Thankfully, the temperature was just fine for epoxy primer so I was able to get the bonnet back in epoxy following all of my filler repairs. Given that the epoxy should sit overnight (at least) before you do anything with and it looking like I was going to be able to get back over to the garage on Saturday morning, I wanted to get it painted ASAP.
|Which is the best side. This...|
I'm still struggling with good overlapping coverage - some dry spots, but I got full coverage between the two coats. I kept the respirator on for most of the rest of the visit due to the ambient fumes and got to work on the bulkhead.
I had filled a lot of the pits and other areas of concern with filler, both "regular" and fiberglass, and it was time to smooth it down. I cheated a bit and used the angle die grinder with my roloc fiber sanding discs to help me out so I didn't have to hand-sand it all. I'm not too concerned with the final result in this area so if there are imperfections, I'm fine with that. There's a lot of stuff going on in the bulkhead area (heater hose, wiring, master cylinders, etc.) so a lot of it will be invisible anyway. That being said, I wasn't going to leave it looking like total crap, either, so I got to work.
|Initial filler removal. The area to the left of the clutch master cylinder mount is a mess (still).|
|After working, second round of filler applied. This was pretty much it once it was cleaned up.|
That done, I moved on to the passenger's rear wing, blocking out the epoxy to show me the high and low spots. Not too bad for highs, but there were several lows, of course. 50+ years of use will do that to you.
|Screen capture show the first look after blocking. Dark spots are the lows (lots of them).|
Unlike most of my body work so far, except for maybe the doors, the rear wings are nearly inaccessible from the back. This makes it challenging to get a dolly in there to be able to push out on the lows while hammering off-dolly to bring down the highs.
|After blocking and a bit of hammer and dolly work. Coming along nicely.|
One spot that will require more thought and planning is the sill area where it mates with the rear wing. I didn't do a great job in this area initially and I wish I could have that moment back to do a bit better work there. But, I'll have to make it better now. I'm looking for suggestions on a good fix so if you have any, I'm all ears!
|The seam, specifically, is what's jacked up. Yuck!|
Also, after the initial assessment, I figured out that my repairs to the dent in the rear wing near the tail light weren't sufficient to ensure the tail light would sit flat. Again, I didn't take a before picture, so you'll have to suffer another screen capture.
|Notice, towards the bottom, that it's not flat across the face of the tail light mounting point.|
Anyway, I did as much hammer and dolly work as I thought I could and then resorted to filler. Right above the center of the wheel arch, in particular, I had to rely completely on filler because there is no access behind that spot because of the inner wheel arch itself.
|Initial round of filler.|
I blocked that area out and, finding spots I missed of course, did another round of filler.
|Blocked out following second round of filler.|
I was pretty happy with it at that point and moved on to the tail light repairs. I initially tried the stud puller, but that wasn't working. Instead, I decided to cut a relief in that area to allow me to pry out the tail light mounting plate. I still need to work on a patch, but that will be the next visit.
|Close to where I think it needs to be. I didn't have a tail light assembly at the garage to test it.|
|Same area, different view.|
That done, it was time to get the bonnet in build primer, so that's what I did. I got about 3 coats on there, good coverage all around. There were a couple of concerning areas that I didn't mention in the video and didn't take pictures of (of course!) like sanding scratches and some spots where the filler wasn't sanded to feather. Thankfully, it appears, though I haven't blocked it yet, that it filled all of those areas nicely.
|It looks good...trust me.|
|That nose is nearly perfect. Not quite, but close. Thankfully, I'm not painting Dorothy black!|
That was about it. I did sneak over there today to flip the bonnet over (with help this time) so that I can get the underside of it in epoxy. I also brought a tail light assembly over to see how that fit up. I bit more fine tuning, but otherwise it's much better that I would have been!
|Pretty close. Huge gap to fill.|
|Slightly different angle. Same gap, though...|