Page Title: BODY PARTS Sheet Metal NEW

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Our sheet metal parts with the exception of the patch panels are from Nissan unless specified otherwise. Sheet metal components from most car manufacturers are not usually "bolt-on-and-paint". Nissan parts from the 60's are far more "finished" than some other manufacturers I have seen, but there is still lots of finish work to be done on seams, getting the headlight scoops to fit properly etc. I have also noticed differences in where the mounting holes in the front fenders are drilled. Since the new inner fenders do not come drilled I don' t think they considered this a problem as when the fender was mounted you'd just drill through wherever the fender hole was. A little bit more work when you are installing a new fender on to an inner fender that is ALREADY installed on a car!

Although the parts are durable when installed on a car, when they are loose they are easily susceptible to damage. They were not stored in the best way or the best environment. I was able to see one original storage container that came to us via ocean shipment. The crate itself barely survived. What this translates to is body panels having some sort of damage. This ranges from very typical little dings to multiple small dents, creases, or a major problem. Rear fenders, doors and hoods survived very well for major damage, but various dings and creases from meeting a "sister" are common. Front fenders took a real beating. Out of a crate of 20 we would classify 5 as great, 5 as "condition 3's", (major defect) the other 10 in between. You have to remember that these are "NOS" PARTS (New OLD Stock), they're "NEW" but they have been in storage for 40 years. If they get to be $2000 a piece, they will STILL have dings and creases. If you are replacing a part it should be because yours is crushed or bondo'd up or rusted out. If you're looking for a mint ding free new body panel you've chosen the wrong vehicle manufacturer.

Sheet metal parts on the New Sheet Metal Page are the best of the bunch. and would only have small dings and creases which seem to be present on almost every sheet metal part. These are the parts we used to call "Condition 0" or "Condition 1". The parts listed in the "Odds and Ends" sections have what we consider to be damage. In the past we had to rely on sending you a general description of damage conditions and how we judge and price the fenders. We tried to if anything overstate the damage to avoid people being unhappy. This scared some people off unless they were in the local area and could view the part. We very rarely lost a sale when someone saw the part. With the advent of email and this online catalog we will begin taking detailed photographs of some of the parts and putting the parts and photos up on the "Odds and Ends" pages and/or emailing the photos to you directly. You can then see the defects that we see. This is somewhat of a time consuming endeavor, but it seems to making things easier for our customers and ourselves.

Front fenders were stored stacked on top of each other as they "nest" together pretty well. What happens is that the vertical brace on the rear inside of the fender rests on the outside of another fender. After you get 6-7 of them and start bouncing them around during movement, a crease develops on the underside fender.

Rear center panels (the panel between the taillights) were stored stacked on top of each other so that the support for the trunk latch from the panel above rested on the panel below. This makes an indentation behind where the license plate is. Almost all of the panels have this to some extent. Click on the part number to see example pictures.

Hoods are stronger then front fenders when "loose" so they are pretty good. They still can have a ding or small dent where the next hood hit them during their early life.

Surface Coating on New Parts

Sheet metal parts may come with grey, black or red (ruddy brown) primer. Whatever we have is what we will ship. Unless part number starts with DU or DN the picture is generic (just a sample of any one of the parts we have or had in stock) Although these parts were all primer coated by the factory, primer wasn't intended to be a 45 year preservative. What this means is that the panels show rust discoloration or surface rust. On most fenders there isn't much of a problem yet, it seems to be present on hoods to a much greater degree. A lot of the hoods have some amount of surface rust. The 65-67 hoods many times have a lot of surface rust; not as much on most of the 67.5-70 hoods. A lot of the 65-67 hood; because of the age and primer technology available in 1965 have surface rust over most of their surfaces. The Nissan parts were made just too far in the past to not have this be the case.

ANY PART CAN HAVE SURFACE RUST ON IT!!! Any area not sandable should be reshot with something current that stops the rust process. Regardless of what does or does not show, I'd recommend you sand these down COMPLETELY anyway. Primer quality has improved in the last 45 years and old primer can hide rust underneath. Primer is not preservative and I'm quite sure Nissan didn't think these parts or cars would be around 40-50 years later. Having the parts dipped in a stripping solution does the best job; but that also can remove filler that was applied at the factory and will have to be reapplied. Discuss this with your Auto Body Shop.


Before we get to what year's parts "fit" on what year's cars; and how you can use one year's parts for another years; I'd like to discuss the fit situation in general.

First off; although these are original NISSAN parts; they are not MACHINED parts that go on another MACHINED part. They also are not "stamped" parts; at least not by today's standards. Yes they were "stamped" but a bit more crudely than modern parts are. In addition most of the panels, fenders, doors, hoods are composed of many panels that were then spot welded or seam welded together to make what you see as the completed panel.

I do not think Nissan's tooling jigs were all that accurate either; or maybe not maintained. I've seen a lot variances in parts. New inner front fenders were not pre drilled to hang the fender. Easy when inner and outer fender are both new on the assembly line; just hang fender where you want and drill through both panels. Instant perfect fit! You may find the situation a little bit off when hanging another "new" fender. It is not usually much of a problem to "adjust" the holes in inner fender. (new fenders come with holes predrilled). The pieces of the front fender near the headlight are sometimes no where near being finished. Basically what I am trying to say here is do not think you are going to take a new fender and just bolt it on and start shooting the primer and paint! True I have hung a few where that HAS almost worked out; but not often. I've seen far worse from some other vehicle manufacturers; and have heard worse things from body guys. One told me he wished he could buy all the PIECES that make a fender for a certain British car and he'd assemble them HIMSELF...

The area around the headlights can vary; and the headlight scoop trims vary; so always fit those pieces BEFORE painting.

Typically the older production parts are better in this regard; which is what we have as far as sheet metal parts go. The worst problems were on the latest production fenders from about 1980 when Nissan reproduced some items.

What Fits What

Although the roadsters were changed fairly often, some of the differences were subtle, and can be worked around to use a lower cost part or in some cases the only available part. A lot of information on "what fits what" will be covered in our next print catalog, and somewhat on the individual parts pages for each part. Not all of the different year parts are available so many times it's necessary to improvise. Nissan itself even did this with their parts supply. We have some fenders that the factory modified by welding up sidelight holes, or even welding on an entire other flare.

Holes for side moulding may or may not be present in doors and fenders.

Front Fenders vary in the size of the flare, the park light hole, and what the shape of the side marker light hole is, if any. Emblem holes, (if predrilled), may be different on some years. Some fenders were drilled for other countries or not drilled at all. Although some people feel the shape of the rear upper end of the fenders where they hit the cowl and upper part of the door is different between 68-70 and older cars, there seems to be as much difference between one 68 fender to another 68 or from one 67 1/2 fender to another 67 1/2 as there is between a 67 1/2 and a 68! The rear most part of the 63-64 and 65 1500 fenders differ, although NOS replacement fenders have had only one of the styles for at least 28 years. (Pics and Info) Fenders depending on production run also can vary around headlight area as well. It was not intentional, they just vary due to inadequate quality control. The headlight rims themselves can vary a lot. Always fit the headlight scoop to the fender before painting the fender. Don't assume the mounting holes (if they are already there) for the headlight scoop trims are in the best place. I did have a body shop tell me one time it was easy to flare the 1500 fender into a medium flare 65-67 1600 fender than it was to "deflare" a later fender to work on the earlier 1600. But that was just one person's opinion.

Rear Fenders vary in the size of the flare, the type of rear door post attached (if any) and the undercar portion that fits against the trunk floor. This last aspect is not much to worry about as body shops can deal with the changes without much work. If the fender is being changed due to rust or accident (instead of just for the fun of it!), they will have to do much more work than this. The 69-70 fenders have a hole for the bumper end rubber that the older cars don't have. They also have side marker light holes, round on the 69, rectangular on the 70. As with the front fenders, the 67 1/2-70 has the larger flare, 65-67 1600 has a smaller one and the 1500 a little smaller yet. The 68-70 door posts are all the same.

Hoods vary in the bolt pattern of the latch, the location and type of mounting bracket for the hood support, and the shape of the "scoop" which determines which trim piece fits it. And please see "surface coating" above. The 1500 can use the 65 1600 hood but the emblem holes will only match the 65 1500 that had the individual letters; you'd have to fill them if you want to redrill and install your 63-64 emblem.

Doors are tougher to "cheat" with. You can use 65-67 doors on a 67 1/2 if you modify the door post to accept the different latch but it can be difficult to get everything lined up properly. You can however use the outer skin from a 65-67 on a 67 1/2 and vice versa.

Rear Center Panels vary by the angle of the license plate area. Later (68-70) cars had this area modified so license plate was mounted more vertically. The 69 and 70 panels have the two license light holes in them. The panel for the 63-64 has no provision to mount a trunk lock since those cars had the lock in the trunk handle. In some cases, on 65-67 vs 67 1/2's the emblem holes may be different. Otherwise, any panel can be FORCED to work. It is actually quite common to see this and other "mistakes" on cars, up to and including mismatched rear flares as in the old days when a car was hit, a body shop would just call up a wrecking yard and get a fender, or the Datsun dealer would order the wrong one. (The Nissan parts book is somewhat of a disaster sometimes as to what's what) Apparently no one noticed that the one they were getting was different.

Front Aprons come in two types, little vent holes and big vent holes. In an attempt (probably) to increase cooling, the vent holes were enlarged. Either one of the two panels can be used on any car. The small vents are of course much harder to find in a new part because all of the panels were superceded into the "improved" version when it became available with the introduction of the 1969 models.

As with everything, if you have any questions about a part, please ask.



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