Panel Beating Tips for Apprentices

Most people associate panel beating with the deafening noise in a workshop, but there is more to it than meets the eye. Thanks to continuous innovations in the automotive industry, panel beating has quickly gained popularity. As an automotive body repair apprentice, you should be excited at the current prospects of the industry. However, you should understand that apprentice panel beaters are only allowed to handle tiny and shallow dents as they ease into the trade. Notably, it is critical to handle minor dents professionally to break through the early stages of training. This article highlights panel-beating tips for tiny dents. 

Inspect the Area Around a Dent Thoroughly

When dealing with small dents, it is easy to ignore the areas around it. However, any experienced panel beater will tell you that there is more to a small or shallow dent. The reason is that bumps contort a metallic panel and create less conspicuous creases. Therefore, it is crucial to inspect the area around a dent for possible creasing before you start beating the body back to shape. The best way to conduct such inspection is by holding a light close to a car's body. It gives you a good idea of the extent of the damage caused.

Start with the Simplest Tools

One of the most common mistakes that apprentice panel beaters make when repairing small dents is picking a hammer or dolly. Not every car dent requires the heavy artillery you use to repair deep dents. It is crucial to keep a hammer and dollies at bay because the simplest tools in a workshop are enough to take care of minor dents. For example, you can easily pull out shallow dents back to shape with a regular kitchen plunger as long as there are no creases or the dent is not located in a corner. Doing so will help you to repair tiny dents without damaging the paint job on a car.

Choose the Right Dolly Shape

Another error that automotive body repair apprentices make is picking the wrong dolly shape and size. Notably, newbies believe that the shape of a dolly does not necessarily affect small dents, primarily because of the small surface area. However, nothing could be further from the truth because a car panel takes the shape of a dolly as you beat it out. Always assess the shape of a dent and choose a dolly that is as close to the shape of the dent as possible.

For more advice, reach out to professional panel beaters in your area.