off in its entirety but i don't have the floor space or the ceiling height to do it. The other option is to break the body down and remove it piece by piece but i'm worried about panel alignment afterwards. Is there a technique/process to follow? How do i shim the bulkhead for example without knowing how it will affect everything else?

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I think (I've only done it once) that basically you have to rebuild from the back to the front, so you'd adjust the bulkhead once the back body is back on; using washers with slits is a great way to finetune adustment without taking the long bolt i and out all the bleedin time. Don't over-think it and remember it's built to the nearest centimetre or two ;)

 

 

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Pretty much the rear tub doesn't have any adjustment, so put that in place first then align the bulkhead off that making it nice and parallel, as long at those are in the right place the rest will generally pull itself into the right position.

If it's an older truck as you pull it apart you'll find spacers all over the place, Land Rover used a plethora of shims in all sorts of places. They tend to drop out when you remove the panel. You'll get the idea, it's not rocket science.

Just complete this for the 3rd time on my 90, and this last time I reckon has been the best as I took a lot of time to get the bulkhead just right. (It did need the use of a ratchet strap to pull one side into the right place).

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So i'm hearing work from the rear and make my way forwards. Do i hang the doors before i shim the bulkhead? Also, if i'm taking it apart panel by panel is that the time to replace the bulkhead or at least acid dip/repair/galvanise or is it still an almighty pain in the arse to do even with the roof/windscreen/wings off etc?

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21 hours ago, paime said:

So i'm hearing work from the rear and make my way forwards. Do i hang the doors before i shim the bulkhead? Also, if i'm taking it apart panel by panel is that the time to replace the bulkhead or at least acid dip/repair/galvanise or is it still an almighty pain in the arse to do even with the roof/windscreen/wings off etc?

So measure your door at the hinge points, then add 8-10mm (ish) and line up the bulkhead parallel to the rear tub door shut with your door width + the shut tolerance. Once you've got it right, trial fit your doors to make sure they fit. It's a pain but I took my doors on/off a couple of times before I was happy, and still he doors are pretty much the last panels to go back on. Put defender panel tolerance into google and it will pull up the page of what you're aiming for.

As someone who's taken there truck apart 3 times and only galvanised the bulkhead the last time - yes yes yes yes do it now! I only took it apart the last time to actually replace the bulkhead for a galvanised one.

Check out my last few pages of my build to see the last phase of work.

 

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I am replacing my chassis soon (expecting my new Richards chassis to arrive later this month) and am stripping the body down.

Everything has been replaced / galvanised / repainted in the past so I am not anticipating too much remedial work and hopefully it is "just" a case of moving items from the old chassis onto the new one. Obviously certain parts are being replaced just because it would be false economy not to do so (fuel-tank, brake pipes / hoses, wiring loom. TRE's, exhaust etc etc) whereas other items (such as suspension) are relatively recent and will go straight across.

Alignment starts at the rear (as already stated, the tub has no adjustment) and don't bolt the bulkhead firmly into position until you are happy with the door alignment etc. 

Had my bulkhead galvanised a few years ago, no problems with warping etc however I did drill plenty of additional holes and bolt a decent box-section across the bottom mounts. Don't forget to cut out the mesh from the vents before you send it off otherwise it comes back practically blank, I ground the welds out beforehand and bonded back into place afterwards.

 

 

 

 

DSCF0007.JPG

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Strangely, I am in a similar spot. I have five brand new doors (110) and a new galvanised bulkhead. The bulkhead really needs doign this year, but I am thinking its going to double the time spend if I then do a chassis later, so am thinking of doing that this year now too. Whilst at it, as I am replacing the doors, the rest of the body will need a respray etc as new doors/old body will look rubbish, so I am also now thinking of stripping it down into component parts, prepping and spraying them all and then putting it all back together new.

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3 hours ago, paime said:

Cheers Maverick. You're from up my way, where did you get your galvanising done? Any issues with warping afterwards?

Got them done at Forfar Galvanisers. I don;t think they're the cheapest, but they've done a good job with everything I've taken them.

Regarding bulkhead specifically. I built a pretty heavy duty/stand for them which seemed to work ok, it had twisted slightly across its biggest diagonal dimension so had to pull it ut a bit with a ratchet strap when fitting, but the bracket at the bottom of the footwell held it ok once in position.

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  • 5 months later...

1991 110 CSW.

I've just refitted my four side doors after having the chassis and bulkhead galvanised.  Although I had fitted a 2"x2" angle across the base of the bulkhead it still suffered some warping in the galvanising.  I started refitting from the back, and ensured that the tub was really as far back as possible.  However, I couldn't fit the front right door.  The gap between the top of the screen frame and the B pillar was just the same dimension as the top of the door.  Of course, the closure gap needed additional space.  Also, the roof extended beyond the top of the screen frame.  Ratchet straps were not sufficient to achieve alignment and I had to make an adjustable spreader from readi-rod and 1" steel pipe to get alignment.  While aligned I bolted up the roof all around, and was then able to fit the door, but it still doesn't look pretty, the gaps around the door are not parallel or consistent.  I think that a part of the problem is that I replaced the screen hinges, that allow the screen to be folded down, with one piece items that maintained the screen in alignment with the bulkhead.  Perhaps I should have kept the original hinges and accepted a little mis-alignment with the bulkhead, but much better door alignment.  In fact, I might just go back and refit the original hinges🤔.

One check that I should have done, but didn't, before fitting the bulkhead, was to lay it horizontally, supported at each corner on supports with the tops aligned absolutely horizontal.  This would have identified the extent and location of the warp, and perhaps allowed me to straighten the bulkhead before fitting it.

Anyway, best of luck with your rebuild.

Mike

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