Classic Car Restoration: Body Work : Body Filler Problems: Car Restoration Tips

Classic Car Restoration: Body Work : Body Filler Problems: Car Restoration Tips

Hi! I’m Doug and I work with twenty great
guys in St. Louis at Doug Jenkins Custom Hot Rods and we are going to do some work for
you today on Expert Village. As I start to look at this, I can see that the rust is partly
caused by an old body repair. You can see this pink stripe here, that’s body filler.
That’s why this part of the car rusted, and other parts haven’t. The car sustained body
damage at some point and somebody put body filler over bare metal. Whenever you do that,
you will always have rust. This is a great example of how inexpensive repairs in the
history of your car, will cost you more later on. This pink here is body filler. All of
the rust that we are going to repair today…all of this panel that is coming apart, is caused
because body filler was put on bare steel. Body filler is nothing more than talc, which
is, you know, a mineral. It’s like dirt. So you have dirt fastened to your car, right
up against bare steel, holding moisture against your car until it comes apart like this. We
are going to cut all of this out and repair it with metal.

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. he says not to put filler on bare metal, then in another segment, after they've welded and smoothed the metal, they apply filler directly to the metal. am i missing something here?

  2. thanks a lot.

    Body work is something you have to try to understand, doing research on the net makes me less and less worried about doing some of it myself when I get the '65 'Pala

  3. Filler works over bare metal just fine, BUT If you apply filler you need to seal it off from absorbing water with epoxy primer. Some people even apply filler over epoxy, I havent tried it personally.

  4. yeah, phobiablack…what you say makes sense, but it would have to be a repair that didn't get sealed with epoxy (or urethane?) primer and then sat in the weather. the car in the video was painted. i suppose it could've been exposed to weather before it was painted, but they don't say. i made a habit of putting filler over self-etching primer, then always priming over a repair right after sanding it. so far so good.

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