Whether it's rotted metal or a blonde on a cell phone plowing into your car, bad things do happen to vehicles. In this case, our '66 Nova SS had rot in the lower quarter-panels, not to mention the poor bodywork done decades ago was starting to fall apart. It was time for some serious restoration work to be done to this Nova. Part of the work we are specifically focusing on is replacing of the rear driver's side quarter panel.
After a phone call to Goodmark Industries, a replacement quarter-panel and rocker was ordered and shipped. When it arrived five days later our fun began. Let's go over a few points before we start cutting and grinding on the Nova. Properly fitting a new panel to your vehicle is not like slipping on a set of tube socks. Yeah, we wish it was that easy, but it's not. Lots of trimming of the panel, grinding, and test fitting is involved. Let's not forget to mention the right tools you'll need to get the job done. Of course, this may be the best excuse in the world to justify getting the latest gizmo and widget combo set.
Should you decide to skip the whole home improvement experience, a job like this at an experienced shop would require anywhere from 10-16 man hours. That translates to roughly $1,200-1,500 in labor costs; keep in mind this is just one panel on the vehicle and we are guestimating on the low side.
It's very likely that many reading this are the do-it yourself type. It's also likely that many are on a budget tighter than a wrestler's outfit, so installing the panel yourself is the only option. We found ourselves at Harrison's Restorations and watched them do all the work. Let's condense 16 hours of work into a few pages and watch how they did it.