81 Fiat X1/9

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81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 16th 2011, 11:28 am

Here's some shots of my prep work on my '81 X1/9. Planning on gloss black via Rustoleum. 90% done prepping. Did a rear bumper delete and front bumper tuck, lots of holes to fill. Rust wasn't too bad on it (remarkably). First three shots are from last year. Rust wasn't too apparant at that stage but after a salty Michigan winter, well, steps had to be taken to fight it back a bit. Lots of shots of windshield extraction and treatment, if the seal there is compromised they tend to rust fast there, mine was starting to.
http://gallery.me.com/jvandyke#100837
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by retired plumber on August 16th 2011, 11:22 pm

Rust around the windows is very common. Michigan dosen't have that locked up lol. Most people don't pay attention to the rubber seals around them and even if they notice"something" it usually dosen't bother them. By the time that "something" becomes "a thing" its usually to late. Good catch and nice car.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by 86 stang on August 17th 2011, 12:04 am

nice start and welcome
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 17th 2011, 12:22 am

Very slow going. I've never stripped a car down so far, lot's to deal with and figure out. Hope it's all worth it. Love the car so I guess there's my answer.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by Tommy Hillbilly on August 17th 2011, 2:36 pm

I remember those cars. What's that car weigh, like less than 2000 lbs?

Just organize it all, and thread fasteners back into where they normally go, in order to keep track of them.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 17th 2011, 6:06 pm

More like 2200. They were built to the early 70's crash standards, which everything out of Detroit failed, so they lowered the standard. Tough chassis but not so light. Only 85hp doesn't help either but man oh man does it corner like it's on rails! Blast to drive.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by retired plumber on August 17th 2011, 7:46 pm

You need to look into some of the fiberglass rebody kits for that. I know they made some very "sporty" ones Twisted Evil lol! I almost bought a GT40 to go on a VW pan years ago.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by 86 stang on August 17th 2011, 11:13 pm

keep it one step at a time/if you love the car it will be so worth every hr sculpt
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 17th 2011, 11:21 pm

retired plumber wrote:You need to look into some of the fiberglass rebody kits for that. I know they made some very "sporty" ones Twisted Evil lol! I almost bought a GT40 to go on a VW pan years ago.
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And.....no! Not without the HP to back up a body like that. I won't be going there!
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by Tommy Hillbilly on August 18th 2011, 12:04 am

I wonder if anyone has ever stuck a VTEC or some other modern 4 valve 4 banger in one of those.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 18th 2011, 8:26 am

They do a lot of creative things over here.http://xwebforums.org/index.php
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 19th 2011, 9:37 am

okay, body prep done (mostly) hope to lay first coat tonight;
will sand all current top coat with 400 (or is that too rough?)
prime the body work spots (sandable filler primer, is that good or should I reprime on top of that with a standard primer?)
wipe down with wax remover, wipe again with mineral spirits, let dry a bit and start rolling, 2:1 Rustoleum gloss black and paint thinner (says 100% mineral spirits on the jug), very dry roller, with totally dry roller on hand if needed, foam "brushes" for weird areas) hair dryer at the ready to blow down bubbles, if needed. Lay one thin coat and sand with 1000 (hopefully sometime tomorrow, dry time?) repeat, repeat, repeat.
BTW rocker panels have the texture on them, not sure what to do about that, was thinking standard rattle can on that since I can't really buff and polish a texture, thoughts?
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by 86 stang on August 19th 2011, 4:23 pm

the rattle can should do fine on the rocker panels any time you go as low as 400 i think it would save you some work if you go back over after with a higher grit before i put more paint down/ cents
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first coat done

Post by jvandyke on August 20th 2011, 5:04 pm

First coat on, finally! Covered much better than I thought, some roller marks, some sanding marks showed through, some orange peel. Not bad for a first coat, I guess, what do I know. There's some spots that already look better than the paint I started with! So, let dry for a day and sand away the mistakes and orange peel lay down a second coat.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by wantajav on August 20th 2011, 9:14 pm

Looking good...remember THE SANDING.

As many thin or as few thick coats as it takes, all you are trying to do is get a certain thickness on there then polish it to death like a rock tumbler until it is shiny as glass.

Thin = harder smoother vs thick. Love those X19's had a 850 syder years ago
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 23rd 2011, 10:37 am

Sanded first coat, addressed some drips/runs/sags (used razor blade to scrape off the blob, then sanded them pretty much completely back to original paint). Painted second coat yesterday (first coat Saturday, second Monday). Second coat looks worse than first, I think I tried to keep it too thin, roller was too dry and I kept backing up over potential run areas resulting in "roller marks". I'm learning. Trying to decide if I should wet sand coat 2 or just plow ahead into coat 3 then sand. I guess knowing that I need to build up many many coats there doesn't seem much sense in spending too much time sanding very early coats.
How many quarts does one car potentially take? I've almost finished off one quart and have two complete coats on the car. It is a small car and no roof. It doesn't really matter. At $8/quart I can handle several quarts.
I was planning on 10+ coats. After the first the results were so good I got excited I might get by with only 3 or 4 but I see that to have enough material to work with to sand out issues and produce a shine, you need quite a bit, even if 95% of that panel looks great, that 5% needs more paint to get right which means you're painting the whole panel again anyway. It does pain me that a panel that was nearly perfect after 1 coat now has issues from the second but I'll get over it, just keep laying it down!
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by 86 stang on August 23rd 2011, 3:39 pm

i used 3 quarts on my vert to get 9 coats and some rattle cans on bad spots/and i did the bottom in black so i think you will need 4/ i had problems with any paint in the can after it was less then 1/2 empty /some people are not keeping it in the cans and useing something that keeps the air away from the paint better //roller marks are made when you push down to hard or to much paint on the roller/if you have an issue to sand out i would do it now its more work later /car is looking good thumbs up
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 25th 2011, 7:49 am

Finished coat three. I'm going way too slowly!
So far I've only done three coats and the paint is laying out so well I don't have any orange peel so not much sanding, I guess I'm sanding mostly to allow the next coat to stick, knock down dirt and bugs and fix "issues" and not so much to reduce peel, I have almost no peel. I hope coat 3 comes out alright, it was really late and I was really tired. gun 2 (my foster kid insisted on the emoticon).
I thnk I'm moving too slowly, trying too hard but results are promising. I'm thinking 10 coats which will take me another week. Then if a panel has issues, I'll just do that panel and until I have all pretty good panels then I'll start the final sand and polish. Looking good, feeling pretty confident it will turn on really nice. Runs and "roller marks" are my enemy. If I inspect a panel a few minutes after rolling and see a run starting I hit it with a very dry roller but you can tell after it sets, still I'd rather have a dullish roller mark vs. a full blown run to deal with. It took me two hours to roll out the car last night which seems way too long. I'm just to anal i guess.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by retired plumber on August 25th 2011, 3:34 pm

Anal you say? You get out of this what you put in. The more you do now in the way of carefulness and things like that will cause the end result to be better than someone who just throws it on. Not saying that isn't ok but it all depends on what you want the final outcome to be. There are a couple of cars here that have taken paint trophies at car shows and there are the ones that just want their offroad brush buggy to be all one color. Most of the rest of us fall somewhere in between there. Where you fit is up to you.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 26th 2011, 11:08 am

Okay, coat 5 is on, dried and sanded. I think I will do coat 6 then go for finish. I tried a spot on a panel but am a bit perplexed. I went at it with 600 as between all previous coats, then moved to 2000 and then some clear coat polish and am not getting anything resembling a shine on it. Guess I'm just checking this is what you do: final coat, 600 to 1000 to 2000 to polishing compounds either with polisher (which I have a cheap one) or hand. I was originally planning on more coats but it looks good and 6 "should" give me enough to work with, no? Coverage is fine and it lays out great between every coat very little if any peel which sand down easy enough. So, yeah, lay coat 6 and do the above or maybe start with 800 or 1000? It's hard to attack these coats as they look really good as is, nice shine and no peel but there's "crap" in the paint, dust flecks, occasional bug and of course some areas of inconsistent leveling, but whole panels look gorgeous even before I touch it with any sanding, only way to know it isn't perfect is to run you hand over it and feel the "gritty things" that dried in the paint.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by stang_krazy on August 26th 2011, 12:09 pm

I like it!
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 26th 2011, 11:27 pm

Here's after coat 5. Have since sanded like a mutha and done coat 6, halfway through sanding that. Will apply coat 7 and might start to polish. Is 7 enough? I guess it all depends.....






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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by stang_krazy on August 27th 2011, 12:56 am

going to look pretty good.
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by 86 stang on August 27th 2011, 1:31 am

i agree lookin good popcorn
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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

Post by jvandyke on August 27th 2011, 7:16 pm

Sanded. I forget what coat this is, 6 I think....


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Re: 81 Fiat X1/9

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