Body Prep

O.K., now how many months has it been since I started stripping this thing? But wait Adrian, you said that you found an easy and quick way of doing it in the previous section, what's the deal? Well, the flat areas were easy, but then the door jambs and and convertible top corners and rear light wells with tight curves came in to play. The picture to the right shows where the fun really begins... this is a no-go, and just clearing out this water runnel with 80 grit paper took me quite a while.



Materiels

For the body work that required structural buildup, I used the waterproof short strand Bondo-Glass with 3M glass matting. for the bonding seams, light buildup, and evening over locations where the fibers were starting to come through, I used the Evercoat. And for small scratches in the fiberglass I used the glazing putty. If you are a first timer using these things like I was, here is a good hint on the Bondo-Glass and Evercoat. Both of these products use a cream hardener. They state that if you follow their mixing directions you get from 7 to 10 minutes of work time until it hardens. Yea, right... gives you around 3 minutes, not nearly enough time. So what I recommend is that you do some tests first. Using a paper plate and plastic knife, whip up a batch, stir it around, and simply play with it on the plate see how fast it takes until it is no longer workable (creamy smooth). Toss the plate and knife away, then try again using a bit less. After a couple of tries, you will be able to eyeball the ratio. Make sure you mix them up well!

Have to keep taking the chair in and out to park the car...

And the door jambs... arghhhhh... sanded them down as best I could, and will just primer the hell out of them with new coat. Reviewed an original paint job on a survivor 71 and noticed that from the factory the door jambs were pretty much just overspray anyhow. Will stick with that as the excuse.

The rear light parts are metal, didn't remove them, will simply paint over. Covered by red lenses anyhow.

Interesting things you find while tearing apart your car. Found the date 3-22-71 10:30AM written in marker on the passenger floor, and you can see the bit 282, though no clue what that is for.

And for the major work, here is the driver side bumper mounting hole. This was a major crack area when I bought the car, and after stripping the paint I found out that a major chunk about the size of a silver dollar was nothing but old body putty. In fact, the entire hole area where the chrome bumper support bolt attaches was completely destroyed. Dug all the old crap out, made a batch of the Bondo-Glass and coated a piece of 4 inch square fiber cloth with it, and pressed it against the interior side of the hole. I let it set, took my drill and carefully drilled through the mesh, then made another batch and built it up on top of the base layer, making sure to keep the bolt hole open. Took about four layers. As it is now, it is rock solid in place.

Bolt Holes

With wet sanding and priming, there is going to be a LOT of contamination issues with bolt holes. Tape was a no go, so thought outside of the box. Local pharmacy (and gun store, though more expensive there...) had jars of disposable ear plugs. These are the perfect size for every threaded hole on the car.