Thursday, 11 May 2017

An ugly pair of bumpers

I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it.
Pablo Picasso

I have been pretty daunted by the massive amount of work that is still to be done to prepare the body for paint. I have had two quotes by professional panel-beaters, each amounting to R35,000-00. Gulp. That's rather outside my meagre budget so it looks like I shall have to have a go myself.

I figured that I could start with summat small, like the wheels or the bumpers and see how it goes. If I cock it all up then there's no real harm done and it can be repaired by a pro later. A lot later. After I have saved up a mountain of cash. So there's the motivation anyway...

So it's bumpers - here is the pic that I took of the bumpers just after I removed them in August 2010 (2010? Geez this has been going on a bit, hasn't it?):

Pretty rough hey? They are scratched, dented, twisted, battered and generally quite rough; a bit like their owner. I have a lot to do here.

I started off by separating the bumpers into their individual parts and then sanding and wire-brushing them to remove the rust and loose paint. Despite a lot of bashes the metal seems to be in good condition and the rust is only on the surface. After a bit of thought I decided that I did not want to mount the spare wheel onto the front bumper in future - perhaps I'll stack it up on the rear roof-rack or a waist-high bracket stuck on the back. So the welded-on bracket was ground off and smoothed over.

There were many layers of paint which were cracked, worn and faded so I chose to strip it all off of the face sections; those "inside" parts that are out of sight will just be sanded down and primed.

Seems that the old man did some damage to a lot of kerbs and trees, potholes and pedestrians before I inherited this old thing! We got busy with some borrowed panel-beating hammers, sandpaper and wire brushes.

I dug out the mounting brackets from the store. I had cleaned these up previously and given them a lick of good enamel paint. I was also happy to find a selection of brand new mounting bolts and bits which I had forgotten about. Joy, that's one less immediate expense to worry about thanks to my unusual pro-activity! 

So I have loosely assembled them to check for obvious major flaws and missing bits - all looking good so far.

Next jobs will be to fill the few minor dings and scratches that remain, then to bang on a primer coat.

Thanks for stopping by

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