I just bought a 1987 Toy, cab is in great condition, no dents no rust that I
ca see. The bed, of course, has rust in front of the left rear wheel and
around the fuel cap lid area. Does anybody have any info on how to remove
the rust? I think it is completely through the outside layer and I am
probably sure that I am going to have to cut that area out and replace with
Problem is, I don't know how to do this. Any info would be greatly
appreciated, i.e. websites.
You can fix this yourself, but you'll need to spend some serious
money to get the right tools and supplies to do it - almost as much as
a body shop would charge to fix it the first time or two, but after
you get past the initial investment the repairs get really cheap.
I have most all this stuff already, but don't need to use it for
that. (Rust? On cars? In Los Angeles? Vas is das 'rust' stoof?)
Basic stuff you need - A small wire-feed MIG welder. Proper
sheet-metal shears (hand or power) and a cutoff wheel & discs (so you
can cut out the bad spots and the patch from a repair panel without
distorting them too much). Flanging tool to bend a "step" in the old
metal to weld the patch into and have the finished patch level. A
starter set of body hammers, blocks and dollies to get everything
flat. A can of body filler and tube of catalyst hardener. Spot putty
to fill the little scratches while doing the primer phase.
Grinder/Sander and the right grinding and sanding wheels and wire
wheels to get it all flat after each step. Good HVLP paint gun/blower
system for spraying the primer and paint.
If you want to get fancy (and blow several hundred bucks in the
process), you can buy the portable sandblaster with the vacuum media
recovery system, to clean the little spots that aren't too rusty -
blast them to clean out the rot, coat bare metal with rust converter,
prime and fill the divots with spot putty, then final prime and paint.
Another trick is to use a "Roper-Whitney Junior" style hole punch
('paper punch' for steel) on the patch panel, and then make 'puddle
welds' through the holes to tack the patch down flat (like spot welds)
in several places, before running a bead around the edges. And don't
do the edges in one long bead, you'll heat and warp the panel. Do an
inch at a time, and then skip to the other side of the patch.
Go to a good auto parts store with a paint-mixing counter that knows
their stuff, and bring the car with you (clean!). They can modify the
paint color mix to match how faded the car is now. Don't be afraid to
ask questions, they should know about the paint they sell...
The paint, primer, thinners and prep materials (like bare metal prep
etch, glazing and spot putties, etc.) need to be bought as a complete
system from one shop (or following a statement from the paint makers
that these prep materials are satisfactory) and you have to follow the
label directions exactly. This way you don't have to worry as much
about a bad reaction and the primer not sticking to the metal, or the
paint falling off the primer. If everything used is from Glasurit or
PPG (or whoever), there's less potential for problems, and the
inevitable "Not Me!" blame deflecting finger-pointing.
And laying down the color coat to the point where the repair is
invisible takes a lot of practice and good techniques (which I haven't
gotten anywhere close to yet) - practice on a beater car first, or get
an old car door for practice. Or do all the prep and priming work
yourself, and take it to a local body shop to let their expert shoot
the final color coat.
--<< Bruce >>--
Bruce L. Bergman, Woodland Hills (Los Angeles) CA - Desktop
Electrician for Westend Electric - CA726700
Good advice - I had an 80 4wd and kept hearing a tapping sound when I went
over bumps. Turned out the frame had cracked on both sides and the tapping
was the bed bouncing against the cab - when stopped they were touching. I
thought about keeping it in 4wd all the time so when the back end finally
broke away I could still downshift to a stop...just kidding. My frame was
trashed - I could push my finger through it, but it had very little body
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