Important Things to Know about Panel Beaters
Your car has been damaged pretty badly in a vehicle collision or road accident, and you are worried about its condition and performance. But relax! There are people who can actually restore your car to factory condition by carrying out extensive repair work on it. In some countries, auto body mechanics are known as panel beaters. Their job is to repair the body of a vehicle after it is damaged in a road accident. Let's know more about these professionals.
Skills and Techniques Used by Panel Beaters
These are professional experts who repair the body of the car with some specialized skills like:
- Planishing: It is a metalworking technique that finely shapes and smoothens sheet metal to finish its surface.
- Metalworking: Metals are used to create individual parts, assemblies, or large structures.
- Welding: High heat is used to join metals or thermoplastics together by fusing them into one piece.
- Putty fillers: Putty is a clay-like substance used to fill gaps and holes.
The repair work involved might require these experts to repair or replace the damaged vehicle parts.
Areas of Work for Panel Beaters
Normally, these professionals work on regular vehicles like cars, vans, 4WDs, and other similar vehicles. Some of them can also work on motorbikes, trucks, and airplanes. There are some experts who exclusively work on restoring a vehicle only, and do not work on vehicles damaged in accidents. Others specialize in body customization only.
Training Received by a Panel Beater
You can train to become a panel beater by completing a trade apprenticeship. Normally, these apprenticeships are three years in duration, but they can be completed in less time. The three years of training includes on the job training combined with classroom sessions at a trade school. A fourth year is spent exclusively on practical jobs.
Special Equipment Used by a Panel Beater
Panel beaters use special equipment to do the required work. Here are a few examples:
- Different hammers and dollies used for planishing.
- Body flippers and files.
- Assembly equipment like screwdrivers, socket sets, and spanners.
- Other hand equipment like chisels, pliers, vise grips, tin snips, and so on.
- Hydraulic pushing/pulling devices.
- Devices for measuring and aligning vehicles.
- Hoists for lifting vehicles.
- Safety equipment like overalls, safety glasses, boots, welding helmets, gloves, hearing protection, and respirators.
- Welding tools.
Panel beaters work on collision repair, restoration, painting, and mechanical jobs on cars. Here are some other services that most of them provide:
- Dent Removals: All dents in the car body are removed to make the car look as good as new.
- Panel Replacement: Body panels that have been damaged too much are replaced by new ones, sourced from local dealers.
- Restorations: They specialize in restoring older and classic cars to the condition they were in when they came out of the showroom.
- Repainting and Paint Touch-ups: Small dents, nicks, and general wear and tear are also taken care of.
- Complete Repainting: The entire body of the car is painted newly to pristine condition.
- Rust Repairs and Rust Proofing: Rust corrosion repair and rust panel rebuilding are also done
- Auto Electrical: They work on a full range of auto electrical services like car alarms, electric windows, and others.
- Mechanical: The car's engine and mechanical systems are taken care of.
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