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:::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?)

Posted By: NDL

:::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 04:37 AM

Hello Y'all!

I am a budget minded consumer, who owns a 2001 Ford Ranger base truck. The truck's got about 200k, but she runs well. Even so, she's a work truck, nothing fancy.

The portion of the rear quarter panel, immediately above the wheel lip, rusted through. I want to do something about this, such as to make the truck presentable looking, but I don't want to put lipstick on a pig.

One thought is that I could bide my time with a temporary fiberglass patch repair (which I would do myself), thinking that it might hold me over until I buy something newer. The other option is to have a panel patch welded on; the patch itself will run $75, but then there's the labor involved + having to grind the welds down, and repaint.

The shops around me are either of the low end Maaco variety, or top end shops which perform flawless repairs on late model cars. Unfortunately, we don't have a local shop that does decent, affordable, work. I am simply looking to make the truck look halfway presentable.

Does anyone have a ballpark range as to what it would cost to have a quarter panel patch welded in, and fresh paint? Again...I haven't approached any of the shops around town, as they would do a showroom style job, costing several thousand dollars. I figured maybe someone in the know might give me a ballpark figure to work around. I live just west of Charlotte, NC.

TIA
Posted By: fisher83

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 04:57 AM

If it were me, I wouldn’t bother with any of the options listed. Given that the truck is 18 years old with 200k I would probably just stick to minimal maintenance and not do any body work. With the current value of the truck any money spent sprucing it up won’t net a return when it is time to sell it or trade it in.
Posted By: Jethro_Bob

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 05:25 AM

At my local pick and pull a truck bed no lights or tailgate runs $150 plus tax. Idk about your area, but it might be a good option to look into.
Posted By: csandste

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 05:52 AM

Earl Scheib is long gone nationally, though a few stores remain as independents still carrying the name.

I was having dinner with someone tonight and we were talking about the joys of getting a cheap paint job on a beater. In the old days you'd get to pick from about ten standard colors, which of course eventually chipped off revealing the red spots under the new maroon paint. Door jams, and decent prep were not included.

If I were you, I'd get rid of that rust-- maybe a patch, maybe finding a pick and pull bed. I'd get the cheapest paint job I could wrangle. I'd pay a few hundred max. Do as much prep yourself as you can handle. In my day I got probably five different paint jobs, some in the seventies running thirty or forty bucks. Think I got some bodywork thrown in for well under $100. Don't think they ever painted my tires green but purists would cringe. Obviously prices aren't what they were a half century ago, but I still remember these crap paint jobs with certain fond memories.

Sort of the equivalent of throwing a bottle of Restore into an almost cooked engine and getting another year out of it.

Posted By: Dave9

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 07:31 AM

I'd need a picture, but considering the age of the vehicle you should be able to take a piece of sheet metal and beat it to a near enough shape, weld it on, plus filler.

If this is not DIY, yeah there's the labor. Things you can DIY with low skill and cost could look fine but won't last long term. If by the labor you meant the DIY labor then it's all about how much work you want to do for cosmetic reasons vs paying someone... same as always except this is elective surgery.

If you're really cheap but ambitious, you can completely remove the rusted metal and I mean completely, then lay down some fiberglass matting, epoxy resin, with a mesh or metal framework (riveted on if welding is beyond doing) if the gap is to large for the fiberglass to stay at the shape needed, and then body fill, primer and paint. It may not look perfect. Perfect costs $$$/$$$$, or a good eye for matching the contours and putting more on, multiple steps until you are satisfied and ready to paint.
Posted By: joekingcorvette

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 11:17 AM

I have had stuff like that repaired and it always comes back. Either get a new box or have the patch panel welded in and painted. Either way it's going to cost you quite a lot of money.
Posted By: Donald

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 11:31 AM

Originally Posted by NDL
Hello Y'all!

I am a budget minded consumer, who owns a 2001 Ford Ranger base truck. The truck's got about 200k, but she runs well. Even so, she's a work truck, nothing fancy.

The portion of the rear quarter panel, immediately above the wheel lip, rusted through. I want to do something about this, such as to make the truck presentable looking, but I don't want to put lipstick on a pig.

One thought is that I could bide my time with a temporary fiberglass patch repair (which I would do myself), thinking that it might hold me over until I buy something newer. The other option is to have a panel patch welded on; the patch itself will run $75, but then there's the labor involved + having to grind the welds down, and repaint.

The shops around me are either of the low end Maaco variety, or top end shops which perform flawless repairs on late model cars. Unfortunately, we don't have a local shop that does decent, affordable, work. I am simply looking to make the truck look halfway presentable.

Does anyone have a ballpark range as to what it would cost to have a quarter panel patch welded in, and fresh paint? Again...I haven't approached any of the shops around town, as they would do a showroom style job, costing several thousand dollars. I figured maybe someone in the know might give me a ballpark figure to work around. I live just west of Charlotte, NC.

TIA


I have found some "one man" body shops that will do rust repair at a reasonable cost. The large body shops are doing work for insurance claims and cannot be bothered.
Posted By: doitmyself

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 12:24 PM

Maybe investigate some somewhat attractive and affordable fender flares? Treat the rust to attempt to slow it down, slap on the flares, and call it good.

[Linked Image]
Posted By: NDL

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 12:47 PM

Originally Posted by csandste
Earl Scheib is long gone nationally, though a few stores remain as independents still carrying the name.

I was having dinner with someone tonight and we were talking about the joys of getting a cheap paint job on a beater. In the old days you'd get to pick from about ten standard colors, which of course eventually chipped off revealing the red spots under the new maroon paint. Door jams, and decent prep were not included.

If I were you, I'd get rid of that rust-- maybe a patch, maybe finding a pick and pull bed. I'd get the cheapest paint job I could wrangle. I'd pay a few hundred max. Do as much prep yourself as you can handle. In my day I got probably five different paint jobs, some in the seventies running thirty or forty bucks. Think I got some bodywork thrown in for well under $100. Don't think they ever painted my tires green but purists would cringe. Obviously prices aren't what they were a half century ago, but I still remember these crap paint jobs with certain fond memories.

Sort of the equivalent of throwing a bottle of Restore into an almost cooked engine and getting another year out of it.


Originally Posted by Dave9
I'd need a picture, but considering the age of the vehicle you should be able to take a piece of sheet metal and beat it to a near enough shape, weld it on, plus filler.

If this is not DIY, yeah there's the labor. Things you can DIY with low skill and cost could look fine but won't last long term. If by the labor you meant the DIY labor then it's all about how much work you want to do for cosmetic reasons vs paying someone... same as always except this is elective surgery.

If you're really cheap but ambitious, you can completely remove the rusted metal and I mean completely, then lay down some fiberglass matting, epoxy resin, with a mesh or metal framework (riveted on if welding is beyond doing) if the gap is to large for the fiberglass to stay at the shape needed, and then body fill, primer and paint. It may not look perfect. Perfect costs $$$/$$$$, or a good eye for matching the contours and putting more on, multiple steps until you are satisfied and ready to paint.


Originally Posted by joekingcorvette
I have had stuff like that repaired and it always comes back. Either get a new box or have the patch panel welded in and painted. Either way it's going to cost you quite a lot of money.


Originally Posted by doitmyself
Maybe investigate some somewhat attractive and affordable fender flares? Treat the rust to attempt to slow it down, slap on the flares, and call it good.

[Linked Image]


I want to thank everyone for their replies, and for the time y'all took to give me your opinions. You have all given me something to think about...

The fender flares were a good suggestion, but a decent set will run around $350, which I could otherwise use for a semi temporary repair.

The local Maaco shops are not well thought of, and Earl Scheib shops are sorely missed (my high school shop teacher had them paint his Nova, and they did a surprisingly good job).

Assuming that I put a fiberglass patch over the hole, (and I have enough skill such that I think it would look halfway decent), what do you think the average shop would charge me to hit that part of the quarter panel with paint? Or is it likely that most shops wouldn't be interested in half a--ing the quarter panel, which would leave me with a rattle can paint job?
Posted By: atikovi

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 12:49 PM

Spending money for cosmetics on a $1,000 truck doesn't make much sense. Plus DIY body repairs usually always look like crap. The fender flare suggestion is the best idea if it covers the rust spot. $160 on Ebay https://www.ebay.com/itm/For-1998-2...1?hash=item591a5f4561:g:sfMAAOSwyUtbdb34 Otherwise keep driving and save your money to put into your next truck.
Posted By: Donald

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 12:54 PM

are you saving for a new truck?
Posted By: Trav

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 01:04 PM

I would be more concerned with the frame on these.
Posted By: doitmyself

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 01:07 PM

If minimal expense is your goal, maybe after fiberglass repair could you do a faux fender flare with roll-on bed liner??
[Linked Image]
Posted By: Blkstanger

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 01:24 PM

If I were in your shoes I'd be on the lookout for a bed out of a wrecking yard in the same color. I pulled the bed off my old 1999 Ranger in under an hour by myself in my garage.
Posted By: 69GTX

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 02:37 PM

If you're up to the repair itself, why not a shot at the painting too? Pick up an inexpensive paint sprayer and compressor and give it a whirl. Lots of tips on line on how to do your first spray job.
Posted By: Snagglefoot

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 02:44 PM

+1 on the Fender flares. Go ahead and repair the rust to the best of your ability and if it looks bad, throw the flares on. Neighbour just put a set on. Looks good.
Posted By: 01rangerxl

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 02:59 PM

If the rust is bad enough to eat through the body, the truck had to have come from a Northern state. You may want to check things like the condition of the rear spring shackles, bumper mounting area, fuel tank straps, etc. before proceeding with repairing cosmetic issues.

It's usually pretty hard to find a replacement bed that is a good color match...even if the color is the same it's probably going to be noticeable that the bed has been changed without some paint work, at the very least a good buffing. Replacing the bed would be a good opportunity to clean up the frame on the truck and make any necessary repairs to the parts I mentioned above though.

There's probably nothing to lose by trying your fiberglass idea except some time and cost of materials if it doesn't work out. I'd just spray paint the finished repair.
Posted By: JLTD

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 03:34 PM

Originally Posted by Jethro_Bob
At my local pick and pull a truck bed no lights or tailgate runs $150 plus tax. Idk about your area, but it might be a good option to look into.


That was my first thought also, a donor vehicle.
Posted By: earlyre

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 05:07 PM

check with your local "career center/Vocational School/etc" they usually have an auto body program, and need vehicles for the kids to work on.
They normally have heavily discounted labor costs...
Posted By: NDL

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 07:20 PM

***


I hate not replying to each person individually, as I appreciate the time that each person has taken in offering a solution. I thank y'all for sharing your ideas.

Contacting the area vocational college was a great suggestion, but I had already done that, and they don't do body work on donor vehicles unfortunately.

The flares sounded like the best solution, but I didn't run with that, because I had seen flares costing several hundred dollars. Yet one poster (on this thread) came in around $150, which makes it a worthwhile solution.

The other thing is to patch it with fiberglass, and yes, maybe give the paint a whirl myself.

Again, thanks to all for your time.
Posted By: nthach

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 09:26 PM

If the local pick-your-part yard is nearby and having sale or has decent pricing, I'd look for a cancer-free bed and do a meticulous job rustproofing it with Fluid Film or the like.

If you don't care about aesthetics, you can patch it, what you can also do is use fiberglass cloth with some foil tape as a backing and try your best to contour to the panel. Build up the glass layers and use some kitty hair filler or plain-jane Bondo for final finishing and prime/paint it.
Posted By: DuckRyder

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 11:02 PM

[Linked Image]
Posted By: NDL

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/03/19 11:37 PM

Originally Posted by nthach
If the local pick-your-part yard is nearby and having sale or has decent pricing, I'd look for a cancer-free bed and do a meticulous job rustproofing it with Fluid Film or the like.

If you don't care about aesthetics, you can patch it, what you can also do is use fiberglass cloth with some foil tape as a backing and try your best to contour to the panel. Build up the glass layers and use some kitty hair filler or plain-jane Bondo for final finishing and prime/paint it.


That's a great suggestion, thank you

Originally Posted by DuckRyder
[Linked Image]


Bingo! That's exactly what I was looking for...thank you!
Posted By: GMBoy

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/04/19 03:53 AM

Search car-part.com and see if there is a good whole bed available in your color. Probably be about $500 and an hour or two to change it out. I just swapped out a bed for a guy's 2000 S10 pickup and we found the same color used in good condition for $500 and when swapped looked like it belonged there all the time...paint age and normal wear was all the same.
Posted By: NDL

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/05/19 12:37 AM

Originally Posted by GMBoy
Search car-part.com and see if there is a good whole bed available in your color. Probably be about $500 and an hour or two to change it out. I just swapped out a bed for a guy's 2000 S10 pickup and we found the same color used in good condition for $500 and when swapped looked like it belonged there all the time...paint age and normal wear was all the same.


Thank you for your suggestion, which I will take into consideration
Posted By: JHZR2

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/05/19 01:56 AM

I wouldn’t do fiberglass since it’s an exposed, visible part. If it were in the bed I’d think differently.

I’d suck it up with getting a patch welded in and paint reasonably well matched. Or else I’d let it rot and be saving for a new truck. It all depends upon how much you like the truck...

The replacement bed is a great idea, but it’s a lot of logistics to make it work... I’d consider that option first honestly, but you could waste a lot of time in search and I don’t know that it’s a great use of your time unless there’s a bunch of pick and pulls or used parts distributors around.
Posted By: NDL

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/05/19 05:06 AM

Originally Posted by JHZR2
I wouldn’t do fiberglass since it’s an exposed, visible part. If it were in the bed I’d think differently.

I’d suck it up with getting a patch welded in and paint reasonably well matched. Or else I’d let it rot and be saving for a new truck. It all depends upon how much you like the truck...

The replacement bed is a great idea, but it’s a lot of logistics to make it work... I’d consider that option first honestly, but you could waste a lot of time in search and I don’t know that it’s a great use of your time unless there’s a bunch of pick and pulls or used parts distributors around.


I thank you for both your time and opinion.

***

Swapping beds is more work than what I want to get into right now...do you have any idea what a welder would charge to weld a patch into the quarter panel? The patch itself runs $55 plus shipping, and if I have it welded into place, it would be a big improvement over what I have currently.

The other question would be: how would I treat the welds? I know that I would have to grind them down, but what method would be most effective?

Thanks in advance
Posted By: JHZR2

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/05/19 01:19 PM

Originally Posted by NDL
Originally Posted by JHZR2
I wouldn’t do fiberglass since it’s an exposed, visible part. If it were in the bed I’d think differently.

I’d suck it up with getting a patch welded in and paint reasonably well matched. Or else I’d let it rot and be saving for a new truck. It all depends upon how much you like the truck...

The replacement bed is a great idea, but it’s a lot of logistics to make it work... I’d consider that option first honestly, but you could waste a lot of time in search and I don’t know that it’s a great use of your time unless there’s a bunch of pick and pulls or used parts distributors around.


I thank you for both your time and opinion.

***

Swapping beds is more work than what I want to get into right now...do you have any idea what a welder would charge to weld a patch into the quarter panel? The patch itself runs $55 plus shipping, and if I have it welded into place, it would be a big improvement over what I have currently.

The other question would be: how would I treat the welds? I know that I would have to grind them down, but what method would be most effective?

Thanks in advance



It’s not the welding and welds that are the issue. It’s the prep and paint after. A pickup bed shouldn’t have much in the way of closed off areas; notionally accessing from behind once done to treat, paint, etc. should be straightforward. It’s getting it to look reasonably presentable that’s the challenge.
Posted By: DuckRyder

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/05/19 01:39 PM

To some extent the answer depends on exactly where the rust is and how bad.

My Ranger has a partial wheelhouse inside the fender. It extends from the lip to the inner bedside in the area above the wheel. I’d hazard a guess that this is where the rust is from it becoming packed with mud, snow, salt and other detritus and not getting cleaned out. I suspect this partial wheelhouse will need to be repaired as well. Is this included in the patch panel?

It's also possible you could avoid the welding entirely and install this patch panel using Lord Fuzor or similar panel bonding agent.

Still, you are going to have several hundred dollars (and at least a day labor) in this by the time you have done it.

IMO the replacement bed of same color and flares are both more expedient, and possibly more cost cost effective solutions. Particularly if you could find used OE flares off of a sport or edge.
Posted By: NDL

Re: :::Thoughts (Should I Put In For A New Quarter Panel?) - 05/06/19 04:30 PM

Thanks to all who replied.

You have all given me much to think about, and if I go ahead with any kind of repair, I will post the results on this thread (should any future poster look to do a similar repair).

Again...thanks to all who shared their knowledge and time.
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