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Thread: Paint Bubbles = rust underneath? How to fix?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    14

    Default Paint Bubbles = rust underneath? How to fix?

    Hello. My 96 VW had some paint bubbles on the back fenderwell above the tire (see photo.) From what I've been able to research on this excellent forum, it looks like I may have a growing rust problem underneath, thus causing the bubbles.

    Can anyone give me a quick how-to on the process of getting in and fixing this problem?

    I'm assuming that I need to sand the paint down to the metal to reveal the rust, grind/drill out the rust (which will probably leave some holes), fill the holes with a quality filler, prime, paint, etc. But before I go guessing (and probably guessing wrong) on how to repair this problem, I'd rather hear the "right" way to do it from the guys who have done it before. Any help would be appreciated.

    I might mention that the old VW is due for a total repaint sometime in 2011, so painting the bubble repair to match the current color isn't a big concern to me. Fixing the rust is my primary concern.

    Thanks guys!! Great forum Len. It's been very helpful so far. Keep up the good work.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    230

    Default

    You need to strip the paint to see how much sheet metal to cut out

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    14

    Default

    Okay, cut the rust out. I get that. But here's an update, I went ahead and sanded down the paint to get at the rust/metal. Sure enough, there was rust. So I ground out the rust and was left with a lot of good metal and a few tiny holes (see photo.) These holes are no more than 1/4 in diameter, maybe smaller. I can't imagine cutting the metal out when the rust has only created these tiny pinholes. Wouldn't it be better to just fill the holes with some sort of filler?

    I admit I'm an amateur, so if I'm barking up the wrong tree, please forgive me. On the flip side, I have a neighbor who does cutting and welding, so if I need to cut out the tiny holes, make them bigger, and weld in patches, I will. Just hoping for an easier way to do this since the holes are so small.

    Thanks for your help. My old VW thanks you as well.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    230

    Default

    you need to cut out well past all those holes. All of them in one crop

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    1,600

    Default

    The holes arenít small. Only the part of the rust that you can see is small. The holes are the result of rust on the other side of the metal. When you cut out the bad metal and see the back side you will see a lot of rust. You may even find that you havenít cut to the extent of the rust so be prepared to make the cut even bigger until you have clean rust free steel on all sides of your cut, then make a patch to replace the rusted metal. If you try to fix the front side you are going to have to do it again soon because the problem is where you canít see it and it will keep growing. Rust never heals up by smearing filler over it.

    Bob K

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    14

    Default

    Thanks Bob K. Now I understand the reasoning behind cutting out all the rust and welding in a new piece of metal. And that's what I'm going to do after the holidays. Wish me luck. Thanks again.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    962

    Default

    Just cut it uniformly all the way around the wheel well and put some 22's on it and call ot good!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Dakota
    Posts
    33

    Default


    Quote Originally Posted by gtome View Post
    Just cut it uniformly all the way around the wheel well and put some 22's on it and call ot good!
    While your at it you should paint the hood and trunk a different collor and put a huge woofer in the trunk

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