Using sheet metal parts for cars

In Florida, car restoration is a popular pastime, for both the retired community cherishing their vintage wheels, and for those looking to revisit a period of classic auto craftsmanship. With an increasing number of retired car aficionados, muscle car restorations are projects requiring different types of parts and materials. Auto body sheet metal combines raw materials like plate metal, expanded metal, cold-, mild-, and hot-rolled steel, and uses tools like welding wires and rods, castings, fittings, and more. These Florida car restoration projects demand high productivity at a low cost with reliable results. That means the auto body sheet metal being created needs to meet certain standards of service. When used for muscle car restorations, auto body sheet metal needs to be able to resist corrosion, be durable enough to protect the car and resist dents, and have the best fuel economy.

Auto body sheet metal is manufactured to accomplish these goals, and more. Through efficient and precise metalworking procedures, the sheet metal is formed into thin pieces available in coiled strips or flat sheets, each applicable to different parts of a vehicle. Cutting these sheet metal parts to the right measurements requires using a tool called a gauge with larger numbers indicating thinner cut pieces. The gauge number often depends on what type of auto body sheet metal you are working with, what you’re looking to use the sheet metal parts for, and the type of cuts in the metal you’d like to make. The gauge cuts sheet metal parts based on average weight, which the manufacturer’s standard sets at 41.82 lbs. per square foot per inch thick, though this number can differ for iron-based and aluminum or brass metals.

Benefits of using sheet metal

Car body work requires the most cost-effective and reliable material if you want your muscle car restorations to be successful. Stainless steel and aluminum are two of the most popular materials used for auto body sheet metal. Their durability and reliability make them ideal for a forged sheet metal car body panel. Professional metalworkers can finish the material so it adheres to paint and resists corrosion. Each type of metal is assigned a different grade in accordance to their characteristics. Stainless steel sheet metal parts come in grade 304 (most commonly used, very formable and resistant to corrosion), 316 (resists corrosion at highly elevated temperatures and is often used for pumps and valves), and 410 (dull finish and lower corrosion resistance). Aluminum sheet metal parts, on the other hand, come in four common grades, ranging from pure aluminum to aluminum alloy, and vary in strength. Many make for great car body parts because they are chemical- and weather-resistant, easy to weld, and are also resistant to corrosion. These are highly important characteristics in auto body sheet metal because you’ll be out driving or showing your vehicle consistently. In Florida, car restoration needs to stand up against weather conditions; the state is known for treacherous weather conditions, requiring muscle car restorations to be done with sturdy, reliable materials.