Joe Guinan

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Firewall Reconditioning
Before... Can you say "Ugly"?
The car was originally brown, and the paint on thefirewall was corroded from brake fluid and battery leaks. I once used undercoating goo to temporarily cover the rust. I took close-up photos of the wiring, and then everything came off the firewall and I started cleaning it up. I rolled the car outside and used a small spray bottle with gasoline in it and a few rolls of paper towels to remove the undercoating goo, then hit it all with sandpaper.
During... The entire firewall was cleaned and sanded, then scuffed with a "3M Scuff Pad" before being sprayed with a good rust inhibiting primer.  All the firewall braces were painted "aluminum".  I taped off the battery box bracing, but I actually drilled out the spot welds on the brake master cylinder mounting braces and removed them from the car so I could clean up under them and get all the rust out.  The pedal assemblies, brackets and bonnet prop rod were painted.  Then I sprayed several coats of truck bed-liner material on the entire firewall.  This stuff should be tougher to damage than paint, and the textured appearance looks good and matches the front wheel wells that I treated in the same way.  The bed liner stuff even stands up to battery acid - a nice idea even if you don't do the entire firewall.
After... New master cylinders were purchased and installed,.The Clutch Slave Cylinder was rebuilt and the PDWA was taken apart, cleaned and painted. I flushed and blew out the lines, then used Silicon based "DOT 5" fluid (note the purple color) in order to eliminate future problems with any leaky fluid eating through my paint. The brackets were attached with some stainless steel bolts I had left over from the bonnet re-assembly and some plain galvanized washers.  I hit the brake and clutch lines with a scuff pad to clean them up, and I bought some split tubing to slide over the wiring to clean up the engine bay a little more.  I still need to remove the wiper motor and clean it up.  Haven't had enough time for that yet.
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