I'm still looking for a replacement for my '98 'burb whose roof
is rusting through: http://tinyurl.com/3dzzrql
I'm hoping to find something within a year - especially if/when
we see $5.00/gallon gas.
Besides covering up the hole so rainwater won't pour in, is there
anything I should be doing to mitigate the damage?
Maybe some kind of expanding foam I can spray in there that will
bond to the already-rusted metal and slow down the process?
Any idea of what kind of foam? I Googled a little, but could
not find anything.
Polyurethane insulating foam seems to adhere quite strongly to a
lot of stuff. I'll try in on some rusted steel today - but
would like to hear from somebody authoritative before I inflict
it on the vehicle...
If you don't go the Cut and weld approach (best action) then I would use
Epoxy fiberglass, as epoxy will bond better to a metal surface than
fiberglass resin. You can pick the stuff up at West marine, or I use
Raka in Florida. http://www.raka.com /
Surfboards are made with Epoxy, since it is stronger than fiberglass
resin. It bonds better to most materials. but you need to prep it
properly for paint because of it's Amine Blush. Read the manual
You can shoot them an email and see what they say.
Hopefully, you haven't done anything yet. You need to change your thought
Foam... NO GOOD. It won't stick to rust. It has no strength. It will hold
moisture which will accelerate the rusting.
1st thing you will need to do is remove the roof rack. Leave it off if you
want to do a fudge and butter seal. No need to have it on there unless you
plan to use it.
WHAT? You want to USE IT? (OK, judging from the pics... you obviously want
to use it.) You will need to at least rivet some decent pieces of steel
over the damage, with holes for mounting the rack back onto.
Don't ignore the fact that with any load on that rack, the wind resistance
is trying to rip that rack off the top.
One thing I find works well to slow down rusting steel is NAPA brand open
gear lube. Nothing else quite like it. But your best bet is to cut away
the rusted metal. You need to build your patch first. Have your holes all
drilled and lined up with the old holes, and mark the patch position before
cutting out the rotted metal. Then patch, seal, paint, and mount the rack
back on. Obviously, it will looked repaired when done. You'll need a good
body guy to prevent that, which is where the major expense would come in.
Plan B: Make some sort of dam all around each spot (the bigger, the
stronger). Fill the holes with something thick (maybe some foam might work
for that) and then pour epoxy resin such that it is large enough to grab a
good solid footprint around the rack mount, and deep enough to encapsulate
it. Then you have it glued down and sealed.
Plan C: Duct tape. Lots of it. At least that will add some strength.
Please update with what you end up doing!
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