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Pulling the body off...

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I'm almost ready to pull the body off my 1950 Olds 88. I plan on builiding a dolly for it out of a few 4x4's and heavy duty casters so I can easily move it around while I work on the frame and drivetrain. At this point I have removed all the body bolts and disconnected everything that connects the body to frame (brake, throttle, shift linkage / wiring harness / e-brake cable / fuel line and tank...)

My plan is to lift the body off with two, 1-ton cable hoists. I can attach a heavy duty rope around the two body mounts at the firewall but the back does not seem so obvious.

Is there a "best" way to lift the rear of the body up that would not overly stress the body? The car is very solid with little rust. Trunk floor is completely intact and quarters are solid. I was thinking about inserting a 4x4 inside the trunk that extended into the rear quarters close to the trunk hinges and lift in the center. My concern is damaging metal that has managed to go undamaged for 60 years.

Or, should I be looking at a jacking method instead. I was thinking I could lift each side a few inches with a floor jack, place blocks between body and frame until it is high enough to insert 2 4x4's parallel with frame and two perpendicular that would stick out past the overall width of the car. I could then continue jacking until it is high enough to roll the frame out and put 2 heavy casters on each perpendicular 4x4.

Steering column? I have never removed one. Can this be easily detached from the steering box. I have the shop manual but it does not go into any detail and it has many decades of grease on it. I would prefer to leave the steering column in the car and not get involved in taking it completely out if I don't need too. I plan on dealing with that when I get to the interior overhaul.

Any suggestions are welcome and don't worry I realize they all come with a disclaimer :-)

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  • 3 weeks later...

When I pulled the body off of my 42 Dynamic we used two long 2x6s and used 2 floor jacks and cinder blocks to jack it and block it etc then rolled the frame out from under it. I took the steering column out of it first. On the 42 was not a big deal. Once the body was complete stripped, 4 people (one on each corner) could easily pick it up. Thats how i got it on the trailer to take to my body man.

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I did something similar. I fit 4x4's just behind the rocker panels. After raising it about a foot I added two more 4x4's perpendicular to the first set. After rolling the frame out I attached 4 heavy duty casters to the the 4x4's and rolled it out of the way. It's sitting in the driveway for the time being until I get the frame and drivetrain done. A few pictures attached if anyone is interested.






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i use and engine hoist to lift the body, put the front up on 45 gal drums, with a 4x4, and the back just left the hoist, as i was swapping frame for frame, already had a completly restored, running frame,, Its best if you remove the stearing colume thought,, or at least pull the wheel off, and the outer colume, then remove all but one bolt on the steering box , this way the steering shaft will drop down towards the seat, and done have to raise the body so much,,



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