Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

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ian65
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Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by ian65 » Fri Apr 25, 2014 10:55 pm

Have you checked under your windscreen trims? No? thought not........ well here's a cautionary tale...


as most of you know, I've been restoring a 1984 series 3 car for the last couple of years..... most of the work was done and it was almost ready to mot. One of the last jobs, which I'd left till last as it seemed pretty minor, was the leaking windscreen. Ever since I've had the car, it's leaked water into the cabin from the windscreen but apart from a few rust bubbles coming out from under the satin black windscreen trim, everything looked good. It should have rung alarm bells when I saw that it had had a replacement windscreen at some point during its life.
About 3 weeks ago, I decided to remove the windscreen top, bottom and side trims to sort out the rust and fix the leak....the screen practically fell out into my hands and then this is what I found...

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the front of the roof is rotten, the windscreen pillars have almost rusted through at the bottom and the bulkhead is holed..... even worse, the holes in the bulkhead have allowed the top of the inner A posts to rot out behind the dash...
Even if proper repair panels were available, which they aren't, the car would be beyond economical repair... it would need loads cutting out to get back to good metal, would entail probably thousands of man hours to do a proper job and cost mega bucks....
Sadly, I've had to concede defeat with this car and have learnt a lesson here.
This car has got perfect floors, sills and chassis rails but bizzarely, has rotted from the top down.
If I ever buy another fb that's has a replacement screen, I'll get those screen trims off and have a good look. We never check them do we because it always breaks the plastic retaining clips getting them off but any fb that's got the telltale streaks of rust running from behind the black satin pillar trims down the A posts needs checking very, very carefully.
Replacement bonded screens are a real problem.... the fitters are in a rush so they just cut the bonding out and in the process, scrape the paint off the screen surround back to bare metal.... then without putting any protective primer on it, they just bond a new screen in and from that point, the clock starts ticking and the screen surround starts to rust. This car's replacement screen could have gone in 6 months after it left the showroom and the metalwork around the screen has been rusting ever since..... one bodged job years ago has killed off this otherwise excellent car.... shame.

The moral of this story is to get those screen trims off and have a good look at the condition of the metal/paintwork underneath.... out of sight, out of mind isn't a good policy if rust is setting in underneath those nice satin black screen trims.

Chud
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by Chud » Fri Apr 25, 2014 11:11 pm

That's incredible. :shock:
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mpk490p
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by mpk490p » Fri Apr 25, 2014 11:50 pm

Bloody hell that's the worse one I've ever seen!
Sorry for your loss Ian but have to agree with your comments
Is it worth chopping some of the good parts off as future repair panels?
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KiwiDave
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by KiwiDave » Sat Apr 26, 2014 12:50 am

I recall when my screen came out, the fitter gave the entire frame a good dose of rust preventer before intalling the new one.

Sad to see after all your work though .... a cautionary tale if there ever was one! :shock: :o :(
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spoddy
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by spoddy » Sat Apr 26, 2014 1:01 am

oh no ian, that is really bad news.
i can't believe it, as that car looked like a great find and for all the work you put into it and to find this lurking under the windscreen is just unbelievable.

i actually checked under the windscreen trims of a white fb i went to see as i did remember to check that area because of a crack in the windscreen.
but it was the original windscreen as you could see the white blumish effect in the glass too, so that can help identify if its a new or replaced windscreen if the pillar covers cannot come off. the fb i had gone to see had them screwed on with tiny screws?

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ian65
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by ian65 » Sat Apr 26, 2014 7:01 am

apart from the work involved to get to and repair the tops of the inner A posts, once you start patching a roof, it'll never be any good long term. The screen pillars form part of the structural integrity of the shell and I certainly wouldn't want to be in this car if it ever rolled over. If time, money, and long term workshop facilities were no object then I suppose something could have been done but that's just unrealistic.... some cars are just too far gone to make a home restoration viable, especially on a car that's only going to be worth 5 grand tops when done..... we aren't talking Ferrari Dinos here.
It's already been stripped and the shell has gone.
The problem when it comes to checking the screen surrounds is that you can't get them off without breaking the clips and if you're just looking at a car for sale, the seller isn't going to be happy about you doing that.....
On a restoration project such as this car, they should definitely be removed to check the metalwork.... I didn't because I never dreamed it would be anything like this bad......it was actually much worse in real life than it looks in the photos.
I've learnt my lesson.

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spirit r
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by spirit r » Sat Apr 26, 2014 8:24 am

Heart is bleeding looking at those pictures, ian.
1987 first time changing the windscreen of my Rx7. I asked if i could help and looking what´s to do.
Same experience as you described ian. Fitters cut out the old windscreen with a piano string. I made new silver colour but the fitter have no time waiting until the colour is dry. In 1990 if i painted the car yellow I saw whats happend slightly rust under the trims.
With that mind i have painted the car 2011 without windscreen in gunmetal again.

Thanks Ian perfectly picture description
so a german could understand easy what´s going on.

Thomas

RamoNZ
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by RamoNZ » Sat Apr 26, 2014 8:42 am

That's a real shame there Ian, a solid lesson for all of us though.
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myatt1972
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by myatt1972 » Sat Apr 26, 2014 10:13 am

BLOODY HELL :shock:
Keith...

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A7RXY
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Re: Have you checked under your windscreen trims?

Post by A7RXY » Sat Apr 26, 2014 10:49 am

Before you all go out there and pull off your trims these holding clips are no longer available in the UK and on back order at Black Dragon in the US, I've tried to get some from Aus but these are turning out to be expensive. so you need to get a set before you start to investigate.

Good luck

Dibs

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