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Manta B Project Underway!


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Built the new garage so can now start on the 2.0 GTE that i aquired some time ago from a very nice chap down near Bristol. As I promised at the time I would be using it for a project.


well 2 nights graft and most of the interior / running gear is removed. Typically the car needs major surgery to the swan neck chassis sections and floor area. Will need 2 new outer sills and one hole fixing in boot chassis section. and the sun roof is bubbling so i will need to replace with a full roof skin i aquired some time ago.

posting up picks of the bad bits and welcome advise from those experienced in terms of best course of action.

Time and tide waits for no man but this manta does!!










you will see from the pics that the chassis as been repaired in the past but very badley so first job is to cut away the repairs and let dog see rabbit i think!

rest of the as usual is great, almost like new with only very slight surface rust in small areas.

Edited by upk
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Great, nice to see you are underway!! How long ago did you buy that from me? '07?

If your "A" project was anything to go by, this won't be any problem for your skills.

I have known this car since new as it was delivered from the Vauxhall Dealer I used to work for. It was always a "local" car and I used to work on this when it came in for service.

I will be watching this one come back to life very closley.

Good luck and keep us updated

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took a close look at the rusty swan knecks. cut back the outer on one side to reveil the condition of the inner reinforcment!!!!!



now i could by reinforcement sections from germany or i could repair using 50x25x3mm thick mild steel box section:-

mark out some notch points ( this is ally just to demonstrate the idea)


bend to shape and reweld then fit and weld to good metal doing one side at a time to avoid any body sag. then repeat for drivers side leg. (total cost under £5 for steel)


running gear mounting points still intact so will weld up nicely.

then plan to get outers from germany to make good.

any comment from those in the know??

cheers kev

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The Klokkerholm chassis leg repair sections are cover panels, I've used them to repair smaller areas but yout corrosion goes far beyond their length.

If you are referring to that other guy who has remanufactured the complete leg I woulg go for that. Much neater and stronger job, especially as you don't seem to be mucking about!

Very encouraging work, it shows when you have a leg that crunchy, when you get back to metal, the repair looks fairly straightforward- and the repair will probably outlive the original!

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  • 4 weeks later...

got myself 2 sets of these:-


and one for each side of these:-


could not believe how quick these parts arrived, faster than the post office from 10 mile away!!!

and i must say the floor pans fit like a glove and the chassis rail skins are very good quality.

i will post up some pics at the weekend of all the goodies.....

ps shell now completely stripped only one disaster, cracked the bronze screen getting it out :( , what a bummer, anyone got one at a reasonable rate?

Edited by upk
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I am sure that the guy you bought the Swan necks from has put up a post on the forum within the last couple of months?! will have to go and have a search to see if i am correct.

As to the section from PS autotelia would be intrested to see some pics and how well it fits.

Looks like this is going to be one very intresting project to follow closely.

Keep the updates and pictures coming



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these are the parts i recieved



and swan kneck outer sheets


made up one of these


not yet finished but looks a bit like this, will add a sheet of metal as per original and weld it to the box section to give it more strength .


as this seems fairly straight forward i have deceided to change roofskin first so i started to check out how to remove the skin.


cut off the piller outer from the donar roof to see how roofskin looked behind it. have decided to remove the same portion from the actual car as i can weld it back and its hidden behind the trim.

i can then remove roofskin by drilling out all the original spot welds!!!!


he says confidently :blink::huh:

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Love the pictures, just a question where the bolt whole is for the out rigger, is that just the inner section left with the outer section removed?

Cant quite tell from the pictures.

Thanks also for the picture of the floor plan, much appreciated.

Keep the updates and pictures coming.



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look carefully John you can see bolt hole, i am welding in the box section between the two holes for the subframe (i will then weld on the outer sheets) cutting away just one side of each swan kneck at a time to avoid any distortion!

worked on the roof today for a couple of hours............drilling.......and drilling............and drilling...out the spot welds :lol:

and marking up where i am going to make the next cuts.



Note this is the doner roof not the one on the car!

Edited by upk
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Interested to see how the roof works out, you might wand to invest in a nibbler to reduce the amount of sparks and toxic dust you fly around, on the car you could grind off the old flange so you don't have holes drilled in the flange you are keeping, but a set of nice spot weld cutters with the retractable centres do make a nice job of that type of work, just watch for the puff of rust dust or you can still end up going through both.

Don't forget to brace your roof up first too.

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Think I said something in the other thread about maybe seam welding the roof internals too. Boreham used to do that and put "L"s up to the roof skin too but not like you need a rally tough roof frame. Adding the B pillar cross brace should help some but I would be tempted to spot in an oblong frame with diagonals but then again I tend to over do it....................


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Doc your sure into the welding jobs, not much left of the original car there thumbsup.gif , Serisously pop up some pics of the finished job, do you spray the cars once the welding is done. Please bring one to billing and get pissed with the sat night crew biggrin.gif

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well spent a couple of hours today cutting the donar roof skin from its frame:-

drilled the spot welds from the roof brace , used a hot air gun to soften the sealer and off they came



then cut along the inner frame rails outer skin


and removed like so


then drilled out the spot welds holding the inner frame inner skin


so left with all these parts


and this


just need to clean up the original piller joints



and this


but have to do that another time cos i need to refit a gearbox to my mates mark 2 so we can go and play on the Cambrian rally next weekend.( car 80 if your'e out watching i will be in the silly seat)!!

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Hey Doc, you must be a mind reader!

i have just come in from the garage, only been in to work out how i get this back on and came to same conclusion as you. Opel put it on originally and must have mounted to the frame in this way else there was no way they could access all the frame spot welds....................or was there?

Plan now is to peel away the existing roof skin without damaging the frame and hey presto............well i hope it goes that simply anyway.

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Opel welded the roof skin to the gutters and pillars last so didn't have to clear the internal frame in the same way (I think).

Although sliding on from front to back could be wrong if the internal with the "uphill" welds only runs fron A to B pillat, could well mean sliding on from the back.

You will need to establish how it goes on before you totally clean up the car roof into the door seal areas to allow you to do Kev's method as plan B.

Of course now you are very close to being able to remove the skin totally from the frame and hiring a spot welder for the day to weld it back on.

Is it single skin between A pillars across the car or between the C pillars across the car? Just pondering if it doesn't slide easy that drilling out or cutting through internal would allow narrowing of roof frame temporarily. Might be a case of unpicking a standard joint OR maybe weld four captive nuts in that alingn with a plate to position for reassembly........ who knows lol.

You might want to borrow my Cavalier group 4 Body book for all those shell dimensions.

I love using the Jedi mind trick see if you can get people to do silly things :)

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May the force be with you!!

A & B post are both 3 skin.

I will tack the frame back together and take a view from their.

Hopefully it will slide from front to back.

As you say better to keep plan B ( kevs method) up my sleeve to the last minute.

cheers doc i may need a loan of that book !!

Edited by upk
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single skin frame between posts across car when roof skin is off.

so it may be possible to squeeze the sides closer with a small section cut out.

hey doc, am boldly going where no one has been before with this method??

Edited by upk
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As I said Jedi mind trick lol.

Just random thoughts. Wouldn't cut anything out when one cut and allowing to overlap would do. Just bouncing stuff around for when I need to do one, saves me time if you do the R&D, harsh but true.

May yet wiggle on from front or back.

Your car your choice lol, no waranty implied or given

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