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Old 03-08-2020, 06:39 PM   #1
K20rookie
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Replace rocker?

I've decided to tackle the body work on my 70 K20 restoration, and have zero experience with metal fabrication or body work. I'd like to learn how to do it, plus I don't really have the funds to pay someone else.

I'm thinking I will need to replace the driver's side rocker panel and both footwells, but I wanted to get confirmation from you guys to make sure I'm heading in the right direction. I plan on buying a mig welder and teaching myself how to do this.

I was hoping I could get away with POR-15, but after closer inspection it looks like that won't be an option. Any advice would be appreciated. I thought I would start by flipping the cab on it's back and cleaning/POR-15 the bottom, and then flip it back up and start on the rocker.
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Old 03-08-2020, 06:40 PM   #2
K20rookie
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Re: Replace rocker?

More pics...
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Old 03-08-2020, 08:48 PM   #3
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Re: Replace rocker?

Save the por15 for a bridge..you dont need it on your truck..
With no welding experience your gonna need lots of practice...thin body panels is not the ideal place to learn how....
1st before you cut out anything is to x brace everything before you start cutting...
Go to a body shop and get some old fenders to practice welding on...
Looks like rockers and kick panels for sure..and probably floor pans before you get done..
You may find it better to pay someone to do all this before its done...
all that metal needs replacing and epoxy coated..not por15...
This can turn into a very big job before you get done..good luck with it..
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Old 03-09-2020, 09:54 PM   #4
sfont66
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Re: Replace rocker?

I am at the same point as you are. I bought a truck from California with very little signs of rust, it did have noticeable rust though in the kick panel area. The kick panel area is kind of 3ply. The floor pan/inner rocker, kick panel ,door pillar all pinch together here. So you may also have hidden surprises. One thing I would suggest , if adding bracing, do it so that you can mount and adjust doors properly. You will need to mount and adjust doors , checking gaps before final welding. Also rebuild your hinges first.
Collect all your parts, supplies and tools first, Do a bit of research and have fun.
If it gets a bit frustrating , take a break and Consult the forum. Lots of great members here willing to help.
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Old 03-13-2020, 09:52 PM   #5
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Re: Replace rocker?

I'm in same boat. Purchased mig welder a few years back...practiced...

Finally getting to my rust-repair-restoration job...gonna be fun!
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Old 03-14-2020, 12:17 PM   #6
randy500
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Re: Replace rocker?

Por 5 is pure snake oil and doesnt belong on anything.
Use the industry standard, epoxy primer over sandblasted or sanded bare metal or just leave it alone.
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Old 03-19-2020, 10:00 PM   #7
Lanman1972
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Re: Replace rocker?

Read through lots of build threads and gather info. As mentioned welding thin gauge steel can be a challenge but when you get IT it feels awesome. The area where inner rocker, kick panel, rocker and pillar come together can be tricky. Good advise to brace everything before cutting. Only tack weld until door gaps are correct. Good luck!
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Old 03-20-2020, 07:17 AM   #8
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Re: Replace rocker?

What company are you guys getting your rockers from ????/
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Old 03-20-2020, 07:44 AM   #9
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Re: Replace rocker?

I'd rejoice if all my rockers looked that good! need a tetanus shot before climbing over some of mine

as for your objective to learn how to weld and replace your own, if you have a decent mechanical aptitude, I vote go for it..

I've had the skills since putting expert builder lego kits together in the 70s, been a heavy junk mechanic all my life since..

cutting, fitting, and welding steel is part of my trade.. only thing stopping me is time, and rust doesn't really bother me

my advice is similar to above, learn, practice, practice, practice..

practice cutting, fitting, and welding simple panels and slowly graduate to more complicated pieces..

if you have time, take some adult learning classes.. most community college classes are very affordable..

once you're confident you have the skills down, dive into your project..

and remember, you can make vast improvements although your first project may not be a show stopper..

these were production made trucks, they weren't perfect the day they left the factory..

and the joy of it all is that it can almost always be saved by more careful rework..

lots of threads here to guide you, may even solicit help from a neighbor or fellow enthusiast..

here's a fun thread caught my eye recently Budget Shortbed: welding, grinding, rust oh my

good luck!
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Old 03-21-2020, 09:22 AM   #10
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Re: Replace rocker?

Quote:
Originally Posted by randy500 View Post
Por 5 is pure snake oil and doesnt belong on anything.
Use the industry standard, epoxy primer over sandblasted or sanded bare metal or just leave it alone.
When it comes to maximum corrosion resistance nothing outperforms the aluminum pigmented moisture cured urethane. On projects that are in extremely corrosive environments project engineers usually specify two coats of the aluminum pigmented primer followed by an epoxy intermediate coat and then a urethane topcoat.My 55 is completely painted like this Here's a video that compares different products including epoxy in salt fog chamber.The title of the video is POR 15, KBS, chassis saver SP I epoxy and Mastercoat salt fog test. Who went the furthest?

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Old 03-21-2020, 11:20 AM   #11
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Re: Replace rocker?

Be sure to get a welder that you can use gas with. I find the .025 wire is the best. Keep the gaps no bigger than the wire you are using. Tack, cool or dolly and repeat. Do not be in a rush to complete the work, or you will have a lot of warping. Odds are once you get into it, you will see more needs to be replaced than originally thought. Don't let that discourage you. As others mentioned, gather panels, add bracing on the inside and let er rip. When grinding welds, avoid excessive heat. Found best way is to use a cutoff wheel and slowly work the welds down, or get a good burr. Also do not forget the eye, hand, nose and ear protection.
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Old 03-22-2020, 05:31 PM   #12
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Re: Replace rocker?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 4u2nv View Post
What company are you guys getting your rockers from ????/
I purchased most of my repair panels 6or7 years ago for another project, but ended up not using them until recently. Probably from Summit or Rock auto .
The passenger side fit very well, with very little extra work, the driver side needed some work to make it fit better but not bad.
Perhaps rockers have gotten better since 2013 ?
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