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Old 08-22-2004, 03:23 PM   #1
Partymmudasti
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Default 93 SL2 Collision Repair Help!!!!

I am trying to fix my Moms 93 SL2, that she hit a parked truck while going about 25-30mph. She crumpled the hood, set off the bag, and pushed the radiator support back about 3-4 inches.

I replaced the hood, replaced the bag (but didnt connect it!!!! trust me, i dont want that thing in my face!) hehe I also bought new headlights off ebay. I need advice on how to pull the front end back out.

Somebody told me to attach a chain to the rad. support and the other end to a tree, then reverse. Ive already heard of this, but it sounds kind of harsh. I dont want to damage the condensor or radiator, as its only bent now, not broken or creased.
Ive also heard of using a "come along", one of those ratchety things, and tying one end to a tree and the other to the front end. This sounds safer, but either way, I wouldnt want to be in the way if the thing came off!! talk about getting smacked like a bi***! haha. Give me some advice before I get myself killed. The cars a 93, Im not paying to bring it in. Its only got 70k miles, it still smells new on the inside.. come on and help me.

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Old 08-22-2004, 03:41 PM   #2
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Hahaha...you get what you pay for.

With that said, look for someone who does body. They usually have a hydraulic machine made to straighten out frames. It's a long metal rod (with different fittings on the end) and as you pump it, it expands. That would be your best bet.

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Old 08-22-2004, 05:07 PM   #3
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actually, if you have a small hydraulic based lift, and something that's WICKED strong, clear out the engine compartment, and you can probably generate enough force with the jack to unbend it, lots of work though.

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Old 08-22-2004, 05:53 PM   #4
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Quote:
Somebody told me to attach a chain to the rad. support and the other end to a tree, then reverse.
Problem with this approach is that you have very little control of the forces involved (direction and strength) and hence it's darn near impossible to get it right.

Quote:
Ive also heard of using a "come along", one of those ratchety things, and tying one end to a tree and the other to the front end. This sounds safer, but either way,
That's a little bit more controllable, but you may not be able to generate enough force to straighten it and as you say, satefy would be a concern.

Typically what rebuilders will do is remove the front crossmember/support (including removing everything in front of and directly behind it) by drilling out the welds, then retrieving a similar undamaged piece from a rear-end wreck or by buying getting a new collision repair part, then re-weld the straight one back in.

If you have a friend in the repair business, you may be able to have them handle the rough stuff of replacing the crossmember/support and leave you with the easy stuff.

But if I were you, I'd leave this for the pros to do.

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Old 08-22-2004, 05:55 PM   #5
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This would make things much easier. I don't know if a tool place would rent such a thing, or if you would just have to buy it outright. I have a friend with one, and I've used it to straighten stuff, it's great.

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=32746

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Old 08-22-2004, 07:02 PM   #6
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so I gather you folks think im gonna f things up, eh? you are probably right, lol seeing that ive never done this before. and its not all that bad, i mean it doesnt look like it would be that bad to pull it back out, but then again, its pretty firm metal.I did manage to buy a radiator support section on ebay a while back, in case i had to cut the old one out and weld a new one in.. but i was just worried about expense. My parents are retired, and my moms health isnt so great. Of course, I have my own commitments (new house, new chrysler, boat..etc) for a 24 year old guy to be taking care of his parents and himself, it gets pretty tough, thats why i was trying to do it myself.

One last question, if i went to harbor freight (theres one about 10 mins away) and bought that hydraulic thing, how does it "pull" things? Im assuming you would have attach it to a hard object (my garage wall- not a good idea) hehe. So i guess the chain idea is bad, huh? What if i attached it to a come along, and hit it with a hammer in certain spots to get it in to shape?

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Old 08-22-2004, 08:03 PM   #7
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That's the tool i'm talking about...

it pushes it outwards. You're gonna have to put it in, hand pump it till it forces it outwards. As stated above though, it only works if you can clear that engine, and find something firm enough to push off of, a firewall would be a really bad idea.

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Old 08-23-2004, 02:07 PM   #8
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Frame work is not DIY. I looked into this when I repaired my Ford Probe. I had a body shop do the work, they charge about $30-50 per "pull" on the frame jig. This takes a trained guy about 30min. just to set up the machine to pull in the correct direction. Sometimes it takes 2 pulls. Keep in mind that the bending will weaken the metal too. The next time you hit something in the same spot, that damage will be much more severe.

You have to think about how the accident happened, what forces were aplied to the frame, and in what order. Then reverse all of that. I actually just had them install a new core support from a junkyard car, it cost me about $150 and that included repainting it (I did all assembly and disassembly and brought them the frame from the junkyard car). The tools you would buy would cost almost that much, not to mention your time.

I'm not trying to tell you not to do it, I just want you to do it in a safe manner...and sometimes that may just mean taking it to a professional.

Bryan

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