How to Eat an Elephant... 73 Charger Body Restoration - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
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Old 03-22-2009, 05:02 PM
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How to Eat an Elephant... 73 Charger Body Restoration Help

You eat an elephant one bite at a time. However, it takes so long.

Enough with the metaphors, I have a 73 Charger that has some appreciable rust spots. Mainly, I have a couple different situations: surface rust, pitted rust, and penetrated rust.

Anyways, I cut out my old and rusted quarter panel which I plan to weld in my new quarters. My strategy is to clean up the entire right rear of the car, por 15 and prime the car while the inner quarter is exposed, and finally tack weld in the new quarter.

I am currently using a twisted wire brush 4.5" on the grinder and a sand blaster with playground sand. It works, but it takes a long time. Also, every piece of metal has two sides: its visible side and usually and less accessible side. Lastly, getting the undercoating off is really painful.

I was wondering if you guys had some tips. I am definitely on a budget where I cant get a giant tank and dunk the car in an electrolysis machine. However, if there are more efficient tools or chemicals, I would like to know what you guys think.

My goal is to be able to paint these lesser exposed areas (such as the trunk, floor, interior roof, and bottom of the car) with a color very close to my finish paint. I also want to do the job once.

So my target list:

1) how to remove bottom coating well?

2) how to remove rust well, and how much removal is enough? I am able to sand blast and wire wheel all the loose stuff off of the car to where I am left with a black rust. I see everybody trying this naval jelly stuff. I was thinking about using the por 15 process which has a metal etcher, but some threads were commenting on the need to remove all rust. This would present another problem.

3) I have a mig welder that I could use to weld in new patches to areas that have rusted all the way through. However, inert gas is a little hard to come by. I was thinking of some fiberglass patch with por 15 painted trough it.

4) There are areas that are extremely pitted, but not penetrated. Take for example the trunk. Some areas are very rough because of the pitting. Is there a product good to paint over that smooths this out. I was thinking something like por patch.

5) I also need a good rust preventative primer.

6) I need a seam sealer. Heard fusor 800 is good. Is that a paintable sealant?

Thanks for your help. I really appreciate your knowledge and help. I just spent 4 days stripping the right rear of the car... and it is very time consuming.

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Old 03-22-2009, 07:20 PM
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My friends Andy and Kelly have gone thru this on a 1st gen Camaro and a 38 Olds coupe and it is a tough job..What we found is that it is much cheaper and easier to just bite the bullet and take the large parts to a local sandblaster and have him blast it..thne bring it home and shoot 2 wet coats of epoxy on everything inside and out..Both of the mentioned cars have been in progress for quite some time now and we have no new rust to deal with..The Olds has set for almost 3 years as Kelly has other things to do in the interim..Now the bad metal is being replaced and primed...

Doing it all yourself is not exactly all it is cracked up to be and tho I know how to do this I know when it is time to call for reinforcements as it were..

Sam
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Old 03-22-2009, 07:58 PM
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You know, i think it wouldn't be so bad if i wasn't doing a unibody. Anyways, what type of epoxy did you use?
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Old 03-23-2009, 06:26 AM
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I use the Southern Poyurethane epoxy..Anytime one does a whole car it does need to be broken down to digestible tasks..The blaster will probably find some rusty places that you did not know you had but when you do it the way I suggest you can replace those areas at your leisure..The smaller parts one can do at home or in ones own shop..Keep us posted on progress..

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Old 03-23-2009, 09:43 AM
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anybody know of an active cupon code for por 15? I have a several hundred dollar purchase I am considering making.
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