Slow, Driving Rustoration 1972 Dart

Discussion in 'Members Restorations' started by dartnlo, Sep 18, 2018.

  1. dartnlo

    dartnlo Has Dart Fever FABO Gold Member

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    I remember saying a few pages back that I was going to do a quick crappy paint job on the vinyl top area to fix the rust and make it more presentable until I get around to putting a new vinyl top on it. Well I did it. A quick crappy paint job!

    Truly though it is a major improvement for curb appeal. No more exposed weld joints, no more crappy multi colored roof. Well sort of.

    I ordered some F3 and F7 rattle cans off of ebay drastically underestimating how many cans I needed and how poorly the paint covered. When I got the shipment I tested it out to see the colors. They both looked like F3 to me. Even after 3 test coats on a sample they looked identical and the color name for F7 had the word yellow in it. I sent the seller the pictures of the test coats. He said he would send me out a new F7 and make it a better coverage mix too.

    It was better but I just didn't order enough cans. Even with the extra can to start with 3 cans wasn't enough. I should have shot the whole thing in black primer first instead of gray. The roof is especially stripey. I said it yesterday but I'll say it again, no more rattle cans for me except for small rust fixes.

    So excuses aside, I'm pleased with the way the body work turned out. Definitely good enough for now and good enough for a vinyl to down the road. The rust is gone and metal protected as well which was the plan. It will also look better than it did from 25 feet away. I'll have to see it outside but I like this subtle 2-tone. I may end up doing more body work on the C-pillars later and doing a trunk stripe in F7. The artificial lighting and flashes really didn't capture the colors very well.

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    • dartnlo

      dartnlo Has Dart Fever FABO Gold Member

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      Definitely an improvement. Where is the best place to get those little plastic moulding clips that snap on to body studs?

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      Last edited: Nov 6, 2018
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      • dartnlo

        dartnlo Has Dart Fever FABO Gold Member

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        I also heard my radio for the first time tonight. It turns out the speaker was shot.
         
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        • dartfreak75

          dartfreak75 Well-Known Member

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          Dang buddy looking good I like it! Looks good enough you can hold off on a vinyl top for a while!
          I'm still trying to decide if I want to put a vinyl top back on mine or not.
           
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          • Baptist_Ben

            Baptist_Ben Active Member

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            That came up good man. Makes a heap of difference to the overall appearance!
             
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            • dartnlo

              dartnlo Has Dart Fever FABO Gold Member

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              Well I'm getting closer to completing stage 1 of this driving rustoration, which is - make it a reliable daily driver - in theory if not practice. Thing is I really don't do too much daily driving lol. I work from home 95% of the time for my "real" job. I only drive 2 miles round trip for my evening job as a chef line cook. I'll probably leave her locked in the garage during the winter and avoid more rain, snow and rust.

              I've been driving it around town to assess the mechanical needs better. It's still having the occasional cold start problems fuel/air wise. It seems to get flooded fairly easily in the morning. Once it starts and I drive it though, it starts super quick with barely a flick of the key. The transmission will need attention sooner than later. It's leaking, it is cold blooded and slips like crazy till it's ran for a minute or so. I've never adjusted the carb (except for idle speed), points or timing since I met her. I thought the radio was broken, turned out the speaker was bad. Heater works great with the fan hot-wired to a toggle switch and adjusting the vent control manually. I need to lubricate the window regulators, especially the driver's window. So a few big things and lots of little things to get done for this stage.

              This weekend I'm planning on doing some long overdue maintenance. I never changed the oil in Iowa when I bought it, I've never even looked at the spark plugs, the pertronix ignition is still in the box, and I have a filter kit and fluid for the trans. I'd like to get all of those things done this weekend, basically change all fluids and do a tune-up. I'm planning on taking a short trip (about 50 miles) to Wichita to see Bohemian Rhapsody on Sunday. I figure it would be cool to go in a car that likely saw the rise of Queen in the 70s. So I hope to have her running even better than she is right now.

              I have a dual speaker bracket ordered from FABO member 74-sport.399 and a new stereo i'm mounting in the glove box that accepts digital input. I'm hooking the AM radio to the speakers as well in case I want to use it instead. It will be nice to have some tunes!

              So as I get close to the end of Stage 1, I can say I'm very pleased. I've gone over the body and unibody and all of the rust is very manageable. I know I'm in for a transmission rebuild/purchase down the road, just hopefully until next summer while my bank account catches up from Stage 1. I think the engine itself is very strong. I still haven't heard any unusual noises from it.

              I think she's already a head turner and with the crappy roof paint job I did, she just looks like a solid survivor, which she is.

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              • 74 DART'

                74 DART' Well-Known Member

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                Man i feel like i am living through you!! You have done an amazing job in a very short time. Its an awesome car and its pretty cool how the simplest things being accomplished make us so happy. Good Luck and keep it up!!
                 
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                • dartnlo

                  dartnlo Has Dart Fever FABO Gold Member

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                  Thanks, you are so right! It's the little victories along the way that keep us going through the troubles of rebuilding. I read your story earlier today before your comment here. I feel for you man. I had to sell my 70 Swinger almost 30 years ago while I was away at college. I've told the story of losing that car to anyone that would listen for that entire time. It feels really good to be driving a Dart again. Almost makes up for the 30 years without one!

                  Keep your eyes out for another project. I know you'll find one. Good luck!