Beating out a dent in an '88 Saab
June 7, 2004 1:57 PM   Subscribe

BodyShopFilter: I managed to put a big ol' dent in the fender of my 88 Saab. I'm not too upset (anymore) about the dent, but it did put a bulge in the track that my hood runs along. I want to pound the dent out. How do I do it? Do I need a special hammer? Any precautions/tips/tricks? Should I just pay the autobody guy to do it right?
posted by daver to Technology (4 answers total)
You might want to pull the dent out. You may be able to do that by attaching a cable to the fender and to an Unmovable Object and reversing slooooowly and gently.

Note: DO NOT let your head and body get anything even close to in-line with the cable. If it were to snap, it'd have every chance of eviscerating you... or worse.

You would want to align the cable in such a way that the angle it's pulling at is tangential to the shape of the curve at the attachment point, I think.
posted by five fresh fish at 2:07 PM on June 7, 2004

Response by poster: Ok, let me be a bit more specific:

The dent is actually in the fender, meaning the part of the car above the tire, not the bumper. The dent is more like a deep, deep valley. It's not a paintless dent deal. It's big, and nasty. But I can live with that -- no work needed on the dent itself.

All I want to do is get the resulting bulge at the top of the dent. The only route I can imagine is pounding it out. I'm not willing to spend $200 on this, can I just do it myself?
posted by daver at 4:04 PM on June 7, 2004

Can you post a link to a picture?

Consider pulling or pushing, not hammering. Maybe use a handjack, or a long lever.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:17 PM on June 7, 2004

One trick is a plunger. Usually door panels or sides of a truck or mini van. Rather than hammering try the pulling. I thought I saw something that removed dents from those devices "as seen on TV". Check the Autozone or Pepboys for dent fixes.
posted by brent at 9:26 PM on June 7, 2004

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