AMAZING... I will definitely follow this thread... And cool rotisserie you got there :-)
AMAZING... I will definitely follow this thread... And cool rotisserie you got there :-)
Man you should have filmed all this and put out an instructional DVD on how to rsto M3" along with a complimentary jar of vaseline to soften the final bill
carrying on from where we left off last night, and it's on to the final of
our 3 types of fillers. With the heavy fillers on and filler primer done and rubbed
down it's time to break out the stoppers.
After rubbing down the black guide coat on the shell and separate panels
it's not uncommon to find some little tiny holes in the surface of the
filled area. These are tiny little air bubbles that sometimes get trapped in the
fillers as your spreading it on, and will show through the final top coat if
not dealt with. Kinda hard to see them they're so small but since I can't
figure out how to use the zoom on the camera your just going to have to
shove your face up close to the monitor...
along with these tiny holes, block sanding the guide coat also showed
up a few larger blemishes that would also have to be dealt with....
The last few larger one's shown above can be filled with a thin covering of fillers,
but theres no point trying to fill the tiny pin holes with fillers, it just won't fit.
So, we use this stuff....
as you can see by the label 3M have decided to call it "Acryl Red Putty"
probably cause they couldn't charge you enough if they just called it "stoppers".
Basically it's just a very fine, runny, light form of normal fillers that
has the advantage that it'll fit into any little scratch or pin hole. You can
buy it in a tin or a tube like above. The tube seems to be handier for the
simple reason that this stuff already has the hardner premixed in it, so
the minute it's exposed to the air it starts to go off. With the tube you can
take a little out at a time but the tin version seems to go hard after only
opening it a few times. Then again I'm not exactly the fastest worker.
So, squirt a little out to use...
and apply it to the one or two pins holes on the car along with the
thin coat of fillers for the bigger blemishes....
well maybe a little more than one or two holes...
if you ware spectacles it helps to clean them before this job or you
may use half the tube before realising it's dirt on your glasses not
pin holes on the car...
the stoppers goes off fairly quickly and can be sanded away usually
within 10 minutes. As it's so fine and light it sands much the same as
the primer, so just gently rubbing it with some 320grit takes away the
to leave just the little bit filling the pin holes...(you'll have to take my word on it)
the larger bits of normal filler take another small covering of guide coat
and a light block sanding again to get them down flat....
and with all that done around the shell and separate panels the bodywork
is finally as flat as we can get it.....
it's then time to clean up the....
and start taping up for final coating of primer....
as everything now needs to be coated fully in primer it's decided to break
it down in to three sessions. First the underneath, inside, engine bay and
boot and then later the outside and finally the doors and bumpers and other stuff.
We decided to do it like this because theres just so much square footage
of bodywork to be sprayed on the car it would be hard not to get overspray
on panels that were starting to dry while your just getting around to
spraying the area next to it. Plus with our magnificent, money no object,
extraction system there was a good chance one of us would probably die
from toxic fumigation.
Got to spend a little time being precise taping the car up before hand as
any paint that gets under it and on to the other half will show up when
you spray over it later....
1 inch tape around all the edges first....
and then with that done, roll out the paper and fill in the gaps....
quick once over with pre-cleaner, a swift wipe of the tac-rag, slop
some paint together, fire it into the gun, and splatter it out on to the
shell, leaves it looking like this....
again handy having it on the spit for this part as you can turn it to any
angle to help getting all the nooks and crevices inside and underneath....
and when that was finished and dried the paper is whipped of and
everything that was sprayed is now taped off ready for the second
half to start....
the window and door jams are all taped from the inside so as to
allow full coverage right out to the edges....
there is however one danger to watch out for when
taping a car up from the inside....
with all that done the final thing was to hang some paper down from
the sills of the car. This is not to avoid overspray on the underneath
of the car, thankfully we're not quite that anal, but instead to stop
and spray travelling under the car and landing on freshly painted
panels the far side....
a wipe, tac, mix and splatter later....
with the shell now fully primered we could move attention to the other
bits, bumpers, doors, spoilers etc. However to do this the shell would have
to go outside to make room, and we were worried that extreme temperatures
of the Irish summer season might literally warp the metalwork!
Yeah, as usuall it had been pissing rain solid for a week now....
alas, just as we were about to abandon work on the M and start
building an ark, the clouds broke and the sun shone through long
enough to allow us to get this done.
a few lengths of steel....
one short length of steel bolted to each spit stand...
and some pimp daddy chain...
allows us to hang the panels up for spraying like so....
and some string from the rafters hangs the spoiler and mirrors.
(spoiler worked out grand like this, mirrors were a disaster,
imagine trying to spray an old grandfather clock pendulum, whilst moving,
and you'll get the picture, you live and you learn)....
the rest of the stuff went on what ever we could find to prop them up...
started to run out of suitable props at this stage so had to borrow the
neighbours wheelie bin.....
had to be careful with that and tape it up good and proper as he's
already fairly suspicious as to why the grass in his back garden
has turned a funny shade of primer grey.
bumper plugs are removed and done separately so as to allow the
primer under where they shall sit....
and thats it, the last of the stuff to be primered.....
wipe, tac, mix, splatter and ta-daaaa....
join us tomorrow evening to find out how things turn out as we
take a turn to the darker side and start applying the Jet black.
Congrats on a great job thus far. I complain about not having the space to undertake such a project, but your project is a testament to doing more with less.
My hat is off to you sir!
And finally the 3rd and final part to this update...
We had decided right from the start of this project that the car would
be going out to have it's top coat applied by a professional. The
reasons for this were:
a) i wanted the top coat and lacquer to be baked in an
oven to get the finish as hard as possible.
b) i wanted the finish to be fly free, ie. nothing stuck to the
outside of the shell but paint, no dust, no flies, no stray pigeons.
c) perhaps most importantly of all I wanted it painted by a
professional. We've sprayed quite a bit so far on this car and quite
a few rally cars in the past and in a moment we'll also be spraying some black
to the interior and underneath of this one. But, there's a world of difference
between spraying primer and spraying top coat. Spraying primer is fairly
straight forward and your always going to be sanding it before the next
coating anyway so the finish doesn't have to be mint. But top coat can go
t*ts up in the blink of an eye if you haven't got enough experience to spot
the signs that all is not well. After this much effort to prep it, I want the top
coat to be as good as it can be and for that to happen it needs to be
painted by someone with a lot more experience than me.
That said, I'll be f**ked if i'm going to let someone else have all the fun, we
were going to paint as much black as we could first.
With the whole car now primered the bits we were going to paint black
next would need to be sanded/ flattened. For the interior and boot we
above is a 180 grit soft sanding block and below is a 220 grit
sanding pad. They're much quicker to use than normal sheets of
wet and dry paper and they'd do just fine to give a quick lick to the
the engine bay was a different story though. I'd spent a lot of time
already sanding parts of the engine bay smooth and sanding down
the seam sealer flat as I wanted the bay to look as good as the
outside of the car. So now the primer in here was going to have to be
guide coated and wet sanded with 600grit to get it mirror flat. Only
the turrets, wheel tubs, chassis legs and front slam panel got this
treatment. Not bothering going this far on the bulkhead as it'll be
covered by the oem soundproofing.....
and with that eventually finished it was time to shoot a couple of
coats of blackness....
very happy with how it came out, interior took it very well...
the boot, as always,was a pure pig to do but came out well too.
For anyone who's curious as to why a boot's a pig to spray, get yourself
an empty kellogs conflakes box, stick your head inside it and then
shove an aerosol can in there aswell and try to spray the inside of the box.
You'll get the idea pretty quick.
underside came out pretty sweet to....
and then the engine bay, would all that extra sanding pay off???
it looked like all that extra effort was worth while, the majority of
the bay was silky smooth...
all except that is, the f**king turret's and wheel tubs which was the
main part I wanted to get right....
I'd like to say I took this discovery in a cool and collective manner,
but the truth is passers by outside had to cover there young children's
ears for quite some time. What had happened was we had sprayed
the underside of the car first and some overspray had blew up in to
the engine bay and settled on the turrets. Unawares of this we then
flipped the shell over and started spraying the engine bay. You could
see it showing through as we were spraying but there wasn't a lot we
could do then, so we finished and let it dry to see what it would look like....
It's not terrible, but it's not what I wanted either. And the irony of it is
it's only on the turrets and wheels tubs, the only part thats really noticable
when everything refitted to the bay. So, what to do? well if you've read
this far you've probably a good idea. After leaving the paint to fully
cure the effected areas were wet sanded back down again with 600grit.
Didn't have to go right back to the primer to get it flat although the areas
do look grey in the pictures...
each side was sanded back to a line or crease in the bodywork
as it was going to have to be taped off to be resprayed and
you don't want nasty tape/paint lines standing out.....
So to also help blend in the resprayed parts, instead of just normally
taping off the area, the masking tape was rolled like so....
and then placed snug up against the seam....
and another strip of tape softly over it to stop the roll unfurling....
and repeat until all the area is done....
the thinking behind this is that if you just taped it normally you'd get
a noticeable line where the paint builds up against the edge of the
tape, whereas this way some of the paint will fade in under the roll
and if all goes well, make the line unnoticeable.
With that done the rest of the shell needed to be taped up....
and then mix a small bit of paint, spray it on, say 3 decades of the rosary
and slowly open one eye to see if it's come up good....
yipidy f u c k i n g doda....
with that little episode over it was time to move on to the final
preparation of the exterior and remaining panels for top coat.
The reason this wasn't sanded along with the interior is if any
overspray crept through the masking you could end up 15 pictures
back up again and in serious need of sedation. Quick mask up
to stop the nice black paintwork getting messed up by the coming
and then head to toe every last square inch of bodywork left in
primer gets powder guide coated and wet sanded with 600grit wet
and dry paper....
no scratches or blemishes to worry about this time just the need to
get the primer as mirror flat as possible, any top coat can only be
as flat as whats underneath it....
bit of washing up liquid in the water helps the sanding go a little easier
and cleans any stray contaminants off the panels as you go...
or 3 weeks to be precise....
but there is a small reward, with everything sanded so smooth
you could now catch the light and see reflections on the panels
and see how flat it'll look when black....
and then with nothing left to do, the time had finally come for the
top coat to go on. How was the black going to look? Would it
come out ok? Was all this effort going to pay off?.....
And i'd dearly love to be able to tell you all, but the simple truth is,
we just delivered the shell to the bodyshop this morning and it'll be
an agonising few weeks before we get to see the finished article.
But at least now you know how I feel.....
Oh the Joy of it all. Wait till you start putting the thing back together. My neighbours think I have Touretts.
That, is simply amazing work ! I just wish I had the skill you have to be able to do that to my own bare shell resto project. I now see that when the time comes, it's going to cost me a fortune to have someone else to do almost exactly as you have done - so much detail work to get the end result perfect.
Not just a great thread, deffo on of the best on any forum I've ever read.
that is one hell of a resto! utmost respect to you! deffo the best one i've seen so far as your attention to detail is unbelievable.
Did you have the shell dipped and e-coated all in one go ? If so, did this expose any problems that were hidden ?
Yeah we did. Having the two processes done at separate times
was never an option for us unfortunately. As the car and i reside
in Dublin the dipping required we trailered it on the ferry over to
England and left it there and then returned 4 weeks later to collect
it when primer dipped. As it was, them two round trips cost us
1200euro boat charges, another 1200 for two extra boats journeys
to bring it home between dips would have well and truly broke the bank.
We did consider making our own makeshift raft but the coastguard search
and rescue service is pretty poor on that section of the Irish sea.
As for exposing hidden problems upon return, I was fairly lucky (doesn't
seem right using that word) in that all the rust on my car was fairly well
developed and was easily identified and repaired before the dipping process
started. So when the shell returned home, thankfully, there were no new
"discoveries" of deceased metalwork. We also new the car had had a few
coats of paint during it's life and that there was a bit of fillers used around the
shell so we knew it was never going to be straight as a die when going to collect it.
Didn't stop me from having nightmares in the mean time though, of receiving a
phone call from SPL saying that what little of the car remained after dipping
could be posted home if I wished.
Are you thinking of having your shell dipped?
Last edited by xworks; 09-04-2009 at 02:50 PM.
I was kinda thinking the travel costs would be a killer if you did. Reason I asked was because I found a lot of rot under the underseal that you simply wouldn't have known was there unless you had removed it first.
It's a long story with my car, but yeah, I would like to do almost exactly as you have done by changing the roof, rust repairs and a quality paint job. Finding someone to do the job as well as you have is going to be tricky ....
Look forward to seeing the final paint job and rebuild. Keep up the excellent work.
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