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hand formed aluminum panels

i have been thinking the past couple of days. (very dangerous) Back in the good old days aluminum panels were formed by hand with a mallet and wooden bucks. I think they used this method for prototype 356's. I wonder how hard it would be to hand form some panels and a hood for a 944 out off aluminum. Does anybody have any experience pounding aluminum? Am I just too crazy?
I think a set on molds could be easily made by using FRP then the beatings begin.
Any feedback welcome.

Speedy

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Old 10-14-2004, 08:04 PM
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it can be done! aluminum crinkles easily, if you dont keep pressure around the area being formed. i worked on the tooling for the plymouth prowler hood, which is aluminum, and we used neoprene parts to achieve a wrinkle free form. incidentally, my olds beater car was t-boned by a deranged taxi-driver at 2am in the morning, as apparently, he was color blind at the lights. as a result of this, my right side rear door, took a massive hit. i got a sheet of aluminum about 1mm thick, and "made" a new panel to cover the damage. from about 10', you would never know! so, go ahead and see what you come up with.
aluminum is very easy to work with, and to cut to shape, but beware! its easy to put lines dents and bumps in it as you work with it.
bob.
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Old 10-16-2004, 12:08 PM
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I would love to see something like this.

Especially for the area on the earlies where the center speaker goes. I think a couple of guages would be nice.

Biggest thing is to make the 'buck' as perfect as possible, yes?
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Old 10-19-2004, 11:28 AM
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I've seen it done before. By the time you're done, you will have some serious arm strength, lol. But if the form is made properly, the product is a great looking panel.
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Old 10-19-2004, 03:40 PM
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See if you can locate an English wheel. Used for forming curves in sheet metal in two planes.

For smaller parts, a heavy vinyl bag filled with fine sand and some rubber hammers make a good beginners tool for sheet metal forming.

Simple one plane curves require no tools except some arm strength. Lower door skins come to mind. Done a lot of those over the years (used to live in the rust belt)
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Old 10-20-2004, 12:47 AM
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Ask around, there are a lot of sites that have plans (free) for how to make an english wheel and pneumatic hammer... i think that's what it's called.

I'll post some links to some forums in a minute... they're on the otherr computer.

I've been looking for books & websites for how to do this stuff a lot lately. I'm hoping to be able to make some piecces for my 914 soon
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Old 10-20-2004, 12:20 PM
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Here's a thread on 914 I started about sheet metal fab. Everything I'm doing is 20ga or 16ga sheet metal.

http://www.914club.com/bbs2/index.php?act=ST&f=2&t=17747&hl=metal&

www.ghiaspecialties.com is really really good. The guy's on the 914club forum and makes some awesome ghia and 914 flares & whatnot.
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Old 10-20-2004, 12:42 PM
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Your hood is already made out of aluminum. Unfortunately, there goes your weight savings idea........ Although other panels could benefit from a little weight reduction.

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Old 10-20-2004, 01:45 PM
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