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Old 01-15-2002, 07:03 PM   #1
tcs007
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Default Self seam welding...

If you had access to a wire feed welder, a place to do it in, and the patience, could you seam weld your car yourself?
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Old 01-15-2002, 08:32 PM   #2
orbit03
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yes, but to do it properly is a lot of work. You pretty much have to strip the car to a bare shell, remove the goop in the seams, and then seam weld. Also, it isn't a continuous weld, it is about a 4" weld, 4" gap, 4"weld, etc...

We did it to our rally celica and my friend is currently doing it to his project GTI. It adds a boatload of strength to the body and keeps it from vibrating itself apart on the bumpy gravel roads. It is probably overkill for a road car or track car.
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Old 01-16-2002, 01:03 PM   #3
2.5GT
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Would seam welding add more strength and structural rigidity than say, a seam welded in roll cage? My friend also owns a welder and can help me do the work. However, I'd like the idea of having a stiffer chassis without having to climb around a ten-point roll cage.

Jason
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Old 01-16-2002, 01:45 PM   #4
orbit03
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It would help structural stiffness, but not remotely as much as a weld in cage that is also tied into all four strut towers. What are you looking to accomplish? Seam welding will help stiffen the car some, but it is usually done to keep the car together and tight for gravel rallying. Like I said in my previous post, it is A LOT of work. You have to pretty much strip the car to a bare shell. to get to the important seams. You would also have to strip all the undercoating off the car. The proper way to prepare the shell is to acid dip the whole shell to remove the paint and all the goo. Then seam weld, put in cage, and repaint. Like I said earlier, probably overkill for the street.
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Old 01-16-2002, 02:12 PM   #5
tcs007
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Sounds to me like it is a cost (of time) vs. gains issue. Too little gain for the huge pain in the arse you make it out to sound. So, I'll be skipping this step I guess, at least until I have another car and way too much time on my hands, which will probably never happen.
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Old 01-16-2002, 03:19 PM   #6
2.5GT
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My friend with the welder is already going through this whole process on his track 2002. He's already stripped out everything off of the car and is getting ready to acid (he said the acid bath is actually an alkaline bath - kinda a misnomer) dip the car somewhere up in NJ. Then seem weld the body and weld in a ten-point cage. He's putting A LOT more time into his project (even custom fabricating a fiberglass widebody kit and fiberglass hood and trunklid) than I would ever hope to put into my car.

I was interested in stiffening up the car enough to get rid of the annoying rattling that I've noticed on all Subarus. Seems as though the body flexes A LOT for a car that has a rally-bred heritage (I'm talking about the Imprezas, too). I remember riding in my friend's All-Trac Celica, and that thing seemed to be a little more sturdy.

Jason

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