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Old 05-18-2008, 07:46 PM   #1
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Heavy Oxidation

I have a frameless shell sitting in my driveway waiting on its new frame. It sits closer to the ground than normal and so I thought it might be a good time to at least begin working on polishing the exterior skins.

So far I have stripped the clear coat using Napier RemovAll 220. This stripper worked great. But this trailer must have been sitting outside for most of its 33 years because the oxidation on the top and about a 1/4 of the upper sides seems very heavy.

Today I worked on small sections for a few hours by hand and experimented with Nuvite to gain a little bit of experience and to test how much the oxidation might yield. I'm using the Grade F7 for compounding heavy oxidation. I was amazed at how quickly this compound works on totally dull sections.

However there are large sections in this trailer where the skins have little "spirals" in the aluminum. The compound works great on the areas around the spirals but seems to have little or no affect on spirals themselves. Apparently the spirals are deeply oxidized areas. I didn't want to push polishing them too much with the F7 before I asked for advise.

BTW there are lots of spirals on this trailer. What causes them?
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:19 PM   #2
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That's a very serious case of filiform corrosion.

It occurs under the organic coating. In this case it looks like the skin may have been poorly prepared before clearcoat, or it was improperly repaired.
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:30 PM   #3
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WHEN I did mine i started with #9 and still had some of those,now everyone is going to tell you no steel wool,i used 00 steel wool then the #9 to get rid of the marks caused by the steel wool.it worked for me,then went to #4 still haven`t went to the fine yet with the cyclo,just too hot down here. dave
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Old 05-18-2008, 10:05 PM   #4
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Dune: Worm Sign!

Frame rot; now filiform corrosion! Worm sign! Interesting... I'm not surprised after reading a few threads on this. This AS was sitting on the coast for many years.

Unfortunately, apparently this isn't an isolated phenomenon:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f142...ams-31743.html

Looks like I might be replacing some panels. It seems this might be just the reason I needed to purchase buck rivet tools. I feel really sorry for the folks that are finding this corrosion on their brand new rigs.

Could someone point me to the PDF that was floating around with the data about this corrosion. The links in the threads have expired.

I take it that compounding doesn't "fix" the visible damage?
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Old 05-19-2008, 01:25 AM   #5
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Todd, you can get the filiform corrosion out. It just takes more work.

If you have G6 use it. Otherwise use your F7 with a compounding drill moving about 1 in per second. The rub is you'll have to do it over and over even up to 10 times over the same spot.

Just pick a spot and give it a try.
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Old 05-19-2008, 04:56 AM   #6
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"persistence" it is what you have to have more of than the corrosion.
I spent 5 hours working the panel below my jalousie windows yesterday. Someone had used steel wool or maybe 80 grit sandpaper to clean up the area around the placards. The sanding had given the corrosion a good tooth to build from. This is what I did... wet sanded with 320, 400, 600, then 1000. I then used F9, then F7. Lots of work for one small panel, all due to someone being too aggressive and not finishing what they started. Not perfect, but much better.
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Old 05-19-2008, 03:27 PM   #7
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Amigos: Mark, Easyride, Tim & 62overlander,

Thanks, that's exactly what I was hoping to hear!

I realized pretty quickly that I had purchased a virtual "black pearl" for my first airstream. But I have yet to lose hope that with a little work and creativity the damages and deterioration could be repaired.

When I first learned about the filiform form of corrosion, after I opened this thread, the first thing I did was look through as many threads as possible on the subject. Obviously I read too many threads on corrosion problems with new airstreams because I was beginning to think this problem was impossible to correct.

So I was thrilled to hear today about your experience correcting the problem with a little elbow grease. You made my day! If you have anymore photos, before and after, of your experience with repairing this virulent form of corrosion I would appreciate your posting it.

Thanks again!
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Old 05-19-2008, 06:06 PM   #8
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You are not alone.....

Hey Todd,

I think that I have your twin. When you get your system down on removing the filiform just come a tad east on I-10 and show me how! Hands on that is. You might want to stop by Austin and pick up Marcus on your way. I am sure he will need the experience!

Here is a picture of mine so you won't feel all alone.

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P. S. - I will even throw in an almost new set of axles for your new frame(actually the are 38 years old but that is still young if you ask me!).
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Old 05-19-2008, 06:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by easyride
WHEN I did mine i started with #9 and still had some of those,now everyone is going to tell you no steel wool,i used 00 steel wool then the #9 to get rid of the marks caused by the steel wool.it worked for me,then went to #4 still haven`t went to the fine yet with the cyclo,just too hot down here. dave
I have similar oxidation (plus some acid rain damage)! I am with Easyride in wondering why a very fine steel wool (0000 with mineral spirits) followed by pre-polish and polish (sorry I use Rolite) wont work.

Can sombody educate me why 10 times with pre-polish is better than a quick rub with 0000 steel wool.

Thanks.
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Old 05-19-2008, 08:48 PM   #10
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Here are a couple of pics on my '71. They represent before and after.



This is after 10 times over with F7.



BTW - Here is a great thread about polishing... I learned a lot on this one ;-)
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Old 05-19-2008, 09:05 PM   #11
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filiform corrosion solutions

By the time I'm finished with all the filiform on my trailer hopefully with the help of everybody here who has previous experience we'll have a great thread to show others how it's done!

I must say I'm very encouraged by what I'm seeing and hearing about dealing with this kind of trouble. I'm also curious about the steel wool? Maybe somebody who has used steel wool to their detriment could post a few photos or an explanation of the pros and cons?

I'm also happy to find out that I'm in the good company of others similarly "infected" with this form of corrosion. :-) Hopefully our collective wisdom will prevail and show a way out. As Tim and 62overlander have shown there are solutions!
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Old 05-20-2008, 05:24 AM   #12
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Old 05-20-2008, 05:26 AM   #13
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when the sun shines again and the rain goes away, I will take some photos of what steel wool does....
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Old 05-20-2008, 07:50 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vhord
Hey Todd,

I think that I have your twin. When you get your system down on removing the filiform just come a tad east on I-10 and show me how! Hands on that is. You might want to stop by Austin and pick up Marcus on your way. I am sure he will need the experience!

Here is a picture of mine so you won't feel all alone.

Attachment 60685

P. S. - I will even throw in an almost new set of axles for your new frame(actually the are 38 years old but that is still young if you ask me!).
I'll defiinitely consider working in trade. If I practice polishing on your trailers, then I'll be an expert at it by the time I finally get mine.

And I bet three or four people polishing at once can make it go a bit quicker than going solo!

Maybe we should all meet in Luling and have a polish party. And, of course, some BBQ...
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