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Hey guys,

 

I'm looking for some advice on what to do for the next step of my 240z project. I have the car stripped down to a rolling shell with the engine bay primered and the underside undercoated already. I'm debating between sanding down the exterior and interior to factory primer, repairing any trouble spots in the process, and then shooting paint OR having the interior and exterior media blasting with fine crushed glass (hopefully less likely to warp) and then shooting paint. The factory paint looks okay. There are few spots that have cracked and are peeling but overall  it's not bad. Some spots will have to come down to bare metal anyway for repairing. Which route do you guys think I should take? I have a large compressor and the tools to do the sanding. Media blasting would make the following easier, though:

 

One big issue is rust. There are several rust spots that I'm concerned about and am not sure what to do about. There's rust around the inside perimeter of the roof. There's rust inside the passenger and driver side vent plenums that run to the engine bay. There's rust inside the cowl area. There's some rust in the rockers (not too bad) and the dog legs are pretty rusty. I boroscoped most of these places and have some pictures below. The worst of it all is in the dog legs. In the other spots there rest seems to be bubbling a little but mostly on the surface -- some pitting. I'lllet the pictures do the talking.

The car:

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Dog legs:

I will most likely be replacing these.

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Inside the rear wheel-well area above the dog legs:

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Around the the inner perimeter of the roof:

It's rusted most of the way around and the rust goes into the recessed area all the way around. This is perhaps only surface rust and would come off with a wire wheel, but the issue is accessing this area. This is where blasting would be nice and this is one of my biggest concern areas.

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Inside the driver and passenger vent air plenums:

 

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Some other rust around the hatch sill:

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What do you guys think I should do about the rust areas? Should I get everything blasted as best they can do then seal it? Should I sand/wire brush everything I can and treat it with some ospho or other converter then seal it and use cavity wax? I have these products on hand. I've already put a lot of money into this project so I'm all in and want this to be near show quality and last a long time. I don't know if it's worth it to split the seams on some of that rust or not. How hard is it to remove the roof? I did my own floor pans, battery box, and frame rails.

 

Edited by jkelly

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28 minutes ago, grannyknot said:

Get it sand blasted while it is still solid.

So you would sand blast the best they can then shoot paint?

Would you try to get a rust converter into any of the places that can't be blasted (seams, laps, rockers, vent plenums)?

I'm a little hesitant to get it blasted because the guy can't do soda and I'm worried aboit warping panels. He will use 40/70 fine crushed glass. Which he said he's done for body shops before and they like it.

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If I had the chance to strip my car again and the circumstances were not what they were at the time, (immediate place needed to house the car after as well as find a body/paint guy), I would have brought my car to a dipper in LA or checked out these guys in Oregon. 

http://www.metaldipping.com/faq.php  

Read the Common Questions section and see how many myths that are spread by people.

Edited by Nelsonian

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55 minutes ago, Nelsonian said:

If I had the chance to strip my car again and the circumstances were not what they were at the time, (immediate place needed to house the car after as well as find a body/paint guy), I would have brought my car to a dipper in LA or checked out these guys in Oregon. 

http://www.metaldipping.com/faq.php  

Read the Common Questions section and see how many myths that are spread by people.

I thought about that. The only thing is my underside is already done  (epoxy primed, seam sealed, and truck bed lined). I would be taking a few steps back and eating about $800 and hours and hours of work, but it may still be worth it to have the peace of mind there is zero rust, and they can prime the entire thing for me. I'm not sure. Attached a picture of underside.

You think it's worth it? $800 in the grand scheme of things isn't a ton i guess. Id have to pay $500 more to get the rest of it blasted. $1890 for dipping the Z shell, doors, hood, fenders, and deck lid isn't too bad. I saved more than that doing my own battery box, floor pans, and frame rails. 🙄

Has rust come back to bite you since you didn't dip it? Mine is a California car but seems a bit rusty.

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Edited by jkelly

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It would be a tough pill to swallow going back on what you have already achieved, however all metal would be rid of rust. I know all too well about one step forward and three steps back as I have made a few costly mistakes along the way on my build, er, um Z build education. I had my car immediately epoxy primered by Bob the blaster using Endura epoxy primer. The car was on his car port in Jamul with body repair started for roughly 4 months with only a blue tarp and bungee cords holding it on. I then moved the car to my body/paint guys garage in El Cajon for a long while then had to move it to a rental garage in Chula Vista close to the San Diego harbor/ocean where it has been for at least 2 years. I have not had any re-rust issues I am happy to say so far. I have had alot of sand come out of the hidden cracks however as the car has been flat bed or moved on a car hauler from south SD to North county SD no less than 4 times n the highway. Hopefully most has shaken itself loose by now. 

I had an older gentleman who has been blasting for most of his life do the work and still had minor signs of warping. My body guy was not that pleased with the work ahead of him to get all straightened. It would be a tough decision to make to dip then epoxy, undercoat seam seal, but without a doubt will have eliminated all internal rust without warping any panels in the process. 

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Edited by Nelsonian

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23 hours ago, jkelly said:

So you would sand blast the best they can then shoot paint?

Would you try to get a rust converter into any of the places that can't be blasted (seams, laps, rockers, vent plenums)?

I'm a little hesitant to get it blasted because the guy can't do soda and I'm worried aboit warping panels. He will use 40/70 fine crushed glass. Which he said he's done for body shops before and they like it.

Actually I suggested blasting because you had already done the bottom, I had my Z dipped, the shell and the hood. If I were to do it again I would have done as much as I could of the body work and rust patching BEFORE the dip. The car was sprayed with a water soluble rust inhibitor immediately after the dip which is good for a week maybe two then it starts to rust so you have to be fast.

I used the Eastwood inner frame spray to coat all of the areas you can't see or get to then 2 part epoxy primmer for the rest of the car. These pics were taken hours after it came out of the neutralizing tank.

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21 hours ago, Nelsonian said:

It would be a tough pill to swallow going back on what you have already achieved, however all metal would be rid of rust. I know all too well about one step forward and three steps back as I have made a few costly mistakes along the way on my build, er, um Z build education. I had my car immediately epoxy primered by Bob the blaster using Endura epoxy primer. The car was on his car port in Jamul with body repair started for roughly 4 months with only a blue tarp and bungee cords holding it on. I then moved the car to my body/paint guys garage in El Cajon for a long while then had to move it to a rental garage in Chula Vista close to the San Diego harbor/ocean where it has been for at least 2 years. I have not had any re-rust issues I am happy to say so far. I have had alot of sand come out of the hidden cracks however as the car has been flat bed or moved on a car hauler from south SD to North county SD no less than 4 times n the highway. Hopefully most has shaken itself loose by now. 

I had an older gentleman who has been blasting for most of his life do the work and still had minor signs of warping. My body guy was not that pleased with the work ahead of him to get all straightened. It would be a tough decision to make to dip then epoxy, undercoat seam seal, but without a doubt will have eliminated all internal rust without warping any panels in the process.

The car looks great! It is a tough pill to swallow. I'm still considering it, but also considering other options like shooting Ospho into every nook and cranny, washing it out with water and a pressure washer and then spraying Eastwood Frame Coating into the cavities.

 

1 hour ago, grannyknot said:

Actually I suggested blasting because you had already done the bottom, I had my Z dipped, the shell and the hood. If I were to do it again I would have done as much as I could of the body work and rust patching BEFORE the dip. The car was sprayed with a water soluble rust inhibitor immediately after the dip which is good for a week maybe two then it starts to rust so you have to be fast.

I used the Eastwood inner frame spray to coat all of the areas you can't see or get to then 2 part epoxy primmer for the rest of the car. These pics were taken hours after it came out of the neutralizing tank.

Just got done reading your entire build thread. Very impressive timeline and the car looks great. I saw the crap you pulled out of the passenger and driver vent holes. I removed a comparable amount of leaves and probably rat shit from the passenger and driver vent plenums -- 45 years worth of debri, I'm sure.  Nasty

I'm considering going back and getting it dipped, but a big part of me wants to just push through with what I have and get this thing on the road. There will be more restoration projects in my future, I'm sure.  Ill sandblast what i can but after much research I'm thinking about getting a flexible drill attachment with a brush, knocking down what loose rust I can in the rusty boxed in areas, shooting Ospho into all of the boxed in areas, letting it sit for a couple days, cleaning it out with water, and then shooting Eastwoods Frame Coat in there. Then cavity wax on top of that. I figure that should slow the rust rate down a bit. Maybe for another 45 years? I really have no idea. I never really hear of anyone coming back 5 years later and saying "Oh yeah, that rust that I just covered up with rust encapsulating paint still looks great and my rocker panels (or other part) are still solid!"

Edited by jkelly

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I guess it depends on how hardcore you want to go with her... I am doing a resto mod so i stripped it and sanded most areas and blasted the hard to reach areas to make sure... I am very happy with the result and was able to do the work mostly myself.. 

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Hard to tell, but some of those spots look awfully pitted, some look like just discolored/surface rust. 

Downfalls to blasting are the expense and the chance of warping, but blasting definitely will tell you if the panel or area is able to withstand regular use. 

For me it would be a mindset kind of thing, just encapsulating rust is a bandaid, something that I will have to remember and always plan on addressing sometime in the future. If you lived by the ocean and it was going to rust anyway, then it might be fighting a losing battle, but having pictures and being able to show receipts may be useful in the future when or if you even sell the car or have a claim on it.

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3 hours ago, Greeko said:

I guess it depends on how hardcore you want to go with her... I am doing a resto mod so i stripped it and sanded most areas and blasted the hard to reach areas to make sure... I am very happy with the result and was able to do the work mostly myself.. 

How did you get into the hard to access areas? Like the passenger/driver air ducts that run up the engine bay sides, and the inner fenders above the dog legs, and other areas? Were those areas just not rusted?

 

3 hours ago, seattlejester said:

Hard to tell, but some of those spots look awfully pitted, some look like just discolored/surface rust. 

Downfalls to blasting are the expense and the chance of warping, but blasting definitely will tell you if the panel or area is able to withstand regular use. 

For me it would be a mindset kind of thing, just encapsulating rust is a bandaid, something that I will have to remember and always plan on addressing sometime in the future. If you lived by the ocean and it was going to rust anyway, then it might be fighting a losing battle, but having pictures and being able to show receipts may be useful in the future when or if you even sell the car or have a claim on it.

It is a mindset thing. I'm to the point where I'm pretty OCD about things. Even if I can clean out most of the rust in those pictures, there's still going to be rust in the seams and lap joints that I'll wonder what the state of it is. I dunno, maybe if I put enough work into the engine and make enough horsepower I'll forget about the lap joint rust :D

 

Also, you can't even acid dip/chemical dip a car in California any more without paying for it with your left testicle. Jeez. I was quote $2600 for just the shell today. I did get a $1500 quote for the whole car in Phoenix AZ.  Pretty good price and only 10 hours away rather than 12 hours to Eugene Oregon!

Edited by jkelly

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Dipping is quite the challenge if you don't have a high volume shop and a transport method. It is one of the most sure fire ways for sure.

You could have someone blast the hard to reach places, I think the local rate is about a dollar a minute for spot jobs. Blasting will definitely test the metal, if it is corroded it will have holes blown in it. Dipping would be more telling as the weak panels would no longer be there and any rust would be neutralized for the most part.

You could alternatively either get a sand blaster for the harder to reach areas and spot blast them (sandblasting is super messy, I would suggest doing this outside/in the backyard/ a neighbors dirt lot etc), or cut to give yourself better access and replace the panels down the road. A little blasting setup is not too bad. You can get a setup for about $200 compressor and blaster from harbor freight. Trying to get a flex brush all the way in there would be quite a challenge without good access.

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Yeah, I'm not sure I want to go to all the trouble of trailering the car out to Phoenix. I'm leaning towards blasting what I can and cutting out some access panels to those hard to reach spots. You sure aren't lying about it being messy. I've done a good bit of spot blasting with my 60 gal compressor and something like this:

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It works pretty well for smaller stuff and the price. I had the bottom of the car sand blasted by a mobile blasting company. It made a huge mess and I wouldn't do that at my house again. A dirt road or a field somewhere is a much better idea.

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For sure, I blasted in my garage, spent the rest of the weekend cleaning up.

I did find they make special heavy duty vinyl that you can stack weights on, pull them up to the rafters, then you just vent at the top, all the sand is heavy so it stays inside, sweep and re-use. I still wouldn't want to do it indoors though.

Also just a word of advice fine silicate particles are extremely hazardous to your health. Use a quality respirator under the blasting hood if you value your lungs in any way. 

A needle scaler is also quite nice if you have room to get it on the surfaces. Much less of a mess. The panels do take a beating so maybe on floors and unseen spots, I wouldn't use one on the outside panels.

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2 hours ago, seattlejester said:

Also just a word of advice fine silicate particles are extremely hazardous to your health.

From what I've read, you shouldn't be using sand anyway. Health hazards aside, it's too abrasive, prone to warping the metal, and some have said that it will work harden the metal. If I were blasting, I'd use something a bit gentler. There's plenty of options.

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3 hours ago, seattlejester said:

For sure, I blasted in my garage, spent the rest of the weekend cleaning up.

I did find they make special heavy duty vinyl that you can stack weights on, pull them up to the rafters, then you just vent at the top, all the sand is heavy so it stays inside, sweep and re-use. I still wouldn't want to do it indoors though.

Also just a word of advice fine silicate particles are extremely hazardous to your health. Use a quality respirator under the blasting hood if you value your lungs in any way. 

A needle scaler is also quite nice if you have room to get it on the surfaces. Much less of a mess. The panels do take a beating so maybe on floors and unseen spots, I wouldn't use one on the outside panels.

I might try putting in some drop cloth or something similar in the garage to contain it. I blasted in the driveway/yard at my old rental house and the landlord had a little fit about the sand in the yard, if you could even call it a yard -- more like a dirt lot. So, I'm not going to try that again being that I'm still renting. I'll have to clean up whatever I do and it'll be easier in the garage. I've seen those needle guns. They look really effective, especially for undercoatings.

 

1 hour ago, rturbo 930 said:

From what I've read, you shouldn't be using sand anyway. Health hazards aside, it's too abrasive, prone to warping the metal, and some have said that it will work harden the metal. If I were blasting, I'd use something a bit gentler. There's plenty of options.

I've read the same during my research. I think it comes down to the person doing the blasting,  type of sand used, pressure, technique, etc. The safest route is to use walnut shells, plastic,  or soda blast it which all have their downsides, so I've read. I might just get some walnut shells for doing the blasting spot blasting I'm doing or just take it easy with the sand and not doing any outer panels. I don't mind sanding. I just have to do something about those rusty inside panels.

 

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17 hours ago, jkelly said:

How did you get into the hard to access areas? Like the passenger/driver air ducts that run up the engine bay sides, and the inner fenders above the dog legs, and other areas? Were those areas just not rusted?

 

It is a mindset thing. I'm to the point where I'm pretty OCD about things. Even if I can clean out most of the rust in those pictures, there's still going to be rust in the seams and lap joints that I'll wonder what the state of it is. I dunno, maybe if I put enough work into the engine and make enough horsepower I'll forget about the lap joint rust :D

 

Also, you can't even acid dip/chemical dip a car in California any more without paying for it with your left testicle. Jeez. I was quote $2600 for just the shell today. I did get a $1500 quote for the whole car in Phoenix AZ.  Pretty good price and only 10 hours away rather than 12 hours to Eugene Oregon!

I didn't have rust in most of those areas. I did however spray some rust converter in gaps and crevices to make sure.. 

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15 hours ago, rturbo 930 said:

From what I've read, you shouldn't be using sand anyway. Health hazards aside, it's too abrasive, prone to warping the metal, and some have said that it will work harden the metal. If I were blasting, I'd use something a bit gentler. There's plenty of options.

I agree, if one had the money I think having it dry ice blasted would be pretty neat, no moisture involved really, cools as it blasts.

All the other bits I couldn't find locally which killed the price in shipping. Financially I don't think you could beat the price of sifted sand.

I did find and try baking soda. That is way too soft to really get at surfaces. It would leave things like rubber and gasket intact, probably why it was suggested for things like aluminum. I've heard similar things for walnut, a bit too much on the soft side. I do agree with big thin panels sand might be a bit too abrasive though. Make sure to get a regulator to control pressure and apply at an angle for any spots of that nature, but those might be better suited for a wire brush anyway over blasting.

Regardless if you have decided to blast inside the garage, make sure you have a kill room so to say setup with air flow out controlled. I still had sand in the rafters and stuff, that stuff really does get everywhere, you really don't want to think about having to pay for replacement heaters and stuff because you stuff up the intake and stuff.

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I really dig this discussion, I have been doing chassis repairs/reinforcements and I am at the point where I am considering blasting or dipping. My biggest trouble spot is in the interior of my cowl. It has some rust, some difficult to remove paint (looks like the P.O. applied POR15). I am considering getting a little spot blaster for just the hard to reach spots. Most of larger rusted sections I just cut out and replaced. 

A couple of notes on the methods I have tried:

Doing it area by area with wire wheels/rolloc discs, convoluted discs. This is time consuming and surprisingly expensive. The 3M bodyman's bristle discs (purple) are amazing. They work really well, they don't catch edges, they don't remove hardly any base metal, and don't fling wire wheel bits. However they are really expensive. You are going to go through a fair amount of consumables. Good grinders and a big compressor are a must for me. This works for most of what I have run into. 

Sandblasting yourself (I did a 70' challenger chassis), again surprisingly costly, and a pain in the ass. You go through way more media than expected, more tips and consumables. I bought a cheap Harbor Freight pressure blaster and had to fix it over and over. It took a long time and made a huge mess. I even constructed a wood and tarp booth to contain it. I used a supplied air respirator (which I already had). You are probably money ahead to pay a shop to blast and epoxy primer it. If I saved the materials expenses and  spent half the hours I had into blasting at work picking up some overtime, I could have just paid to have it done. 

Home chemical stripping, Aircraft remover for paint and acid (Ospho) for rust. Chemicals and fumes are nasty, aircraft remover will burn you. This method can be pretty effective. Get some plastic sheets to contain the mess, use good quality gloves, be careful. Also note epoxy primer does not play well with Ospho, you need to have a really solid procedure to wash and neutralize or you will have paint failure. Ospho must be re-wet with Opsho then flushed with water and a little dawn dish soap, then water born was and grease remover, dried very well, then painted. 

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You do bring up a good point. I had to run tandem air compressors to keep up with the demand, the energy bill was kind of nuts with a couple days of blasting in. Harborfreight had a better style blaster (not a propane tank looking one) that worked a lot better in my opinion, if you sifted sand you could get through the whole thing. 

V-fib went all out in there. It was surprisingly gone in his car. He took out all the spot welds and we fabricated a new floor and cabin intake to weld in. 

Honestly really over kill unless you can really see a lot of rot in that area, I can't imagine how much work it will be to fit the cowl panel again and seal the windshield in. I just ospho'd mine on the sides. They do sell ospho paint/rust converter that works ok on light rust. 

Aircraft stripper will not only burn you, but the fumes or toxic and a nerve agent, really really bad stuff.

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Sounds like you guys have done a lot of what I'm planning to do. I have a good bit of rust in my cowl too, mainly around the vent tube near the passenger side. The vent tube has some rot around it so I'm going to drill the spot welds on the piece of sheet metal covering it and remove that, then cut out the bad vent tube metal and replace it. I'll probably spot blast and Ospho what I can't get to with a grinder. Those little siphon feed spot blasters are surprisingly effective. I'm using mine with a 5HP 60gal Quincy.

I feel you on the paying someone else to do it. After doing my own floor pans, frame rails, battery box, and about to be dog legs and cowl vent I'm ready to focus on restoring the interior. Anything but grinding grinding grinding, spot weld drilling, etc. Although, I do enjoy the welding.

Those purple 3M wheels look interesting, I might have to pick some up and test themout.

I'm testing the Ospho on some rusty parts at the moment. I'm on two coats already and tonight will be 48 hours of it sitting there "converting". We'll see. I'm planning to shoot some PPG DPLV (Yay for compliant California paint -_- ) on there and see how it adheres. I've read that epoxy primers are okay to shoot over Ospho, but a self etch primer containing acid will not bond properly. I've read everywhere that at the very least you have to rinse Ospho off with water to neautralize it. Your process sounds better, except you can't always wipe some areas down with W&G remover. It's nuts how the Ospho instructions don't mention anything about rinsing -- just dust off the white powder and paint. I've read about a lot of paint failure using that method.

Initial Ospho application:

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After 24 hours:

It looks darker but no white powder like the Ospho folks mention.

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After 48 hours:

Not much difference.

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Edited by jkelly

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From my brief tenure as hobby car restorer I have learned a couple things....

Home DIY Blasting, dipping, rust removal BLOW FAT CHUNKS!!! Messy, dirty, painful and a WASTE of your time...

I enjoying doing it myself.. (pause for horrible joke to set in) but certain things I will send off and happily pay a little more or most likely the SAME up front and have a professional do the blasting/rust removal... Once that is done heck yes I will have fun welding new patches in, skimming etc....

And on that note...I have also learned to SPEND MORE MONEY and get a better vehicle to start on (unless there is a sentimental attachment to the original vehicle).. People have this idea that if they buy the cheapest Vehicle out there it will cost them the least amount of money...IT WONT!!!.Ask me how I know...lol..

Just my rant after finding more awesome rust in a spot I had already gone over ...sigh..Never ends lol

 

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Edited by Greeko

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With the right setup you can do decently at home, the problem is it is hard to really invest in something you might do for a very limited time. I gave away my whole setup once I was done with it, probably broke even for the amount of blasting I did. If I sold it probably could have come out on top a bit. So there is indeed some merit in having a professional tackle it.

It really is a matter of how much you value your time, with the factor of reliability of the shop doing the work. If you can find a place that has a proven track record with a set time frame that would be great, but the unfortunate thing you run into is that those time frames can be moved or changed, and sometimes you will find 90-95% completion, something you don't notice until you get home, then have to spend a ridiculous amount of time fixing  or trying to get the last 5-10%.

The last item I had blasted still had caked on grease/dirt. I think the guy just missed it as the piece filled up with blasting media an stuck to it. Innocent mistake on his part, but I had to spend 2-3 hours with a pick taking all that stuff out.

If you aren't a stranger to welding and such, sand blasted material is really nice to work with as a base. A bit of acetone or ethanol to get rid of the small grits and it welds nicely.

P1030172.jpg

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Some samples, that is with a harbor frieght blaster, dual air compressor setup. You really can't beat a sandblaster for the odd curvatures and such. 

The ospho stuff you really want to tackle with a wire brush or something before you coat it. The things like the brake booster with the possibility of the reaction disc having fallen out over the last 40 years was easy to just drop off and exchange for a reman. 

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jkelly, as far as Ospho  (Phosphoric Acid)  goes, you have to eliminate as much of the rust as you can, if you apply it to well established rust like on your brake booster it will never get down to bottom of the corrosion. A bench mounted wire wheel or even some 60grit paper will break that crust on the rust and allow the Ospho to get down to the bottom. The white powder won't show up for a couple of days until it has dried completely and your right, paint will never stick to that, it must be washed off.

Getting rid of as much rust as possible is always the best method, Ospho is better than nothing but it won't penetrate heavy rust.

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