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How to deal with a few rust areas fenders/sills - 95 legacy (pics)


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7 replies to this topic

#1 FleaDog

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 01:49 PM

Got a few rust areas on the bottom fenders/bottom sill/fascia. Whats the best remedy for these? I was going to wire brush, sand, and at least prime with one of those rust-stopper products then pain over or simply coat with inner wheel well spray.

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thx for looking

#2 mikec03

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 02:37 PM

Basically, you have to cut out the rusted areas! I know that you don't want to hear that but it's true.

For the last two pictures [the back], take off the paint with the 3m wheel, then use a drumel cutting wheel to remove anything that's severely rusted.
For surface rust, use the grinder on the drumel to get the last amounts of surface rust. Then it's converter, fiberglass, bondo, prime and paint. You can't leave any rust on the inside or outside, hence the advice to cut when in doubt. Rust never sleeps.

For the front, same procedure but it looks worse. Only time will tell when you hit it with the dremel cutting wheel.

If that's all the rust you have on a 95, you should thank your lucky stars

#3 porcupine73

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 08:26 PM

Well ... I don't know what to tell you. I thought I was doing the right thing a couple years back by grinding the FFFFF out of those areas, patching with fiberglass (and often needing to reinforce with wire mesh), sanding, priming, and repainting ...

And well, I didn't do the best job I guess, but within a year or two, it just rotted out again.

So roughly speaking I gave up. I just paint over the rust spots with a paint of roughly the same color. Yes it loooks cheesy. But it's cheaper and much less time spent for roughly the same result anyway I guess ..

#4 Fairtax4me

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 08:28 PM

Those areas usually rust from the back. When you start grinding they usually end up as a big hole.

The front fenders need to be replaced or have new sheet metal welded on. Replacement is probably the easiest route. I don't know if patch panels for that area are available. There are much more common rust points on these cars that you can't get patch panels for. That bottom section is what holds the lower leg of the fender. You can try cutting out the rusted area but there will probably not be much metal left to hold the bottom of the fender on the car.

The rear dog-leg can be cut out and filled with fiberglass or bondo.
Those may turn out to be OK after you grind the surface rust off, but be prepared to cut out a fairly large section, you may find a lot more rust than what you see.

#5 porcupine73

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 08:37 PM

^^ agreed, that is what I tried ... at first, the grinding route. Well then I ended up with a huge hole in the metal. So I packed some aluminum mesh screen in there and bondoed it over. But yes in a couple years it just rusted again. It wasn't worth it. The painting over looks kind of cheesy but damn it is like 1000 times faster. It's an unfortuante thing of having an older vehicle I suppose, esp in a place like NY where they salt the F*$*$# out of the roads.

#6 mikec03

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 07:35 AM

You have to cut out at least an inch around any penetration. So if you have a 1/2" penetration, figure a 2 1/2" hole. Rust is like cancer. Just taking out the obvious rusted area isn't enough. Then use a converter and seal the converter in case you missed any surface rust, especially on the inside.

#7 MilesFox

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 09:16 AM

You can patch the fender from behind and seal it up, and do some bodywork on the outside. The trick is removing the bolt on the bottom without breaking it, and replacing it with a 10x1.25 stainless bolt.

Dirt and leaves will accumulate there holding moisture and causing it to rust. be sure to spray with the power wash wand inside the fender withthe door open or peel back the inner lineer to wash it regularly to prevent this. the rear fender rust is caused by the same debris hiding behind the mud flaps.

you can remove the flaps and inner fenders once a year to blast out debris. It is not a bad idea to treat these areas with an undercoating product while you have it apart to prevent more rust.

#8 WoodsWagon

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 02:17 PM

You need to reach up inside the rear wheel wells, way up into the tower the strut goes into. So with the back of your hand against the coil spring, curl your fingers in so you can push against the outer wall of the tower. If it's still there, it will crumble, if it isn't, that's where the water/salt is getting in to rust your doglegs from the inside.

Use a wire wheel to clean the bubbled paint down, then coat it with a rust converter primer and after that cures, paint. You're just buying time after the rust starts, but you can prolong the agony quite a while with rust converter and paint.

You can also use wax based sprays to soak the inside of the panels to help keep rust from spreading.

Bondo actually holds moisture, so it will rust the metal out around it if it isn't completely sealed with paint from both sides.




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