A little advice please....

Tony1968

Tony1968

G-Body Guru
Supporting Member
Jul 1, 2018
736
93
NW Indiana
20191006_191039.jpg

Removing hvac then brake booster, etc. Want to clean up firewall and hit it with some satin black.... Should I just wire wheel firewall or DA with some 80 grit? Just want it to look clean when done. Thanks in advance.....
 
Rktpwrd

Rktpwrd

Comic Book Super Hero
Feb 2, 2015
2,675
113
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
View attachment 125374
Removing hvac then brake booster, etc. Want to clean up firewall and hit it with some satin black.... Should I just wire wheel firewall or DA with some 80 grit? Just want it to look clean when done. Thanks in advance.....
It all depends on how nice/carried away and into it you wanna get Tony. I see quite a bit of factory undercoating on the firewall, do you want to get rid of that, or just repaint over it?

It’s very easy to disappear down the rabbit hole with these types of things, just look at Olds Cool. It started out as a simple rust repair and repaint. More info is gonna be needed for us to adequately answer your question. When I had the engine pulled from Olds Cool, I just did a simple clean, scuff, mask and spray bomb job, but The Juggernaut got holes welded up, seams smoothed, and the full custom treatment.

Let us know what you’re looking to do.
 
Dayzedandkonfuzed

Dayzedandkonfuzed

G-Body Guru
Feb 9, 2010
712
93
Anglemont, BC
I once stared down the barrel of smoothing the firewall completely in a 79 firebird. Ended up just smoothing all the dimples and small wrinkles. I used a wire wheel on an angle grinder to take all the paint off, scuffed real good with a scotchbrite, and sprayed etch primer then high build after filling the dimples. Sanded that down and sprayed it semi-gloss black, looked pretty good. A total smooth look is a TON of work, and no base model 79 mullet is worth that.
 
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Tony1968

Tony1968

G-Body Guru
Supporting Member
Jul 1, 2018
736
93
NW Indiana
I don't want to smooth it up like totally custom or weld anything. I have a delete plate for hvac removal.
Maybe I can pound some stuff down as it can be a learning experience? Before I get to real bodywork?
 
C

ck80

Royal Smart Person
Feb 18, 2014
1,173
113
Well, undercoating you'd want to scrape off with a putty knife as best as you can before starting much surface prep.

I'd recommend getting a decent wood handle one, and apply gentle heat to the knife blade from a low temp hand held torch just long enough to heat the blade a bit (don't cherry red it) then scrape. Think the $15 blue bottle type from walmart or home depot. It will help cut through and loosen it up. Resist the temptation to torch the undercoating as 1) you don't want to start a fire, 2) you don't want to heat the metal and warp it.

If you don't remove the undercoating first it'll foul up whatever you use prep the surface.

Once I moved south I'd just stick something in the sun in the summer, let the heat do my softening for me.

After that it's your perogative, but I'd just scuff lightly anywhere that was factory paint. Really only get into the spots where paint is gone and surface rust took over.
 
M

mikester

Royal Smart Person
Mar 10, 2010
1,601
113
Small town NY
I will do that. I have small propane torches all the way up to B tank acetylene so I'm covered. You saved me some time already. Thanks
You dont need heat. You dont know whats on the other side of the areas youre heating up. Not good. I scraped most of the undercoat off and kept washing everything down with cheap lacquer thinner. Then I hit it with sandpaper. Its just work and a good amount of time. It looks like all the screws are out of the AC box. Thats easy too. Wax and grease remover, cheap thinner and a ton of time. You can get the new seal kit or just the box to firewall seal from Mikes Montes. A little bit of low gloss black and they can look pretty nice.
As far as the frame I used a Dewalt heavy cup wire wheel and a 4" grinder. Again, it takes a lot of time to get the rust and crap off. I did the firewall in body color on my wagon because the motor is black. I like contrast under the hood. But thats just me. Everyone has their own tastes.

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Last edited:
oldsofb

oldsofb

G-Body Guru
Dec 7, 2007
913
93
Maryland
It’s very easy to disappear down the rabbit hole with these types of things, just look at Olds Cool. It started out as a simple rust repair and repaint.
Been there! Am there!

Eastwood makes an undercoat cleaner that works very well (and smells like oranges). Keep us updated.

Hutch
 
S

shoedoos

Master Mechanic
Jul 3, 2012
309
63
I think we have all missed something else in the OP's pic.....look at that dash.....yes, not a crack in it.....congratulations and use kid gloves if you ever remove it....
 
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