Lottie, a 79 full restoration Part 1/2/3/4/5

Discussion in 'Restorations' started by martinvention, Jul 12, 2015.

  1. Thanks Art for the above. I have had a bit of a holiday from Lottie with some other projects but now back in the fray. The rear end offside was badly repaired some long time ago and needs outer and inner panel work including replacing the end of the inner valance and a bit of the chassis (first time I have had to use 2mm plate): Rear chassis to inner valance 2.jpg

    Below - D post from inside showing rust and chiseled out metal by some bodger in the past. The panel that sits over this area and joins both D pillars as well as the deck to the hinge panel was held in by a few tack brazes and lots of mastic. I can forgive rust which is natures way but these bodges were an insult to engineering.
    D post inner rust.jpg

    Below - The panel behind the hinge panel now beyond repair and difficult to source, so I will try and make one:
    Rear end upper x member 2.jpg

    So to the recovery phase, chassis, inner valance and D pillar repairs.

    Chassis to rear valance repair.jpg I chopped out the pillar and reworked on the bench, it needs to be fitted and checked with each patch to make sure it is the right shape in all planes. I got it wrong twice and had to cut and weld again. Here it is offered up again but will not be fixed in place until I attend to the wheel arch/flap and firewall areas where access is better without the pillar.

    D Post repaired and offered up.jpg

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  2. Chopping away the rust from rear of arch and firewall. I have an excellent new arch from Schofields but the base of the firewall will have to be DiY. The inboard part that the front edge of the battery tray joins to is not too difficult but the outer part joins the mud flap outer edge to both the curved flanges of the wheel arch rear outer panel. Also need to make good the engine seal panel which rests atop the chassis rail and joins the battery tray inner flange. Some piccies: Engine seal to battery tray panel.jpg

    Firewall to OS arch.jpg
  3. been there looks in better condition than mine did but it will be good when its finished :)
  4. Thanks Womball, I have to agree your Daisy is the most extreme example of 'rust to resto' finesse I have ever seen and a perfect subject for you to showcase your skill.
    Lottie being an 79 van has not fizzed so long and the worst bits at the rear are due to bad repairs. The OS quarter was replaced below the bulge and hardly attached to the fuel filler panel and firewall at all. In the second photo below you can see the thickness of filler used to hide the bodge and hold it together. First photo shows the new mudflap and repair to the bottom of the firewall. I think I have made a mistake with the firewall area to the right. In some photos I see the rear return inside the arch panel stops at the battery tray and I guess the void is open to the elements. Having made mine extending to the bottom of the arch I decided to install it and give a bit more support to the flanges joining the rear quarter to the base of the wheel arch. OS rear arch and firewall.jpg

    Second photo shows the new section of wheel arch attached. Although 'normal' rust was limited to the bottom 6 inches , the curious cut was necessary to replace the flange area rusted because of the previous bodges.
    OS rear arch and flap.jpg
    Last edited: May 27, 2017
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  5. looks good to me wot you have done is right it joins at the were the tub and fire wall meet good work :thumbsup: up to you but dont fit battery tray till you have fited the rear corner on make fitting easier ;)
  6. Thanks Womball I will bear that in mind, there will be lots of test fitting as so much has been disturbed.
  7. Making progress with the rear end and pleased to discover that behind and below the bad sections of engine seal skirt the rust is not significant and treated with grinder, wire brushes, flap discs and 'octupus ink' convertor. I am itching to fit the new quarter panel but access is so much better without it for now. Note my improvised trolley which allows the shell to be wheeled around, the front pair of wheels are castoring. Engine bay skirts removed.jpg
    I have cut the front upstand of the skirt in line with the shock mount sub chassis so as to avoid cutting into it, as happened on the other side:
    Engine Bay NS Skirt removed.JPG
    The OS is prepped with Bonda seam sealer and more Bonda and ready for the return of the 200mm section below the bulge which was removed to facilitate the cutting and re-welding of the D Post. This section will be joggled ready for the new quarter panel:
    Rear Qtr OS prepped for section weld.jpg
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  8. Finally fitted the quarter panel section below the bulge and primed and sealed joints before fitting lower quarter panel. Also fitted new battery tray and repaired engine skirt panel which sits on chassis rail and provides upstand to weld battery tray flange to, I made this upstand a bit taller and folded it over the battery tray flange to leave a neat top edge. Only bit left for this area is the air filter pedestal, but I know I will curse it many times if I fit now, before finishing all work around the engine bay.
    OS Rear Quarter fitter.jpg
    and from the inside:
    Batt Tray and quarter fitted.jpg

    Next I have 2 nice Schofields panel to fit; the outer valance should be straightforward but the hinge panel more difficult as the transverse frame behind needs to go in first and then the floor lip repaired. Replacement transverse panels seem rare and a NOS @ £85 seemed pricey so I made my own in 2 sections and welded together:
    Hinge panel inner frame.jpg Some awkward welding to be done sitting in the engine bay to make sure this one joins the D posts nicely.
  9. Outer and inner rear valance prepped with 2 coats Bonda and weld through for the flanges:
    Outer Valance prepped.jpg

    And fitted:
    Outer Valance fitted.jpg
  10. JamesLey

    JamesLey Sponsor

    Looking good martin. You can't be far off finishing welding?

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  11. Thanks James, yes almost there, after the last few rear end panels the engine hatch and a couple of window openings then I expect there will be a few dodgy bits discovered when I grind the paint back to a stable level for finishing. I also need to flip her over on her side and refit heater duct Y piece and cable conduits and then finish with Bonda, Rustoleum and stone chip the wheel arches. Then I plan to lower and refit castors to improve headroom for spraying.

    Iris is coming on well and you are providing an excellent narrative for others to follow. I am pleased to see that you are using the quality panels where available. Best wishes Martin.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2017
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  12. JamesLey

    JamesLey Sponsor

    Cheers mate. Let me know how you tackle the y piece. I think I may end up buying the Schofields repro one and chopping it to fit. Part of the tubes at the front under the cab had to be cut out to so might use my roller to fab some up.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  13. Hi James, I patched mine last winter and though not pretty I think it will serve. I added sockets to reassemble with clamps and plan to wrap in something that will provide protection from the elements and insulation, possibly GRP tape and polyester resin or woodburner seal cord (also GRP?) and possibly aluminium tape as used on furnace chimneys.

    Y Piece.jpg
    Your rollers should be spot on for straight runs, but do have a look on the web for furnace flues in stainless.
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  14. Decided to fit hinge panel next so that I had a straight and level edge to work from to make up new lower jamb sections. The DiY transverse frame I make to link the D posts (see above), floor and hinge panel will go in last so that it can be tweaked to mate well with the other bits. Damaged jamb:
    Hinge panel and bad floor.jpg
    and other side cut back to good metal and with repair to top of D post: Hinge panel and bad floor cut out.jpg
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  15. JamesLey

    JamesLey Sponsor

    Nice idea. Ours was toast so couldn't really be saved. Might get some stainless sheet and make it out of that perhaps for the front.

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  16. Finished the rear hatch threshold and am prepping the frame that goes behind including fitting the latch pin securing bracket. Threshold stitched/seam welded to floor by raised rib and plug welded to hinge panel. The hinge panel (Auto Craft) is for a 73-76 van with captive nuts for 2 screw hinges and I decided to use it for my 79 as it seemed better quality than the correct black primed repro panel for this later van. I will make suitable hinges later. Rear Hatch treshold finished.jpg
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  17. Got the frame behind the hinge panel in, I also had to make 2 end pieces for the fore and aft box frames (arrowed) the originals were mutilated and the bodge hidden under oodles of seam sealer. Lots of plug welds some difficult to get at hence I have the van flipped over on its side. This also this makes it much easier to prep the underside including the engine upper support cross frame. D Post and floor frame.jpg

    After lots of wire brushing with various heads on a long extension rod I have coated all the surface rust with Flag rust converter and will leave for a couple of days before applying Bonda and then seam sealer.
    rear prepped for primer.jpg
  18. After Scotchbright and second de-greasing coated all in Bonda, seam sealer next. For the difficult corners of the X frame and reverse of various flanges I used a long handles 10mm sign-writers brush with the head bent to a jaunty angle. I still need to flip her over on the other side to finish NS chassis rail and also do last few plug welds, I find it impossible to MIG weld undersides especially plugs as it seems that molten metal respects gravity particularly well. Rear in Bonda.jpg it seems
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  19. Looking good. Need to do the rear valance on mine at some point as the engine bay seal is held in with duct tape at the moment as the seal strip rotted off.

    When welding upside down I find the weld drips into the tip of the gun if i'm not careful. Turning up the wire speed a little seems to help.
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  20. Thanks Zebedee, I will give it a try. Today I made a bracket and some mods to the air filter support. As my head and shoulders are going to spend some time in the engine bay I did not want to share that small space with that sticky out pointy bit of metal but I wanted to finish the welding so that I could progress to seam sealing. Solution weld in a small bracket to allow bit pointy bit to be bolted in later: Air filter fix.jpg
    Bracket with captive nut fitted fitted, I will drill hole through base and engine seal tin much later when final fitting and fit a captive bolt to base plate. Air filter fix 2.jpg
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2017

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