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Old 08-04-2021, 09:16 PM   #2101
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Tack your too large patch to the side, and then use the cutoff wheel to cut through the patch and the bus at the same time. You now have a patch that fits exactly.

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Old 08-05-2021, 07:26 PM   #2102
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Welded on the bit of faux fender rim.

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The two plug welds look so-so. I'll improve them with bondo.

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A very badly-timed catastrophe, one of the pins and its containing metal on my electric shears broke off, rendering it inoperable - and I only had a couple more cuts to make with it before I'm basically finished with the sheet metal work on my bus.

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A battlefield repair that failed miserably. The outer part of this is sintered metal which apparently can be welded, but apparently not by me - these broke loose immediately. I may make another attempt at this just so I can squeeze a bit more life out of this thing. Spent the afternoon driving around trying to find replacement shears, but no luck. Harbor Freight was out of them at the moment and Lowe's and Home Depot only sell them online.

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So I had a fun time cutting this horizontal bottom strip with my diablo cutting wheel. I really hate cutting sheet metal with cutting wheels, so difficult compared to the shears.

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This smaller notch in the fender will be easier to deal with without the shears, at least.

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Old 08-05-2021, 07:43 PM   #2103
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Looks like you managed nonetheless! I love those kind of shears, got a pair too. They are also available pneumatic form, perhaps easier to get as well.
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Old 08-05-2021, 08:40 PM   #2104
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Looks like you managed nonetheless! I love those kind of shears, got a pair too. They are also available pneumatic form, perhaps easier to get as well.
Huh, HF does have the pneumatic varieties in stock at my local, and they're cheaper at ~$30. I probably should have bothered to walk the extra 20 feet to look over the pneumatic section.
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Old 08-06-2021, 02:30 PM   #2105
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Old 08-08-2021, 01:07 PM   #2106
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Huh, HF does have the pneumatic varieties in stock at my local, and they're cheaper at ~$30. I probably should have bothered to walk the extra 20 feet to look over the pneumatic section.
This repair kit might be the ticket for those shears:

https://www.amazon.com/Gino-Developm.../dp/B004HJJXVC
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Old 08-08-2021, 01:19 PM   #2107
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This repair kit might be the ticket for those shears:

https://www.amazon.com/Gino-Developm.../dp/B004HJJXVC
I'm actually on my second set of swivel heads (HF sells those for its shears as well). The problem is that the "beak" piece which holds all those parts (and is made of sintered metal) broke along with the pin.

I found somebody selling used HF shears for $30 on OfferUp, so perhaps I will get lucky.
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Old 08-09-2021, 05:06 PM   #2108
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Prepped for filling my big dent with bondo glass.

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I wanted to call this my "fender bender" but then I realized this is the skirt and not the fender. "Skirt straightener" I guess is what it is.

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Kinda worked.

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First layer of bondo glass.

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These pics didn't come out too well, but they're pics of a huge cicada being dragged up the side of the bus by a really huge wasp.

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After this pic, the wasp tried flying with it again but it ended up hitting the street and rolling a few times with it. Then it just started eating the cicada in the street. I could hear the crunching from like 30' away.

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Something weird was going on with the bondo where it was setting up after like 20 seconds, despite my mixing in only a little dab of the hardener. I had to go with mixing very small batches to get it to work.

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I got hit with the depressing scope of how much prep work the sides of the bus are going to take before I can start painting. At least half the rivets need to be scraped and primed because of rusting, and the bottom edges of all the rub rails need flap-discing. The "BROCTON C" paint is also not coming off very easily, and there's still a lot of tape glue residue on the other side I need to get off. Sigh.
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Old 08-09-2021, 05:09 PM   #2109
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I got hit with the depressing scope of how much prep work the sides of the bus are going to take before I can start painting. At least half the rivets need to be scraped and primed because of rusting, and the bottom edges of all the rub rails need flap-discing. The "BROCTON C" paint is also not coming off very easily, and there's still a lot of tape glue residue on the other side I need to get off. Sigh.
Why not just wire wheel the rusty rivets, orbital sand the rest, then go at it with paint? From what I’ve seen most exterior paints folks have been using are pretty effective and forgiving on these buses.
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Old 08-09-2021, 05:30 PM   #2110
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Why not just wire wheel the rusty rivets, orbital sand the rest, then go at it with paint? From what I’ve seen most exterior paints folks have been using are pretty effective and forgiving on these buses.
Well, that is basically what I'm doing, but in my case with the rusty rivets there's a bit of bubbling paint all around them that doesn't come off with the wire wheel, so I have to hand-scrape around each of them with a painter's tool.
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Old 08-09-2021, 05:34 PM   #2111
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Well, that is basically what I'm doing, but in my case with the rusty rivets there's a bit of bubbling paint all around them that doesn't come off with the wire wheel, so I have to hand-scrape around each of them with a painter's tool.

Ah, yeah that will take some working.

As they say, painting is like 90% prep…
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Old 08-09-2021, 05:35 PM   #2112
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Ah, yeah that will take some working.

As they say, painting is like 90% prep…
Aka "depressing scope".
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Old 08-09-2021, 06:26 PM   #2113
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A solution of Prep & Etch sprayed on all the surface rust will eliminate it and prevent it's return. Rinse after 15 minutes, dry and paint. Paint thinner on a rag will probably attack the surface black paint without marring the yellow.
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Old 08-09-2021, 07:15 PM   #2114
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Cicada's are being dipped in chocolate and sold here as a dessert. Nuts if you ask me. They say it has a nutty flavor. I am not going to try it. Yes, these buses can be daunting when working on them alone. I can only do so much but it will get done. One day at a time. You'll get there!
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Old 08-10-2021, 08:44 AM   #2115
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Huh, HF does have the pneumatic varieties in stock at my local, and they're cheaper at ~$30. I probably should have bothered to walk the extra 20 feet to look over the pneumatic section.
That sucks your shears broke! Mine are still going strong (so far)... I had to get caught up on all your progress! Looking great! And your metal patch jobs are going it well it looks like!!

I need to tackle painting my bus soon! You're giving me some inspiration!
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Old 08-10-2021, 05:46 PM   #2116
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Driver's side fender bondo.

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Passenger side, primed underneath the rub rail replacement.

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Riveted the rub rail piece. I was thinking of using self-tapping screws for this because I wasn't sure the 1/4" rivets would pull through the rail flange and two layers of sheet metal, but they worked great. I also welded up the joint between the new piece and the old rail.

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More bondo glass. Reproducing the rub rail profile on the seam and on the end cap is going to take a few more coats at least.

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Old 08-10-2021, 06:07 PM   #2117
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That sucks your shears broke! Mine are still going strong (so far)... I had to get caught up on all your progress! Looking great! And your metal patch jobs are going it well it looks like!!

I need to tackle painting my bus soon! You're giving me some inspiration!
Thanks! I'm jealous of how small your bus is right now, that's for sure.
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Old 08-10-2021, 09:14 PM   #2118
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Thanks! I'm jealous of how small your bus is right now, that's for sure.
Haha!
When my wife and three kids are in our short bus on a rainy weekend, I'm jealous of yours!! Lol
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Old 08-11-2021, 07:14 PM   #2119
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The end of the "BROCTON C" era.

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First sanding of the bondo glass. This stuff hold together great over seams and holes, but sanding it is a real pain.

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Rub rail end is coming together.

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More bondo work on the rub rail seam.

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Attacked the rivets.

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Sanded the driver's side bondo.

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Rusty rivets and screws.

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Fortunately this particular wire wheel takes the paint right off the rivets and screws, and also gets the bubbly paint around it. It's hard enough work with this thing, I can't imagine that I was going to do these all with a painter's tool.

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So much prep still to do, ye gods. Hope I can start painting on Saturday.
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Old 08-12-2021, 12:31 AM   #2120
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Ya that glass filler bondo is a real bear to sand but it’s looking awesome. Man where does the time go? I thought I’d be painting by now and I’m not even close. My wife and I get one holiday a year together and that’s in September, coming up fast and all she wants is a few weeks cruising in the bus.
You’re making great progress and it looks like the finish line might be in sight.
Keep at it and enjoy some cruising.
Cheers

Curtis
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