While Chris started to handle some of the finish welding, the Tennessee Valley Mopar guys helped Craig get the front fenders and hood mounted. The AMD fenders were the first to go on, and since these were preproduction pieces, we didn't know what to expect. What we learned was that it took several sets of fenders being made to get them right, and the pair we had must have been the latest set, because they looked great to us. The headlight bucket areas had the right mounting points for the headlights and bezels, and the body lines were crisp and in the right spot. Although we didn't have a veneer caliper, the metal felt to be the same as the factory stuff was. What we were told about them, though, was to be careful with them, because they cost roughly $100,000 a piece. Since they were preproduction pieces, that was roughly the cost of R&D to get to this point. We were assured, though, that the actual production pieces will cost a lot less. The hood itself was something A-Body guys have needed for a while. The GT style hood had the correct bulges, and the attaching points for the hood chrome are as good as the factory mounting points.
By 3:00 on Friday--day five--the newly rebuild Dart was ready for the next phase of restoration, bodywork and painting. But we were done, both literally and physically. We had accomplished our goal, the body was welded back together, and would be able to head to the body shop for the finish work and painting.
We learned that the AMD installation center is a great place for those enthusiasts that really want to restore their car, but fear the problems that can arise when major metal repair is needed. Craig has developed a table/jig system that firmly places the car in the proper position so that assembly is a snap, and the body doesn't flex, twist, or get out of shape when large pieces of metal are removed. We definitely found a shop that can help you get your car back together. Apparently, nothing is ever too far gone to rebuild.