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tam_shops
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Terry Kay wrote:
Like I mentioned Awlgrip has a much bigger color selection to match what your looking for.

Take a look;

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


If this sample is too small go over to Awlgrip Top Coat--you'll see more tints of blue than you'll need.


Thanks, great! Might be too many colours to choose from. Much easier to copy someone else's hard work picking colours! LOL


djkeev wrote:
I've seen people asking about painting the hardware bolt heads.
Here is a photo of what I believe are original bolts on my 86.
They are about the only ones NOT rusty!

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Dave


Very good to know! This looks like something I could easily do myself, noticed how the video showed the guy doing it on the van w/ the van covered w/ plastic. That I could do! Smile

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dobryan
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 8:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

PDXWesty wrote:
My top was still in good condition too with just the faded gell coat. No fiberglass showing. I had a shop paint it for me to color match the body. I don't think you necessarily need marine paint. Auto paint would work fine as well. I removed all the seals, took the front off and all the bolts, cleaned it really well with a scotch bright pad and took it in. I'm sure they also did a wipe down with something. They shot a base coat/clear coat and it looks great. 6 years later and it still looks good as new. No peeling or fading of any kind. Just wanted to let you know you have options besides stock marine paint.


I agree. I have repainted two pop tops using an automotive epoxy primer, base coat, and clear coat. They both came out great. YMMV.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2013 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my never ending search on what to paint my camper top with, and knowing I can return what I purchased already, I sent away for Awlgrip colors.

I'm not sure more choices are helping me!

It is really good how they punched the center out so you can see the color you are comparing it to.

Here they are, the online versions quite frankly stink. You can't even see anywhere near the real colors!

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djkeev
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, the sun was out today so I took out my Awlgrip color chart to see if here is a better stock color for the top.

Conclusion? Staying with what I have.

While out there I pulled a couple of top screws to see about getting replacements. Many are seriously rusted and "need" to be replaced.
I plan on using 18-8 Stainless Steel Slotted Truss Head Screws with an 18-8 Stainless Nylon lock nut.

I see GoWesty shows these screws in their catalog.......but........no stock Sad

They have a large diameter Slotted Truss Head on them. They are a 6mm with a 1.0 thread pitch. Overall thread length is about 15mm.
The stock screws have a 16mm diameter head. These are NOT off the shelf screws! The best I could find met all the size criteria but are 16mm long. the biggest difference is that they only have a 14mm Diameter Slotted Truss Head.

Hmmmmmmmm .........did Westfalia Engineers really NEED that 16mm or were they simply readily available locally for cheap?

I ordered the 14mm headed screws and I will have them on Monday.

Does anyone have a reason supported by data showing that the extra 2mm is a must have to hold the Fiberglas properly in place?

I also plan on using these same Truss Head screws to replace the rusted carriage bolts for the hinge and latch fastening points.

Below are photos...
The first is of the stock screws in my gauge.

The second photo shows how the four luggage rack screws are the same size as the Hinge screws but have a tapered point on the threaded end. (Left screw, tapered point is grey) This is NOT a major deal in my book.......a non issue if you will.

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ragnarhairybreeks
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 6:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

I'm tired and achy and got nothing more productive to do than answer your question Smile

So you have found out, just as the other "frustrated with stock truss head bolt" westy owners have, how hard it is to find stainless 6 X 1mm truss heads.

Is a 14 mm head good enough? Well, lets go to the whiteboard...

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


(man, I'm going to be pissed if I have made any math mistakes, if I have my excuse is I really should be in bed with a book and some hot tea instead of doing this silly Samba dance)

Can you live with such a difference? Will disaster ensue with such a radical change?

And can you live with only 18-8 stainless rather than 316?

Smile

I went my own route:

http://shufti.wordpress.com/2012/07/15/vanagon-pop-top-hinge-bolt-replacement/

Kidding aside, I have seen the bolts replaced with philips head machine screws (stainless, set into epoxy filled stainless cup washers. Looked pretty nice.

cheers,

alistair
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djkeev
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 6:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, thanks for the morning math lesson !

With my aging brain power, but I do years of experience in finding the obvious, I do not see that the head size makes a huge difference in the fasteners ability to keep the fiberglass tops on while in motion.

The only stresses that I can figure on each fastener is that of lift while in motion. The action or raising and lowering the top puts a degree of stress on the rear eight (four per side) fasteners, both opening and closing.

I cannot see any obvious signs of tension (pulling away) stress on the heads. The stress appears to be borne by the threaded shaft of each screw. The fiberglass is trying to lift or is being pushed down while driving and it seems that the bore for the fastener is what carries the brunt of the task and keeps it all together.

The only fasteners that encounter stress on the head, and I'm going to guess a great deal of stress, are the fasteners for the latch.....of which there are many!
Probably because of the obvious stress load the latch bears.

I might consider even putting some fender washers under each latch screw head to distribute the load. It's on top, out of sight 99% of the time.

I'll examine each mounting point for signs of stress when I disassemble it for painting.

To answer your question, yes I think that I'm very comfortable using the smaller headed screws. The only exception is on the latch but even there I've got 8 original screws in great shape I could use if in doubt about using the smaller heads.

Am I comfortable with 18-8 stainless over 316? Heck yes! Look how long the factory anodized ones lasted before they succumbed to rust! In addition the heads with be painted with Brightside Boat Paint.

As I've mentioned in another post about choosing canvas over the more modern and expensive tent fabric options available, this hardware will last me for the rest of my driving years until my children take the keys out of my old angry hands and say "Dad, You can't drive anymore!" Speak to the hand

Dave
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ragnarhairybreeks
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave,

My tongue was firmly in cheek when I wrote my last post, take it with a grain of salt.
The head diameter, 18-8 stainless quip etc, was in in good fun.

cheers

alistair
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ragnarhairybreeks wrote:
Dave,

My tongue was firmly in cheek when I wrote my last post, take it with a grain of salt.
The head diameter, 18-8 stainless quip etc, was in in good fun.

cheers

alistair


Yeah, I thought so but it did get me to thinking.......... Smile

BTW, a view of the top showing the latch fasteners, these appear to be carriage bolts, any clue why? Simple assembly speed? "Antitheft" properties? Laughing
I'm going to use my 14mm Slotted Truss Headed ones here.
And yes......I've got a new skylight sitting in the van ready to install.

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ragnarhairybreeks
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the carriage bolts on the top are used for ease of assembly. Even with mastic (don't forget it!) under the head, the head could/will rotate as you do up the nut inside.

Mind you, I've seen examples where the square hole in the top was rounded out and the anti-rotation feature of the carriage bolt useless.

Back to mastic - Bentley has some VW number, but I used something called "dum-dum" . I don't know how widespread that name is, but it comes in rolls (I got the 1" wide stuff, rolled up with a brown paper backing one side). This roll I have will last for a lifetime, and many pop tops. Cost about 10 bucks.

I'm not pulling your leg about the name, it's not some trick to make a fool of you at the hardware store Smile

I like mastic over caulk due to it's ease of use, doesn't get all over everything, left over stuff doesn't set up in the tube, blah, blah.


cheers

alistair
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djkeev
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I've been painting the luggage rack portion of the top.

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=532045&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

My Van is painted the Savannah Beige Metallic body and I (we) chose the Bristol Beige 4207 for the top. Just did a color check and all is well! Smile
(Or beauty is in the eye of the beholder? Shocked )

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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Couple of facts worth mentioning in the refinishing arena.

If you desire a satin finish on our pop top, ad the flatting agent.
Why would you want the top to look as it does now--Flat & dull?
You'd be defeating the reason your painting it.
if you want the flat, chaulked out look permanently, don't even bother spending the money on the materials--leave it as it is.

Second, waving a scuff pad over them dimples on the top will in no way, shape, or form offer enough grabber's for the urrethane to hang onto that top.
Use no finer paper than 180, if you want a good permanent lock down on top with the deck & hull urethanes.
Waving that Scotch pad over that top is a waste of time, and will not give you enough grabber's in the fiberglass to lock it down.
if your planning on priming use 80 on the top , prime, hit the primer with 180, and then lay the urethane on.


One more thought;
If for some reason a few have found that the Penetrol only lasted a couple of months, there is something really wrong here.

(A) they didn't apply it right.
(B) they didn't use enough of it.
(C) they applied it high humidity.
(D) the pop top was so sun beat & porus it was beyond trying to save with a fiberglass fortifier.
They were jipping the job, trying to save some money, when it should have been painted in the first place.

This is the only reason's the Pentetrol failed to give premium results on milked out gel coat.
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Bntbrl
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can buy a scotchbrite sanding pad from your paint supply house. Scotch pads are used everyday in body shops around the world.

80 will leave you with a lot of finish sanding. If you have to sand it go over it with 180 and prime and then block down to paint.

A good cleaning, then a degreasing after your scotchbrite pad should be enough unless you have something to smooth out. When using a scotchbrite pad make sure your entire area is dulled looking, that you've scuffed the surface so that paint will stick well. Degrease, then tack rag it and paint it.
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Read the message again;

80 prior to priming, 180 prior to painting.

And as they are not taking the Vehicle to Earl Scheib, or not even maaco for a diamond gloss paint job--they are rolling & brushing--do you think it makes one iota of a difference?
They will be rolling and brushing--
You think that that urethane is going to reveal any sanding marks?

Allowing the paint to stick to something is the key element here, and scotch brite pads are at best 320--not enough on the rough gel coat.
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ragnarhairybreeks
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll admit to not using primer when I painted pop top with Briteside. I did pressure wash it and scrub it hard, then sanded with 150 grit before painting (2 coats).

Of course I worried that I should have primed it. Was about 1.5 years ago, paint looks the same, and hasn't flaked off Smile

I have to say that the paint really does not hold the dirt. Washes clean with little effort.

alistair
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alistair,
150 was plenty good to hold the paint down on the glass, as long as you got the whole top dull with the scuffing.
And--it's been there for a year and a half--it isn't going anywhere.

Story;
Got a call from a regular account to paint 6 brand new Macks--
They came green from the factory, the entire top of the hood, roof to the bottom of the window sills were going to be grey, with a boot stripe at the break.
I quoted the job at $1500.00 per truck--lots of sanding, lost of masking.
I got low balled---and didn't get the work.

2 years later, I get a call from the same customer.
"Hey, can you come over here and look at a couple of trucks?"

Sure enough--here was the same 6 trucks ( two years older ) with most of the paint peeling off of the sheet metal & fiberglass hood.
It was pretty obvious what he got for his money.

They originally had masked, & waved scotch brite pads all over the trucks new paint, and blew the second & third colors on--it was rolling off is sheets.

I got the job to re-do all of them at $500.00 more per truck that I had first quoted because now I had to strip whatever color was on there off, prior to repainting them.
It was a BS job--for sure.
The top coat is only as good as the surface your painting on.
If it isn't prepped right--the top coat will eventually be garbage, & roll off.

Scotch pads aren't the way to go--been there, seen it, and re-done may vehicles that got the Johnny one wave scuff treatment.

Wave, wipe & shoot isn't the right way to go.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 2:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting, as I've read I keep reading "gelcoat, Gelcoat, Gelcoat.........."

Well mine is PAINTED!

There is no reason to believe my PO painted it. He was owner #2 of an 86 in 1990. He didn't do much of anything......why paint the top?!?!

Dealer painted it?

There is over spray around the lift mechanism fastening points, there is also a paint line above the Top Seal.

Under the top seal you can see fiberglass strands!
Makes me wonder if this was a replacement top or ?????
Why the clearly defined paint line around the unit? Wouldn't the factory paint the entire top and then install the seals?

Did VW deliver these in other colors besides White?

Hmmmmmmmm...........

Paint line........
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Fiberglass strands....... You can see the individual fibers shining in the light......
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Over spray.......
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 3:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well........ Yes, they did deliver tops in colors.........

From the 1987 Westfalia brochure..........

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I've just completed painting the entire top assembly with Brightside.

They recommend three thin coats and believe me, it needs three thin coats!

I have a small spot yet to paint for I had to repair a crack by the skylight.......
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=550549

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I used all of the first Quart and about 1/4 +/- of the second Quart.......
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Plan for it....... Smile

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2013 5:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I'm done!

Except for refastening the canvas onto the body and installing the skylight.

Looking at the process, considering the work involved and the huge drying times for the paint between coats.......

Im happy, very happy. So much better than it was previously. The brushing of the finish prevented the mess of setting up to spray during the colder winter months. It was easy to heat the space for brushing without the worry of explosion from spray mist.

BUT
Honestly....... if I were to do it again, I'd seriously consider doing it during the warmer months and use a single stage Automotive paint. Prime, color coat layers in rapid succession and be done with it.

I have some brush marks and places where the gloss isn't 100% equal. Not bad enough to start over and it may have simply been the application process and experience. Maybe my "help" wasnt qualified? Laughing

I spent $100 on paint and brushes. I fought brushes of all quality levels shedding bristles! Evil or Very Mad The 97 cent chip brush to the $16 oil only "pro" brushes, all shed bristles.

In conclusion, do what you deem best and are capable or comfortable doing............ but if you can spray....... Spray.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2013 7:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice job Dave, but I'm surprised you brushed on. I found that a foam roller (small one, and not very thick foam) followed by tipping off with brush was pretty quick and I didn't have any brush marks.

I only did a small (2 ft X 2 ft) section at a time.

Mind you I did it during summer, outside.

cheers

alistair
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