Miles Cook
May 30, 2007
Photos By: Donald Farr

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"The metal used in the making of these bodies is modern 1006 steel, which has lower impurities and controlled carbon content. The more consistent metallurgy allows the different size (thickness) steel to weld together with better penetration due to such a similar structure.

"We also use modern welding equipment and techniques that do a superior job of permanently bonding the metal together. We have had tests done that show the metal fails before the welds, and we already know that the metal is better to begin with. There are at least 20 percent more spot welds on our body shells than Ford used to assemble the original cars. In places where we feel wire welding is needed, we use that method instead of spot welds.

"On the occasions where SAE gauge metal doesn't transition to exact thickness of metric equivalents (by 0.1mm increments), we automatically round up to the next tenth of a millimeter. In many cases, such as with the floorpan, we add an additional 0.1mm of thickness after the rounding up. That's on a large structural part that adds rigidity to the entire unibody. We have also added to the roof panel, firewall, and quarter-panels using the 'round-up-plus' technique.

"We have made certain parts of the body considerably thicker because we thought it would be a good thing to do. Throughout the years, we have seen a lot of metal failures. Some were because the metal wasn't strong enough in a certain situation. Areas such as the trunk drop off, the rear crossrail, and the radiator support weren't very thick from the factory, but they are on these body shells.

"We also applied structural improvements from subsequent years and retrofitted them to the Dynacorn '67. The dual torque boxes and reinforced trunk-hinge arms are from the '68 models. The extra-wide-and now extra-thick-big-block-type shock tower braces from '69-'70 are installed on the shock towers to help prevent cracking of the towers. We also use the second-design door hinges, not the early '67-style.

"Another key upgrade is the one-piece seat platform in the floorpan. The part is designed after the convertible seat platform that runs from rocker panel to rocker panel and is welded all the way across the transmission hump. With the added steel thickness, this part becomes the stoutest gusset in the whole body and ties the rocker panels together at the center of the car."