Monday, March 21, 2016

Filling the Trenches

I couldn't stand it any longer.  Knowing I still have some sanding to do, I wanted to try my hand at using body filler.  I've got Evercoat Rage Ultra (for bigger areas) and Metalglaze (for small areas and finishing).

So I figured I'd start with the Metalglaze on a small area.  I followed the directions exactly... and ended up with a lump in about 30 seconds.  Apparently it was a bit too much hardener for the temperature (about 85 degrees).  The second time around, I tried with the Rage (since I have more of it).  I got almost a minute of working time... still too much hardener.  The third time was the charm though.  I used about half what the instructions indicated, and got about 3 minutes of working time, which is plenty.

I started with the rear fender, which I knew had waves in it even though I was as careful as I could be with the heat.  I applied thin layers to see what it would take to smooth out the waves.  It turns out, not too much!  I went over it twice with the Rage, then Metalglaze, and it came out pretty decent.  Same with the edge and bottom of the fender, where I pulled the metal outward to line up with the door.  It's not done yet and I am learning a lot about sanding, but it's a good start.


I worked on the rear valence, too.  The panel I bought was generic and for a 70+ car, so I had to fill in the spots where the reverse lights go.  Again, thin layers.  It doesn't look too bad.  I think the goal is to get things smooth enough to the point where I can use a high build primer, then fill the (hopefully minute) ripples that are left.

EDIT: I've learned that I should apply two coats of epoxy primer before I apply any high build primer, that Evercoat recommends you apply to bare metal, and everyone else is in an Internet war on which you do first (and they've all been doing this for ever, you know).  Well, I'm not in a position to apply primer right now, so I'm going to continue with the filler, then the epoxy primer, then fix any remaining issues with Metalglaze and glazing putty before the high build primer and (hopefully) final sanding.  I'm not sure I can spray in my garage, so this might get expensive.

This was about 4 hours of work, of which about an hour was spent making mistakes.  So I'm figuring it's about 40 hours by the time I'm done.  That's 9 more weekends!  I've got to either work faster or find some time, or else it will get too hot to apply filler and primer.

Boy, my shoulders are sore today.  It's a great upper body workout.

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