Last month we explained how to properly remove a quarter-panel so thatas much of the original factory look as possible could be preserved. Infact, when this work is done correctly, no one should be able to tellthat the quarter was ever replaced. No telltale scars should show. Notonly that, but the new panel should survive at least as long as theoriginal.

As you saw last month, removing the cancerous part always uncovers moreareas that need proper treatment. There's hidden rust, dirt, debris, andold undercoating that needs attended to. You do not want these things tocontaminate all your hard work and cause the body to reject your newpanel. Take the time and spend the effort to treat these areas, and youshould never have to be concerned about a relapse again.

No two cars were assembled exactly the same. In fact, the same car isnot the same from one side to the other. Everything wasn't intended tobe perfect, it just had to be within an acceptable tolerance. Now if youadd thirty or so years of usage and maybe even a bump or two, you cansee why no car is going to be perfectly "square."

The reason we are reminding you of these things is that even when usingquality reproduction panels, each panel must be custom-fitted to eachcar. Prep work is never fun or glamorous, and it sometimes doesn't looklike you are really accomplishing anything. It can be dirty, dusty,tedious, and time consuming, but if you don't get this part right, thosethings that you are covering up will begin to grow again, eventuallycausing future problems by reinfecting the new parts you've labored sohard to replace. So, don't be in a hurry to slap that new panel on.Invest the effort now, and you'll be rewarded for many years to come.