Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Fixing the tailgate

So going back a couple of months when there was a day with a break in the rain I decided to tackle the "little bit" of bubbly rust that was along under the tailgate window.

When I bought the van I noticed the bubbling and so knew that I'd have to deal with it, however once I started on it I very soon discovered that it wasn't the "little bit" of rust that I thought it was - it had in fact rusted totally through in many places and was a complete mess.

Because it was so bad with the window rubber seal also disintegrating I had to remove the window so that I could properly get at the holes to sort them out.

After a stripping it down, cleaning it up and doing lots of rust killing I could see the full extent of what I needed to fix.

The good thing about these holes is that I could get to the underside of them from the inside on the tailgate and so I proceeded to fibreglass paste over the holes from the under side and then fill them with filler on the top.  After a lot of filling and sanding I had it looking quite good again.  Annoyingly I forgot to take a picture of it in the filled/sanded state.

That was all a couple of months ago...

After that the weather got really crap again and I didn't have a dry couple of days again to proceed further until this week, when finally and thankfully the sun has come out allowing me to get on with finishing off my tailgate repair.

Because the extent of the repair was so big I decided that I should respray the entire tailgate as there was no way I was going to get a partial respray to blend in well.

So, off came the entire tailgate and the respraying proceeded.

While I had the tailgate off and it was drying I took the opportunity to replace the rubber seal round the edge of the tailgate.  Fortunately this turned out to be very easy and only took a few minutes - I had been thinking the worst and imaging it taking hours after the nightmare I'd had fitting the new front door seal.

As I ended up having to take the glass out I decided to get new glass as the de-misting wires on the existing glass had long since been scratched to pieces and so didn't work.  So, once the tailgate was fully dried I fitted the new glass with a new seal (which went surprising easily too!) and then fitted the tailgate back to the van.

I must say I am very pleased with the final result.  Yes the paint spray job isn't that good if you look close, and there are a couple of marks in the middle where I turned it over to lacquer the back too soon and the soft lacquer marked, but considering I did it with spray cans on our driveway I don't think it's that bad!

1 comment:

  1. That looks great. Im sure the sanding and filing was a real pain!