Day 14 and beyond (like ~7 full days total work) – Getting some welding and other things done (Gas Tank + Metal work) – May 2nd to June 7th
I found a welder (student) to come do work at my place, he’s not too expensive but the project is getting very expensive. If i would have known about all this i wouldn't have started but now I'm a never quit kinda guy.
My buddy Ernest came by to give me a hand with some stuff, so while the welder was working on the floor pan patches, Ernest went bananas with the torch, burning out rubber bushings. They will be replaced by urethane bushings (which Bluntech advised against ). I'll also be putting larger sway bars.
We then got to work on the gas tank, I had picked up the Por 15 gas tank seal kit (http://por15canada.com/por15-fuel-tank-repair-kit.html). If there’s one thing Ernest is good at... it’s reading instructions 10 times to make sure we follow them properly (not my specialty). It was quite the workout, after every step you need to swoosh around the tank for ~30mins. Before applying the actual sealer we had to make sure it was very dry... Ernest on the job
A few days later I started stripping the exterior of the tank to coat that with some Por 15, I also stripped the front sub-frame for the same process.
I’ll leave out some of the smaller rust/welding stories to keep this post a little brief but there have been a lot of nasty surprises while taking apart this car... 2 examples; when I started to work on the shock towers I discovered the patch (repaired by previous owner) which I thought was sound was not, the patch was placed directly over the rust, so there was a nice surprise behind it. The nose had a lot of bondo on the inside at the bottom, which was put on top of expanding insulating foam :s
I cut the shock towers from inside the trunk all the way to the inside of the cabin, this is a common 2002 rust area. I cleaned up the spring perches which were in decent condition and applied some Eastwood Rust Encapsulator, just to add an extra coat I applied some white rustoleum spray paint I had lying around (as a top coat to the eastwood stuff). I made 3 patches per side, I was pleased with my work given my tools (a grinder, mallet & a cement block) and metal experience (zero). The welder put them in and I will por 15 the trunk along with the floor pan in the future.
We had placed some 1x1 square tubing to reinforce the car as we work on it, specifically for the rocker panel replacement. It’s what the more knowledgeable people from the bmw2002faq forums do
Kosta came on Sunday, I needed him mostly for moral support because cutting rockers is scary... not to mention this car is a piece of crap and very depressing. We got to work with a spot cutter to remove the rocker panel. I picked up the spot weld cutter from Summit for ~$8, well worth it. We started on the driver side, which is the side I believed to be in better condition of the 2. The condition was not so good, a large portion of the front part of the rocker turned out to be bondo on top of a rusty patch which just covered the rust (much like the shock towers the actual rust was never addressed).
We got the driver side more or less off, now I need to clean it up a little more and wait for my package from http://www.restoration-design.com (located in Canada) with 2 rear rocker/quarter panel patches.
I hate this car.