Body preparation begins

Ok ok before I get started I should say a quick sorry to anyone who’s been following my posts and wondering what the hell’s going on, Christmas is over and you said you’d be getting straight on to it … well, I actually ended up taking on a few more jobs before the new year and then the football kicked right back into action and on the days I had off, I decided I needed a break, so I took a much needed few days to completely relax and get a few other (house) bits done an sleep a lot. But fear not I am back and tonight saw the start of prepping the body.

Now this is one part of the modular build you can actually have Pilgrim do the prep work for you, i.e. remove the flash lines and cut most of the holes … yes honestly you can, but I want the sense of satisfaction (if all goes well) knowing that I did all the work and got it to that condition it will end up in.

So first off, I have to remove the flashlines, these are the where in the manufacturing process a line of resin is formed between the moulds. Now reading online there are several ways of doing this, but here is how I decided to do it;

First I broke off the majority of the flashlines with my fingers using a cloth and then very gently scrape the remaining bits off with a blade (I used a plasters scraper) until the ridge is only just visible. I then got out some wet and dry sandpaper, and making sure to use lots of warm soapy water I got to work rubbing those flashlines down. I started with 400, then 800, then 1200 and finally 2000. This leaves the whole area very dull looking and apparently ready for polishing. So here’s my first attempt;

Time wise I think it took me around 45-50mis to do the one side of the front wing which I didn’t was too bad, but then looking at the entire car, oh man this is gonna to take a while! You’ll notice I used a rigid sanding block aswell, although here I think it might be a little to hard, so I’m going to get a hard sponge tomorrow and try that. When using the 2000 grit I decided to use this with my hand, mainly because I thought I could feel the contours of the body better by hand, and I wasn’t go mad at this point. I did stop and think, why am I testing this on an area plainly visible! Well that’s because of what others have said and the results I’ve seen, I was and still am fairly confident I can get a decent finish.

So here’s the end of 45-50 mins of rubbing down, a nice dull shine, but I can still see the ridge where the flash line was in places, so I need to go back over this. I think with 800 first, then 1200 and finally 2000 before I try polishing it. The problem I found when rubbing it down was it was difficult to see if you’d rubbed it enough to remove the line completely, clearly in some areas (only slightly) I hadn’t. But thats ok, its nothing a little more work will sort. At the end of this I know, the more prep I put into getting this right the better the result will be, so there’s always hope. I did keep whipping it dry to check, but I only have so many cloths!

Tomorrow I’m going to get some G3, G1o Farecla and some hand held polishing pads, once I’ve had another go at this side I want to polish it up a little to make sure I can get the finish I’m going to be happy with. If all goes well, then I can set to work on the rest of the car.

I’m doing all this in the hope I can get away with not painting the car yet, thats one cost I hadn’t budgeted for so I am hoping I can get this Gelcoat looking in good shape by the end.




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