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Old 01-09-2013, 06:09 PM   #11 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Connecticut
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I had a '93 VX with similar but more extensive rust problems. The quarter panels can be done with virtually no power equipment if you have a cordless drill (and sander). I did both sides but am showing just the left so I don't flood the thread.

You can see quite a bit of the rockers if you cut out the quarter panel area and take off even just the small interior trim piece (where a speaker would go). I saw a lot more than I wanted to see. Oh you need to remove the exterior rocker panel trim piece too.

I did the work in basically an unpowered garage (I used a small generator so I could use a sander, drill, and a couple lights). If I had a cordless drill and matching cordless orbital sander then I could have done the whole thing with no power plugs nearby.

Other than the quarters I bought virtually everything from Eastwood - panel repair it, all-metal filler, metal snips to cut, and various rust convert / zinc / rustoleum primer / etc sprays to cover rust and prime. At first I used bodywork specific sanding stuff but later went to the orbital palm sander.

I had more extensive damage than what I initially saw - the rocker panels were going and the wheelwells were starting to rust through. I figured it'd be okay for a winter beater car and it was really fun car to drive (and yes I did put a fart can on it but only because it was cheaper than OEM replacement stuff).

Then we had our son so I sold the car (and its summer counterpart, a 350Z, which, without engine off coasting or other radical techniques, normally got 28-30 mpg up to 35-36 mpg steady highway stuff @ 65 mph avg speeds; this prevented me from selling the car for a while because it got "good" mileage and was fun/fast) and replaced both with a Golf TDi. I got the VX from a friend who bought it new. I got it with 246k on it, sold it with 283k.

I hope this helps give you an idea of what you need/want to do and how to do it. I'm no expert at bodywork although I think in a different world I'd be hammering panels for a living. The job was definitely second rate but it was fun and I enjoyed doing it. If I had more time I'd have done more, even recruiting a welding friend, but I wouldn't put my kid in this car and it was taking up space, eating up insurance premiums, property tax (in CT), etc, so I sold it.

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