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How to fix this rust spot more solidly...?
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epowell
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:35 am    Post subject: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

Hi Folks...
...I have a bit of time now and the weather is decent so I figured I'd attempt to tackle the worst, chronic rust spot my van has... two years ago I went into it on this thread (starting near the bottom of the page) https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=...;start=120
...and I ended up just doing a wimpy temporary "fix"... now 2 years later I am back where I started.

So I think I will go out there now with a cutting wheel and just cut out the bad stuff, and then hopefully get at the inside rust with a dremel micro-grinder... after that I think I will try to weld in a piece of sheet metal. I have a wimpy flux core welder that is so underpowered that it won't burn thru 1mm sheet metal!!! Shocked >>> I am no hell of a welder, but we learn by practicing...

So maybe just doing these things (cutting, grinding, welding) will fix it?

This is what it used to look like 2 years ago. I plan to cut along the yellow line.
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This is the wimpy fix I did 2 years ago.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Here's what it looks like right now.
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dabaron
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:12 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

i think the only way to deal with this would be to cut the metal off and replace with a new section of the panel. not fun, but it will last an amount of time longer.
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alaskadan
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:40 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

I think you should raise the cut line above that body crease a little. The rust holes go right up to it on the outside, no doubt it goes higher on the inside. Secondly, you being a novice at welding with a suspect welder too, I'd assume your weld will be a little sloppy and require a good bit of grinding to clean it up. It would be easier for you to just have to grind it flat and not recreate a contour. Just going a 1/4" above would help a lot.
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epowell
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:44 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

dabaron wrote:
i think the only way to deal with this would be to cut the metal off and replace with a new section of the panel. not fun, but it will last an amount of time longer.


I know you are right, and was hoping not to hear this.
I think phase one was the wimpy 2 year "fix", phase two will be a bit less wimpy cut/weld "fix".... and eventually phase three will be a panel replacement and that will accompany probably a total body strip-down.

My only major concern is that I don't want the rust from here to spread into the FRAME Shocked !!
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epowell
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:46 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

alaskadan wrote:
I think you should raise the cut line above that body crease a little. The rust holes go right up to it on the outside, no doubt it goes higher on the inside. Secondly, you being a novice at welding with a suspect welder too, I'd assume your weld will be a little sloppy and require a good bit of grinding to clean it up. It would be easier for you to just have to grind it flat and not recreate a contour. Just going a 1/4" above would help a lot.


Yes you are 100% correct in everything you said.
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epowell
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:18 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

This seems like a good tutorial.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hNcOGbDbDK4

I like this one also
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DyLJYOggsjA
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zuhandenheit
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:43 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

I'm thinking it isn't really worth it to fix again until you can fix it well -- probably by using metal from a donor van.

If you want to very much slow the rust for now, I'm thinking the best option would be to apply something like Waxoil on the inside. You'll just have to be careful to thoroughly remove it before any future body repairs. (Paint)
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MarkWard
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:45 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

I can't tell from the pictures you posted, but the critical area is where the trailing arm mounts to the unibody. I'd be inclined to cut the outer skin to have complete access to that area. There is a secondary panel underneath the outer skin above the arm attachment. Here is a picture of a project I started, but ended up abandoning it. You can see quite a bit of the innards with the exterior panel removed. You may find that you need to cut the secondary panel and deal with the rust above the suspension mount even adding some 1/4 inch plate as a gusset.

You need to stop the rust. Everyone raves about POR, but ospho might be a better product for that corner. Then the other products on top.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:19 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

Incidentally, I am pretty sure ospho is just as good a base for por15 as their metal prep. Both are phosphoric acid based and seem just about identical. I was thinking oil because it will seep into the seam on the bottom. Actual, ospho or similar than waxoil (or similar) would likely be good.
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dobryan
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:34 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

If you want to try to slow down the rust without doing any body work use ospho liberally inside and out then flood the area with waxoyl. Read the instructions though. This is only a temp measure....
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epowell
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:54 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

MarkWard wrote:
I can't tell from the pictures you posted, but the critical area is where the trailing arm mounts to the unibody. I'd be inclined to cut the outer skin to have complete access to that area. There is a secondary panel underneath the outer skin above the arm attachment. Here is a picture of a project I started, but ended up abandoning it. You can see quite a bit of the innards with the exterior panel removed. You may find that you need to cut the secondary panel and deal with the rust above the suspension mount even adding some 1/4 inch plate as a gusset.

You need to stop the rust. Everyone raves about POR, but ospho might be a better product for that corner. Then the other products on top.

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


Everyone's talking about OSPHO! What the heck is that? I must find out.
The post tells me a lot, THANKS Mark! By "outer skin" I guess you mean that outer panel metal - including the area inside the wheel well [that is also rusted, and opening that up will also give me greater access]. From what I am gathering so far it will be best to make my rough sheet metal patches actually before I start cutting holes? My patches should ultimately be "butt joints" and EXTREMELY well fitting. Then welded on with tiny tak-welds to avoid warping due to over-heating the metal.
When I have to 'outer skin' cut out, I need to grind out all rust 100%, and then apply some serious something there to stop rust from coming back quickly because this IS an area of potential secret water gathering.

- - -
Ben, great to see you here. I appreciate your detailed expertise. I think I will dig into this a little bit now because I am concerned about my frame getting rusted > I don't want that!
But here is a vid where the guy just chopped up his frame and welded it back together - right in this spot! But he is REALLY a good welder!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q32ohE_Yz-4
and
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCjJNSeM45Q
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 8:52 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

My main concern is that the rust does not get into the FRAME and thereby initiate serious structural decay.
Here are a few fotos I just took of the area in question - - - my understanding is that what we need to be concerned about is the frame cross member and the bracket which is holding the trailing arm. Am I correct to assume that that bracket is welded to the frame member by a butt joint weld? And as long as these items are not rust damaged, then I'm still OK for the time being?

This area is currently pretty dirty, but I can't really see any serious rust to the frame&bracket..... can anyone see more than I can?
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calo1956
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:02 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

You can also get that quarter panel from the Bus Depot, its maybe $30 then just cut the part you need from it. I will be replacing mine soon. working my way forward from the back, wheel arch next than that quarter
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:11 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

calo1956 wrote:
You can also get that quarter panel from the Bus Depot, its maybe $30 then just cut the part you need from it. I will be replacing mine soon. working my way forward from the back, wheel arch next than that quarter


Shipping to Czech Republic would be a little difficult.....
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ZsZ
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:27 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

The most common Klokkerholm and Van Wezel branded body panels are available here in any parts shop
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epowell
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:35 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

dobryan wrote:
calo1956 wrote:
You can also get that quarter panel from the Bus Depot, its maybe $30 then just cut the part you need from it. I will be replacing mine soon. working my way forward from the back, wheel arch next than that quarter


Shipping to Czech Republic would be a little difficult.....


But I'll be in Canada in 3 weeks... plus my Brother is coming up from the US to visit..... Idea
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:36 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

ZsZ wrote:
The most common Klokkerholm and Van Wezel branded body panels are available here in any parts shop


You mean, these panels are available here?
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:44 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

epowell wrote:
ZsZ wrote:
The most common Klokkerholm and Van Wezel branded body panels are available here in any parts shop


You mean, these panels are available here?

Yes, they are shipped from Denmark to the US (made somewhere in the EU)
Ask your parts guy. The most common is the Klokkerholm
https://www.klokkerholm.com/xProductCatalogue/productCatalogue.aspx?Group=172530
Not a good quality panel but cheap

Edit: Van Wezel in CZ : https://www.profidily.cz/bocni-stena-van-wezel-5870141-644726.html
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:56 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

I am going to be replacing the driver's side rocker panel on mine due to the commonplace seam rot. It is basically a longer version of that rear quarter panel pictured above. Research on Samba shows my new panel being installed with two part epoxy panel glue, not welding. My cousin the auto body man confirms for me I will be cutting out my old panel, cleaning the attachment areas of the body and the new panel to bare metal, and then gluing the new panel on. I bought some 3M panel epoxy and am going to borrow my cousin's epoxy gun (its like a two-barrel caulking gun). Supposedly, the bond is so strong that the steel will tear before the epoxy will let loose. He say's its done this way nowadays so the welding won't burn up the corrosion resistant coatings from the inside of the panels, and the panels won't warp from welding heat. I'm going to give it a try. Good luck with your project.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:58 am    Post subject: Re: How to fix this rust spot more solidly...? Reply with quote

The suspension bracket is shaped like an upside down "U". It is seam welded to the cross member and yours looks good there. It is also rosette welded across the top to the frame rail along with some seam welding. Your crossmember section looks good, but you can't really see the condition of the frame rail where your bracket is attached. In the original pictures you posted, I see a lot of rust in that corner.

You could remove the trailing arm and get a better picture and poke at the area with a tool of your choice, but removing a section of the skin will give you a closer view of that area, even if all you do is hole saw and inspection hole in the inner panel.

What is happening, is the rusting is taking place in that corner. It is a dead end where dirt and moisture collect. What I like about Ospho is that is has a viscosity similar to water and will flow into the nooks and crannies that you can't reach with a brush or sprayer.

The aftermarket panels are more than you would need. You just cut out what you need. If you get the rusting under control, it will probably outlast the van. You can always deal with it later, but you will be cutting into that corner again. There is not an easy way to address it from inside.
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