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Old 13th December 2008, 23:30   #16
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I just found out from the MASS supervisor - the machine they use is called car-o-tronic. It is used for both detecting and removing alignment defects. Sensors are fixed at places on the apron and then then measurements are done remotely by the machine. He furthermore said that if an apron is replaced at their service centre, nobody will be able to detect that it has been replaced, hence no question of any loss in resale value. He said, if the same job is done by a garage that does not have this equipment, it is easy to make out that the apron has been changed.

This is as told to me by him. I did not have to get my apron fixed (as mentioned earlier), nor have I personally seen the machine/process, so cannot vouch for the quality of work or other details mentioned above.

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Old 15th December 2008, 17:27   #17
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Hashim,
Check this thread http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...ge-please.html (Swift Front Tyre repositioned - advice on damage please.). It was posted by me and I had a bent lower arm. It may be useful for you atleast compare the issue and proceed further.
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Old 15th December 2008, 20:32   #18
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Originally Posted by menonrajesh View Post
Hashim,
Check this thread http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...ge-please.html (Swift Front Tyre repositioned - advice on damage please.). It was posted by me and I had a bent lower arm. It may be useful for you atleast compare the issue and proceed further.
Thanks menonrajesh! That was a very interesting thread, I read all replies there and found very informative

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I just found out from the MASS supervisor - the machine they use is called car-o-tronic. It is used for both detecting and removing alignment defects. Sensors are fixed at places on the apron and then then measurements are done remotely by the machine.
Sounds interesting, I would love to see that machine fixing my car alignment cheers: After my exams get over, I am going to get my car done at auth. service center only, no more local garages!
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Old 16th December 2008, 08:27   #19
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dont go for local mechanics for apron work, it wont be precise. and your job wont get finished.

Go to maruti service, though its costlier, its worth for this kind of job.
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Old 16th December 2008, 21:09   #20
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Apron or the suspension dome as understood is a critical assembly to determine chassis & suspension geometry. this part needs to be strong as it bears lot of stress.

The heating solution, softens the part for working out & theoritically can be perfectly straightened by trained hands. But heating releives all the work stress induced during manufacturing, thus making it less stronger. If mechanic straighten it out by heating ask him to use a wet sponge to rapidly cool the surface to induce some stress & hence giving some strength(but be carefull untrained hands can cause cracks with wet sponge cooling).

changing an appron can be done perfectly to factory settings, but proper equipments are needed, & those are not available in authorised service stations. You need to have proper fixturing to locate at exact geometrical point. You need spot welding equipment (normally workshops use gas welding). proper flux & sealant. Sealant is somethinbg no body except OEM assy bothers to use.

The way to tell if the appron has been changed or not, is to look for sealant on joints, covered with lead oxide & OE paint. The replacement parts dont have this clue & hence true value can detect it was changed.

best option is to sell off the car, as it would be difficult & painstaking job to properly align & fix the geometry. Most of errors would be compensated in alignment process, which if gone beyond tolerance limit will give handling problems.
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Old 17th December 2008, 00:21   #21
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Quote:
You need spot welding equipment (normally workshops use gas welding). proper flux & sealant. Sealant is somethinbg no body except OEM assy bothers to use.
The supervior told me specifically that they dont use gas welding. He used some other word... cant recall. I asked if its electric welding... his reply wasnt very clear, so cant recall. And like I said, he told me its impossible for anyone to make out if they have welded it or its factory welded. But thats what he said... I havent seen the work myself. I not in a hurry at all to belive that even an authorised workshop can replicate whats done at the plant.
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Old 17th December 2008, 14:46   #22
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Originally Posted by Raccoon View Post
The supervior told me specifically that they dont use gas welding. He used some other word... cant recall. I asked if its electric welding... his reply wasnt very clear, so cant recall. And like I said, he told me its impossible for anyone to make out if they have welded it or its factory welded. But thats what he said... I havent seen the work myself. I not in a hurry at all to belive that even an authorised workshop can replicate whats done at the plant.
It doesnt matter its electric or gas welding, the technique should be able to heat the welding metal instantly & before heat could dissipiate to surrounding sheet metal, the weld should be completed. This is achieved by spot welding & most workshop dont have the equipment.

anyother welding process surely can weld sheet metal, but in turn intended mechanical property of sheety will get detoriated due to heat transfer, thus making it weak.

If he tells it is impossible to spot about the repair, get it done, wait six months, go back to him selling the car, he will be the first person to say "arey sar ye to accidental gaadi hai, 25000 se 3000 kum lagega".
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Old 17th December 2008, 16:03   #23
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^^^Hehe... that should be intresting! But he actually told me its impossible for anyone to make out directly... they only way a buyer can make out would be if he has access to the insurance claims or the records kept by the service centre. With so much confidence, it should be intresting to see the final work...

Anyway, the bottomline is, if anybody has to get such work done, it should only be a MASS that has the equipment (unless you personally know a non-authorised place and are very sure that they have the equipment, and have seen their work).
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Old 17th December 2008, 16:28   #24
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Hey I had a Esteem earlier and had a similar issue with the Apron. I had bumpped into a road divider and the problem started with the front right wheel. My local mech welded the Joint but after a few days the wheel gave me the same problem. My mech told me that the Apron has rusted and is damaged beyond repair so I had it replaced at a total cost of around 12K. They had to remove the Engine to cut the old Apron out and weld the new one. The car worked well for 2 - 3 months. Once while driving back from office the right front wheel bummped into a pot hole and damm.... the problem started again. I got it welded again and sold off the car. Mine was a 1997 Model.

Good luck with your repair job. You can go to some Juggad Mech and the guy will lift the joint with a Jack and weld the portion where the Apron is damaged but this jugad wont work for long. If you are planning to keep the car for long I would suggest to get a proper replacement job done from a authorized workshop.
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Old 17th December 2008, 16:30   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raccoon View Post
^^^Hehe... that should be intresting! But he actually told me its impossible for anyone to make out directly... they only way a buyer can make out would be if he has access to the insurance claims or the records kept by the service centre. With so much confidence, it should be intresting to see the final work...

Anyway, the bottomline is, if anybody has to get such work done, it should only be a MASS that has the equipment (unless you personally know a non-authorised place and are very sure that they have the equipment, and have seen their work).
a replaced part tells its story itself and it can be pointed out .service centers could not give it factory finish to it. so instead of spending money on it and decreasing its value . get it aligned by heating and sell it. you will have a profit as you you can add the cost of repair and get another car. i have seen many dealers buying cars in bad condition but are genuine at more price than a car with any replaced part no matter how much good condition it has. they need a reason to decrease your cars value .
i own sold my m800 97 model for 60k as it was genuine no parts replaced , the market value of m800 97 model here is around 40k.

Last edited by harry2223 : 17th December 2008 at 16:35.
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Old 17th December 2008, 16:37   #26
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However, authorised or not, you gotta keep your eyes wide open with these guys. For eg. the same guy who told me all this told me that they add acid to the battrey in servicing. I was aghast, and told him AFAIK, you never add acid... only distilled water if needed. He said that rule is for customers, but at their end, when they service, they add "some" acid (apparently even in maintainence free batts!). I asked what is this "some"? How can you possibly arrive at this "some" quantity without measuring the specific gravity using a hydrometer? The response I got was not very reassuring... to say the least! So you cant trust these guys...

Luckily, this was someone from the body shop. Hopefully better sense prevails in the workshop, where this is actually done...

Btw, does anybody know for sure if any make of any battery requires topping up with acid???
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Old 25th December 2008, 18:19   #27
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Update!
Now as my exams are over, I went to M.A.S.S. for getting an estimate. They looked the car from all angles and said that they will bring wheel in right position by pulling it in front
They didn't had any car-o-tronic machine and one old man (who was head of mechanics there) said, "if car is running fine, then we should not touch this". He quoted approx 10,000 Rs. for the job anyhow.
He also added that I should get it done from local mechanic because they will do it at low cost

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Old 25th December 2008, 23:21   #28
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Gawd... seems you have found some really sick MASS... and shame on Maruti too... you should write to them! Mebbe see if you can get some really competent person to have a look at it. "Car running fine" logic is ridiculous... you gotta get all the alignments perfectly in order, weather its running or not is quite another issue!

Suggest you try other MASSs...

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Old 26th December 2008, 00:06   #29
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heating and pulling job can be done. But I have seen very few expert that knows this very well.

Other option is to change the whole thing, Its a costly affair, not only the part is expensive but also there will be lot of labour jobs, including removing engine.

One idea is to visit a Kabbadi, the people who buys total loss insurance cars. look out for the part.
After getting the above part forget MASS, find some expert bodyworks wala.

chances are that you will end up paying under 5k with labour.
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Old 26th December 2008, 00:16   #30
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Get an apron from a total loss car?!?!?! But its supposed to be spot welded! Can it even be removed intact and ported onto another car??
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