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Discussion Starter · #61 ·
For the body, I don't really have the time or skill to try to do all of the rust repair. I am going get estimates from some local shops that do this kind of work. A question for the forum: how much of the car should I strip down? It seems that the more I remove, the more areas I find that need repair so I am thinking that I would need to strip down everything: in addition to windshield and windows, interior, engine, I am also thinking fuel tank, brake lines, fuel lines, suspension. Does this make sense?
 

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If I had enough money, I would also take out the wiring and everything that isn't the shell and get it dipped in a tank to remove all the paint but it's your car.

That's the extreme cost is no object car stripping method. I am not a bodyshop person and I don't have the skills to do body work. You'd have to ask a professional what he or she thinks about dipping a shell. It may cause more problems than it's worth. I believe you do have to remove everything if you get it dipped.

A more measured method would be to tape off everything you don't want painted. Try to sand down to bare metal if you see rust. Remove what you mentioned except maybe the suspension. Leave it on the suspension if you want to move it around without trailering the shell. You need to keep CV joints in the front suspension if you move it around on its wheels.
 

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If I had enough money, I would also take out the wiring and everything that isn't the shell and get it dipped in a tank to remove all the paint but it's your car.

That's the extreme cost is no object car stripping method. I am not a bodyshop person and I don't have the skills to do body work. You'd have to ask a professional what he or she thinks about dipping a shell. It may cause more problems than it's worth. I believe you do have to remove everything if you get it dipped.

A more measured method would be to tape off everything you don't want painted. Try to sand down to bare metal if you see rust. Remove what you mentioned except maybe the suspension. Leave it on the suspension if you want to move it around without trailering the shell. You need to keep CV joints in the front suspension if you move it around on its wheels.
Also available is 'soda blasting'. It's like sand blasting but not as messy (no dust) and when they are done the metal blast media leaves a film that's naturally resistant to corrosion. They recommend you prime/seal it right after the soda blast because the film only does a minimal job of preventing rust. Pretty sure you'd want to strip it down to a shell. Doesn't look like you are far from there... :) You could leave the suspension in so they could roll it around. Some places will come out and do it at your house. Others require you to bring 'big jobs' to them. How much do you have them blast? That's up to you. Before you do anything I'd hunt around for your body shop and then follow a plan THEY recommend. They are the ones who will be doing the follow up metal work and paint. They will have relationships with people who can blast or dip. One advantage over sand blast is that it doesn't heat up the metal (aggressive sand blasting can create heat and warp sheetmetal). Read up on it. The 'soda' media is simple baking soda and they use a water jet to deliver it. It will blow away rust from what I've seen on YouTube. I have a '79 Scirocco that is in much the same situation rust-wise as yours and I'm considering this path. I have the same rotted out 'flange' along the top edge of my hatch opening in the body... :( In my opinion any kind of spot prep approach (doing it location by location with a mini-blaster (harbor freight)or sanding) only works well if the rot is in minimal locations...Make sure you wear lung protection and don't use sand (Silicosis will ruin your lungs) Yours like mine doesn't seem to fall into that category (spot repair). Sorry i didnt' read the whole thread, but how is the cowl at the base of the windshield where the rubber seals? Very common rot spot. I've replaced this sheet metal in one of my cars and this '79 will need it also. If you can find a good donor shell or parts of a shell then you can cut out the parts you need (like the top region of the hatch opening) and just pay the body shop guy to cut out the bad metal and put in the good pieces. When you cut on the donor car be sure you cut off more than you need so you can trim it back to fit your car. He will be thrilled if you provide metal. Again... check with the body shop you choose... they may have sources for replacement panels. Don't hold your breath though. I usually resort to visiting my local wrecker with my cordless sawzall and cutting out what I need. Lotsa fun!
My route to restoration is to make it mechanically good... i.e. a driver with everything working then I'm going to strip it down for paint. I want minimal monkeying around with it once I pay for a nice paint job.
As you can tell I like talking about this stuff so don't hesitate to reach out....Good Luck.
Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #68 ·
Some progress pictures:

All the wiring is out!
Automotive tire Electrical wiring Gas Cable Wire


I tried labelling and taking pictures as much as possible.

Does anyone know where I can get this cross-member (yellow arrows). It's pretty rusty so thinking of replacing instead of repairing. I am most likely going to replace the floor pans.
Tire Wheel Vehicle Motor vehicle Hood

Tire Wheel Motor vehicle Automotive tire Hood


A lot of rust along the windshield....
Automotive lighting Hood Automotive tire Tire Motor vehicle



Finally, the dash. Looks like it was re-covered with an aftermarket dash cover. I am thinking of removing this and seeing if I can repair the likely cracks underneath - thoughts?

Automotive tire Automotive lighting Bumper Motor vehicle Fender

Bumper Automotive tire Automotive exterior Gas Automotive lighting


That's all for now!
 

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Some progress pictures:

All the wiring is out!
View attachment 128485

I tried labelling and taking pictures as much as possible.

Does anyone know where I can get this cross-member (yellow arrows). It's pretty rusty so thinking of replacing instead of repairing. I am most likely going to replace the floor pans.
View attachment 128488
View attachment 128487

A lot of rust along the windshield....
View attachment 128489


Finally, the dash. Looks like it was re-covered with an aftermarket dash cover. I am thinking of removing this and seeing if I can repair the likely cracks underneath - thoughts?

View attachment 128490
View attachment 128491

That's all for now!
Great to see the progress and what's revealed along the way...likely a good indicator of what I'll find as well. That dash cover looks like a pretty decent solution from the pics. It'll be interesting to see what's underneath and whether you can get the cover off without damaging it.
 

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The cross member is just there to support the seats. I doubt you will be able to replace with anything better. Just cut it out, repair and weld back in place. If the dash is not cracked, clean it up and leave it be. $ saved.
 

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Some progress pictures:

All the wiring is out!
View attachment 128485

I tried labelling and taking pictures as much as possible.

Does anyone know where I can get this cross-member (yellow arrows). It's pretty rusty so thinking of replacing instead of repairing. I am most likely going to replace the floor pans.
View attachment 128488
View attachment 128487

A lot of rust along the windshield....
View attachment 128489


Finally, the dash. Looks like it was re-covered with an aftermarket dash cover. I am thinking of removing this and seeing if I can repair the likely cracks underneath - thoughts?

View attachment 128490
View attachment 128491

That's all for now!
You are GOIN' FOR IT!!!!!!!! Right On!

regarding wiring... you want to look at the 5 (or 6) mass connectors that go in the back of the fuse panel. Each of these mass connectors is a square plastic block about the size of a 1" cube. Each is a different color. Look for pins that got really hot. IIRC the one going out to the fuel pump is one. When it gets real bad they will melt the plastic body of the mass connector. On the back of the fuse panel they are identified as connector A through E I think. At the bottom is my first inserted image. (I call them mass connectors because each one has 30+ pins). I've had to hunt and peck to find good used connector blocks for the ones that are damaged in my car. ANYONE OUT THERE HAVE THESE??

As for the rust in your window channel.. you are lucky... yours doesn't look so bad. I've had several that have perforated. I had to cut out the entire cowl (metal panel that the windshield wiper pokes thru) and weld in a good one. You should be able to blast it and treat it with Eastwood rust 'converter' to manage the nooks and crannies you can't get to.

I got nuttin' to say about dashboards... mine all look like the Bonneville Salt Flats. 😞
Circuit component Rectangle Engineering Electronic component Font
 

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Discussion Starter · #72 ·
You are GOIN' FOR IT!!!!!!!! Right On!

regarding wiring... you want to look at the 5 (or 6) mass connectors that go in the back of the fuse panel. Each of these mass connectors is a square plastic block about the size of a 1" cube. Each is a different color. Look for pins that got really hot. IIRC the one going out to the fuel pump is one. When it gets real bad they will melt the plastic body of the mass connector. On the back of the fuse panel they are identified as connector A through E I think. At the bottom is my first inserted image. (I call them mass connectors because each one has 30+ pins). I've had to hunt and peck to find good used connector blocks for the ones that are damaged in my car. ANYONE OUT THERE HAVE THESE??

As for the rust in your window channel.. you are lucky... yours doesn't look so bad. I've had several that have perforated. I had to cut out the entire cowl (metal panel that the windshield wiper pokes thru) and weld in a good one. You should be able to blast it and treat it with Eastwood rust 'converter' to manage the nooks and crannies you can't get to.

I got nuttin' to say about dashboards... mine all look like the Bonneville Salt Flats. 😞
View attachment 128860
Thanks for the encouragement - it does seem a bit overwhelming...

Do you (or anyone else on the forum) know a good source for wiring schematics - I have the Bentley manual but I find actual wiring diagrams to be easier to follow.
Thanks!
Joe
 

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Check with "ldboehm", he has done some amazing things with the wiring in his Mk1 Scirocco..
 

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Thanks for the encouragement - it does seem a bit overwhelming...

Do you (or anyone else on the forum) know a good source for wiring schematics - I have the Bentley manual but I find actual wiring diagrams to be easier to follow.
Thanks!
Joe
Wiring is shown in wiring diagrams. They show how wires are connected to stuff.

Electrical schematics are a way to illustrate what is supposed to happen inside a circuit. Made by and for Electrical Engineers.

Did you read the directions on how to read the Bentley Current Flow Diagrams?
 

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A is the front harness, check pin A8 as its usually fried or on the way as the fuel pump draws extra current loads when its heading south overloading the current capability of that circuit.
B empty,
C is other front harness,
D & E are the internal dash circuits,
E is the rear circuit.

If you have a Bentley you have the best available wiring diagrams in that manual.

Seat front cross member just cut one from a Rabbit or Jetta around the same vintage, the seat mounts do vary slightly in respect to the glide plastic pieces that they use.

Keep at it !! (y)(y)(y)
 
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