Thursday, November 22, 2018

Epoxy Primer and Filler - Triumph Spitfire Restoration

Lots of catching up to do here, so let's get to it:


A whole bunch of different work for these two visits. I started with the newly epoxied driver's door. Up to this point, I had only done hammer and dolly work on it and it seemed to go okay. Now, it was time to get some body filler on it.

I used my hand and the light shining in the epoxy to find the low spots and got them filled in. I tried to keep the body filler thickness to a minimum after sanding, but there were some spots, like along the crease of the door and around the door handle, where some extra was required. I also tried to be a bit more precise with the filler, putting it only on spots that required it vice all of the place. I had to make up a few of batches to get all of the spots, but I think in the long run I saved a lot of otherwise wasted filler that way.

"Thick" body filler on the crease of the door where it was dinged.

With all of the filler work done and the door sanded down through 220-grit and a red scuff pad, it was time for another shot of epoxy.

Door suspended, waiting to shoot with epoxy.

All nice and shiny.

With the door painted, that was all of the work I could do on that for that visit and I called it a night.

A few days later I came back to start work on the door again, this time with polyester glazing putty. On a side note, I invested in a 4-pack of steel blades for body filler to replace the plastic ones that I wasn't very happy with. There was one each from 1" to 4" wide. The things are great, more flexible, and spread a much nicer layer of filler out. I highly recommend them.

Coster 1100 Steel Autobody Spreader Assortment 4-Pack.

With the new spreaders, I got the glazing putty on the spots that needed it and sanded them down.

Door ready for another shot of epoxy following glazing putty application.

In addition to getting the door ready for epoxy, I did a few bonnets odds and ends, namely the pivot tubes and their brackets. I had these thing laying around for a while and didn't want them to get too rusty after cleaning them up, so I prepped them for epoxy as well.

The bonnet pivot tube's brackets, drying from W&G remover

The pivot tubes hanging and drying from W&G remover, waiting for paint

Pivot tube brackets laid out ready to shoot.

I looked at the boot lid again for oil canning and drilling holes for the Mk2 emblem. Unfortunately, the picture that I had for how the emblem holes measured out was for a Mk3, which used a slightly different Spitfire emblem. Turns out, the holes were not the same. I didn't want to screw that drilling up, so I ordered new emblems (both the Spitfire4 and Mk2) from Rimmers(another sale!) and I'll use them along with a photograph of the emblems from a Mk2 car to make a template.

As far as the oil canning, it was still there, but I was afraid to do more work because I wasn't so sure I could get it out since it was such a large, flat piece of metal. I was afraid I would just chase it all of the place and never really fix anything. So, I'm waiting on making a final decision pending advice from my YouTube subscribers and putting the reinforcement frame in to see if that helps (which I'm pretty sure it will).

With that decision deferred, I moved over to the front valance, hoping to get some work done on that and getting it into epoxy when I shot the rest of the stuff. As I had replaced some cancer holes on this previously, I wanted to use fiberglass filler around the weld beads.

Front valance damage post-repair.

There are two reasons for this. First, the fiberglass short strands will provide some added strength to the repair and second, it's waterproof when it dries so it will hopefully keep water out of the small dips and holes in the weld beads that I may have missed.

Bondo-brand short strand fiberglass filler.

The fiberglass filler mixes up just like the other stuff, but you can see the small strands of fiberglass in it - it's more grainy looking. It mixes up a brown-ish color and spreads very nicely.

Fiberglass filler applied.

Once it was cured (which takes just about as long as the regular stuff), I sanded it down. It also sands out very nice. Overall, I was happy with how this stuff worked out. I intend to use it over all of my weld beads for my replaced panels, so that's a good thing!

Sanded down (opposite side)

I will put regular body filler over the fiberglass stuff, but not until after I get the whole thing in epoxy, which was next. I got everything shot that was waiting.

Pivot tube brackets in epoxy...

...pivot tubes...

...door...

...and finally the front valance.

And with that, I called that visit done as well. Until next time...

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