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Thread: Rattle Traps

  1. #51
    Aspen and Volare Administrator Rattle Trap's Avatar
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    Sigh... and then there's always, "That Guy." LOL!

    Spend a little time in one of those FC's and you'll know why they quit making em. They do look cool tho. Not Kit Car cool, but whatever floats your boat.
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  2. #52
    Aspen and Volare Administrator Rattle Trap's Avatar
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    Today I got the typical 78 cowl and firewall sealed against the rain that moved in mere minutes after.
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  3. #53
    Aspen and Volare Super Moderator aspen79's Avatar
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    The heater won't work worth a crap now

    I take it the cowl is rusted through near the interior air intakes. Not only a '78 problem, lol.
    1979 Aspen Sunrise 500". Bought in 1987 with 72,000 miles and a mighty E24 California emission 90hp leaning tower of power/4-speed
    1996 Dakota with a torque monster (not) 3.9L V-6 and automatic owned since 1998. Now demoted to winter duty
    2008 Ford Mustang V6, the new summer daily driver

  4. #54
    Super Moderator 77rr2x4s's Avatar
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    You needed some Flex Seal. LOL Trees and debris is usually what takes out the cowl and air intake. That crap finds its way in though the cowl screen and sits in the there and holds water and moisture. When does anyone every clean out the stuff behind those three little rubber flaps. Almost nobody.
    Last edited by 77rr2x4s; 06-25-2021 at 05:24 PM.

  5. #55
    Aspen and Volare Super Moderator aspen79's Avatar
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    I must be almost nobody, lol. I've made sure to keep the cowl drains clear since unclogging, and then fixing, the cowl on my first car, a 1970 Barracuda Gran Coupe waaaaaaaaaaaay back in 1981. Part of it also comes from my dad. I remember him cleaning out the cowl drains periodically since I was old enough to be aware of such things. I'm thinking maybe 1965 or so (he says, showing his age).

    Yep, Flex Seal. Fixes everything. Replaced the oil pan on a 2011 Jeep Commander a couple months ago, due to it rotting through (thank you Wisconsin DOT). The owner tried fixing it with Flex Seal and what do you know, it didn't work worth a crap, LOL.
    1979 Aspen Sunrise 500". Bought in 1987 with 72,000 miles and a mighty E24 California emission 90hp leaning tower of power/4-speed
    1996 Dakota with a torque monster (not) 3.9L V-6 and automatic owned since 1998. Now demoted to winter duty
    2008 Ford Mustang V6, the new summer daily driver

  6. #56
    Aspen and Volare Administrator Rattle Trap's Avatar
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    Not to lessen the pain felt by owners of other years, but '78s truly are the worst about firewall rot. I've traced it back to a porous sealant used at the cowl mating area. They just have a tendency to collect water and rot the whole way across worse than any other year caused by debris. Plus in the throws of bankruptcy they were using the cheapest steel possible. I know we've all joked with each other at one time or another about how you can have a hole larger than a quarter right next to smooth perfect steel with a shiny uncoated bare steel back side.

    But at least I'm in no shortage of good steel including firewalls and cowls either whole or drilled apart at the seams. It is such a headache to get fresh sealant into those narrow cowls with them in place. But that's what it takes sometimes. Not in this case. This one is gone to the point where it just needs replaced. Not such a big deal though. Never understood why people act like a little structural surgery is a major issue.

    I would actually rather have a rusty original car than one done by anybody else. I've seen what so many others have hidden under shiny paint. When I'm done I know that it's good, unlike one that simply hasn't gotten bad from the factory yet. But I sure have a great appreciation for those who've managed to keep them nice all along too. That's just not the case with this one. It already has patches on some of it's patches.
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  7. #57
    Aspen and Volare Super Moderator aspen79's Avatar
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    Cheap dirty steel almost is rusted before it's even formed into sheet metal. I've seen the hole rusted in the middle of a single layer panel, and 1/8" from the hole on all sides, it's solid without even any surface rust. Back in the '80's I owned a '76 Ford Elite and there wasn't a speck of rust on the car, not even the lower 1/4's (and it was a life long Wisconsin car) except,,,,,,,,right in the middle of the drivers door there was a rust hole about 2" high and 5" long. No bracing or anything behind the hole and the rust stopped at a point. Not even a bubble in the paint right at the edge of the hole and from the backside, the steel looked perfect. Have had other '70's cars with similar oddly placed rust holes also.

    Speaking of cheap steel, remember how the square body (especially the '73-'75 models) Chevy pickups were rotted out already, when they were barely over a year old. I don't mean a little surface rust, I mean big gaping holes. Combination of cheap steel and poor body design with crappy drainage made rust a guaranteed thing.
    Last edited by aspen79; 06-26-2021 at 06:08 PM.
    1979 Aspen Sunrise 500". Bought in 1987 with 72,000 miles and a mighty E24 California emission 90hp leaning tower of power/4-speed
    1996 Dakota with a torque monster (not) 3.9L V-6 and automatic owned since 1998. Now demoted to winter duty
    2008 Ford Mustang V6, the new summer daily driver

  8. #58
    Aspen and Volare Administrator Rattle Trap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aspen79 View Post
    Cheap dirty steel almost is rusted before it's even formed into sheet metal. I've seen the hole rusted in the middle of a single layer panel, and 1/8" from the hole on all sides, it's solid without even any surface rust. Back in the '80's I owned a '76 Ford Elite and there wasn't a speck of rust on the car, not even the lower 1/4's (and it was a life long Wisconsin car) except,,,,,,,,right in the middle of the drivers door there was a rust hole about 2" high and 5" long. No bracing or anything behind the hole and the rust stopped at a point. Not even a bubble in the paint right at the edge of the hole and from the backside, the steel looked perfect. Have had other '70's cars with similar oddly placed rust holes also.

    Speaking of cheap steel, remember how the square body (especially the '73-'75 models) Chevy pickups were rotted out already, when they were barely over a year old. I don't mean a little surface rust, I mean big gaping holes. Combination of cheap steel and poor body design with crappy drainage made rust a guaranteed thing.

    Man that's so true of the era. And really funny you would mention the square body GM. A childhood friend's dad had a 75 or 76 GMC. Orange with the white roof longbed and white wheels with dog dishes. I'd have to ask them to be sure. But the story always was that he got a discount on it because he had to report back with the truck every however often for inspection of it's continuing condition as part of a new metal coating process experiment. The entire driver side of that truck rotted off! I mean Horribly Rotted right off! The rocker was gone in a few years but he kept on driving it for at least a decade. There was literally nothing for a good foot around the rear wheel opening at all. Just looking at the hood there was surface rust all over the driver side but the passenger side paint was still holding solid. That was the craziest truck. At least they must have coated the whole bed floor and actual cab floor because those held solid. We would sneak driving it down the grass field rows practicing our 3 on the tree driving when his parents weren't home. Until that day when the tailgate was down and Todd put it in the wrong gear and backed it into the basketball pole instead of going forward down to the field. Yep... None of us kids ever drove that truck again after that...
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  9. #59
    Super Moderator 77rr2x4s's Avatar
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    I was told that GM was using recycled steel on the trucks for a couple years. There was a silent recall if you complained enough they would fork over some new sheet metal for the rust buckets on those few years.
    Last edited by 77rr2x4s; 06-29-2021 at 02:37 PM.

  10. #60
    Aspen and Volare Super Moderator aspen79's Avatar
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    Who can forget the first Vega's. Rusted through,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,on the dealership lot before it was even sold. Now there's quality for you, lol.
    1979 Aspen Sunrise 500". Bought in 1987 with 72,000 miles and a mighty E24 California emission 90hp leaning tower of power/4-speed
    1996 Dakota with a torque monster (not) 3.9L V-6 and automatic owned since 1998. Now demoted to winter duty
    2008 Ford Mustang V6, the new summer daily driver

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