Presto-Chango!

Old Anvil Works Their Magic on an International Fender

By Eric Geisert   –   Photography by the Author

You know how when you ask a 5-year-old to draw a cow or dog their sketch is usually way out of proportion, with legs too long or head too small but always with really big eyes? That’s the way some people see the ’60s-era International Harvester line of pickup truck—it kinda looks way out of proportion.

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03 one of the spare front fenders was cut apart and Cleco’d Old Anvil Fenders
In a proof of concept, one of the spare front fenders was cut apart and Cleco’d to the existing fender to get a rough idea what the fender might end up looking like.

Classic Truck Performance stopped by Old Anvil Speed Shop in Orange, California, to see what they’re doing about it with one of their customer’s projects: a ’63 C-1100 International Harvester standard-wheelbase Stepside pickup.

12 The gaps between the old fender design and the new sections Old Anvil Fenders

Inside Job: Premeditated Paintwork, aka Task Force Chevy Interior Prep
Two of Old Anvil’s principals (owner Paul Bosserman and graphic artist Jeff Allison) teamed up to heavily massage this International Harvester pickup and knock some of the weirdness off. The truck is benefiting from a long list of custom bodywork they worked out together, including reshaping the grille area and roofline, but something had to be done about the bed’s fenders—they’re just too plain.

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32 you can now see how the front fender’s lip has been transplanted to the rear fender Old Anvil Fenders
From any angle you can now see how the front fender’s lip has been transplanted to the rear fender, too, and we wonder why the factory never thought of doing that because the truck’s profile has been greatly improved.

The front fenders have this large, scalloped flare design that makes a statement, but the rears, with a simple thin body line (reminiscent of a ’50 Ford F-1 rear fender’s lowkey look) looks anemic on a truck with so much personality elsewhere. So the idea was hatched to carry the front fender’s flarelip design into the rear fenders, and CTP followed along as one of Old Anvil’s young metalshapers, Brandon Gerringer, took the idea from concept to reality.

01 The project at hand involves using the lip edge design Old Anvil Fenders
The project at hand involves using the lip edge design from the front fender of a ’63 C-1100 International Harvester pickup and transplanting it to the rear fenders.
02 the stock rear fenders are positively sedate Old Anvil Fenders
For as flamboyant as the front end of the truck is, the stock rear fenders are positively sedate in comparison.
03 one of the spare front fenders was cut apart and Cleco’d Old Anvil Fenders
In a proof of concept, one of the spare front fenders was cut apart and Cleco’d to the existing fender to get a rough idea what the fender might end up looking like.
04 Some of the donor front fender sections are cut off as they won’t be needed Old Anvil Fenders
Some of the donor front fender sections are cut off as they won’t be needed.
05 Some rust repair work was also needed Old Anvil Fenders
Some rust repair work was also needed, so Brandon Gerringer removed the old section and then formed a new piece before clamping and welding them together.
06 formed a new piece before clamping and welding them together Old Anvil Fenders
The piece was intentionally left long as some areas of the fender’s new design were still being worked out.
07 the part through the planishing hammer Old Anvil Fenders
After slightly bending the panel over his knee to get the shape started, Gerringer then runs the part through the planishing hammer in an East-West then North-South direction, but it also helps flatten the welds.
08 Another rough cut line is marked and some of the original fender surface Old Anvil Fenders
Another rough cut line is marked and some of the original fender surface is removed so the new section will fit better.
09 With the old fender opened up the new fender section can now lay down Old Anvil Fenders
With the old fender opened up, the new fender section can now lay down on the old fender and get prepped for final cutting.
10 For the driver side fender Gerringer had picked out the precise location of the new fender Old Anvil Fenders
For the driver side fender Gerringer had picked out the precise location of the new fender section by simply moving it around until it looked “right.” But the passenger side needed to copy the other side, so the new section was Cleco’d in and a handful of measurements were taken to ensure both fenders would fit the bed box in the same way.
11 The gaps between the old fender design and the new sections Old Anvil Fenders
The gaps between the old fender design and the new sections were going to be the areas that were going to need the most attention on this job.

12 The gaps between the old fender design and the new sections Old Anvil Fenders

13 The old fender was sprayed with Dykem layout fluid Old Anvil Fenders
The old fender was sprayed with Dykem layout fluid and the new section Cleco’d back on before Gerringer scribed where the cut line was going to be.
14 incorporated mounting tabs for the Clecos Old Anvil Fenders
In order to remove and reattach the fender several times during the process Gerringer incorporated mounting tabs for the Clecos.
15 Gerringer cuts along this line and removes the last part of the old fender Old Anvil Fenders
Using a 1/16-inch cutoff wheel, Gerringer cuts along this line and removes the last part of the old fender.
16 The Cleco mounting tabs are still in place Old Anvil Fenders
The Cleco mounting tabs are still in place.
17 With the new section mounted you can see the tiny gap that will need to be welded up Old Anvil Fenders
With the new section mounted you can see the tiny gap that will need to be welded up.
18 tacking the bottom of the leading edge Old Anvil Fenders
Because the bottom section of the fender’s design hasn’t been settled yet, Gerringer can only go so far while tacking the bottom of the leading edge.
19 tack the two pieces together Old Anvil Fenders
Every 1/2-inch or so Gerringer tacks the two pieces together, except in the areas that still need to be worked further.
20 hard work begins on the two gap areas Old Anvil Fenders
The idea of adding the front fender lip to the rear shows promise, but now hard work begins on the two gap areas.
21 Starting with the front area Old Anvil Fenders
Starting with the front area, Gerringer uses a MAP/PRO torch to superheat the stamped line…
22 superheat the stamped line before quickly using a hammer Old Anvil Fenders
…before quickly using a hammer (inside) and dolly (outside) to begin flattening it out.
23 using a sandbag (outside) Old Anvil Fenders
Going from using a sandbag (outside) and a ball peen hammer (inside) to a hammer (outside) and dolly (viewed from inside the fender).
24 and a ball peen hammer (inside) Old Anvil Fenders
Gerringer alternates between raising and lowering the sections until they begin to meet each other.
25 tack weld them together Old Anvil Fenders
As the sections get very close to each other Gerringer begins to tack weld them together—a little at the bottom, then the top, then back to the bottom.
26 pneumatic planishing hammer also helps to flatten and shape the areas Old Anvil Fenders
A hoop-type pneumatic planishing hammer also helps to flatten and shape the areas that need it.
27 fab’d the steel tool in his left hand Old Anvil Fenders
Gerringer fab’d the steel tool in his left hand on the lathe (adding some knurling, too) that holds one of the planishing hammer dies so he can precisely hand planish some of the areas.
28 The area the contained the gap and the old fender detail is now gone Old Anvil Fenders
The area the contained the gap and the old fender detail is now gone.
29 The same type of intensive bodywork was applied to the rear Old Anvil Fenders
The same type of intensive bodywork was applied to the rear section with the same stunning result.
30 though the application of heat was a bit wider this time Old Anvil Fenders
(The application of heat was a bit wider this time as the transition needed to run over a wider area) and more shrinking and stretching needed to happen.
31 the “new” fender design can now be revealed Old Anvil Fenders
After final welding, planishing, and sanding the “new” fender design can now be revealed.
32 you can now see how the front fender’s lip has been transplanted to the rear fender Old Anvil Fenders
From any angle you can now see how the front fender’s lip has been transplanted to the rear fender, too, and we wonder why the factory never thought of doing that because the truck’s profile has been greatly improved.

Click on this issue’s cover to see the enhanced digital version of Presto-Chango!

ctp december 2023

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