I have always wanted to try body work and I thought this cafe project would be a good place to start. The tank was in pretty good shape overall although it did have 2 holes (but...I was responsible for them). I was able to MIG weld them up (which was interesting because you never know if you got all the gas/fumes out of the tank until you put a big spark near it). No issues though. I took a piece of solid pipe and ground it down to resemble a small ball peen hammer and made some bends in it and stuck it in the tank and hammered out the bigger dents. This was a process and took 2 people (one to hold the tank while I was beating on it). I thought it was pretty close and time to start in with the body filler. I bought a DA sander, some sand paper, and filler and...dove in. I actually started on some small dents first to get a feel for things before moving to bigger dents and more areas as I figured out how much time I had before the filler started setting up.
I started filling in the area around the filler neck but am still not sure I like it this way.
This is pretty much done near the filler area. I still need to do a bit more work where the neck and tank actually join but...I may end up taking all of this back off.
The left side of the tank was the worst side for sure. So I was kind of curios if I could get it to start taking the shape I was after before starting on the right side (which I know will be more cooperative). It will be easier to throw this tank away if I've only worked on one side.
I'm pretty amazed with how this looks. This was after an hour of shaping. The DA sander I have is a 5" one and it is extremely hard to get it in the knee dent and hit only areas that you want to target. I ended up doing a fair amount of hand sanding here. It's so hard to get a good picture of this process but the area at the front of this knee dent (where the stock tank badge used to mount) was the worst. I think it's gonna come out looking ok though. Sometimes the sun truly does shine on a dog's ass.
Body work is not easy. And it's super messy. I wish it was warm out so that I could do this out in the driveway. Right now I have things set up right at the garage door and I open the door when sanding to get as much dust out as possible. Even with good masks, this only helps a little. People that do this for a living as truly artists. More to come although, I am sick now but it will be hard for me to have a week off work and not be in the garage to continue on this.