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Old 10-14-2014, 10:53 AM   #61
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

Quote:
Originally Posted by Malkieri



I hope this helps save you some time and effort!
Awesome! I do web development of sorts for a living so all the detail wasn't needed but I'm sure it will help someone else! I never thought about stealing images from facebook via the URL... great IDEA because yea, **** gets old quick .. and thanks for posting the pic of the rear rust.. the beast I am faced with now that runs along the SEAM of the rear wheel well.

I am thinking I will patch it from under the wheel well, tack a good hunk of sheet metal with a couple of screws to hold it in place from the outside.. then go inside and rivet the hell out of it. The reason I want to do it from the outside is that there is about 1" of area to the left of it that is the frame of the bus .. that is what I can attach the outer edge of my patch to.. the inner edge .. I can't screw from the outside in.. the pointy ends of the screws will be sticking up.. but I can tack it in place and then rivet on the inside.. This is what it looks like inside.
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File Type: jpg 2014-10-12 12.01.08.jpg (1.60 MB, 210 views)
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Old 10-14-2014, 01:40 PM   #62
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

As someone who has taken apart and reassembled a lot of rusty potentially valuable vehicles, here's some factors you should score against each other:

How long do you intend on keeping this vehicle?
How much is the vehicle worth, and can you just drop this one and get another one that is not rusty, now that you know where to look?
How much time and money will you invest in fixing the rust and rot the "wrong" way, ie: loosen the crud then just caulk/paint/body filler/rivet panels over it and not think about again.
How much time and money will you invest in fixing the rust and rot the "right" way, ie: cut out the metal, weld in new steel, treat and coat all metal including taking apart seams?

Many bus bodies are galvanized, and it's extremely difficult to attain the original finish on the metal - it will rust again regardless.

If this vehicle is a temporary thing, 2-3 years, and you're not intending on putting a lot of travel on it, I'd side with just patch it and go.

If you're planning on driving it, you need to fix it right. Bondo patching large swaths of metal is not the correct approach. Riveting metal panels to the rust damage for patches is better, but the damage will continue to spread.

Personally, if I were faced with a vehicle that had that much rust, I would scrap it and get what I could out of the vehicle, then look for a better one. Even if a couple thousand dollars are lost in the process, because fixing all that stuff will take time and money. Not to mention, if it's already falling apart and you need to build the rest of the project on top of the failing foundation.

edit:

Going back through your thread and reading from front to back, I think you need to keep what you have, and pick up some welding skills. It's not that hard, and will cost a little more for some basic metal working tools: angle grinder, welder (get a gas fed 120 volt mig welder) cut out the rust and weld in some new panels. It doesn't have to look pretty, it just needs to work. The wheel wells will be the first place water is slung into the chassis if you're driving on a wet day, and having solid metal there is important.

You also need to start looking at the frame to body interface to evaluate how much corrosion is in place, since it seems there is an unusual amount on the body, as if it lived in a road salting state all it's life.
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Old 10-14-2014, 02:04 PM   #63
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

Scrapping it isn't an option I'd like to consider. It's rock solid in every other way .. the size I want (31.5 feet X 7.5 feet of living space), has belly storage, a perfect engine, new transmission 30k miles ago, practically new tires and breaks. The stress that was involved in just getting it home and getting it to the point that it is now virtually by myself was incredible, not sure I would live through another of those experiences.

I am not slathering bondo on anything that is bigger than a softball and if I do slather bondo on a hole I am covering it with wire mesh repair metal.

Prior to doing ANYTHING with any of the rust I am scraping and cleaning it off .. getting all of the rot gone, then I am treating it with rust converter, then applying a primer. I'm taking all repairs out well beyond the diseased area.

The frame is solid, there aren't any areas where the rust is going into the frame..it's just body rust.

However, having said all of that, if you look at pictures of what I have done so far and deem that it's just not acceptable and wouldn't ever pass inspection .. then scrapping the bus might just be the only alternative.
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Old 10-14-2014, 02:44 PM   #64
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

That's just a little bit of rust. Find a local sheet metal shop and have them fashion some patches, tack weld them from the inside, and seal them from the outside. You will be good to go for years...
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Old 10-14-2014, 03:09 PM   #65
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

Given the pluses and minuses you have laid out...I agree that it sounds worth keeping. And if by "keeping" you are thinking of anything beyond a couple of years, then definitely get some solid sheet metal in the needed areas and treat it properly. Any half way decent sheet metal shop can fab the patches and welding them in can be handled by anyone with a mig and minimal skills (like myself). If you don't want to invest in a welding machine and learning...just ask around. You are bound to find someone who knows someone who can handle it on the cheap. Really not a big deal at all.

Just my dos centavos worth.
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Old 10-14-2014, 03:24 PM   #66
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

Is there something wrong with the metal patches I have made myself? I saved a lot of sheet metal (Large pieces the size of the back of the bus seats) just for this purpose.

Local hardware store has MIG welders on sale.. I'm going to pick one up today. I have a lot of scraps laying around.. I'll practice with a few of them before I start welding on the bus.

I'm confused by the comments sending me to a fabricator.. the sheet metal I am using to make the patches is very heavy duty and I don't have issues cutting it with the grinder.. is there some other reason why sheet metal from a fabricator would be better?
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Old 10-14-2014, 04:53 PM   #67
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

Before calling the rust done, I think you should try a needle scaler on the rusty areas:
http://www.harborfreight.com/air-needle ... -1108.html

Treat it like a big loud steel scraping paint brush. It will break up the flakes and chunks of rusty metal off your existing structure. You'll need an air compressor to run it though.

Here's a great video I found, on a bus no doubt.



edit:

one more video:



You need to use the scaler until the metal is nearly shiny, then you treat with phosphoric acid rust converter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by missingTexas
Scrapping it isn't an option I'd like to consider. It's rock solid in every other way .. the size I want (31.5 feet X 7.5 feet of living space), has belly storage, a perfect engine, new transmission 30k miles ago, practically new tires and breaks. The stress that was involved in just getting it home and getting it to the point that it is now virtually by myself was incredible, not sure I would live through another of those experiences.

I am not slathering bondo on anything that is bigger than a softball and if I do slather bondo on a hole I am covering it with wire mesh repair metal.

Prior to doing ANYTHING with any of the rust I am scraping and cleaning it off .. getting all of the rot gone, then I am treating it with rust converter, then applying a primer. I'm taking all repairs out well beyond the diseased area.

The frame is solid, there aren't any areas where the rust is going into the frame..it's just body rust.

However, having said all of that, if you look at pictures of what I have done so far and deem that it's just not acceptable and wouldn't ever pass inspection .. then scrapping the bus might just be the only alternative.
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Old 10-14-2014, 05:01 PM   #68
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

Nothing wrong with the metal you're using, as long as it's similar thickness to what you're attaching to. You really need to weld it into place instead of blind rivet it though. Spend the extra money and do not get a flux core welder, get one that takes a gas bottle. You don't want to spend half your time or more chipping away flux from your welds.

If you have never mig welded anything before, here's some of the top things to keep in mind:

Sparks from welding make fires. Rags, flammable materials, anything that burns will burn if you're welding next to it.
After welding, stick around for a half hour doing something or anything else to wait for slow burning embers or fires to be known. Don't just weld and close up shop and leave.

Toxic gasses. The three common killers you will encounter are galvanized coating, paint burning and gassing off, and residual pools of cleaning chemicals:
Burning paint is toxic and can contain lead or chemically sensitize you.
Galvanized coating can make you instantly dizzy or sick with one breath of vaporized zinc coating.
Chlorinated brake cleaner and it's family can create phosgene gas from the UV radiation, which will kill you very quickly.

Heat, thermal, and radiation. Welding process is hot - be smart about holding items that have been welded, and ensure you have adequate protection.
Use an auto-darken helmet. It's the only way to go.
Wear shoes that you can pop off easily, or wear pants and boots that prevent molten steel drips from burning through your socks.
Wear gloves and skin protection. You can easily get UV radiation burns (sun burn) from welding. Be protected.

http://www.millerwelds.com/resources/ar ... g-safety-/


Quote:
Originally Posted by missingTexas
Is there something wrong
with the metal patches I have made myself? I saved a lot of sheet metal (Large pieces the size of the back of the bus seats) just for this purpose.

Local hardware store has MIG welders on sale.. I'm going to pick one up today. I have a lot of scraps laying around.. I'll practice with a few of them before I start welding on the bus.

I'm confused by the comments sending me to a fabricator.. the sheet metal I am using to make the patches is very heavy duty and I don't have issues cutting it with the grinder.. is there some other reason why sheet metal from a fabricator would be better?
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Old 10-14-2014, 11:50 PM   #69
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

The only reason I mentioned a sheet metal shop was because it appeared you had some odd shaped areas to repair that might be tricky to form patches for. If it's all flat metal, just cut to fit and weld in place. Laying one sheet over another creates a void that will quickly become a rust pocket. Moisture will collect there from condensation even with sealer around the edges.

And I'll second getting a gas shielded mig. The ones that use coated wire are crap to work with. And I'll guarantee you, that it will pay for itself pretty quickly on all the things it will allow you to do on your own if you are building a bus. I've taught people the basics and in 20 minutes they were laying down strong, good looking beads. Migs are by far the easiest to learn. I call'em Monkey Welders cause you can teach a chimp to use one in no time.
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Old 10-15-2014, 08:38 AM   #70
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Re: TRusty Bucket .. since the thread is not going away lol

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tango
The only reason I mentioned a sheet metal shop was because it appeared you had some odd shaped areas to repair that might be tricky to form patches for. If it's all flat metal, just cut to fit and weld in place. Laying one sheet over another creates a void that will quickly become a rust pocket. Moisture will collect there from condensation even with sealer around the edges.

And I'll second getting a gas shielded mig. The ones that use coated wire are crap to work with. And I'll guarantee you, that it will pay for itself pretty quickly on all the things it will allow you to do on your own if you are building a bus. I've taught people the basics and in 20 minutes they were laying down strong, good looking beads. Migs are by far the easiest to learn. I call'em Monkey Welders cause you can teach a chimp to use one in no time.
Like it or not.. this one is on it's way to me.. I'll spend the weekend practicing welding instead of finishing a floor, at this rate I might get the bus done by the time I am ready to retire lol

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003FGWZK4/ref ... 00_TE_item

Also got gloves, a hood, and better wire.
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