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Mick's V8 Celica

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Stripping & repair

Every millimeter of the shell and body panels were carefully checked for any sign of rust. If you are going to do a total rebuild like this and want it to last, you must be thorough. The last thing you want to see is bubbles of rust growing under your $8000 paint job 6 months later!

When cutting rust out make sure to cut far enough away from rust and into healthy metal. I used a 1mm thick cutting blade on the angle grinder - easy! The rusted bit that you cut out - keep it neat and in 1 piece if possible as this can be used as a template for the new metal to fill the hole and makes for easier welding.

All the black tar matting was lifted off the floor and later replaced. I found rust developing under tar mat but it was not visible from under car.

Soon after welding in new metal, protect it with good quality primer or rust guard.

There were small spots of rust hiding under roof gutter (the car is upside down). This area is covered by a stainless strip. Some people think they are chrome but all the shiney bits are stainless steel! Again, if you want a rust free car, every inch of metal must be checked. I actually used the smallest torch I could find, like a pen torch to look in every little nook and recess in the chassis, body, doors, hatch, etc.

This is where the headlight brackets, bonnet hinges etc mount up. I removed these by drilling out many spot welds because in the join where the 2 panels meet there was surface rust and gunk. The only way to clean up the join properly was to disassemble, clean, prime and weld up again. A lot of work!!

The grey area is where the battery is mounted. This was also rusted due to battery acid!

For working on the shell I made this "A" frame rotisserie. This allows you to spin the shell 360 degrees - great for working on the underside of the car.

Rust repair, under side of battery location

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Last updated 26 Mar 2008