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Old 08-12-08, 04:04 PM   #1
huerro
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(Auto) Body by Foo?

Does anybody here have auto body experience?

Someone hit my car while it was parked some time ago and left a nice big dent in my fender. Fortunately, it looks to be just one big dent and not a crumple. Is there any reason I shouldn't be able to just take the fender off and bang it back into shape with a mallet? Any chance of this making things worse if it doesn't work?

It is vitally important that this come out looking stellar.* How else can I pick up the ladies if my 10 year old Civic that smells like a dog has a dented fender?






* That is a lie. It is not vital that this come out looking stellar. Slightly less crappy would also be an acceptable outcome.
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Old 08-12-08, 04:18 PM   #2
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how much metal working experience do you have? cause if it's anything less than "I'm an expert" you aren't gonna be able to bang that sucker out and have it look decent. you may be able to get away with a suction puller, but it may need a couple of holes drilled into it and a real puller used.

Good luck, though.
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Old 08-12-08, 04:29 PM   #3
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what UA said, plus check the bone yard, you might find a honda that matches yours with a decent panel.
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Old 08-12-08, 04:41 PM   #4
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^ agreed
replace the panel
it's pretty hard to fix a dented panel back to "like new" condition without some proper painting tools and a lot of time.
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Old 08-12-08, 04:43 PM   #5
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what UA said, plus check the bone yard, you might find a honda that matches yours with a decent panel.
Might? I wouldn't even waste my time pounding...with the amount of civics on the road, you're bound to find a new fender for cheap. Check ebay too...
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Old 08-12-08, 04:57 PM   #6
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Might? I wouldn't even waste my time pounding...with the amount of civics on the road, you're bound to find a new fender for cheap. Check ebay too...
Perhaps you don't understand the joy I get from banging on things with a mallet.

Thanks for your advice all.
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Old 08-12-08, 05:06 PM   #7
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just remember, when you whack with a mallet, the panel will thin out and deform.

you can use a punch tool to condense thinned out parts.
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Old 08-12-08, 05:28 PM   #8
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I would just replace it. A panel off a junked civic should be less than $50.

But if you do want to try popping it back into place a tip is do it in a low light area (garage) and shine a light on it from an angle. Using the reflection (or whatever it's called) you can see where there are dimples or bends in the metal. Don't know if that explanation makes sense but I can try to clarify more if needed.

Also, don't "bang away" with a mallet. You should use some blunt tool (end of a broom handle with a tennis ball works well) and try to "smooth" it out by pushing gently. If you bang on it really hard then your going to get dents coming out the other way and your gonna have to bash up the paint to get them back down.
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Old 08-12-08, 05:37 PM   #9
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Yell at it until it fixes itself.
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Old 08-12-08, 07:05 PM   #10
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My friend has a older civic also. Same color. He got hit while the car was parked and almost the same thing happened except on the rear panel just above the wheel well. I ripped out the lining in the trunk, took a rubber mallet and wrapped a rag around it, and just pounded away for a few minutes. By no excuse is it perfect but it looks a hell of a lot better than before. The cars too old and he doesn't car enough to pay for a new panel.
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Old 08-12-08, 07:12 PM   #11
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Make it into an art car.
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Old 08-12-08, 07:35 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by kidonabike View Post
I would just replace it. A panel off a junked civic should be less than $50.

But if you do want to try popping it back into place a tip is do it in a low light area (garage) and shine a light on it from an angle. Using the reflection (or whatever it's called) you can see where there are dimples or bends in the metal. Don't know if that explanation makes sense but I can try to clarify more if needed.

Also, don't "bang away" with a mallet. You should use some blunt tool (end of a broom handle with a tennis ball works well) and try to "smooth" it out by pushing gently. If you bang on it really hard then your going to get dents coming out the other way and your gonna have to bash up the paint to get them back down.
wrong a civic fender at a yard is over 50 its somewhere in the 80+.
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Old 08-12-08, 07:40 PM   #13
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Sometimes they will pop right out. about ...I don't know, 22 years ago? I caved in the door on my old man's IROC. I popped it back out and he never knew. In fact it's sitting in his garage with less than 30k miles on it. Don't tell him, k?
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Old 08-13-08, 02:35 PM   #14
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Try popping it out. Remove the wheel and the plastic liner and try popping out the dent from the back side.

If that's not good enough, find a pick-a-part place or call their network of suppliers. Much easier, faster and cheaper to get a replacement than trying to repair it yourself (unless you've got a lot of time and several weekends free). You really CAN find a front wing for about 50$. I got two wings and a bonnet for one of my friends for $100. Then about $50-75 for decent paint and you're set.
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Old 08-13-08, 02:45 PM   #15
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Try popping it out. Remove the wheel and the plastic liner and try popping out the dent from the back side.

If that's not good enough, find a pick-a-part place or call their network of suppliers. Much easier, faster and cheaper to get a replacement than trying to repair it yourself (unless you've got a lot of time and several weekends free). You really CAN find a front wing for about 50$. I got two wings and a bonnet for one of my friends for $100. Then about $50-75 for decent paint and you're set.
It's funny you posted that...I've been doing just as you suggested, but just came inside because of the rain. It's not perfect, but sure is a lot better! Good call.
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