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Author Topic: How much rust is too much rust  (Read 756 times)

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clyle2000

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How much rust is too much rust
« on: 07 July 2021, 19:58:29 »

Been working on my Omega for a while now but I wonder if there is a point where too much rust is too much, I am happy to plod away on this project but I don't want to spend time and money if the rust is so bad that its never going to be drive able and safe.

I will get some pictures when I feel brave enough but after removing the sill plastic covers under the sill is badly rusted to holes and the jack up points are very bad also.

The arches I am comfortable cutting out and using low heat aluminum rods with new metal, fiberglass to repair but under the car i am not so sure.

I really don't want to get rid of her and I do want an Omega in my life.

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Migv6 le Frog Fan

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #1 on: 07 July 2021, 20:57:43 »

If you can weld then its a matter of how much time / effort you want to put into it.
If you cant, its then a matter of deciding if its worth spending a lot of money on.
To be honest, the answer is probably no, unless you have a very strong sentimental connection to the car.
You could probably buy a nice Omega that doesnt need a lot of welding (although they are becoming scarce) for the cost of having a lot of welding done.
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Nick W

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #2 on: 07 July 2021, 21:10:35 »

How are you repairing steel with aluminium rods ??? ???


Crusty sills are the easy job: replacements are about 50 per side, and are complete from the door seal to the lower edge. And the plastic covers mean that very little finishing is necessary.


Wheel arches aren't too bad, but do require a lot of time consuming and expensive finishing. Welding in properly shaped metal will require very little filler, not fibreglass.


Now the bad news: you need to look at other parts of the car.


The biggest problem is rot from under the driver's feet, through the bulkhead and along the chassis rails to the front panel. This is the start of digging away at the rot on the driver's side:







To repair those areas properly will require removal of the radiator, trans plumbing, subframe, alternator, steering gear together with a lot of fabrication. The other side is worse because of the air conditioning, battery tray, ABS and wiring.


These are MOT repairs in progress to get another couple of years out of the car:







(that needs to be rotated 90degrees anti-clockwise and is the steering box mount)


End of the driver's sill/inner wheel arch/floor/seatbelt mount:


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clyle2000

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #3 on: 07 July 2021, 22:43:43 »

Ive just had a peek behind the front wheels and all looks good.

I a going to get the wheel arches and plastic end cover plates off to get a better peek.

Yes I have seen on you tube that low heat aluminum rods can be user to join metal together so I might give that a go.

If i grind down bodywork until I see bare metal and it is just small rust pits does this need cut out or can this be treated?
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Nick W

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #4 on: 07 July 2021, 23:10:09 »

Ive just had a peek behind the front wheels and all looks good.

I a going to get the wheel arches and plastic end cover plates off to get a better peek.

Yes I have seen on you tube that low heat aluminum rods can be user to join metal together so I might give that a go.

If i grind down bodywork until I see bare metal and it is just small rust pits does this need cut out or can this be treated?


Peeking is useless. Jack the car onto an axle stand, remove the wheel, scrape any loose underseal, and start poking with an old #2Phillips screwdriver. DON'T do this if you think you're going to fix it with aluminium welding rods. They can be OK for low stress repairs to aluminium without needing an AC TIG welder and lots of practice, or an oxy-acetylene torch and even more practice. They don't work on steel!  A proper fusion weld is the only acceptable repair for structural panels.


If all you find is small pits, then you can grind them back to shiny metal. That's what you can see on the right of this pic:





where I sanded the paint to repair some car park damage. I wasn't expecting to find the holes under the bumper.


But remember, rust is always much worse than it first looks, because that required this welded repair to the outer arch panel once I had done a similar repair to the inner.


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clyle2000

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #5 on: 08 July 2021, 21:32:50 »

Thanks for these, yip I am going to strip her all down to get a peek under her.

Regarding the aly rods I saw this on youtube for some basic body work repairs and I was going to give it a shot.

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clyle2000

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #6 on: 19 July 2021, 19:33:50 »

Managed to get under the old girl.

Most of these are rocker rust but some of it looks to be the jack mounts.

Behind the wheels, is this OK or is it bad?






















« Last Edit: 19 July 2021, 19:35:35 by clyle2000 »
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cam.in.head

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #7 on: 19 July 2021, 20:33:31 »

to be honest its all std stuff and very similar to the pictures that nick w put up earlier. the sills and back of sill / wheelarch area are common areas to go .
the deciding factor of "how much is too much " realy depends on what you find when you clean back the area behind the front wheels. all doable and relatively straightforward if its on the facing visible bits.more tricky and time consuming if its gone further round.
nothing is unrepairable and the omega fares better than cars from the 70's or older where you could pretty much find rust in most places eventually !.
the sills and rear bit hold dirt and water/ damp and that causes the issues there.cars with sill covers are always going to do this compared to cars with bare sills and would only have been helped or slowed down if the sills had been better protected by their first owner but how many would bother ?
others will post their ideas and solutions soon but  it realy depends on you and your abilities/ friends/ finances .   
happy prodding !
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Nick W

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #8 on: 19 July 2021, 20:35:17 »

So, you need both sills and some rebuilding of the back ends/inner wheel-arches/tubs/floor/seatbelt mounts. That's not too bad. Have a look behind the where the rear bumper wraps into the wheelarch.


Considering that everything in your photos looks like it was recently attached to the Titanic, I think you need to actually dig around the front chassis rails(from the bumper mounts back to the bulkhead on all four faces) with a poky tool - a tired #2 Phillips screwdriver is ideal. Do the same where the the rear diff mounts attach to the boot floor too.
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Nick W

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #9 on: 19 July 2021, 21:02:22 »

The red areas on your photo are where you should start probing:





I think you'll find most of them are already holes just waiting to be revealed. They are where several panels overlap, and have rusted through from the inside because the joins aren't waterproof. The green box highlights the stiffener inside the chassis rail for the steering idler, and the flaky underseal down the rail to the jacking point isn't good. That already looks worse than the repair my earlier photo showed, and look how bad that turned out to be.
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clyle2000

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #10 on: 19 July 2021, 22:27:31 »

Thanks everyone, I am going to stop spending money on her us now until I get all the bad points checked out from Nick W pictures.

Ive already started putting new parts on her as I don't have much of a clue about structural parts of a car and this project was a learning and bring back some old memories when I had a P reg Omega back in the day.

The sills, rockers and wheel arches are on problem for me, when asking for advice on cost to look at other bits what is the best way to word it.... how much to replace the ? bits.
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Andy B

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #11 on: 20 July 2021, 08:24:22 »

.....

The sills, rockers and wheel arches are on problem for me, when asking for advice on cost to look at other bits what is the best way to word it.... how much to replace the ? bits.

'Rockers' is American for sills ......
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Nick W

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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #12 on: 20 July 2021, 09:25:51 »

Thanks everyone, I am going to stop spending money on her us now until I get all the bad points checked out from Nick W pictures.

Ive already started putting new parts on her as I don't have much of a clue about structural parts of a car and this project was a learning and bring back some old memories when I had a P reg Omega back in the day.

The sills, rockers and wheel arches are on problem for me, when asking for advice on cost to look at other bits what is the best way to word it.... how much to replace the ? bits.


The pictures of repairing front chassis rails earlier were 1.5 days work most of which was spent on the driver's side. And they're only MOT repairs intended to keep the car going for another 2 or 3 years. To repair this area properly, or if it had been much worse, would require removal of the subframe, trans cooler pipes, A/C hoses, radiator, steering assembly and a lot of careful fabrication/welding. I don't think that's worth doing on an Omega.


I would expect a full sill replacement(patching them is more work and a poorer job) with the extra repairs to inner sills and the the wheeltubs to be an afternoon per side. That doesn't include the preparatory removal of carpets, soundproofing etc.
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Re: How much rust is too much rust
« Reply #13 on: 20 July 2021, 11:00:45 »

The latter is a couple of hours work, if that.
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