Tag Archives: PRE

  • Cleaning Drill Chuck Will Stop Bits From Slipping - Quick Tip


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    Any of your drill bits look like this?  If so, you'll want to keep reading.


    Circular wear marks on the bottom of drill bits are a key indication of the drill bit slipping inside the drill chuck.  The main reason for this problem is cutting fluid or lubricants used come in contact with the chuck,  when this happens tightening the chuck will only go so far.  When this happens the bit stops cutting the metal and starts spinning within the drill itself.  if this happens often the drill bits strength is reduced and could cause it to prematurely break.  In some cases this can be very dangerous because the bit may become lodged in the metal, if this happens and the chuck regains grip on the bit the metal you are drilling could be sent spinning or the drill could be ripped from your hands.


    Keeping your drill chuck clean is the best way to ensure you will never have problems with your bits slipping.  This is a very simple process and will only take a couple minutes.



    First adjust your chuck so it is about half way open so the jaws are exposed but there still some room between them.



    Spray the edge of a rag with PRE Painting Prep and go over each of the jaws to remove any dirt, grease or lubricants that may be on them.  If you have cotton swabs they also work great.  Spray pre on the end of a swab to clean each of the jaws.

    Do not spray the chuck directly because it may remove the bearing grease further inside the chuck, causing it to lock up.

    Routinely cleaning your drill chuck will help prevent bit slippage and increase the life of your drill bits.


    Check out the Eastwood Blog and Tech Archive for more How-To's, Tips and Tricks to help you with all your automotive projects.  If you have a recommendation for future articles or have a project you want explained don't hesitate to leave a comment.

    - James R/EW


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  • How to Fix Rust Pits In Body Work

    If you are lucky, your project car is straight with no big holes rusted in in behind the wheels in the fenders and quarter panels. But even if there is no rust through there, you may find that rock nicks and chips have allowed salt and moisture to eat little pits in the metal.  Click Here To Read Full Post...
  • Vinyl Wrapping Old Interior Trim

    As vehicles age interior trim pieces can become faded, scratched and sometimes if they are coated, start to peel.  Over the past couple years a trend has been growing and a new way to transform that old interior has emerged.

    It utilizes a form of adhesive backed vinyl that becomes flexible when heated.  Major companies such as 3M have developed their own vinyl that is now known to be the go to product.  That being said there are other brands that offer a similar quality product at a cheaper price.  There are tons of color and texture options ranging from a simple matte black to purple carbon fiber.  If done correctly its hard to tell if the vinyl was even added, it looks that good.


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    This 2000 BMW E39 M5 came from the factory with silver brushed aluminum trim pieces but as youll see it needs an update.   After 15 years of use the trim has started to fade, become scratched, and in some spots peel up.


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    The vinyl I chose looks very similar to the original, it even has a texture which mimics the real thing.  If you didn't know already, which one is the original trim?


    Photo Oct 01, 10 58 10 AM

    To start the process I removed all of the trim pieces, it is possible to apply the wrap in the car but for an ideal finish they should be completely removed.  BMW M5 trim is very easy to remove but it will not be like this in every vehicle.  Before you start go online and look up the proper way to remove the trim for your specific car, it will save time and reduce the risk of something breaking.


    All of the pieces follow the same steps so I'll walk through the vinyl application on the center dash piece which surrounds the radio controls and center display.



    1. Clean the trim first using 400-600 Grit Sandpaper.  This will remove any dirt trapped on the surface.  Then spray a rag with PRE Painting Prep to remove any remaining contaminants.  Make sure to clean the edges and the under side of the piece because this is where the edge of the vinyl will stick.



    2. Lay the piece face down and cut out a piece of vinyl with about 1/2"-1" extra on all sides.  If the if the piece is rounded leave some extra material so it can wrap around the edges.

    3. Lay the vinyl on a clean table with the adhesive side up and carefully remove the backing.  Set your piece down on top of the vinyl on the flattest side.  Make sure the grain is going the correct direction and is square.



    4. After the flat side is pressed on lift the piece up and hold it in the air while trying to keep off of the adhesive side.  Use a Heat Gun on one edge at a time, get the edge hot and set the heat gun down, pull on the outer edge and form the vinyl around the outer curves.  Even after removing the heat the vinyl will stay soft for a few seconds, allowing you to pull it into place.



    To speed up the process I utilized the Eastwood Heat Gun's flat back plate with allows you to set it upright on a table while it is still on.  I could then use both of my hands to hold and form the vinyl.



    5.  After the the vinyl is formed around the outer edge, trim off the excess and repeat the same process on the back side.  Wrap the vinyl around the back, sticking it to the under side of the piece, doing this will prevent the vinyl from peeling up.



    6. To deal with the openings, run the Heat Gun along the edges of each while pressing downward.  Doing so will create a slight recess along the outside of the opening.



    7. Next cut an "X" in the center of each opening with a sharp razor blade leaving about 1/2" from each corner.  Heat and pull the center of each flap to form around the inner edges.  Trim and wrap around the back side like the earlier step.



    8. Repeat this with the other openings to create your finished product.



    With the rest of the trim completed it looks brand new and refreshed.  All this was done for about $20 worth of materials and the results pay for them self.

    Combine this with Eastwood Plastic Resurfacer and your interior will look as if it just rolled out of the factory.


    Check out the Eastwood Blog and Tech Archive for more How-To's, Tips and Tricks to help you with all your automotive projects.  If you have a recommendation for future articles or have a project you want explained don't hesitate to leave a comment.

    - James R/EW

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  • How to Quickly Clean stubborn Dirty Whitewall Tires

    Nothing can make a car look better than a nice set of wheels and tires. Wide whitewall tires are the kings of cool when it comes to old cars and they really make your ride standout. But nothing can be a bigger bummer than when they get stained from a dirt, grease, or road grime. I've heard numerous methods for cleaning whitewalls but I've learned a few tips that will easily make your whitewalls shine again.   Click Here To Read Full Post...
  • Shaved Fender Vents on 08-10 Super Duty

    Shaved Fender Vents on 08-10 Super Duty

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    The fastest way to make your vehicle stand out is with exterior modifications, but in order for them to look good it must be done the proper way.  Adding new pieces such as wheels, tires, bumpers, etc. is one method but it can easily be over done and just look tacky.  How many times have you seen a car with parts that just don't belong? I've seen way too many.  The other, and sometimes more difficult method is to remove parts that were originally there.  Not only does it make the vehicle look more seamless it also separates it from all the others.  From the factory this 2009 Ford F-350 Super Duty came with chrome plastic fender vents that stick out more than 3/4" from the panel.  Some may like this look but it ruins the body lines of the truck.  Just like Hot Rod guys shave door handles you'll see step by step how to remove these vents and make it look like they were never there in the first place.



    These are the vents I'm talking about, yeah they are flashy and catch your eyes but they don't do much for the over all look of the truck.  With these removed the side of the truck is stream line all the way to the tail lights.



    Using a plastic trim tool to pry off the vent, the recessed area underneath is revealed.  Having a recessed area the exact shape of the vent provides a great starting point because it will be much easier later on when I weld the new piece in.  As you can see in the above picture the fender is slightly curved so not only will the patch piece have to be the correct size it will also need the bend to be exactly the same to appear seamless.



    I started by making a templet with a piece of poster board, to do this I cut a rectangular piece slightly bigger than what I needed and with masking tape attached it to the fender so the the vent area was fully covered.  Then using a marker and my finger I pressed on the edges of the recessed area and drew "+", one in like with the edge and one perpendicular to the edge.  I did this along the whole outer edge of the vent area and using a ruler connected all of the intersecting points.  Note that I did not once use a tape measure, on most patch panel fabrication an exact measurement it pretty much necessary but for a small piece like this the method I just described takes a lot of the guess work out because you are using the actual panel to get the shape.  Using a ruler and an exacto knife I cut out the shape using the marks I made earlier.



    The template was was a perfect fit,  I want the panel to sit as close to flush as I can, this will reduce the amount of filler and body work later on.



    Next using a piece of 18 GA steel I carefully traced the shape on to the metal. For the first side I wanted to use my Versa 40 Plasma Cutter to cut out the shape.


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    The plasma gives me the ability to cut the curves of the piece near exactly but for extra assurance I used two pieces of 1/4" Bar as a guide to make the the cuts perfectly straight.



    Using a  60 grit flap disc attached to a 4.5" Grinder I removed the burrs, beveled the edges, and removed the surface rust.  when making patch panels like this its very important to bevel the edges, this gives the allows for a cleaner weld that will lay much more flush with the panel.


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    Next to get the patch piece to match the slight curve of the factory panel I used my Bench Top English Wheel  to gently curve the panel.  Be very careful to only apply forward and backward pressure on the panel in line with the wheel.  Putting too much side pressure on the panel will give it a dome and not match the contour of the fender.  One way to eliminate giving the panel a domed effect is to put a rubber band over the upper wheel.  This reduces the side to side stretching of the metal because the band stretches instead of the metal.



    You can see the difference in the two panels with the one on the right being the one that I ran through the wheel and the one on the left has not been touched.  Even though the curvature in the fender is very little, the extra time rolling it through the english wheel will save a lot of time later on when it comes time to apply filler.



    Before prepping the fender for welding I used a magnet to hold the patch piece in place and look at the fitment and gaps from multiple angles to make sure no corners were too high or out of place.  After taking it off to grind a few areas down I was satisfied with the fitment and sprayed the back with Self Etching Weld Thru Primer to prevent rusting from the inside.



    To prep the panel for welding I used a flap disc on a 4.5 ANGLE GRINDER and removed the paint down to metal all the way around the areas where I would be welding.



    Starting with the top edge I used my MIG 175 on a very low setting to tack weld the panel in to place, making sure the panel was seated in the right place before tacking in.



    If you find that after your first tacks the panel is no longer sitting flush with the opening there is a way to save the welds without having to cut the piece out.  To do this use a wide flat blade screw driver putting half of the blade on the new piece and half on the original.  Press the panel so it sits just below flush with the opening then place a tack weld right above the blade.  In the event that the panel sits too low in the opening you can use a very fine flat blade screw driver to pry the panel up to the desired depth.



    The first step in the filling process I started by using Contour Short Strand Fiberglass Filler.  This filler is infused with fiberglass which makes it much much stronger than ordinary filler allowing it to be applied much heavier to fill larger gaps and depressions. Before application I wiped down the fender with PRE Painting Prep to remove and contaminants that would affect the adhesion of filler.  I applied the Short strand on all of the weld seams as well as the top section of the patch which were the lowest areas that needed the most support.



    While some say this material is hard to work with because it gets too hard too quick making it more difficult to sand.  I've found that the ideal time to sand is about 10-15 min after application using 40-60 Grit to knock down the high spots then 80 grit PSA to level the rest.  Be aware that this is a very tough material and will harden very quickly so make sure you get all of the sanding



    After the Short strand is leveled I applied and block sanded Contour Glazing Putty to finish off the panel.  I would have only needed one pass of Putty but I went too light with the short strand in the lower corner. To knock down the high spots I use 80 grit PSA  on a  11" x 1 3/8" Durablock, this block is great for smaller areas like this because it is easy to hold and is long enough to be able to slightly bend so all areas of the block are in contact with the panel at all times.



    Now that the filler is blocked down flush it is time to apply primer to seal the area.  First I again wiped down the with PRE then used 2K Urethane Primer Surfacer using the Evolution Paint gun with a 2.0 tip.  This primer will not only seal the panel but also build up enough that I can come back with 320-400 Grit on a block and do a final blocking in case there are still any imperfections.  The best way to apply this primer is to start from the outside and work your way in, as you can see in the picture I taped off the area about 5 inches off the filler edge this will prevent primer overspray from getting on other parts of the panel that do not need it.  I am not using the tape to create a hard edge and will never have to primer in direct contact with the tape edge.



    The final step before paint is to block the whole fender with 400 grit to remove and sanding scratches and scuff the existing paint so the base coat will stick.  Additionally I scuffed the whole fender with a red scuff pad to create a uniform painting surface.  Wipe off the panel with PRE and then with a tack rag to remove any dirt or lint from the painting surface. You MUST use a blow gun and move as much dust and dirt away from the area surrounding the panels.  Even dust on the floor nearby can get kicked up by the paint gun and get trapped in the paint.



    I sprayed the base with the Concours Pro HVLP Gun with a 1.3 tip. The color I used is a Ford color code UD which was mixed at a local automotive commercial supply store.  Although these stores supply to collision shops most will mix as little as a quart of color matched paint at a reasonable price. I was lucky enough that this Ford UD Ebony color was a very common mix and a quart was just under $25.  Depending on the color code and the additives that go in prices can go as high as $200 just for a quart.  After three coats of base with about 15 min flash time and a wipe down with a tack rag between each its time for clear.



    I applied 3 wet coats of 2:1 European Urethane Clear also using the Concours Pro HVLP Gun with a 1.3 Tip. I mixed the clear 2:1:1/2, the 1/2 being urethane reducer. This helps the clear flow a lot better and lay on the panel much nicer.  I applied 2 coats allowing about 15 min flash time between coats, because it was about 85 degrees the flash time was greatly reduced.






    The fenders still need to be buffed to remove some small dirt specs but other than that there is no reason a job like this cant be done at home as long as all the preparation is done properly.  Post a comment about what you think, or any questions about the project!

    - James R. / EW


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