The Corolla AE92 GT-S Project

A website about my ongoing project

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Welding (2006)

From the start, it was clear that a fair bit of welding had to be done to the car.

There were fist size holes rotted into the sills that would need to be fixed. I already made a few calls and asked around a bit, but I wasn't able to find new weld-in panels for the coupé model anywhere.

So I decided to go look at the Corolla's in the local junkyards and see what condition their sills were in. There were only hatchbacks sitting there (the most sold Corolla model by far here) but the sills looked like they might just work.


There was a white one sitting there with sills that were in pretty good condition. No rust to be seen anywhere. So I made an appointment with the owner to come back with some tools to cut some pieces out of that car. They would get it out of the yard for me so that I could work on it.


Donor car  Removing panel


Grinded out panel  Removed panels


I never held a welding torch in my life back then. But a friend of mine was a welder by trade and was willing to help me out. But of course I didn't have a welder available to me as well. So I decided to rent one.


Renting a welder was easy enough, so I got one early in the morning so that we could have a full day to get cracking. My buddy Wes came over and we hoped that by the end of the day we would have patches on both sides in. But we had to get rid of the rotten bits first.


Friend working on car


Removed rust


We then used the parts we cut out as a template for the patches we wanted to weld back in.

But those had to be worked on a little to get them into the right shape. The coupé parts were just a little differently shaped than the hatchback sills. But with a little bending and hammering, we got them into the right shape and could weld them in.


Friend welding on car

My buddy Wes in action with the welder!


Patch welded in


Patch welded in


That already looked a whole lot better than the great gaping holes that were there before. But we didn't get near as far as we had hoped and this was the result at the end of the day when Wes had to go home again.

We hadn't even touched the other side yet. But while he was busy welding the patches in, Wes taught me the basics of welding and after a little crash course let me have a go at it.

I rented the welder for two days, so even though Wes was unable to help me the next day, I had gained enough confidence in my welding skills to try and get a little done the next day.


Me trying to weld

After a crash course in welding, I could have a little go myself!


But unfortunately, when I had a few welds done the next day I ran out of welding gas. And as I soon found out, you just can't weld without it. So that was the end of that, I had to return the welder the next day and we would have another go at it next time.


Next time turned out to be about 10 years later. But by then, I would have my own welder and a bit more experience at welding myself.