I got into a really bad wreck last winter. My power steering was leaking and had locked up in the middle of an icy road, while I was trying to find a median at night. The guy hit me going around 70 miles an hour but I was able to redirect the momentum and ended up repairing it and redoing my front end as well. I had to replace the trailing arm, upper control arm and beat the dent out with a 2x4, car jack, and a big hammer, with some coolant hoses to spread the force evenly when using the car jack. I smoothed it out most of the way by heating it with a propane torch and having someone hold a plate on the other side while i flattened it with the hammer. There's a lot to learn when it comes to undoing a collision but I've never really understood what a body puller does and I was wondering if anybody knows what kind of tools I might be able to get access to finish the job on my own.

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    What aluminum are you talking about? Last time I checked, aluminum doesn't rust. As for the question, looks like you have a good start on getting it fixed, but realistically, getting a replacement quarter is a much more realistic option as you'll spend way more time repairing this by using the hammer/dolly method, than you would by cutting the old off and welding a replacement in place. Just saying. Commented Jan 7, 2015 at 14:19
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    Judging by the activity in other questions, this guy's trolling: mechanics.stackexchange.com/questions/14899/… , mechanics.stackexchange.com/a/14900/675
    – Zaid
    Commented Jan 7, 2015 at 15:46
  • So are you saying that's a steel body? I never really thought of that. Anyways as far as I've gotten I'm worried that cutting and rewelding may cause a weakness or lead to other problems. I'm talking about the crease around the top of the brake light. There's also a spot along the body seam refer to first picture, that I didn't spend enough time on. Are there any machines that can do that kind of detailed reshaping? Something that small? Because they sure should make one. Something mounted to a track that could swivel and swing into different small areas, maybe using friction for heating sourc Commented Jan 8, 2015 at 2:51
  • The panel goes over the door and makes up the rest of the door frame, stopping at the side mirror. How hard would it be to remove that. I know there are spot welds in the back that could be drilled out. But how is that door frame held in place? I know it can't just be adhesive. It's a 1998 Civic EX. Commented Jan 8, 2015 at 2:54
  • You only cut away and replace what you need. If you have no experience with this type of work, you should leave it to a professional. In this case, though, it would be cut to match and butt welded to mate, then welds ground down to leave the metal flawless. Then you put a thin (very thin) coat of body putty over it to ensure the entire surface looks like new. If you have to put more than an 1/8" of body putty on it, you still have some metal work to do. You only use it to get rid of the high spots. Lots of fun: lots of work. Commented Jan 24, 2015 at 18:00

1 Answer 1


Short strand fibreglass and Bondo would be the easiest option for you, I bet.

Alternatively, use a dolly and hammer. On top of that you can use a shrink disc from Wolfes Metal.

  • I really like the shrink disc method video. Nice trick. Commented Jan 6, 2016 at 17:57

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