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Old 10-17-2013, 06:33 AM
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Saving the Olds

Hello again, has been awhile since I posted, but I have been reading here a little every day.

The body work on my Truck is on standby for now. I decided it was just too much to do and still drive the truck daily.

So I have to straighten out my car first, then back to the truck.

The car is a '94 Olds 88. Nothing remarkable, but it runs decently and most things work, lol.

This is going to be one of those quick economical jobs, nothing fancy just functional.


The main problem is/was water intrusion. It is mainly from the door seals. After I figured this out I did some research and it seems to be a common issue with these cars.

Unfortunately I left the car sit for a month or so during the rainy season here in Fl. When I drove the car every day it wasn't such a big problem as it had a chance to dry out from running the ac, but after sitting a month it was not pleasant.

So I stripped out the interior, and am currently working on putting it back in.

I pulled the headliner as the material was sagging badly, stripped and cleaned it, painted it with the cheap vinyl/cloth spray can paint and put it back in, not beautiful, but a major improvement over what was there and only cost $20. Had to almost fold it in half to get it in and out.

Found a recovered rear deck carpet in the upullit to replace the one that had a hole burnt in it from the melted third brake light. Also fixed the wiring for that and the rear defog.

Couldn't find any better carpet than I had already, so I pulled it, scrubbed it, power washed it, and dried it out. I might be putting that back in today, I'm giving it extra time to dry. I know what happens if it isn't. Also not beautiful, but it will work for this.

Going to reuse the padding, its kinda rough, but as good or better than any I could find and after drying in the sun for a couple weeks it no longer smells.

I may get the rear sail panels back in today as well, haven't decided if I'm going to try painting them with the same paint or not, and they need a little glue here and there.

Front seats are completely trashed, especially the driver side, they are leather and it doesn't hold up well in fl after a certain point. I'm having a hard time finding any better looking seats from another 88, but after some research I think I have found a set of cloth ones in a park avenue that will work. I gather many gm seats have the same bolt pattern where they attach to the tracking, but my driver side tracking is also broken, motors still all work, but the mountings are broken. I'll get it puzzled out one way or the other.

Dash is good, windows are good - one small exception around the top of the windshield, but I'll have a question about that later.

There is a tsb for the door seal leaks that involves using butyl rope to fix the door seal issue, plus it had dried and shrunk so hopefully cleaning it good and putting it back where it belongs and the butyl will fix that part. I also got a small extra piece I can use to fill in the bottom where the shrinking will leave a gap.



Ok, so far so good. One of the problems I'm coming up on is one I could use some advice on.

The car has a plastic bolt on, um, drip rail I guess you would call it. Also has crome trim on it. This piece goes over the doors all the way from rear where the bottom of it has a Velcro type tab, around the windshield, and over the door on the other side and back down to the Velcro tab on the other side.

It comes off in three pieces (Normally anyway, lol) one for each side, and one over the windshield.

The problem I have is the side pieces have cracked with age, I will try to take some photos today to show you what I mean here. The only thing holding them together is the crome (well, maybe crome) strip on the outside and the double sided sticky tape, that quit sticking to the body some years ago from the looks of things.

I have some double sided tape I think will work to restick it, once I figure out how to get the old stuff off without totally destroying the plastic.

My question is, does anybody have any suggestions what I can use to glue the broken plastic back together?

Does seam sealer stick to plastic?

I looked at these pieces in the upullit, and none of them were much better than mine, and by the time I pull them and get them back to the shop they will likely be as bad or worse.

I will be repainting the car back to more or less its original color, which is gold - more or less.

Has that messed up gm issue where it looks like it was driven through bushes every day, and some surface rust on the roof. Small ding in the trunk area and a broken plastic fender where a kid on one of those little 50cc rice rockets ran into me.

Anyway, I haven't given up on the truck, just trying to work my way back to it, and if anybody has any ideas for repairing that broken plastic economically I'd be very glad to hear them.

Thanks, Brandon.

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Old 10-17-2013, 07:03 AM
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Hey Brandon...haven't heard from you in a while...there are a multitude of glues and adhesives out there that will work...they are expensive and you don't need much...try some plastic J B Weld...strong, durable, comes in small part A & B components and cost effective (about $10).

Glad to see you back...I noticed you lurking around on a few threads once in a while but, good to have you posting again...Good luck with your Olds.

Ray
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Old 10-17-2013, 04:19 PM
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Never thought of jb weld for this, I think it will work with a little reinforcement, and I can flat black it so it will be fairly unnoticeable. Perfect, thank you.

I'm also going to get rid of the trim strips down the doors and around the fender wells. I have most of it, but finding the couple pieces I'm missing is more hassle than its worth since the same pieces seem to be missing from all the ones I have looked at for parts.

Anyway, when I remove the clips for the curved wheel well trim I'm left with a row of about 6 - 3/8" holes, can I fill them with JB weld also?
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Old 10-17-2013, 04:44 PM
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You could fill them.......how long do you want the fix to last? Holes in anything, if not repaired properly will come back and bit you....I can't recommend filling holes with a clear conscious and telling you that it's "an Okay repair", if you understand what I mean. I also realize that this car isn't new any more...so, if it's a "gonna get me through the Winter fix"...well...still not right but doable.

The other thing you could do...and it probably wouldn't cost you more than $5.00...and if your not overly concerned about appearance is to go to any rust treatment shop. They drill 3/8th inch holes in door frames and stuff like that...they use a plastic plug...maybe you could get a couple of dozen of them and plug your holes with...plastic plugs...that way you don't need to paint and if you ever find the chrome your needing...pop out the plugs and away you go.

Hope this helps Brandon.

Ray
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Old 10-17-2013, 05:33 PM
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Well, I am hoping to get more than a winter out of it. I can keep the car running almost indefinitely for very little cost.

I'm going to be painting the whole car in any case. The roof has some surface rust, and the passenger fender is broken (plastic) and a little ding next to the trunk lid. Have to straighten out the trunk lid a bit as well.

Mostly I don't want the rust on the roof to get any worse, but by the time I do anything about that I may as well fix the fender and the little ding (about the size of a quarter or so) and paint it all.

The piece I'm talking about isn't actually crome, its just plastic painted the same color as the body. When you shut the rear door it looks like its part of the wheel well.

I didn't get time to take any pics today, but I can prob hunt one up on the net, just a sec...

First photo isn't my car, but its a dead ringer

In the second photo you can see the little curved piece I'm talking about, looks like the front half of the wheel well.

I've looked for that piece on and off for several years now, even the other cars I see in parking lots are missing it.

If the JB weld won't last more than a year or two I will just have to weld the holes closed I guess.
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:40 PM
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I'd hate to say it's a long term fix, when in reality, it may only last a few months..or a few years...no way of really telling. The best way is to weld them up, sorry there isn't an easier permanent repair Brandon.

Ray
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Old 10-18-2013, 06:26 AM
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I may go ahead and try it anyway, have to see how much time and motivation I have when I reach that point. That and I guess whatever I end up using for paint might play a part as well.

I gather gm had some issues with clear coat and/or paint in these years. I've seen several cars where the finish looks like mine. Kind of like it was driven through bushes regularly.

It looks like fine scratches all over the car. I have seen people reclear this and it looks fine afterwards, don't know how long it lasts though.

My car is a little past that stage, at least on the roof, trunk, and decklid. The clear there is pretty much gone, and the paint now has the same issue, looks like its scratched all over.

I can see primer through these scratches, and I would guess this is what caused the surface rust on the roof. In the last year or two it went from no rust up there, to a fair amount.

I am wondering if you are familiar with this issue? And if it is indeed the clear that is the problem?

The reason I ask is because on the sides of the car the paint is still solid and there is some clear remaining. But it has those scratches - I guess its the clear cracking/shrinking?

I'm fairly sure I will have to take the trunk, deck, and hood down all the way, or at least to the factory primer, but I'm wondering if I need to be so aggressive with the entire car.

Like I say, I'm not looking for a fantastic paint job here, just something serviceable but on the other hand I don't want to have to redo it in a couple of years.

I figure if the cracking problem is in the clear, then if I sand the car down till the surface is solid and tight then I should be ok whether I happen to end up with paint, primer, or metal showing shouldn't I?

I have a quart of valdspar DTM 2030 primer, and I would like to use that, and possibly the masterseries primer on the roof, trunk and deck.

I'm not sure if that's enough primer or not?, would give me about 2.5 quarts sprayable.
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Old 10-18-2013, 06:41 AM
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Brandon, I have more experience with that problem than I care to remember. In the late 80's and through much of the 90's GM, Ford and Chrysler all had problems with paint falling off their vehicles and would send them to private shops to get completely stripped and repainted. And that's the best recommendation for you Olds as well. I'm sorry, it always seems as though every time you ask, I come up with a time consuming, expensive, labor intensive solution...and honestly...I would love to post at least once, an easy fix for you.

If you take the paint down to an uncracked fairly solid substrate, you could prime over top of that substrate, sand and paint. Again, the ideal solution would be to strip the car to bare metal, 2 coats of Epoxy primer, do your body work (except welding...do that in the bare metal stage) prime body worked areas, block sand and paint...but, I understand.

Ray
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Old 10-18-2013, 03:20 PM
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Ray (69widetrack)'s reply is on the money.

I've had several cars over the years with the same problem.
One of them was a California car (great looking Eldorado Biarritz) that had been cleared over the cracks. Not good...

The best thing to do is get back down to a solid, crack-free layer, then seal/prime/paint/clear.
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Old 10-20-2013, 07:49 AM
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Ray, if I were to get an answer that was easy I would probably be too suspicious to believe it, lol.

Just the nature of the beast I guess, but one can hope.

I'm probably not going to strip the whole car down to metal. Unless it can't get it solid, then I will have to. I don't think I will though, the paint on the sides still looks pretty good, just the scratched looking clear, and the jambs all look like new still. At least in comparison.

I will have to take the roof, deck and maybe hood all the way down though. The Fl sun is hard on these areas and they look much worse. Almost like a different car from the sides.

I did manage to find a pair of pretty decent cloth front seats at the upullit, and matching cloth back. The back base had been tweaked out of shape because of ppl yanking them out looking for change I suppose. So, I'm getting closer to having the interior done.

Just some general info on my progress, I will have a couple questions in the next post.
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Old 10-20-2013, 08:03 AM
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Plastics.

I have plastic fenders, and bumper covers on this car.

I don't believe I've ever painted a plastic fender before, but I have done some repair/touch up/paint on bumper covers.

The cover I did the most work on was on a maxima, it had a couple cracks which I fixed with the patch kit stuff. Don't recall the brand, but it came in a couple of tubes and seemed to work fine. After sanding it down I used the adhesion promoter my paint guy recommended, then spot primed, sanded and painted the whole front clip. Yeah, I know I should have primed the whole clip, but I didn't really have the money to spare and the existing paint was good, and I sold the car the next day before I could even pull the tape so it worked out well.

But, I imagine what I can get away with on a couple small areas probably isn't what I have to do for larger areas.

Are there any general rules for using adhesion promoter?

Do I have to use it anytime I sand into the plastic?

Does the type of plastic matter? I imagine the fenders are a different type from the bumper covers.

When is the correct time for the adhesion promoter, I think its just before I prime, but not positive.

Also, I was reading on the SPI site and they have a shelf life listed for their adhesion promoter, do all brands of adhesion promoter have a shelf life, or will I have to find the data sheet for what I have to know for sure?

I've had the can of promoter for probably 3 years or so, and this being fl, it has been exposed to a fair amount of heat, but no cold to speak of. Just trying to figure out if its ok to use it or if I should just pitch it.

Thank You, Brandon.
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Old 10-20-2013, 10:25 AM
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Adhesion promoters are like an insurance policy...they are a PITA to pay for when a good quality Epoxy will usually be enough ...just that one time when maybe the epoxy went on a little thin or for what ever reason, the paint let go on plastic...the adhesion promoter would have helped.

Adhesion promoter is adhesion promoter...it's made basically to stick to and help stick to most any plastic and it should be put on about 1/2 hour before priming. All brands have a shelf life, all paint products have a shelf life...from tack rags to paint...that doesn't mean that it's gone bad ...(it should be more of a best before date than a shelf life) it's just that the date is there to protect you, the consumer more than the manufacturer.

If the can has never been opened...it should be fine...if it has...for the price of adhesion promoter...pitch it and get a new one.

All good questions Brandon...sounds like your motivated again...I like that.

Ray
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Old 10-30-2013, 06:30 AM
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Hello again, time for another progress report.

Pulled dash apart and installed the security system bypass signal generator, seems to work well so far. Also bypassed the starter enable relay - not an easy item to get to. Dash back together.

Padding and carpet back in.

Finally found some pretty decent cloth seats from another olds in the upullit, cleaned up a bit and installed.

Spent several hours yesterday in a dishpan scrubbing door seals/moulding. They aren't perfect, but clean and will work for what I need.

Have the rope butyl seal used for installing windshields (1/4" in this case) to apply around the top outside of the seals as per the TSB.

Still having some conceptual issues with the plastic screw on drip rail. Its fragile and just a poor idea in general. I'm going to try to gently remove the tape/sealer that is dried on it and fix the cracks with JB Weld as suggested and then seal it back on with something.

I have some pretty good double sided sealer tape that will probably be ok for awhile, but I'd like to have more of a permanent fix.

Does seam sealer adhere to plastic?

The reason I ask is because when this rail is in place there is quite a gap between it and the roof. I'm thinking about filling this area with seam sealer, if it will hold up.

There would still be enough of a channel for the drip rail to perform its intended function I think.

Thanks, Brandon.
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Old 10-30-2013, 06:51 AM
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Hi Brandon, good to hear from you again. If you want to remove that dried on 2 sided tape, try a plastic putty spreader...this won't damage your surface and will allow you to separate the tape from the body.

Seam sea;er may work, but keep in mind that seam sealer will shrink so depending on how wide the gap is, seam sealer may or may not work...could you post a picture..that would help in determining if seam sealer is the way to go. I understand that budget always enters into the equation.

Ray
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Old 11-01-2013, 06:18 AM
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Hello again,

I got my door seals reinstalled with the butyl rope seal

Photos 1 and 2

This was the first door I did, the others looked better as I learned a couple things about butyl as I went.

Photo 3: The gap left after I pushed the seal up where it should be - I patched it in with short pieces I cut from a piece I grabbed from the upullit.

I think the butyl tape is what I have been looking for to seal the drip rail. Its pretty easy to work with, seems to function well, and is relatively durable - also cheap lol.

Photo 4: drip rail notice the gap/gaps where the plastic has cracked and slid, this is where I will JB Weld it.

Photo 5: The backside, you can see the strip of sealing tape the factory put here. Didn't do a very good job, none of it was stuck to the car at all and its dry and hard on the rail.

More in next post.
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