Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Rust work continues on the Mercedes

Hello, everyone who’s reading. I’m going to try and be better about updating this more regularly. As of now, I’m nearly done with the passenger side of the car.

All the patch panels are welded and seam sealed, which includes some new patches in the trunk/rear quarter area. Despite the flux core welder, I was able to do some pretty clean (by my standards, not global standards – I’m well aware that a professional body man would laugh at my work) repair work on the exterior panels. The interior stuff , with overlap and less room to use my grinder, has yielded sloppier-looking work. But, since the interior repairs will be hidden by carpets and trim panels, it makes little to no difference to me.

I’ve also started applying bedliner to the repaired areas. That stuff is sticky and nasty. Can’t wait to see what it’s like when dry and fully cured.

Over the weekend, I also received an interesting email. Around a year and a half ago, I bought some parts from a guy who lives across town from me. Well, he emailed me this weekend saying that he’s moving out of the area soon, and that since I was the only person to ever actually show up and give him money for parts, that he’d like to give me the remainder of his 240D parts stash so that he wouldn’t have to dumpster it.

Well, on Monday evening after work, I woke the Vanagon up from its winter hibernation and headed over there. I got a decent passenger seat (red), a usable rear seat (also red), door panels (you guessed it – red), headlights, side trim, side glass, a radio, a muffler, and probably more than I’m forgetting.

The guy in question is a really nice guy and a student, so I told him that I’d feel bad taking this stuff, as it was likely I’d resell a good portion of it. It was a nice offer, but I didn’t want to pick anyone’s pocket. As such, I gave him some money for the parts. I still got a very good deal.

The next time I’m out there, I’ll probably start on repairing the passenger side hood spring perch.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Not foolin' around with this car anymore...

No, I'm not getting rid of the Mercedes. On the contrary, I'm finally getting some serious momentum on this project. It was January, 2013 when I started tearing into the passenger side floor. I'd say I did the bulk of the passenger side floor and rocker repairs just in this past month. I now have all the patches in, welded, and seam sealed.

On top of that, I was able to cut out the bad portions of the rear passenger wheel housing lip and weld in patches I cut from the larger Klokkerholm patch panel. It still needs a little bit of filler to even it out, but it's solid and actually looks pretty decent for what it is. I still need to weld it closed inside the trunk.

But, the passenger side of the car is nearly done. I still need to make a patch inside the wheel well and rebuild the passenger side hood spring perch. But, the floor and rocker are solid again (though they still need finishing - paint and truck bedliner).

Now that spring is here, I'm hoping to be able to work on the car most evenings when I get home from the office, which should help speed the project along. My goal is to be driving it this summer.

rusted wheel well lip and formed repair panel

rusted area cut from rear of wheel well lip

checking fit of the repair patch

weld-through primer

patch piece, clamped in place for butt welding

patch tack welded in place

welds ground down

front of wheel well lip - spray paint is from previous owner

crud and dirt caught inside the panel - needed to clean it out

patch welded in place

repaired wheel well lip - still needs a small bit of filler to smooth it out

patches inside the car, seam sealed - still needs final coating