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John Yoswick

John YoswickJohn Yoswick is a freelance automotive writer based in Portland, Oregon, who has been writing about the collision industry since 1988. He is the editor of the weekly CRASH Network (for a free 4-week trial subscription, visit www.CrashNetwork.com).


He can be contacted at john@crashnetwork.com 

Tuesday, 08 March 2022 14:42

Examples Demonstrate Problems with Collision Techs Making Repair ‘Presumptions’

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Without checking OEM repair procedures, technicians might not realize the sectioning procedures for a front lower rail on a Ford Explorer may require making and rivet-bonding a panel over the welded area. Without checking OEM repair procedures, technicians might not realize the sectioning procedures for a front lower rail on a Ford Explorer may require making and rivet-bonding a panel over the welded area.

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A presentation at the Collision Industry Conference (CIC) earlier this year included a number of examples of vehicle repairs that could easily be done incorrectly if a technician makes presumptions about the process based on past experience rather than carefully following the OEM procedures.

Scott VanHulle, manager of I-CAR's Repairability Technical Support and OEM Technical Relations, cited a Silverado box side installed at the factory with 10 welds.

 

“In the repair, you’re only putting seven in,” VanHulle said. “Where those three extra welds were, they want you to put crash-toughened adhesive in there. If you were to get to this point and only then realize you need to have crash-toughened adhesive, you’re going to have to remove that part that you already have partially installed because there’s no way to get the adhesive in there.”

 

Jason Bartanen of Collision Hub pointed to something similar with the lower outer rail on the Chevrolet Bolt.

 

“It’s attached [at the factory] with spot welds and MIG-brazed joints, essentially,” Bartanen said. “But when you do the replacement procedure, there’s adhesive, spot-welding, weld-bonding, rivets, rivet-bonding, plug welds and MIG-brazing. Seven different attachment methods on that one part that came from the factory with two attachment methods. So making an assumption that you know what you’re doing because you’ve been doing it for a long time is a very dangerous assumption to make.”

 

VanHulle also shared slides related to a sectioning procedures for a front lower rail on a Ford Explorer. One slide of the procedure he shared calls for MIG welding.

 

But in addition, he said, depending on which of two zones is being repaired, “you actually have to make these panels out of the service part that you have to rivet bond over the top of the area you just welded. So when you’re doing the repair planning, if you just quickly go through that procedure, you might think, ‘Oh we just need to weld it.’ Well, no, you have to make these parts. You have to do the rivets. So if you’re not truly understanding the procedure, and have those rivets in-stock, there’s no way the technician is going to...


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