10 year old Paint has cracked on seams, hood, can use seam sealer to help suport it ? - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
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Old 03-04-2020, 06:09 PM
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10 year old Paint has cracked on seams, hood, can use seam sealer to help suport it ?

Hello to all body experts. ...I bought a very old custom fat fender (work done in 1952 ) car 11 years ago that had a 2 year old paint job at the time, car body look good...My problem now is over the past years I drive about 400 miles a year, the paint has cracked on the areas where the rear fender seams were filled in and where the hood was pancaked and over lap ( stick welded and pop riveted was used )... The body has some cracks in lead areas, and cracks where I guess bondo was used ( very thin in that area ). The thick area of the car is not cracking... Now can I use seal sealer to help support the stress on the rear fenders underneath and hood or used something else? I can get to the hood easy and under the rear fender seams is hard to get to...I like to stop all the cracking and repair it before I get the car painted. I like to thank you all that have help people on this subject and others types too.!!!

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Last edited by Duker Digers; 03-04-2020 at 06:19 PM.
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Old 03-11-2020, 06:19 PM
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Some pictures would really help here. What year car? I'm guessing a 30's or 40's car with bolted on rear fenders and a split hood?
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Old 03-11-2020, 06:48 PM
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I think you'll find there is no easy fix to those problems, at any that will last, other than proper welding and body work.
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Old 03-11-2020, 06:56 PM
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If that work was in the 50's, the filler is probably not stable. Plastic filler was just starting to be used. May have to dig it out and start over.
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Old 03-12-2020, 06:59 AM
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I like to give thanks to all have replied to my post... Yes its a 1940 car , not with a split hood, the hood was pancaked too.( removed about 3.5 inch out of hood I guess). Some of the cracks just are not in a line and not very deep in a thin film of body filler or some in lead area...
The rear panels on each side just below the rear window area is where the cracks slowly started to spread the more I drove the car... Where body filler is thick- no cracks in the rear fender seams. The hood has the least amount of cracks in it - in the area where the hood was seamed together, its has some spots alone the seam line on each side..

The hood was pancaked using pop rivets and stick welded on the underside of the hood. I could grind welds smother ( because the welds need to be cleaned up too ) I was then thinking to use seam sealer or weld it again using a wire welder to help support it. Now getting to the cracks will be very hard in the upper 1/4 fender panels trying to re-weld it, but using seam seal will be a lot easier to apply with my hand if needed..I do know seam sealer is used all over in today's body parts, I hope I can use it too......I guess if I have to have and get the car soda blasted to remove the paint off. And to see what was used in all areas....I will try to post some pic's...Also this was a car on the cover of a magazine in the early 50's.... Do I need to preserve this leaded car or fix it with today's technology ???? thanks for all answers !!!

Last edited by Duker Digers; 03-12-2020 at 07:10 AM.
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Old 03-12-2020, 09:10 AM
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Are these cracks in the metal, putty, or lead? Metal fatigue cracks would have to be welded, requires blasting to remove any trace of putty, and paint. A series of small welds (tacks) spacing about 1 inch apart. Then continue with more tacks repeating with spacing, untill all tacks overlap or touch. This will allow heat to spread out without warping panel. Being slow is a good thing.
On cars of that era, fenders were mounted with a bead welt between the car and the fender. Many times the builder just sliced the fabric welt off and puttied the seam. This left the fabric tab in the seam. It then collected moisture causing swelling and cracking the putty.
The proper fix would be to remove the fender and the rotting welt material, use a rust converter on the swelling flanges. Then use putty to fill and smooth the seam. Seam sealer could be used when mounting the fender but should not be part of the filling process in the hiding of the seam. Only to seal from water from underneath.
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Old 04-19-2020, 04:29 PM
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On those fat fendered cars, as Maynard mentioned, the fenders were bolted to the body with a beaded welt between. To properly mold in those fenders they need to be bolted with no welt, and lined up properly, then welded at the seam to the body. then mold it in with filler. Simply filling a bolted seam is garunteed to crack in a short time. Due to the normal flexing, and movement of the body to fender joint. Another thing is that the running board is fastened to the frame, and to the fender, the fender is fastened to the body. The normal flexing of fender to body, via running board puts a bit of stress on the fender to body attachment. The folks that built that car took all this into consideration, and that's why they attached things the way they did.
As to the hood seam; If it's a lap joint, and only welded on the back side, the same scenerio is happening there, flexing of the panel is cracking the filler material.
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Old 04-19-2020, 07:29 PM
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I posted some pic's in a file on my car too..My rear fenders do not have any cracks at all and (I do not have any running boards ). The cracks I do have are 1.5 -2.0 inch long along the hood new seam area on each side.. And I do have I think ( stress cracks ) on top of the rear flat area behind the seat above the rear fenders on each side of the car. The car has a soft ride and a full frame. The paint is BC/CC. I was thinking to repair the hood 1st its easier to get at ( there is some body filler very thin) B/C a magnet will stick to some to it. The rear area, I am going to try and crawl on my back and try to look in the trunk area and check and see what is under there.

Last edited by Duker Digers; 04-19-2020 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 05-04-2020, 04:59 PM
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May be patch panel, lapped and welded on one side. Smooth ride, has nothing to do with body flexing. Then again, if it were not for the flexing of the frame, and subsequently the body, you may well not have a smooth ride.
I would start with the hood, and go from there. I would completely strip the hood, top and bottom, so I can see exactly what is going on. One sided lap joints, welded from the back, will have problems on the front. (part you see)
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Old 05-04-2020, 05:52 PM
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Thank's a bunch for you input... Its going to be a hard job with a lot of work...Trying to find another hood is not going to be easy just in case I need one.
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bondo, lead seams, paint cracks, plastic fillers

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