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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my former gullwing GT clusterflock car, as shown in this thread:


I decided not to call it the Racer X project. It's name will be "The Banana" because it will be yellow on the outside and all white-ish on the inside. Charlie wants to call it the Neon Banana, because of lighting mods I'll do to it, but let's call it The Banana for now. I just got it back from blasting and epoxy priming and it is now at the body shop for putty and paint. I should probably have waited until it came back from the shop all nice and puttied up and painted yellow, but I just couldn't wait to show you all how screwed up this car was.
It was 22* when the tow guy picked up the car. Holy cow it was cold. I took these pics as he was loading the car. These are the "10 footer" shots. It doesn't look too bad. They show that I chopped out the heater box for better engine access and modding and generally show that the car looks okay. The next post will show the Frankenstein pics....

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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15,126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Gordo's Banana: The Frankenstein pics
If someone had offered me this car looking like it does in the previous post and in the pics below, I wouldn't have paid $1 for it. Both front fenders had been sliced out and replaced, part of the left front headlight area replaced, and the front part of the driver's side rear fender from the rocker up to the rear side window was replaced. This was all done 25 years ago in Germany and was completely unknown by the seller or me until all the putty was blasted off. I chopped off the gullwing modded roof and replaced it with a normal GT roof and had to slice out 6" high metal boxes welded to the fronts and bottoms of both doorways to make the doors lighter and smaller, along with patch plates over the door latches and hinge openings. The doors were useless junk and were thrown away. The costs so far are $750 for various towings, $300 for welding, I think $300 for new doors, and $1500 for the blast and prime. We'll see what the body shop charges me for putty and paint.

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
So, there's nothing to be proud about with this car, at this point. It's just a normal GT that has been pieced together with body panels from multiple other GTs. Any pride I achieve will come later when the body putty and paint cover up all the "stitches" and I do some cool mods to the parts I'll install on it. With some luck, no non-Opeler who hasn't seen these pics will know that I rescued a disaster car.

:)
 

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Solo II is fun in a GT!
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I applaud your candor and honesty in showing the banana's scars/ stitches, warts and all.
 

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I had to look at the title a couple times LOL I'm sure the moderator's will as well reminded me of my thread (an adventure into my rear end) LOL it's coming along Gordon there's never anything pretty about it in the beginning. You do what it takes to get it done and as we used to jokingly say in the home building practice Take pride in what you hide and put the lipstick on the pig later LOL
 

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Detritus Maximus
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So, there's nothing to be proud about with this car, at this point. It's just a normal GT that has been pieced together with body panels from multiple other GTs.

:)
I might disagree....no matter the reason, you've saved a car that at one point you seemed to believe was unsavable.
This is something on par with rescuing a failed v8 swap car.
Not many people would do it.
 
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Thanks for the photos, I needed to see the heater box area.
 

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Gordon, the pictures are not the finished product. I know you well enough to know that you will turn out something that will be the envy of many on this forum. How do I know? Because I have seen you GT's and there is not one that people would not be proud to own. Keep us posted with the progress of your GT.

Bob
 

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1970 Opel Gt - Purchased July 1972 - Chartreuse - restored - 3000 miles as of 02-16, 2021 -
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Good luck Gordon. Unlike many Opel buyer's/owners you now know exactly what you got...No surprises down the road. And the beauty of that is when it comes back from the shop nice and smooth with a new coat of paint then you have a perfect blank slate, a new car, with which to begin your project. I have never seen a car stripped down and primed and painted everywhere possible inside and out, that is pretty cool. Looking forward, as I feel sure many do, to taking that journey with you and both reading and seeing your progress and the new things/modifications that you plan to do. Makes me want to start a new project myself, but instead I will just enjoy watching you.
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It's actually an adventure for me. I never had to do anything like this to a car. I always had GT's that SOMEONE ELSE went to a whole lot of trouble to fix up. Like I say to many people all the time: Stop the oxygen and you stop the rust. As long as your car is sealed from the atmosphere and you keep after little nicks and chips, there's no reason it can't last forever. This car will never see a rainy day under my watch and it will be protected from the morning dew in my garage, so it should stay pretty good for a long time. It was indoors in Opels Unlimited's showroom for about 18 of the last 23 years and that's one reason it had so little rust. 90% of the rust it did have was on the roof mod and the on the mod metal I cut out of the doorways.

I didn't do the bodywork on my GTX car, but it MUST have at least 2 gallons of putty on it. That's just the nature of a heavily modded car, so I don't fear well-applied putty. The important part is: Don't sand off that nice lead paint that has kept your car rust free for 50 years. Only remove what you need to. There's nothing wrong with putting paint on top of paint on top of paint, etc. Doing so actually stops the oxygen. I've been told by OGTS that all those gorgeous better-than-perfect Opels that you see the Germans have at shows are actually covered with putty AND they have plenty of Frankenstein body panel replacements. They just never dare show pictures of all that stuff. I could have kept these pictures secret. I thought about it. But I always lay all my cards on the table when I show you what I do to my cars. I show you my mistakes and misfires and my successes.

Hopefully in a month or so you'll see my success.......after my mistake buying this car.

:)
 

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Thanks I forget to post my car, most people in Ga. have seen it....... slower cars have seen the rear . I did this body work in the '70s and added the Buick mirrors in the '90s. I have changed the front driving lights to the new style that OGTS sells. In 2000 I added the rear LED lights so car signals could be seen.
John AKA Guyopel
I bought this car new in 1970 (added the '73 rear windows in '78).
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Holy COW! You did those body mods in the SEVENTIES?????!!!!!!!!!! And they're still holding up! Amazing! WOW!
 

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I had to look at the title a couple times LOL I'm sure the moderator's will as well reminded me of my thread (an adventure into my rear end) LOL it's coming along Gordon there's never anything pretty about it in the beginning. You do what it takes to get it done and as we used to jokingly say in the home building practice Take pride in what you hide and put the lipstick on the pig later LOL
I snickered when I read the title as well. I just wasn't going to be the first one to say anything. Whole new meaning to the Racer X thing.
 

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Living in the past
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It's actually an adventure for me. I never had to do anything like this to a car. I always had GT's that SOMEONE ELSE went to a whole lot of trouble to fix up. Like I say to many people all the time: Stop the oxygen and you stop the rust. As long as your car is sealed from the atmosphere and you keep after little nicks and chips, there's no reason it can't last forever. This car will never see a rainy day under my watch and it will be protected from the morning dew in my garage, so it should stay pretty good for a long time. It was indoors in Opels Unlimited's showroom for about 18 of the last 23 years and that's one reason it had so little rust. 90% of the rust it did have was on the roof mod and the on the mod metal I cut out of the doorways.

I didn't do the bodywork on my GTX car, but it MUST have at least 2 gallons of putty on it. That's just the nature of a heavily modded car, so I don't fear well-applied putty. The important part is: Don't sand off that nice lead paint that has kept your car rust free for 50 years. Only remove what you need to. There's nothing wrong with putting paint on top of paint on top of paint, etc. Doing so actually stops the oxygen. I've been told by OGTS that all those gorgeous better-than-perfect Opels that you see the Germans have at shows are actually covered with putty AND they have plenty of Frankenstein body panel replacements. They just never dare show pictures of all that stuff. I could have kept these pictures secret. I thought about it. But I always lay all my cards on the table when I show you what I do to my cars. I show you my mistakes and misfires and my successes.

Hopefully in a month or so you'll see my success.......after my mistake buying this car.

:)
I don't know anyone that dislikes bodywork any more than I do, I do not have the eye or feel to tell when a panel is straight of smooth enough for paint. I have been around a long time and I have known some very talented body people and talented painters. Gordo's GT looks like a seabag full of chipping hammers, we used to say in the Navy and I do not envy his task of taking that sow's ear and making it into a silk purse. If you are going to work on a project such as that you have to know your limitations and ability, when I first became interested in cars, bodywork was done using lead as a filler which required special tools and lots of filing and feeling ( very few body people even have lead tools, let alone know how to use them) next came plastic body filler (bondo) but surface prep is by far the most important factor no matter what filler you use. The best filler I have ever seen used is a product called "Tiger hair" it is like bondo with fiberglass mixed in it and when it dries it is a real pain to sand because it gets harder than Chinese Arithmatic but applied to a properly prepared surface it works wonders. I guess what I am saying is if you want a good paint job, be patient, make sure you use good materials, be talented a nd have a proper space to get it done, If not hire people that have those talents and a place to do it properly and the place to do it properly. Use your time to located such people, be prepared to pay for their talent and do the things that you can do without making yourself crazy and not being happy with the finished product.
 

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My Dad had a body shop and I have his "leading tools".
Many of the body repair products have improved as well as paint
 

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That has to be some of the WORST welding on body panels I have ever seen.
Not even ground down or hammered smooth. Guy needs to stay away from body work on threat of execution!
 
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