Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle? - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 09, 03:28 PM Thread Starter
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Denis
 
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Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

I would like to start stripping my '69 in preparation for a complete paint job, but don't want to take the car off of the road for an extended period of time. (I just got most of the bugs out of the the new 383 / 5 speed combo and LOVE the summer top-down driving!) Anyway, what I'd like to do is strip one panel at a time, primer it, and drive the car during the process. The car will still be garage kept overnight. However, there probably will be days when I bring it to work and it's sunny in the morning and rain in the evening, so it may get wet.

Since this project will be done in small bits and pieces, I would prefer to use a rattle-can to save on prep and cleanup time. Is Eastwood's "self etching primer" any good? How about that two part epoxy primer in a spray can?

As you could tell from this post, I am not a professional auto restorer, however, I do have a decent garage with a pretty good supply of mechanical and refinishing tools. Also, I am not looking for a 100% perfect show car finish. My Camaro will be used as a fun street car for myself and family with maybe an occasional local show and a yearly trip to the nationals in Carlisle.

What are your thoughts on driving a vehicle that is "under construction"? If this is doable, what primer would you recommend?

69 Conv, 383 (445hp, 498lb/ft), TKO600 5 sp, 3.90 12 bolt
A 65K orig mile 307/powerglide car - stock appearance on the outside, many perf mods to make it fun!
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 09, 04:05 PM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Don't do it. If you are itching for new paint, and don't want to have to do it again in two years, do it correctly the first time. (not what you want to hear, but the truth) from what I have seen. The short time you will have it off the road will pay off in the long-run.

If it were an '89 RS Convertible, then yes, prime and drive all year long...

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 09, 08:40 PM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Primer is porous, so moisture will sink in/through it. That's why you see surface rust come through on cars that have been in primer for a while. You would need to strip it back down to bare metal when it comes time to do the paint.

Driving a #s-matching Z in the rain..... and lovin' it....
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 09, 08:49 PM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

agree...it may have surface rust which will cause you to redo it when you go to paint it. you may be better off taking some time, not saying to go full blown, but take it off the road for a week or two, strip it all down, mask it off, and give it a good spray, if your not worried about show car paint, that would probably be the route to go imo

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--350, muncie 4spd, 12 bolt 3.31 (multi-leaf)

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 09, 10:25 PM
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Steps
 
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

I repeat .....Dont do it
What everyone says above, and when u have finished painting the paint will start to blister etc within 1 yr...
If you are real serious, pull the car off the road , head down a55 up, long days, no distractions ....or put another way, total old fashioned commintment, and you will drive out under a week later finished.
Day 1
Car stripped for paint and booked in for media blasting/ epoxy spray next day
Day 2 car back, fix any minor war wounds... long day
Day 3 masked and spray hi build
Day 4 Block down, and respray hi high build...do it right and this will be the last undercoat.
Day 5 basecoat/clear
day 6 and 7 assemble.

Im not talking 8 hr days here, some are only 4 hrs, others a 12 to 16 hr days....

Been there dont it 2x times in the last 30 yrs on the camaro, and several times on some of pur other classics
The 1st gen camaro is THE easest car I have ever had to block down, and a 1962 Morris minor the 2nd... did that between Frid midday and sunday evening
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 09, 03:31 AM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Northeast PA? Summer's almost over. Just wait till winter and bang it out. According to your info it's a cake walk.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 09, 05:30 AM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Epoxy primer over bare metal, then primer surfacer!
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 09, 06:23 AM Thread Starter
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Denis
 
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sauron67MM View Post
Northeast PA? Summer's almost over.
Summer's almost over???? It can't be, it just started. Well, I'll drive the car into October then I'll drive it with the top up.

Thanks for the info, I'll keep my Camaro as a "rat rod" (we used to call them "beaters") this year, strip and bodywork this fall, and paint it in the spring. If everything goes as planned, it will be at the Carlisle GM show next summer!

69 Conv, 383 (445hp, 498lb/ft), TKO600 5 sp, 3.90 12 bolt
A 65K orig mile 307/powerglide car - stock appearance on the outside, many perf mods to make it fun!
http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v92/djbartu/Camaro/
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 09, 07:46 AM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
Epoxy primer over bare metal, then primer surfacer!
No truer words were ever spoken....

We are currently booking restorations for this season. Contact the shop for details. http://WWW.CLEANCUTCREATIONS.COM
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 09, 12:26 PM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

I would recommend not doing it, but......if your going to do it anyway, as others have said, use 2 coats of epoxy primer on clean the bare metal. It will seal it from rusting but it's not UV protected so the sun will take a toll on it.

When it's time for the next step, sand the epoxy really good (p120 or 180)then put another coat of epoxy before anything else.

I don't have any experience with epoxy in a spray can.....probably very thin. I would recommend SPI www.southernpolyurethanes.com Works best sprayed through a gun though.

Again....it's not a good idea to do it this way but probably the best way if you must drive it in the process.

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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 09, 06:09 PM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Good timing for this thread.....

I gave up today. Just plain gave up on the bodywork on mine. I'm the worst body man on the planet and I've been waiting far too long to drive this thing to waste any more time making dust.
Before I get any older and die, I'm putting it primer, putting it back together and driving it, come hell or high water.

So it looks like I'm shopping for epoxy and some surfacer this month.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 09, 06:07 AM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

If you look in my signature you can see the pics of my car has gone from multiple colors to stripped to Bare Metal and primed with an Etch Coat primer (Olive Green color) and the driven "Daily" for over a year and then scuff sanded another coat of etch coat and 2 coats of a 2K high build primer and then driven "Daily" for almost 3 years without and rust showing up on the body. I drove it in Atlanta for my 3 year tour there (just aske Cfunk) and then I drive it here in Fort Worth. I drive it in the Rain also.
I can't bring myself to pay someone 5K in labor to do what I can do. Plus I can't take the car off the road long enough to completely paint it, so I drive it in Primer Gray.

Tony:
67 RS Clone, 388 SBC/Keisler TKO 600/12 bolt, 3.90 gear w/posi and a 250 shot of N2O for fun. See my progress at: password is camaro

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 09, 06:22 PM
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ED
 
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Epoxy prime also and maybe one coat of your base color
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 09, 02:54 PM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

Many years of professional refinishing here.... You CAN. Do your bodywork, etch prime the bare metal spots, then use a quality URETHANE primer which uses a catalyst.. Will hold up as long as a paint job. Period.

Heres a pic of my car in Sherwin Williams SpectraPrime. I could leave it like this for 10, 15, 20 years if I felt like it. Wont rust any quicker than with paint.


If you have any further questions, feel free to PM me.

Mike

68 SS 357, AFR, Hotchkis, 4spd, 3:73
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 09, 01:57 PM
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Re: Will primer (with no topcoat) prevent rust on a driven vehicle?

First off each brand has their own tech sheets on what their primers do. It is a bad idea to drive a car around and let it weather in some sort of primer. Most are porous which is self explanatory. Then you have basic dirt and contamination that will be set into your prime coats. Dirt, grease, acid rain, bird crap, tree sap, etc will all effect your top coat.

There is a difference between a car that is sitting in a shop for an extended period and one that is exposed to the elements. I do not think there is a primer product that is UV protected. It will break down end of story. Plus most require sanding and reshoot if sitting days let alone months.

That said I am sure guys have done it and if it is a say $5k car that you want to beat around with go for it. If you are applying any sort of quality finish it is just a mistake. The most non porous uv stable surface is the clear coat.
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