Stripdown & Cleanup
Armed with my new compressor and sandblaster I focused my attention on the chassis, first job was to srtip the rear suspension and diff, i left the trailing arms in situ as these had been renovated a few years ago, there didnt appear to be any excessive play in them so they would be looked at in more detail later (along with bearings, run out etc).
The chassis being stripped down ready for sandblasting, although the chassis had a light coating of rust, it looked in very good condition for its age.
A quick look over to check for dents or repairs showed no signs of accident damage, i stripped the rear suspension, diff, brake and fuel lines and it was ready for the sandblaster.
Limited space and no means of constructing a confined sandblasting area i sourced the cheapest media i could as it would be lost as the blasting commenced.
I found that kiln dried sand (for patio/block paving) in 25Kg bags was the easiest and cheapest way to go.
Although not recommended because of the silicon element and lung desease, with a quality dust mask and sandblasting 'helment' supplied with the blaster i was confident that with the protection i was wearing and working outside the risk was minimal.
With 12.5CFM free air delivery the compressor was not really powerfull enough for constant blasting, i found i had to take breaks every 4-5 mins to allow the compressor to catch up.
The sandblaster made quick for of removing surface rust, in order to preserve media (and not end up with the sahara on my lawn/driveway) i used a 4 1/2" knotted wire wheel on the more stubborn areas.
You can see in the picture the condition of body mount 4, this would be repaired later when a welding unit was available.
I would suggest that anyone using the small barrel type sandblasting units source nozzels from the outset, the unit comes with 4 supplied but soon wear out, i have seen better quality nozzels and valves on aution sites.
Blasting of the chassis complete, the next step was to get some paint on.
Reading reviews and forums i found many approaches and products when painting the chassis and other components, twin pack paints, enamel, apoxy, POR15 to name a few.
I went with POR15, reading spec sheets and reviews, POR covers well and gives better protection (in my opinion) than other paints
Before applying any primers or paint the surface must be free from grease, clean and dry, using a self etching primer or etching solution will ensure the paint 'grips' the surface, i used Metal Ready (from the manufacturers of POR) this etches the surface in preperation for the paint.
I didnt use Marine clean as any grease on the surface would have been removed with the wire wheel and sandblasting.
When you first apply the Metal Ready (by pump action spray gun) the metal looks shinney before turning a brown rusty colour.
You can see the dis-colouration on the chassis as the Metal Ready 'etches' the surface.