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FFCobra Craftsman
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I guess since I've never done this before, and people are always asking what it's like, I'll update occasionally as I go on the bodywork.

I already filled the ground out seams with the 3M High Strength Repair Filler. Nothing special there youre not trying to get it above the surface of the body, just fill the huge line left from grinding out the gel coat.

Today I taped off the seams, did the first layer of Rage filler, sanded it down, wiped it down with PrepsAll, and taped it again (this time wider), in preparation for the second layer and hopefully a nearly perfect feathering with the body. I've heard a third layer is usually needed to get it perfect, so I'm expecting to do three. We'll see what happens by the time I get there.

Here's the pics of today's results, and the tools used:




There is a high res pic available temporarily at this link for those of you who want a closer look (or you experts who want to tell me what I did wrong)


High Resolution Seam Pic (about 700k)
 

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Premium Member
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Your post reminded me that I'm a little confused about something. FFR says that the seams are so prominent because they gelcoat the mold before they assemble it. So, once that big gelcoat zipper is removed, how much deeper do I have to go to clean out the seams? There is a point at which there is a danger of ending up with 6 body pieces on the floor, and I don't know if that point is before or after all the gelcoat is out of the seam.
 

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Mountain Snake
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As far as I understood, the body is one piece. Not six pieces "glued" together. The seams are only the places, where the mold pieces are put together.

Stefan
 

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Premium Member
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Duh...I know the body is one piece. But grinding down into the seams too deeply will quickly make it six pieces. How deep is deep enough?
 

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FFCobra Craftsman
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Why the tape...

It's my first time doing this so it keeps my feathering line even and the mess to a minimum. When you are spreading the thick filler on and pressing hard to fill the gaps and pinholes you can end up with it everywhere. The tape gives room to scrape the excess off so you don't have to sand as much.

How far to grind...

This one wasn't as bad as I thought. On my body, the final layer at the bottom is all one solid piece and is kind of a tan/orange color as opposed to the gelcoat which is grey and the glass which is mostly white and fibrous. You just grind out most of the grey, making sure it's just wide enough to remove it all. I didn't get too carried away getting all the gelcoat out of the bottom, I just made sure I could see a little of the bottom layer and that it was ground out wide enough. That way I knew I would get some bond on both the bottom of the groove and on the sides where the clean glass is. The object is to make sure that gel coat line can't pop loose later.

Oh, and the body didn't even remotely try to fall apart on me. Just have it on your buck and everything should be ok.

Considering how deep I had to go to remove the gelcoat, I absolutely positively recommend Streetrod Painter's (SRP) advice to use the 3M High Strength Repair Filler. You've got to get chemical and mechanical bond back into the seam. I learned with aircraft that anything can be fixed with glass, it's just a matter of doing it right so it's as strong as the original.

[ July 01, 2002, 01:32 PM: Message edited by: Advil ]
 

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Premium Member
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couple of answers. first, all looks good with Advil's work, except, once you get to the Rage step, forgo the tape so that you can blend it into the gel coat as DaveH said. As for grinding the seams, here is my preferred method. I use a DA with 80 grit and knock them down flat. you will see a "stripe" of gelcoat in the middle of the bare glass. I use a die grinder with a 1/4" wide grinding stone and remove 99% of the stripe. you wil probably go anywhere from 1/16"-1/8" deep. after the stripe is gone, I use and angle die grinder with a 50grit disc to taper the void from the stripe. tape it off like Advil and fill with 3m vinyester repair filler until it is just level, not above. I DA with 80 to make the transition smooth and then fair it out with Rage Gold. good luck, and as always, Cheers, SRP
 

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FFCobra Craftsman
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4,241 Posts
This is great information... Especially for the wanna be do it yourselfer body work kind of guy whos just getting started! Is it possible to "collect" it and post it in the FAQ under bodywork..... Maybe tidle it streetrodpainter advice?

Rgds!
 

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Premium Member
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Excellent info, SRP...thanks
 

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Registered
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What would be really helpful to me is if someone could post a realy good, hi-res picture of what the seam looks like after it has been ground out (I do not have a kit yet so my mind is having a hard time picturing this).

Per SRP's post ("you will see a "stripe" of gelcoat in the middle of the bare glass")...I would really like to see what this looks like.
 

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FFCobra Craftsman
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
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