1972 Scimitar GTE

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The Green Doner Bodyshell

After putting up a post in the Scimitar owners Club Discussion forum I was fortunate to be put in contact with John Valler (Cheers Geoff) who had a body shell that was fairly local and that he was looking to dispose of. This was an ideal source for the fiberglass sections my car was missing.

Fortunately John was able to deliver the body and being a bit pushed for space I needed to break the shell fairly quickly. With assistance from Dave and Marlon (Mr bones) we were able to strip the body of parts in an afternoon and section up what couldn’t be reused, It was my first introduction to the infamous fiberglass itch!

I was fortunate to also get a few other  useful parts particularly the heat sheilds and the doors,

First Cut,

Engine Bay, Nose is a Scimpart replacement as the car went off the road at some time in the past following an accident.

Body with the rear section removed.

One of the sections I will be re using on my car.

fastenings on the doors were completely seized so they were removed complete and will be given further attention later.

The vital sections I needed now removed, not a huge amount left.

Floor pan sectioned up, for disposal.

I’d really like to Thank John for the donation of the body it has really helped me out and got me a step closer to getting my car back on the road.

Body Removal

The A few weeks later and I was ready to remove the body from my GTE. It came off without any major incidents! and I’ve had the first chance to look at the condition of the chassis top. Generally its in fairly good condition (better than I’d hoped judging but some of the other photos I’ve seen.) Though there are quite a few areas to sort out.

The following bits needed attention; the sills, front outriggers, seatbelt mounts, rear diag’s and all the rear body mounts,

I also discovered that much of the front suspension is in very poor condition and I’m currently waiting on a lot of replacement parts from Scimitar Specialists graham walker & qrg.

Particularly bad were the top fulcrums and lower wishbone mounts, which had both corroded on the metal to bush faces. The trunnions, vertical links lower suspension mounts and stub axles also needed replacing.

Chassis Repair work

The Chassis was repaired and primed, The following pictures show the repair sections being welded in, These are readily available from both of the main scimitar parts suppliers. These sections come as galvanized steel but you could just as easily fold the sections yourself if you have the kit or get them made by a local steel fabricator.

Seatbelt mount replaced, galvanised sill section from qrg being measured up,

sill now welded on, with new rollbar mount point,

The back of the rear diag had been patched and this piece of plate was virtually floating loose in the hole underneath!

old mess cleaned up, New steel being measured to do a proper repair,

bump stops – were missing and there was a rust hole in chassis, welded plate in and captive nut for the new style brackets from qrg,

chassis cleaned and painted and given a coat of zinc rich primer, (note missing diag’s which are now fitted!)

Investigating GRP Body Repairs, A posts, Sills and more

The Following photos give an overview of the work we had to do, Theres a fair bit that we hadn’t been planning for – Fire Repairs, door sills, “A” posts and also all the metal seat stiffener plates need replacing… there are also old accident repairs to the rear and front which need attention.
Body overview

Whilst lifting the body off this fairly major damage was done around the filler cap,

Turns out it had cracked along and old repair and was mostly together by body filler,

Additional picture, showing another filler based repair to a crack next to exhaust space – note miss-aligned edge, suggesting the car had been involved in an accident at some point in the past.

Engine bay after removal of the steel and body filler battery box,

Digging round some of the poor fiberglass repairs showed that there had been an engine bay fire which accounts for the missing battery shelf and vent surround, fibreglass has been applied to unprepped burned bodywork and most of the bay has been skimmed in filler,

So from bad to worse, we knew the sills were rusting but it turns out the base of the A posts were also non existent,

Donor A post this was used as template for fabricating a new pair.

Fiberglass Body Repairs – Part 1

The chassis is now finished – cleaned to bright metal and primed with 4 coats of black zinc phosphate, injected with cavity wax and given a topcoat of Schutz underseal.

Suspension components have been painted in  what laughingly passes for Hammerite these days :( and new bushes fitted.

The following photos show the GRP repair work and new steel for the body.

“A”posts removed from car

Passenger side sill section (drivers side came out in dust form!)

New Galvanised replacement sections custom made – took a bit of time and effort to sort out but well worth it! In hindsight I wish i’d gone for stainless steel to guarantee that this work never needs to be repeated.

Passenger side “A”post bonded in awaiting trimming

Seat mount stiffeners – again replaced with galvanized, both these and the “A”posts and sills I’ve bedded in on a polyester resin and filler mix. – reliant had bedded the sills in on resin covered rockwool  :roll:

Engine bay showing the area that was fire damaged beyond repair and needed cutting out and replacing – the vent surround involved making a mould in order to lay up a new section the right shape which was later glassed in place

the same view with the vent cover moulding fitted which came from the donor car along with the new inner wing/batteryshelf section.

starting to repair the front which had previously been filled with bodyfiller – a previous owner had also enlarged the indicator cutouts to accept the units off a capri or escort – doubtful they were road legal,  being flush rather than raised like the originals you could hardly see them under the bumpers.

Front lower shock mounting plates – had rusted between the two layers of plate and were paper thin despite seeming solid.

Galvanised replacements made up.

Both the doors need the steel hinge stiffener plate replacing – don’t think its possible to replace “in situ” and splitting the two halves of the door without damaging  them horribly is almost impossible.

so the plan is to cut the inner moulding off the original doors & discard it then bond new steel onto the inners from these donor doors & bond the original outer’s and donor inner’s back together – Simples!. As a sidenote does anyone know the purpose of the black plate spanning the main cutout next to the window winder? only the passenger side had one? its fairly substantial, riveted at the top and bolted at the bottom.