Friday, July 26, 2019

Finishing Up Sill Rework, Some Wet Sanding & Stud Repairs | Roundtail Restoration

Time to get caught up. This post will be a bit long in doing so. I finished up the sill rework to include getting seam sealer in the gap. That worked out really well thanks to a recommendation from one of my regular viewers. Speaking of which, to the video:


Earlier this month I ordered what will hopefully be the last of my paint supplies from SPI. I got another quart kit of epoxy, but this time in white. I'll use this as my final sealing coat (it'll be reduced by about 25%). I'm going with white instead of grey to give the red a bit brighter of a base to go down on. I'm not sure that it'll really matter, but hopefully it'll give it a bit more "pop" than it would have over grey epoxy.

I also ordered another quart of medium red as I used about 1/3 of a quart for tinting the Raptor Liner. My concern is that I would run out of red in the middle of painting. That wouldn't be incredibly terrible but for the fact that all of the base coat cans should be about evenly combined and mixed to ensure a uniform color. If I had two quarts that I mixed, than ran out and got a third from a different batch, the color may not match. That would have bugged the hell out of me. So, I got another quart. I may not use it, but better safe than sorry.

The last thing that I got was some more Wax and Grease remover but this time, it's solvent-based instead of water-based. For whatever chemical reason, the water-based stuff shouldn't be used to clean base coat. Since the solvent-based stuff is okay on anything and I wasn't sure if I was going to need to spray the base coat, I got a gallon of it. It's supposedly really good to clean your oven, too, so I may try that when I'm all done with the paint job. Good excuse to spend the money right there!

More paint and supplies. That's a bit over $200 worth right there. Stuff's not cheap!

Toward the end of the last post, I wrote about putting down some body filler in various spots to clean up some of my weld seams and panel-to-panel gaps and such. I did more of that, including some minor filler pitting that I had on the bulkhead repair that I did a forever ago.

Polyester filler are the sill-to-upper-A-post seam.

Once that filler was all dry, I sanded it all smooth, blocked everything out through 320-grit and hit the car all over (exterior) with another round of epoxy primer and left it to cure for a few days.

With fresh epoxy covering the bare metal, especially around my sill rework, it was time to get the rework finished up with filler and seam sealer. I did a couple of applications of filler and got it all blocked out. Turns out that area is now better than the driver's side, so quite a turn around.

For the seam sealer application, I put blue painters tape on either side of the gap (recommended by a viewer) to bound the area and filled it will seam sealer, running it down smooth with my finger. This will give me a flexible seal in the seam that hopefully won't crack with the bumps of the road.

Seam sealer. Hard to see since it's about the same color as the epoxy.

There wasn't a whole lot else to do that night since it was towards the later side and a school night, so I decided to give wet sanding a try. Turns out I bought the wrong sanding discs (not wet/dry), but with some water and my 3M DA sander, I went through 400-grit wet (they held up good enough). Smooth as silk! I didn't take any pictures because you really couldn't tell the difference unless you felt it. That was about it for that visit.

When I came back again, my first job was to get the big compressor fixed. I found both a start and a run capacitor on, where else, Amazon and bought them both. Capacitors can be tricky to verify broken, so I played it safe and got both (under $20 for the pair). I swapped them out and the compressor started and ran fine...for about 3 minutes. It locked back up on me. So, I took it all back apart again, cleaned some contacts for the centrifugal clutch up, put it all back together, and it has been running strong since. Not sure that I actually needed those capacitors after all, but it's working, so good enough for me!

Horrible picture of the old starting capacitor. Run capacitor is to the right of the shot.

As far as Dorothy goes, my object was to start back in on the bonnet. I decided to stop wet sanding the body. With it needing to stay in the "paint booth" because of my limited room, I didn't want overspray from other things that still needed to be painted to mess up my wet sanding. Therefore, I covered it with plastic and moved it, sideways, to the back of the booth.

I put the bonnet on the rack, inner side up, and got to work on that. My only goal was to get it in epoxy following some block sanding and such that exposed some bare metal, especially in the areas under the wheel arches.

Because this area was tight, I purchased a Harbor Freight touch-up spray gun. As always, I used a coupon and, for about $25, it was mine. It's only got a 0.8mm tip (the epoxy calls for a 1.4 or 1.5mm tip) so I was concerned that may be an issue. Only one way to find out!

Ain't it cute?!

Because I struggled with is so much when I was setting my gaps, I also wanted to get the transverse support tube installed prior to painting color so I didn't mess up the paint trying to adjust it. I measured the gaps between the end of the tube and the wheel arch support brackets after getting my gaps all set (and before removing the tube) so that I could put it back in about the same spot.

Measurement prior to taking it apart.

With that, I put the tube back in and tightened it down...or not. Either because I wasn't that carefull or just years of vibration (or both), the threads on the studs had flattened out so much that I couldn't tighten the nut. It would only get so (not) tight, then just kind of skip.

The studs. The rear one was compromised by functional, but the front one was shot.

I brainstormed for a bit (you can see that about here in the video) and was ready to drill the bracket out and replace the studs, but decided that it would be better to just paint what I had (I had already mixed the epoxy and didn't want to waste it) and worry about the stud after I asked for advice on my favorite forum. Thanks goodness I did!

Following paint.

The little paint gun did very well. I was actually quite impressed with the coverage and the spray pattern. It allowed me to get into the tight spots, actually putting it through the headlight bucket opening, to get to all the tight areas. I'm sure there are other options out there for a touch-up gun, but I'd recommend this one if you don't have your heart set on something else. The true test will be when I need to lay down red and clear coat. I may change my tune then, but we'll see!

Painting wrapped it up for that visit and I came back for the next one armed with a solution to my stud problem. A gentleman on the forum, a machinist by trade, recommended running a metric die on the stud and converting it from the 1/4-28 UNF thread that it was (want to know what that means? Watch my threaded fastener video) to a 6 x 1 metric thread. The size difference was just small enough to cut fresh metal for the metric size, but not so much smaller that I would compromise its strength. It worked like a champ!

Post- repair.

If you look closely at the picture above, you'll notice that the threads kind of flatten out in the middle. That's where the damage was. However, I cut just enough metal that the nut gets good purchase and does tighten. I didn't get crazy with it, but I think it's good enough. I also cut down the rear stud just to be sure.

All better.

With that all done, I went for another round of epoxy in there to cover the minor portions of the tube that hadn't gotten a full coating. I also did a random assortment of other pieces (door hinges, headlight buckets, windscreen brackets, etc.).

All sorts of stuff ready to paint.

I also cleaned up the hardware that held the bonnet pivot support tubes. I had cleaned these all previously, removing all of the old paint. With the summer's increased humidity, this stuff started to surface rust since they were original fasteners and, therefore, not zinc plated. I scuffed up those and a few areas in the wheel arches and hit those with epoxy primer as well. There is another coat or two of Raptor Liner in it's future.

Passenger's wheel arch, rust protected.

All those parts above, painted.

That was about it. You may notice a strange, large, white piece in a the picture above. I mention it in my video a few times. That's a wasted 240Z fender that my garage mate kindly donated to the cause. I'm going through the whole bare metal to clear coat process on that to make sure my procedures work. It's still in the epoxy phase, but here's the video so far on that:



That's all I've got and I'm all caught up...for now. Thanks for reading and watching!

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