I plan on doing some work to Metro's hood here soon, just thought I would post it and see if anyone has any good suggestions. The hood has 2 main problems, a rust hole and some rust bubbles, and a large gap between bumper and hood from playing bumper cars. I also aim to remove some of the undersiding to lighten it up a tad, and have more access to the rust.
So, plan is remove hood, cut out most or all of underbracing, sand top and bottom, fill in small hole with body filler, and then paint it all primer black.
Here's a picture I took awhile back, look how much that gap could be closed...
If you're talking Bondo, I'd say use it for anything. My front doors on both side completely lost the corners to them and I got them back by adding a good chuck of bondo and shaping it to fit the doorway. I've even made rock climbing walls out of Bondo, so I think filling a hole should be just dandy
To make my door corners I just put a blob of bondo in a sheet of cardboard and folded it around the door. I think you could do the same type of thing for this hole. Tape up the bottom side, pour in a little bondo, then flatten it out on top. then all you have to do is take a sharp knife to it and really flatten it out, sand it until it's perfect with the hood, and it should be good to go
Another thing you can do is get some of the expanding foam in a can stuff from a hardware store, and use it to build up areas. You can cut it and shape it w/ any kind of blade once it solidifies, I use an electric carving knife. Once you have it to a shape of your liking, use body filler for a final coating. Fiberglass works even better for a final coating before the filler, but is more involved to work with.
unstable bob gable
AMERICAN ROAD WARRIOR!
I wouldn't remove any hood bracing, it's there for a reason. If the factory could get away without adding it they would have. If the purpose is to lighten the hood and eliminate rust, replacing it with a fiberglass hood would be a better way to go.
If the goal is to lose weight, do you need the rear side glass? A thin sheet of metal would be a lot lighter than the glass, and with a little work might not look too bad. It would make it look kinda like a midget delivery.
On closing the gap, you can get some rubber weatherstripping from the local hardware store that will fill it, like a garage door top seal or a storm door seal. Look for something with an L shape. Just rivet it to the bumper cover with the rivets to the rear. If you have some skills with plastic, looks like you might be able to rework the bumper cover. Looks like there is a ridge on each side where the cover is molded down to create the gap. If you were to cut the sides and heat the cover, might be able to remold it so the bumper cover fills that lip in.
Thanks for all the suggestions everyone. Bob, very good idea with the foam. The hood wouldn't need it since it would be flat, but I have the beginnings of the notorious kick panel rot Metro's seem to have, too.
Telco, I probably wont remove all of the bracing, I'll have to see when I start. Cool idea on the glass hood, but I'm not even sure if they are made, and even if they are, I don't want to have to buy it.
The car has been through a little diet, but not enough to go to the extremes of removing the glass. My goal is to get it in the 1700's range...stock at 1902 and currently 1811.