Structural Sectioning Procedures: Mazda

Ask I-CAR receives many technical inquiries referring to sectioning. The collision repair industry wants to know where can you section, does the OEM have a sectioning procedure, and where can I find the sectioning procedure? Most OEMs allow sectioning to outer body panels and the front and rear rails. Sectioning reinforcements is not as common, as most reinforcements are replaced at factory seams.

Parts are made from various materials including HSS, UHSS, aluminum, and carbon fiber. These parts also have complex designs to collapse or transfer collision forces in a specific manner. Introducing a sectioning joint to many of these parts will alter how the part reacts to those collision forces. For this reason, sectioning a part is only allowed if supported by vehicle maker repair information. Let’s see what Mazda says about structural sectioning.

Vehicle-specific Mazda repair manuals offer procedures for sectioning of various parts. However, it is crucial to pay attention to the various Notes and Cautions through the entire procedure. For example, in the Front Side Frame (Partial Cutting) Removal [Panel Replacement] sectioning procedure for the 2022 Mazda CX-9, the caution states, “The cut and joint area indicates the maximum size range of the installation position." This procedure can be found under Bodyshop Manuals ➤ Body and Accessories ➤ Body Structure ➤ Panel Replacement.

The vehicle-specific body repair manual is used to determine the required type of welding and sectioning joint for the repair being performed. Failure to follow OEM procedures will sacrifice the safety and quality of the repair.

Mazda vehicle-specific body repair manual can be found at

For additional Mazda information, check out the Mazda OEM Information page.

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