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Body , Panel Fit, Flat, Gap, Prep and paint .. - Esprit 'Project & Restoration' Room - The Lotus Forums #ForTheOwners Jump to content


Body , Panel Fit, Flat, Gap, Prep and paint ..


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Dave, I'm working on a body shell stripped first via media blast ( ground walnut shell and garnet, I believe ) and in several places the gelcoat was taken off. Once I've sanded down the remainder of the thing, removing the last of the primers going just down to the gelcoat, should I have it sprayed with an epoxy sealer before laying on other finishes? 

 

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2 hours ago, eeyoreish said:

Great work! I just hope your ruler hasn't got a kink in it 🤔

Only where it is supposed to have . 

2 hours ago, drdoom said:

Dave, I'm working on a body shell stripped first via media blast ( ground walnut shell and garnet, I believe ) and in several places the gelcoat was taken off. Once I've sanded down the remainder of the thing, removing the last of the primers going just down to the gelcoat, should I have it sprayed with an epoxy sealer before laying on other finishes? 

 

A lot will depend on quality of what you are looking at .. Area's where gel coat has de-laminated will be of concern .. Aggressive sanding of exposed GRP surface with 40 grit to key in primary repair.  Then apply layer of resin with cloth or mat as you would to any damage repair area. ( I will be covering this type of repair a bit later in the thread ) ..  As long as your gel coat or substrate is sound and crack free you can start working the finish..    Unfortunately media blasting can disguise gel crack , so you need to go searching..  Areas where it lifted during blasting will have been bad spots.. Its ones you can not see that come back to bite you.  In situations like that I would orbital sand each panel one at a time down to a circa 300 grit..  This will be quite smooth . Then apply a thin stain coat by hand , wiping over the panel  allowing it to soak down into any cracks ..  Then stain should not put much colour on the panel but will highlight all  the cracks .. you can then grind  them out and carry out resin build repair as previously stated.  .. ( don't over apply stain if cellulose based )  .    Spraying an epoxy coat all over will only bury what is there already ..  Unless you apply a tissue or similar layer within this , any cracks will eventually work their way up .   If you are looking to do similar to what is in this thread,  then only local repairs will be needed.  You will see as the thread progresses, we use polyester coat to seal everything down once required form is achieved ..   These are also far more resistant to cracking..    

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3 hours ago, drdoom said:

Is creating a stain for the reveal of gel cracks a matter of adding black paint to thinner? 

Basically yes.  You will need to play with the ratio,  but you will soon work out what gives the best results..  Go to a spot you know there is gel crack and practice your application on that area ..   find a method that works best for you ..   :thumbup:  

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You could also wipe with wax and grease remover for the crack reveal. You will have to look a little harder but it does work..

Regarding the epoxy comment. I would be cautious using epoxy pre-repair. Resin doesn’t adhere particularly well to it.

I admire your contour work Dave. I found my lotus body to be particularly challenging.

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Thanks, Roland, I've observed adhesion issues with contact cement over epoxy repair of the cockpit rear bulkhead finisher panel, now mindful of this. I may regret having done some work on the shell in epoxy/cloth if unable to reliably lay on fillers needed to finish. 

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I wondered who the lucky owner was, you should have an absolutely stunning Turbo when you are back on the road Richard, this post made me look at my gaps and alignment with a straight edge and can see similar discrepancies which I’ve never paid attention to before. Can’t wait to see the end result especially as I’m thinking about paint as well.

Dave :) 

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Do or do not, there is no try! 

 

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35 minutes ago, LOTUSMAN33 said:

this post made me look at my gaps and alignment with a straight edge and can see similar discrepancies

We can't expect our hand-made glassfibre Lotus cars to be as good as the commercial below.

 

Heck, I'm sure our '88 passes the Tennis Ball Test. 🙂

 

 

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Atwell Haines

'88 Esprit

Succasunna, NJ USA

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14 hours ago, CarBuff said:

We can't expect our hand-made glassfibre Lotus cars to be as good as the commercial below.

 

Heck, I'm sure our '88 passes the Tennis Ball Test. 🙂

 

 

Well maybe all we needed was 'some' Balls to try .. !!!  

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