I'm just looking for some opinions regarding both manufacturers.
I have purchased a couple of A pillar repair panels for a Mk 1 Escort from Magnum and was disappointed with the quality, although they were cheap at 40-odd quid each.
So, I though I'd push the boat out and splash out on the Expressed ones, presuming they must be loads better given the price 240quid each!!
Well, they have turned up and disappintingly are barely better than the magnum ones.
This thing is, I am probably looking to get a couple of quarters and a couple of sills but I'm reluctant to given the state of these.
Any experience with quarters from Expressed? I want to get the best regardless of cost, however I'm now thinking I will just go with the Magnum ones given they are 500 cheaper than the Expressed.
I have a very poor experience with Expressed - on a different Ford model over 6 panels - obvious mistakes & very poor fitting given the expensive price of the panels in the first place - they can't even be bothered to respond to my E Mail when I complained - It's not has though I don't know what I am doing either - I have only been professionally restoring classics / retro's for the last 40 years
1973 Rover 3500 P6 Auto - 23k miles - All original 1937 Jowett 8 HP Saloon - In many, many pieces 1951 Jowett Jupiter - In more pieces than the 8 HP 1952 Jowett Javelin - In regular use jowett.org/ 1954 Jowett Jupiter - Complete - future restoration project 2000 P38 Range Rover 4.0 SE - Daily / Tow vehicle www.flatcapclassiccars.co.uk
Go for the cheaper ones. You will have to 'fit' either panel so you may as well try the cheaper ones first. People expect panels to fit out the box but they rarely do.
Even today cars are built to crap tolerances and dies change over the life of the model.
I've very rarely had a genuine wing not fit out of the box. My 106 wings went on fine, as have parts onto my dad's moderns when it's been tapped. Mk3 Mondeo bumper and tailgate (secondhand) went on fine, as did the crash bar.
Crap tolerances? You are aware that manufacturers individually measure the shell clearances on engines, and match a graded bearing to that particular journal, to keep it in a tolerance window. Yeah, the tolerances are crap. Yes, dies change, but not as badly as that I doubt, from what I've seen anyway.
Pattern body panels? Plenty. You can't expect a panel to line up when let's say: -The swage line matches -The top of the wing is too low and rubbing everywhere -The wing gap to the bonnet waves in and out like an ocean wave -The lower panel sits higher than the mounting point should be, meaning any panel going on top it (W124 Sacco panel for example) won't fit right anyway, so that's another thing to chase.
My MGB ones had my painter saying the same thing (I've never seen a Sebring wing fitted right that was FG despite what the owners say compared to genuine steel items).
But then, what seems 'mint' to some people seems like a piece of crap to others . One man's orange peel is another man's glossy finish.
Sure, it can be done, but you'd be much better off getting a better panel. At a bodyshop, you'd probably end up saving the cash.