Project Mutant: Resurrection of an 82 FI basket case

Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant: Thank the Lord for small favors.

Today, I continued body work (a little). I decided to clean up and replace some of the body filler that was put there by the previous owner. Not what I really want to do, but I'll deal with my discomfort in order to allow progress.

However, I DID have an entire section of the body that I sanded, where there was NO body filler, NO dents, and I was able to take it back to bare metal, and then primer it, to protect. Smooth as the proverbial baby's bottom.

Three weeks looked to be optimistic, based on the amount of additional body work I am encountering. So, target for paint: April 15th. We'll see.
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Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant: Work that body!

Had some personal issues that got in the way of working on the X. Had to attend a memorial service for a family member in Portland, and some work and health issues. Actually was able to spend a little time on the project over the past couple days. Thank goodness I don't have an ACTUAL timeline. I am free to ad-lib the timeline based on feelings, rather than fact! Ha!

Done and powder-coated:
Engine cover

Now in primer -
Drivers Door
Left front quarter
Front trunk lid (finally)
Rear trunk lid (finally)
Front area in front of front trunk (unsure what it is actually called :confused:).

Started on -
Passenger door
Left rear quarter
Left lower rocker panel

Passenger door is up on work bench getting paint chemically stripped at this point. I'll get that door done rather quickly.
Should have left (drivers) side of car fully in primer by end of next weekend. Still need to work some body filler and sand some more.
Then we work on right side, targa bar, windshield frame, and tail-end of car with frame rail plugs and fill-in patches around frame rails.
After that, front frame rail plugs, and build a new grill. Then, we SHOULD be ready for paint!

NEW target for paint: May 25th.
 

Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant: I like the Doors.

Passenger door stripped of paint, primered to protect. need to fill a couple minor door dings, and final primer, then on to the next task.

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Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant: Am I sweating because it's hot, or because I am sick?

Working on a project can sometimes be even more challenging when you are ill. I spent some time on the X yesterday and today, between bouts of fatigue and sweat.

Still, the passenger door is completed in primer with the door-dings a thing of the past. The drivers side of the car is in primer (front and rear quarters, rocker panel). The header panel, front trunk lid and rear trunk lid is in primer. So, about 70% of the car has been worked and is in primer.

Still remaining: Rear end, and passenger front and rear quarters, and windshield surround, and the rest of the targa bar. Not bad!

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Mechanogeek

True Classic
What type of primer are you using for your “final” primer? I’ve used two part urethane primer with very good results.
Initial primer is an etching primer (rattle can) from Napa, part# 7220. Prior to getting the car painted, the painter will spray a two-part urethane primer, and to be honest, I don't know what kind. At this point, when I say 'final primer', what I really MEAN is that I am hitting the primer with 600grit, and then laying down a final coat of etching primer, before the part gets set aside to wait for a REAL painter, who knows what he's doing.

I've decided to have a person I know who paints cars for show to do the laying on of the TRUE final primer, color coats, and clear coats.
 

kmead

Old enough to know better
The nice thing about two part primers is that they are a barrier to what is underneath. It keeps the reaction between different materials and solvents to a minimum. The two part products can also build more without getting soft and gooey as they actually cure versus flashing off the solvents (VOCs).

They also have a shorter life in the gun and can be bad (worse?) for your health.
 

Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant: Taking it easy.

I am just starting to get to the tail end of this flu/coughing/crud that I have been enduring for the last 10+ days. Now at least coughing seems to be productive, and I have been able to get some rest.

I turned the X around in the garage in order to make it easier to work on the passenger side and rear end. I completed cutting off the frame rails in the rear (cleaned up the bad cuts made before). I started making the frame rail plugs, with the welded nut on the back side. The cuts are made, the holes are drilled, and the grade 8 nuts are welded on the back side. Need to clean up the plug profile so it can be inserted and fit pre-welding.

I have a 'plan' for the frame rail plugs so that when the holes in the body work are filled, there will be a small metal circle where the frame rail plug will be poking through the body, so the tow strap can be bolted on when needed. In order to do that, I ordered a short piece of heavy walled tubing, a slice of which will be welded to each frame plug. As the body work is completed to patch the hole, the tubing will be ground back flush to the body work, and THEN the body work can be completed and put into primer.

Hard to explain, but once I get another weekend further on, it should be pretty easy to see where I am headed. The plugs in the image below will be profiled so they fit into the end of the frame rail, and welded there, after I weld on the tube that will extend through the body work.

Had to quit early today, as I was still sweating out the sickness. Bleh!

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RJ80

True Classic
I just binge-read this entire thread, can't believe I didn't see it before. Great work and entertaining writing, too!
 

Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant: All's well that ends...

The frame rail ends on the rear are nearly ready to be welded in. Should get the tubing that will be used to extend through the bodywork tomorrow. Should have the welding done by Friday or Saturday evening.

Then I can work on making the sheet metal plugs for the bodywork.

Mutant's gonna have a flat posterior.

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Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant: Part of the end is near!

I have the frame rail plates for the rear end cut, the backing nut welded on, and the spacer that will peek through the body work cut. Tomorrow morning the spacers will be welded on, and the plates welded into their final resting place in the end of the frame. After that, I will be getting creative with creating the filler sheet metal to cover the hole.

The original piece of thick walled steel tube that I ordered was ordered wrong by yours truly (still not sure how I ordered .875" when I really wanted .625"). Sad part is that if I return it, I have to pay the shipping, and I would only net around $6 in total refund. That's not even enough to justify all the effort for repackaging, relabeling, and taking over to the post office. So, I just ordered a new correct sized tube.

I used a diamond 4 1/2" cutoff wheel with my hand held grinder to do the job. It was cutting at the end just like it was cutting at the beginning, which was surprising considering the thickness of the material being cut. I had used abrasive cutoff wheels before I got that diamond wheel. IMHO - worth every penny.

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Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant: Dang, It's hot in FL!

Working on paint removal on passenger side. One panel so far is almost done down to bare metal, and no rust, no dents, no errors. The drivers side of this car was used, abused, and put away wet. The passenger side may be a redeeming factor.

Need to get another can of airplane strength paint remover.

The rear frame-end plugs are in place. The pictures make the welds look worse than they really are. I decided to NOT grind away the excess weld and slag, since they will be hidden behind bodywork.

Continuing to remove paint, and it is looking like a sweltering couple weeks ahead. So, a bit here, a bit there, and it will soon be smooth and ready for paint.
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lookforjoe

True Classic
Why strip to bare metal if you’re using 2k? Doesn’t that open up a can of worms in terms of surface rust? I would think it would flash rust pretty much instantaneously in FL weather?
 

Mechanogeek

True Classic
Surface rust if you are outside. I have had zero issues in the garage. On the other hand, I want to strip to bare metal wherever possible in order to expose whatever evil lies within. Rust, bad body filler, welds that I didn't know about. If the drivers side has taught me anything about this car, it is that the previous owner(s) played fast and loose with body repairs.
 

Mechanogeek

True Classic
Well, with the weather being too hot, and stresses from employment, and family issues, and the ravages of old age rearing it's ugly head, and, and... Project Mutant is not done, and I have not yet finished prepping it for paint. In a few weeks, the weather in NE Florida will normally be about 10 degrees or more cooler than it has been. So, the project has stalled for a while, but is not abandoned. I'll be getting back to it probably end of September, or first part of October.

It's even been too hot to even clean the garage...
 

Mechanogeek

True Classic
Project Mutant:
Started doing some more work on the too-long neglected little beastie. Cleaned the surface rust where I should have primered before. Coated with rust converting primer (which dries to a flat-black color). Identified a few spots that need a little body filler to smooth everything out. Once the small filler spots are done, there will be a bit more sanding for smoothing the filler, and to sand off the unneeded rust converting primer.

I plan on doing some more paint prep work tomorrow, and expect to have the smoothing and gray primer done before next weekend is out. That would also include the fill-in panels for the rear bumper-delete holes, which I got a reasonable start on.

My back seems pretty healthy, my knee is tolerable, and I think I have all of the supplies I need to complete the pre-paint process. Man, in some ways it sucks getting older. On the bright side, no virus issues for me. I had pneumonia over Christmas in 2019, and maybe I was an early-adopter of the virus. I may never know.

Regardless, progress is once again being made.
 

kmead

Old enough to know better
Project Mutant:
Started doing some more work on the too-long neglected little beastie. Cleaned the surface rust where I should have primered before. Coated with rust converting primer (which dries to a flat-black color). Identified a few spots that need a little body filler to smooth everything out. Once the small filler spots are done, there will be a bit more sanding for smoothing the filler, and to sand off the unneeded rust converting primer.

I plan on doing some more paint prep work tomorrow, and expect to have the smoothing and gray primer done before next weekend is out. That would also include the fill-in panels for the rear bumper-delete holes, which I got a reasonable start on.

My back seems pretty healthy, my knee is tolerable, and I think I have all of the supplies I need to complete the pre-paint process. Man, in some ways it sucks getting older. On the bright side, no virus issues for me. I had pneumonia over Christmas in 2019, and maybe I was an early-adopter of the virus. I may never know.

Regardless, progress is once again being made.
Nice to see you here and read about your progress. You are doing better than I in regards to moving your projects along, I finally sold my other house so I am slowly getting on top of my other projects around the house.

This year on my daily X I need to clean out the coolant system, replace the coolant hoses, replace all the fuel system hoses and a few other basic tasks.

I admire your perseverance and your pursuit of your project. Keep on sir, keep on.
 

Mike Schofield

True Classic
Project Mutant:
Started doing some more work on the too-long neglected little beastie. Cleaned the surface rust where I should have primered before. Coated with rust converting primer (which dries to a flat-black color). Identified a few spots that need a little body filler to smooth everything out. Once the small filler spots are done, there will be a bit more sanding for smoothing the filler, and to sand off the unneeded rust converting primer.

I plan on doing some more paint prep work tomorrow, and expect to have the smoothing and gray primer done before next weekend is out. That would also include the fill-in panels for the rear bumper-delete holes, which I got a reasonable start on.

My back seems pretty healthy, my knee is tolerable, and I think I have all of the supplies I need to complete the pre-paint process. Man, in some ways it sucks getting older. On the bright side, no virus issues for me. I had pneumonia over Christmas in 2019, and maybe I was an early-adopter of the virus. I may never know.

Regardless, progress is once again being made.
Yeah! Glad to see you’re feeling well enough to get back into it. Can’t wait to see more progress!
 

Mechanogeek

True Classic
I don't recall the last time I worked on it during the week.

Gray primer is going on smooth. Tomorrow evening, I have a couple spots that need some putty, and then some final sanding, and then final gray primer on Friday evening.

That is, until Saturday, when I will finish welding in the patches for the bumper holes in the rear panel. Then some putty, sanding, and primer on Sunday.

Then, it is about 97% ready for paint. Still need to do final sanding on the primer, with a walkaround to make sure the rough spots get smoothed. Seems like it is about time to get hold of my guy and see what his schedule is to get it painted.

It looks really good in smooth gray. :)
 
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