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Old 11-18-2007, 11:34 PM   #1
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Rivet How to heal a NASTY SCRATCH?

I just bought this 2004 25' International. It came with the nasty scratch.
How do I fix it?
Will letting it remain as is through the winter possibly cause a crisis?
Forum searches seemed to shed any solutions.



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Old 11-19-2007, 12:07 AM   #2
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I hope you get a good answer to this question as my "new" 76 Sovereign has this same scratch.
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Old 11-19-2007, 12:29 AM   #3
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IF it has gone through the clear coat you are going to need to fix it soon!
Otherwise corrosion will develop under the coating. To remove a deep scratch in the coasting is like repainting a damaged wall. You have to smooth and feather the edges with sanding and re-apply the coating by spraying it on.

If it is just a surface scratch then hand buffing the area with finer and finer abrasive will do the trick.
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Old 11-19-2007, 06:38 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sound-silver
I just bought this 2004 25' International. It came with the nasty scratch.
How do I fix it?
Will letting it remain as is through the winter possibly cause a crisis?
Forum searches seemed to shed any solutions.



If the scratch is into the metal, then the only fix is replacement.

Insurance companies will cover that type damage.

Andy
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Old 11-19-2007, 06:48 AM   #5
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I wish I knew the answer. I would take it to an Airstream dealer for a quote.

Your insurance company won't cover it. They will probably drop you if you ask them.
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Old 11-19-2007, 06:59 AM   #6
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pimp your ride

you could pimp your ride

or go with something more appropriate to cover the scratch and protect the metal beneath
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Old 11-19-2007, 08:08 AM   #7
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Scratch and Burn

That is a great idea

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Old 11-19-2007, 10:54 AM   #8
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hi sound-silver...

ouch!

the definative cure is panel replacement. side panels are the easiest to do...

but still expensive, and way more than most insurance deductables...

for very superficial scratches, megs scratch X will do wonders, followed by a poly sealant wax.

IF the scratch is down to bare metal (does a finger nail catch in it?) it does need to be covered....

start with meg' scratch x or a very light 3m compound (1200)s or finishing polish.

Meguiars SCRATCH X

3M Perfect- It Rubbing Compound restores mild to moderate paint imperfections so that your vehicle looks like new.

clean parallel to (lengthwise) the grove and then exactly perpendicular, avoid a circular pattern.

once it's cleaned you will need to decide HOW MUCH of the grove edge to remove...

buffing just a small amount is the safest approach, but the scratch will be more visible.

taking enough material off to get it smooth, will remove MORE protective clearcoat in the surrounding area (not good)

3m sells a 'scratch repair kit' that includes small amounts of several grades of compound.

this site also has high quality polishes and compounds...

Compounds, Polishes & Glazes

i like the menzerna's and 3m and meguiars products.

and here is a chart comparing the polishes/compounds...

Compound Polish Glaze Comparison Chart

and a simple 'how to' on scratch removal...

How can I remove paint scratches?

after completing the 'removal' stage, some protective coating must be applied...

poly sealant waxes or waxes with 'fillers' will work temporarily and must be reapplied 1-3 times yearly.

clear coat touch up paint, or clear nail polish can be applied directly into the blemish, and lasts longer..

a/s also sells a clear 'acrylic touch up' in a spray can for 10-12$ which may last longer too....

IF you reapply any of these clearcoatings, do it in very thin layers with plenty of drying time between coatings...

mask off the surrounding skin and apply as narrowly as possible to the specific defect area.

when finished, the surface may be raised and more annoying than the original gouge,

if that is the case, consider polishing the clear coat patch, again with the lightest compound (1200 or 2000 or 3000)

best of luck, and the decals aren't a bad idea either!

cheers
2air'

the info above appies to the newer ALCOA clearcoated aluminum panels, NOT the plasticoat applied by a/s up till '99 or so....
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Old 11-19-2007, 12:59 PM   #9
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I like the flames. I doubt if I want to try to fix the scratch on my 76. I'm just going with "it adds character" approach. May put something on it for protection, like some kind of sealer with an artist's brush.
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Old 11-19-2007, 01:29 PM   #10
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I awoke this morn to much helpful info from you all. Many thanks...
After a hearty cup of mudd I decided to inspect closer and see what I'm up against. As is most always the case, the owner wants to see the potential problem in the kindest way. My optimism vanished before the caffeine buzz could kick in and I was about to submit an order to ELBUNDI for the Airstream Flame Sticker Kit It seems the gouge borders on kind of nasty. When I run a fingernail down it there is a slight catching, but not a definitive groove for it to snag on.
2airishuman, I have extend bonus gratitude to you. You broke it down to where even a noob like me now has an attack plan or three. I have nothing to lose if the skin looks imperfect or if I bungle the entire job.
Here's some more pics.



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Old 11-19-2007, 10:35 PM   #11
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Cover Up

Hi, can you tell where my boo boo is/was?
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Old 11-19-2007, 10:46 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
IF you reapply any of these clearcoatings, do it in very thin layers with plenty of drying time between coatings...

mask off the surrounding skin and apply as narrowly as possible to the specific defect area.
I've done very little repair work, but I just covered a shallow scratch with clearcoat. I masked the side of the airstream with blue painters tape, then spraying lightly - several coats. It isn't perfect, but I'm probably more likely to see it than a casual observer.

Paula
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Old 11-20-2007, 11:18 AM   #13
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Oh, say can you see?

Nifty idea.

Pat
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