Body isolator pads

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    What does one use for body isolator pads and shims between body and chassis? I bought some hard durometer fiber reinforced rubber pad material to match what looked like what the mortal remains were that was in there when I bought the car. After removing all of them they looked pretty un-professional, like someone replaced them before, so I suspect they aren’t original. My recollection of my ’36 Packard pads were they were fabric reinforced but with something denser than reinforced rubber. The Pierce owners manual does say the pads settle and the body bolts need to be re-tightened after a while. At any rate it looks like I am going to need to shim the body when I put it back down to get the doors to align. Thinking about a combination of hardwood or metal shims and the reinforced rubber. Anyone have better suggestions?




    Use thick conveyor belt. It comes in assorted thickness. Preload it for a while if possible. It will cut down on the adjustments. Good luck, Ed


    The original material was like woven brake shoe material. but only about 1/8″ thick. Often the shims have imprinted their shape into the bottom of the sill boards of the body.

    As Ed mentioned, a conveyor belt material would work, but get thin material. Most belts are 1/4″ thick, so you’ll have to look around for some thinner material.

    To get the doors to fit, first make sure the door hinges are not worn, if the hinges are loose and sloppy, you will need to drill them out and put in oversize hinge pins.

    Greg L


    The conveyor belt material sounds like a good idea for the body.

    I’ve used commercial truck mudflap pieces cut to size in the past as isolators between the radiator and the frame. They worked great and are also fabric reinforced.


    Thanks! Jim


    I have used plumbers’ red rubber sheet. It is in 6×6 sheets, as thin as 1/16″, but is available in thicker sheets.



    It might prove worthwhile to check with Restoration Specialties& Supply out of Windber PA (814)467-9842.They used to offer what they referred to as “snubber belting and anti squeak” which sounds like what Greg has suggested. When available, it comes in a variety of widths and thicknesses and they are a terrific source for many of the more obscure fasteners, clips and seals.



    Lately my brain is ‘locked’ on Series 80 cars, and my reply above was about the Series 80 cars I’ve had apart.

    I do remember that on my ’33, it has thicker material, at least 3/16″ thick.

    Sorry if I headed you in a wrong direction.

    Take a look at your door margins, if the door sits ‘cock-eyed’ in the opening, usually that is caused by sagging door hinges. If the door opening is not ‘square’, then it might be sagging or compressed body isolation shims.

    Good luck, if you can, post photos of your car and the work done, we all can learn form your work !

    Greg Long


    My question is maybe a bit premature. This restoration is strictly “touring” so originally I was not going to take the body off. Problem with restoring cars of course being where to put stuff after you take it off! However it turns out the most reasonable way to repair some body damage on the back end is to pull it off the frame, which I will be doing soon. Before that decision, I looked at the doors and hinges, they are quite tight and the wood is still good, so I fussed with one of the front doors a bit and after adjusting the hinges to get a good match to the front door post it took some shimming of the pads (and body bolt torque) to get alignment to the center post. At any rate, since rubber creeps over time I was thinking it probably requires something stiffer than reinforced rubber to keep from “settling” too much over time. Actually, the body had settled on its rubber pads over the rear door enough that the wood cross-member was sitting on the frame rails. Thanks for the suggestions, I’ll do some searching.



    The convayor belt won’t settle. My car has been done 20 years and 15 thousand miles. It scored 99.5 points at CCCA 5 years ago and the door and body alignment is perfect. The frame on your car will flex much more than most people realize. Dont make the door gaps too tight or they will flex and pinch.


    McMaster Carr has various width and thicknesses of conveyer belt.

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