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  #1  
Old 02-07-2006, 03:27 PM
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Fix Rust or Go Bust?

My '83 300D has a typical floorpan rust problem from years of water getting in and I'm wondering if it's worth fixing or if I should begin looking for another car. Some background: I'm owned the car for a little over two years and it's currently at 208K miles and running fine. The engine doesn't burn or leak oil and is running real strong. The tranny shows no signs of dying. I've worked real hard to get everything working properly (including the odometer and cruise control!) and the only problems now are the left rear window (needs new regulator) and the power antenna (probably needs a new mast). I recently upgraded the stereo with all new speakers and a brand new Kenwood head unit with built-in Sirius.

I mention all this because - as much as I'd like to be freed from the curse of rust - I'm reluctant to start all over again. I don't have space to stash this car if I go get another one, so pulling parts from it, etc. is not an option. I either would sell it as a parts car or put it up on eBay and make a full disclosure as to the extent of the rust. Which is a problem since I really don't know how bad it is - I've yet to put the car on a lift and take a good look. What I've seen so far doesn't make me feel good: the driver's side front pan is pretty perforated, as is the rear passenger pan. I'm sure the other areas aren't that great either. My question to you folks, who probably know about this than me, is: can this be fixed for a reasonable amount or is time to let go?
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  #2  
Old 02-07-2006, 03:49 PM
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Fix it or drive it as is. If you get another car you have new unknown problems. Here atleast you know what you have. If it runs well, and drives well keep it and fix it if you feel the urge. Here in the rust belt, on my junker cars, I just pop rivit some roof flashing to the floorpan holes to keep my feet dry. It is cheap and easy. This will keep it driveable until it is no longer structually safe. If you want to fix it right, that could cost big bucks so it then maybe sell it if you need a rust free ride.

my 2 cents.

Glenn
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  #3  
Old 02-07-2006, 03:50 PM
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Of course it can be fixed. Probably for the money you would spend for another car.
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  #4  
Old 02-07-2006, 03:52 PM
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Lightbulb Answer:

Welding the wrong metals can kill you
http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/bodywork-repair-paint-tools-tips-tricks/139957-welding-wrong-metals-can-kill-you.html#post1041594

Rust stoppers.
Rust stoppers.

Who has the most rust and still drives
Who has the most rust and still drives

I think I am losing my "floor"
http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/bodywork-repair-paint-tools-tips-tricks/105234-i-think-i-am-losing-my-floor-2.html#post723827

The rusted Floorboard Hole weld from H__ll
W123 The rusted Floorboard Hole weld from H__ll
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Old 02-07-2006, 05:46 PM
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I'd just pop rivet and bondo it up until it got real bad, then buy a rust free example. You can probably drive it for a very long time as it is.
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  #6  
Old 02-08-2006, 08:01 AM
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Here's a cheap in-between approach. On my '76 300D I got some body metal and treated it on both sides with the POR-15 products. Likewise to the remaining surface rusted metal around the gaping wound. Then I cut and shaped the metal and fastened it in with sheet metal screws. I dipped each screw in the POR-Putty before driving it in, and also ran a seam of Putty the entire edge of the new metal all the way around. This stuff is as strong as they say. With the screws and new seams properly treated and held together with the POR-Putty, it adds structural strength without welding.

The hard part was the corresponding rot on the outside of the car- around the jack-point, and where the rocker panel meets the inner fender and front corner of the floor. I used a similar approach, with new metal, screws and POR-Putty. It was tricky because of the many shapes coming together, the factory undercoat, and of course the dirt and grime. All I could really do was wire brush the area, cut out what bad stuff I could, treat the rest, and fill every gap with the putty. I think it worked out, because the jack point, which was loose to the touch before repairing, has remained solid and has survived a few jackings. It ended up at a different angle than the other three jack points, but has remained intact.

Dave
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  #7  
Old 02-08-2006, 11:42 AM
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That sounds like a fairly dangerous maneuver. I'd look for a new place to jack it up at. You really don't want it coming out of the hole and crashing down on you!
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  #8  
Old 02-08-2006, 02:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1983/300CD
That sounds like a fairly dangerous maneuver. I'd look for a new place to jack it up at. You really don't want it coming out of the hole and crashing down on you!
Very true- I am very quick to get a jackstand under the frame! However, my point is that the POR-Putty is actually holding the jack point to the rest of the car and is able to support the weight of the car on the jack.

Dave
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  #9  
Old 02-09-2006, 06:13 PM
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How is the rest of the body? I say this because if waters getting in thats possible in any climate and not necessarily such a corrosive one such as mine. If the entire body shell is rusty and crusty renegade it to a beater. If its just the floors, fixing can be fairly easy.
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  #10  
Old 02-09-2006, 06:17 PM
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I hope the seat is not permanetely mounted on the wood blocks. I doubt that they would stand up to the shearing force of an accident. You probably would go flying into the steering wheel, with the seat!

Get a rust free car with a bad engine. I hate rust!
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  #11  
Old 02-09-2006, 06:42 PM
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True, there are more out there. They aren't so rare that you have to deal with whatever you can luckily get your hands on.
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