My attempt to fix the rust spot on the roof didn’t go nearly as well as planned. In fact, it’s going so not well that I’m going to have to start all over, enlarging the spot to accommodate today’s screwup. Sigh. Is this supposed to be fun?
Let me preface this by saying that I have never done this before, I’ve never seen it done before, and my research on how to do it properly never crystallized into a list of specific instructions. Internet strangers from auto forums all seem to have different opinions about what products to use, and how to set everything up. None of the worker bees at O’Reilly Auto Parts had ever attempted to do what I just tried to do today, and thus had no real suggestions. Yet everyone makes it sound so easy.
Knowing it was risky to proceed without really having a clear plan, I went for it anyway, using the instructions on the back of the paint can as a guide… and crashed. See, this is why I work in design. The undo button is one keystroke away. Not so with auto body repair.
How badly did I crash? Here’s what happened after three coats of primer, and one coat of paint.
Assuming user error, I sanded back down to bare metal, and began the process all over again… doing things exactly the same way I did them the first time. Honestly, I must be insane. I don’t know why I thought things would turn out any different. Sure enough, after one coat of primer, the puckering reared its ugly head again.
At this point, I realized that I was a moron, and stopped trying to “fix” things. I cleaned up my work area and called it day, leaving an unsightly scar on Gypsy’s forehead.
So what now? I’m certainly not going to do anything without a very specific set of instructions from someone who has done this before. The upside is that this spot was only a practice run for the other rust spots that I’ll need to fix. In a few weeks it will be covered by a 30″ camper top, and if the scar remains, no one will be any the wiser.
Today was my first experience working on Gypsy in full view of all my neighbors, and it wasn’t nearly as uncomfortable as I thought it would be. Only a few times did anyone stop and stare. I guess you don’t see someone sitting on top of their van every day… wearing a respirator (not a fan of lung cancer)… using Spiderman techniques to get up there. Additionally, absolutely no one asked me what I was up to, which leads me to believe that I could probably get away with all kinds of crazy antics in this neighborhood.