Wednesday, June 20, 2018

For Sale - 1 Mustang Rotisserie

I wonder how many people will see the title and think, "He's selling his Mustang?"  No.  Just the rotisserie.

Yes, after 6 years and 4 months to the day, the fastback is finally off the rotisserie.  This is a major milestone as now I can start attaching the body panels to the shell and begin the bodywork.  Unfortunately, that will have to wait until I return from Canada in late August.

This isn't a long post, but it's sort of like the old Chinese proverb: one picture is worth a thousand words.  Or in this case, one video and a couple of pictures.

I made the body cart out of wood.  I used T nuts to hold the bolts with fender washers and rubber washers for the factory mounting points to sit upon.  This isn't rocket science but a little bit of mechanics was involved.  A plum line came in handy to lay out the dimensions of the cart.  I used 4" swivel casters (2 of them locking) for movement.  Other than that, it's a WYSIWYG... what you see is what you get.




Below is the video of the actual removal from the rotisserie.  Sorry, it's a little long, but it was a little more complicated than just picking up the body and plugging the rotisserie ends onto the body.  If you don't want to watch the whole thing, just go to about 4:15 into the video to watch the main event.


This is the crew who helped with the lifting and removing the rotisserie.


The body fit on the cart perfectly.  Now it's just waiting for assembly and bodyworking the panels.


So if you need or know of someone who needs a rotisserie for a 65-70 Mustang, let me know, but I won't be able to do anything with it until the end of August.  You can see what it looked like and the the video of the fastback going onto it here.  The price?  $300 ought to do it.

Until the next time...


Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Interior Body Sealer and Primer

This process of restoring the inside of the body shell to some semblance of originality, or maybe a little better, has been a long, tedious, dirty, tiring, frustrating, and painful (both figuratively and literally) step in this restoration.  But there is a little light at the end of the tunnel on this part of the resurrection of my fastback.

Thanks to the factory welding and sealant manual, not to mention a recent article in Mustang Monthly here, I was able to determine not just where the sealer goes, but what materials to use.  I mentioned those products in my previous post.  What I've posted here was over the course of a few days.  I'll let the pictures tell the story...

Seat riser spray sealer applied

Floor to firewall  and kick panel spray sealer applied.
Rear seat and rear wheel tub spray sealer applied.



Trunk floor and wheel tub spray sealer applied

Sound deadener applied (same 3M product as sealer)

Rear valance to trunk floor spray sealer applied.

High build gap filling sealer (3M "fast n' firm) applied

More gap sealer applied.

Gap sealer at firewall to torque box applied.

Gap Sealer applied under spray sealer

Sealing complete in front of passenger compartment.  Dash sprayed with rust converter for now.

Sealing complete in rear of passenger compartment

So after painstakingly stripping, scuffing, and wiping down the surfaces inside the body, I masked off the areas I didn't want the overspray of Zero Rust to go.  That included the dash which I sprayed with Eastwood rust converter, which turns black on clean metal and will preserve it.  I'll detail the dash later.  I decided after masking the trunk area that I will wait to primer it later as that will need to be prepped more carefully since it will be exposed and sprayed with body color.






I approached this project as I would the room of a house.  I "cut in" all the seams and hard to reach places, like the cowl vents, by using a brush to guarantee coverage that spraying might miss.

Cowl vent and pinch seam areas brush painted with Zero-Rust.  

Body on its side.  Painting the hidden areas around the perimeter of the roof

More roof painting with a brush
After all the brush work was done, I set up my primer HVLP gun.  I reduced the Zero-Rust 20% to get a good flow.  I was using a 1.8mm tip in my gun.  That gave a fairly nice pattern and coverage.  The rotisserie came in handy especially for getting behind the dash and doing the inside of the roof.

The finished produce...







There are a couple of areas, particularly under the dash that are a little light on coverage, but at this point, I'm not worrying about it.  Sort of "out of sight, out of mind".  It's not going to be exposed after everything gets installed in the dash and interior and it's certainly not going to rust anymore.

With just 11 days before I head north for a couple of weeks, this major hurdle in the restoration process is now behind me!  It almost seems surreal.  Now I can focus on the actual bodywork.  The big question is do I leave it on the rotisserie, or take it off.  I'm leaning toward the latter for a couple of reasons.   The 1st reason is in spite of the versatility of rotating the body on the rotisserie, it's still fairly high off the floor.  The 2nd reason is  I can't put the front or rear valances on the body with it on the rotisserie.   So if I build my body cart, I can take it off the rotisserie, gain some garage space, and hang all the body panels on the car.  Then I can sell the rotisserie and get that out of my garage where I'm already pinched for space.  (If you know someone interested in the rotisserie, let me know.)

I would say I ate a few more bites of this elephant.  And it's tasting pretty good!  But there is a lot more to eat.  Hopefully I won't get sick of it by the time the elephant is fully digested.

Until the next time....

Thursday, March 15, 2018

More, More of the Same

What a tedious, dirty, and somewhat hazardous job this has turned out to be.  I never would have thought cleaning out the factory sealer and surface rust would end up with hours of work and dollars of consumables.  But it is what it is.

This post represents a number of nights and a long Saturday of work.  And I'm still not done yet.  But let's not dwell on that.  First order of business is safety first.  I use ear plugs instead of the muffs which are bulky in tight places.   Don't I look dashing?!?!

Decked out in all my safety gear.
I found that the best and quickest way to remove the factory seam sealer is Goof Off.  It's easy to apply and works well.  It will take three coats.  The first will get the majority of the larger pieces of seam sealer loose.  I used a wood chisel to scrape the first layer away.  The second coat will get most of the sealer off with the chisel and coarse steel wool.  The third coat I used red ScotchBrite pads to get the last of the sealer off.  Then I wiped down the area with mineral spirits on a cloth.  Finally, I used paper towels to dry off the mineral spirits.

This does a good job cutting through the factory seam sealer
The seam sealer is all gone and cleaned up


That process of removing the sealer worked the best.  The next step was to use the combination of 4-1/2" and 2" surface conditioning disc.  I did buy a lot of 25 Sharp brand 3" Rolok surface disc.  They seem to hold up a little better than the 3M disc. So work began on the door jamb area.

cleaning up the rocker panel and door jamb



The left rear quarter panel had never been completely stripped of paint entirely and there was some primer left from previous metal work.  So I got this all done.


I then started on the interior driver's side and got most of that cleaned up from the rear diff tunnel to the foot well area.


Then it was on to the part I was dreading...the upper firewall and cowl behind the dash.


The advantage to the rotisserie is easier access to areas like this.  It's not easy.  Just easier.  I can't imagine laying on my back or in a contorted position to do this work.  Because of the confines, I used the 90 degree die grinder with the 2" and 3" conditioning discs.

This is the view through the dash on the driver's side of the firewall
 On the larger flatter surfaces, I used the 4-1/2" angle grinder, especially on the toe board, side apron and flat areas of the bottom of the cowl.  I made good time but found that caution must be exhibited in the process.
Yes Virginia, the body is upside down! (not the picture)
My 29 year old Craftsman angle grinder has served me well over the years, especially on my 1929 Ford hotrod and this one.  However, I failed to notice a bracket that was spot welded on the bottom of the cowl.  The conditioning pad caught it, twisted the grinder out of my right hand where it then proceeded to dance across the back of my left hand, out the door and onto the floor while still turning!  Needless to say, there was some collateral damage to me, the grinder, and the hook and loop backing pad.
My ouchie looks better in the picture than in real life.
I used this moment to take a break, clean myself up so that a CSI team won't find anymore blood on the garage floor than is already there.  The grinder case was now loose at a parting joint.  I could probably just use some Gorilla tape to fix it, but decided it was time to replace it.  I ended up spending more than planned, but got a DeWalt angle grinder with more amps AND a paddle switch which is much safer than the toggle on the old Craftsman.  Besides, almost 30 years of service is enough.  I'm also going to make sure I'm wearing my mechanic's gloves when I'm using the grinder.

I had created quite a mess in my "Dexter" kill room, but that plastic cocoon I made has kept the garage messes at bay.  I pushed the fastback outside since it was a clear sunny day and blew the crud and dust out of all the nooks and crannies.  Again, the rotisserie really helps facilitate this process.







After the cleanup of the body and garage, I tucked her back in the garage.  The next step was working on the inside of the roof.  I was down to my last 4-1/2" conditioning disc.  So I placed another order for a box of 10.  The cost of consumables was on a steady climb at this point.


With the body hanging upside down, it made easy work of the roof.  My helper Joey came over for a couple of hours one evening and helped with the task.  I put him on the new DeWalt grinder and I used my 9" grinder with the big bristle brush that worked OK.  I spent a little more time doing some detail cleaning under the dash with my 2" discs.

My helper Joey getting after the roof
 The roof is about 2/3 done at this point.  Joey had school and I was getting tired, especially my hand that was somewhat sore after the fight with the grinder.


I'm probably 75% to 80% done on cleaning up the inside before it's ready for degreasing, resealing, and primer.  I did, however, order some of the sealer materials.  The October 2017 issue of Mustang Monthly had an article that was quite timely.  You can see the article here.   I ordered the "Fast N Firm", the spray rubberized undercoating, and the grey seam sealer that came in a sausage looking tube.  So I had to order the special caulking gun to use with that.  I was a little shocked at the cost.

More money for pricy product
What you see in the picture above represents almost $150 in supplies.  And I know I'll need more, especially at sausage seam sealer which is $40+ for that 10 ounce tube.  Yikes.  And people wonder why restorations can cost so much.  I haven't even gotten to the paint yet.  But if you're going to do a restoration to this level, it has to be done correctly.  So it's part of the price of admission.

I've got work and family obligations this weekend, and I'm waiting for my box of conditioning discs to arrive.  It will also give my hand time to heal up some more.  Hopefully, I'll be back on this beast in the next week or so.  Then I'll get the rest of the inside roof done, a little still left on the underside of the dash on the passenger side, and cleaning up the back of the truck area.  It will be time for some degreasing, Pickle-X 20, seam sealing, and finally primer.  Then the inside of the body will be finished...finally.

Until the next time.