Panel gap fitting

Saab 99 Turbo Part 16 – Metal prep & Primer

We are finally at the Metal prep & Primer stage with the Turbo. We used a standard 2k Epoxy primer. Basecoat will be water based color and over that some clearcoat. This will be the first time for me spraying metallics or water base color so I’m looking forward to it. Already did some test pieces to see how it works. But first – a few pics on metal prep & primer.

Metal prepping for primer
Metal prepping for primer

I used an orbital sander to sand through the whole car. A few corrosion spots were cleaned by sand blasting and then putting on some rust converter. And of course there are some spots where machines can’t reach so some hand sanding was required.

Orbital sander interface pad
Orbital sander interface pad

An orbital sander and an interface pad (soft pad) is a great tool for sanding rounded shapes as it conforms to the shape of the surface. These are readily available.

Front fender after metal prep.
Front fender after metal prep.

A fender after metal prep. It has been sanded with the orbital sander and some 260 grit paper. After sanding the parts are cleaned with silicon and grease remover and panel wipes (paper cloth meant specifically for paint prep).

DIY paint booth
DIY paint booth

We cornered off an area of the garage with plastic sheets to make a simple paint booth.

Interior painted in primer
Interior painted in primer

The fall has been extremely wet here in Finland. High air humidity causes bare metal to gather surface rust very quickly. Because of that I decided to do the body in sections – metal prepping and painting a section at a time. I started with the interior.

Masking unwanted areas
Masking unwanted areas

The next area to be painted was the engine room and the inner fenders. Here we have masked of the interior to keep over spray off the already painted areas.

Engine room in primer
Engine room in primer

Looking pretty good.

Body in primer
Body in primer

The last areas to be painted were the sides and roof.

Applying some body sealer.
Applying some body sealer.

Applying some body sealer. I tried to match the look of the sealer seams to the original.

Underside protection
Underside protection

Over the primer on the underside of the car we applied some more paint. This time a 1k paint that stays relatively flexible even when it has dried. After the car has been painted I will spray on some corrosion protection.

DIY Paint stand
DIY Paint stand

Painting the bonnet felt a little problematic. It’s big piece and if I could I would like to paint both sides in one go. The solution was pretty simple. We made an adjustable paint stand off an old engine stand. It can be used for various other parts also in the future.

Bonnet in the paint stand
Bonnet in the paint stand
Spraying primer on the bonnet
Spraying primer on the bonnet

The stand worked very well. Good access for both sides of the bonnet and I could now paint it in one go.

Spraying primer on the door
Passenger side door in primer

And of course there were the doors also. Passenger side door in primer.

Panel gap fitting
Panel gap fitting

Looking pretty good. The next step before starting body work for paint is to fit all the parts and adjust the panel gaps.

I see some problems...
I see some problems…

I found one problem already. The side edges of the headlight bezels are different on the front fenders from side to side. The passenger side edge has more curvature than the driver side. This requires fitting the core support and the light fixtures including the bezels to see how well they fit and which one of the fenders has the shape wrong. Or if they both do. Anyway – I expect some grinding and welding…

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