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Kirsten's '59 Squarebird Rust Issues

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  • Kirsten's '59 Squarebird Rust Issues

    I have been in considerable contact with Kirsten regarding her new to her '59 Squarebird. If you saw the pix posted of it in Our Rides, you know that it has some rust issues in the usual areas found on Squarebirds. Surprisingly, to me, instead of being on the passenger side, they are on the drivers side. I am about to post some close up pix of the damage and she would like to hear your comments regarding how difficult and costly it might be to have patch panels put in, or to repair this kind of damage. She knows that there are certain repair patch panels available to her, and I have also told her she might want to contact Carl Heller ~ partsetal, because he may have used panels off his Squarebirds parts cars she might be able to obtain at less cost than new ones. I see she has the left hand fender skirt in the trunk and a couple of other panels. But it does not look like she was given other repair panels with the car, as I thought she might have been.

    I have just put her in contact with the VTCI Long Island Tbird Club President who knows her Tbird. It belonged to a previous member of his club, as did our Founder, Alexander Sosiak, who he knew very well up to his passing.... The LI President has contacts with a company on the Island who does his auto repairs on his classic cars and might be a help to Kirsten in getting those rust areas repaired. But she would like to have your advice and expertise regarding the damage so she can make a decision on how to go about this. Here are the pix.
    Attached Files

    Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
    '59 Tbird "The Yellow Rose Of Texas" aka "Tweety Bird"
    "It's Hip To Be Square"
    Thunderbird Registry #33025 VTCI #11178

    Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or (Cell) 210-875-1411 (Home) 210-674-5781

    http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

  • #2
    Kirsten's '59 Squarebird Rust Issues

    Kirsten has sent me some more pix. I see that the passenger side also has some slight rust issued, but nothing like the drivers side. Here are those pix.
    Attached Files

    Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
    '59 Tbird "The Yellow Rose Of Texas" aka "Tweety Bird"
    "It's Hip To Be Square"
    Thunderbird Registry #33025 VTCI #11178

    Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or (Cell) 210-875-1411 (Home) 210-674-5781

    http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks very much for posting these photos.

      I am glad that the skirt came with the vehicle. There are two other body panels of some kind as well that I haven't been able to identify. They are in one of the photos and I hope to have a couple more pictures of them posted here.

      I understand that the rust will grow worse if not addressed so that's the first thing I want to tackle. I just hope it doesn't cost me really big. But I imagine it could.

      Keep in mind, I do not need things to be perfect. I just want to do whatever has to be done to prevent further rusting. And I would like to completely get rid of the worst parts under the driver side door and above the rear drive side wheel.

      Thanks for the help!

      Comment


      • #4
        Kirsten's '59 Squarebird Rust Issues

        Kirsten sent me close up pix of those two panels that were in the trunk. I do not recognize what they might be for. As you will see, one is painted on both sides and the other is not. Can anyone tell us what they are and where they go? Here are the two pix.
        Attached Files

        Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
        '59 Tbird "The Yellow Rose Of Texas" aka "Tweety Bird"
        "It's Hip To Be Square"
        Thunderbird Registry #33025 VTCI #11178

        Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or (Cell) 210-875-1411 (Home) 210-674-5781

        http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

        Comment


        • #5
          I think they are the garnish rail moldings that are located inside the car at the bottom of the door windows.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Sherman View Post
            I think they are the garnish rail moldings that are located inside the car at the bottom of the door windows.
            You are right! Good call.

            Looks like I'm going to need a number of panels to replace the worst rusted parts.

            For under the driver door how does this look?

            https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?m...2F401548979104

            I don't know if I linked that up correctly.

            Comment


            • #7
              Here are a couple of links from Mac's.

              https://www.macsautoparts.com/ford_t...h-1958-60.html

              https://www.macsautoparts.com/ford_t...anel&x=22&y=13

              There will be several places that have the parts. Surveying the damage beyond what we can see on the outside is another issue. These aftermarket parts will need careful prep and finishing or you will have exactly what we are looking at again in a couple of years.
              Austin

              Comment


              • #8
                Kristen,
                Have you previewed any Thunderbird parts catalogs to compare prices?
                Last edited by Sherman; July 16th, 2018, 07:39 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Unfortunately the quality of the repro patch panels leave a lot to be desired. Especially the quarter panels. They don't really fit as well as the factory panels. Depending on how much rust there is you may be able to get away with just replacing the outer rocker panels and fabricating pieces for the quarters above the wheel openings. With Squarebirds the bigger concern is the inner rocker panels. If they are rusted that entails a much more extensive repair procedure.

                  John
                  John Pizzi - Squarebirds Administrator

                  Thunderbird Registry #36223
                  jopizz@verizon.net 856-779-9695

                  http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Kirsten's '59 Squarebird Rust Issues

                    Kirsten, John ~ jopizz really knows his Tbird stuff. What he said about inner rocker panel rust is the reason why you need to get that Tbird up on a lift. I know what you were told about the underbody being in good condition without rust issues. But you need to find that out for yourself, along with a qualified mechanic who really knows his stuff when it comes to checking out rusty cars. IF you are lucky, there will be no major inner rocker panel rust. If there is extensive rust there, that requires a major rebuild of that area, you will have done what others have had to do. Cut out the affected area and piece and weld in the appropriate length, and width of metal to replace the rusted out area. On both sides, if they are both bad. Right now the rust you are seeing is on the outer rocker panel.

                    Rust issues, and other problems are the reasons why we developed the Vehicle Check List for people who are contemplating buying a classic car. Had I known you were considering buying one, I could have directed you to print that list and run it against the car you were considering buying. It might have caused you to change you mind about that car. Classic cars with extensive rust issues in the wheel well, floor, trunk, inner and out rocker panels usually end up being parts cars. Unless someone either has deep pockets, or has good experience in doing their own metal work of cutting, making replacement parts and welding them in...

                    You can find that Vehicle Check List at the bottom of the Technical Resource Library. Anyone who might be reading this Forum as a Guest and who is considering buying a Tbird (or any other old classic car) should print out that list and run it against the car you are considering buying. It could save you thousands of dollars in repair bills on rusty cars....

                    Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
                    '59 Tbird "The Yellow Rose Of Texas" aka "Tweety Bird"
                    "It's Hip To Be Square"
                    Thunderbird Registry #33025 VTCI #11178

                    Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or (Cell) 210-875-1411 (Home) 210-674-5781

                    http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thanks for all of the great advice!

                      I have never had to deal with rust issues on a vehicle before and did not really know how extensive the problem could be underneath. Then again, this is the first time I've purchased a classic.

                      I am crossing my fingers that the rust is surface only. Ray connected me with a local club pres here on Long Island who has offered to send me to a body shop guy his club uses. Hopefully I can get a better look at the extent of the rust and it won't be too bad. But if it's a big big job I will have to consider what to do.

                      If the rust is surface only in some areas is there an easier fix than cutting out and replacing the panels? Like a sand down (to remove the rust), treatment, and repaint? I don't actually need it to be PERFECT but would like to remove rust and prevent it from spreading worse.

                      Wouldn't have been able to figure this out without the support here! I will let you know what happens but appreciate the continued feedback from all of you.

                      There are other things that I would like to do with this vehicle but plan on tackling the rust first and foremost. And only if that is doable will I move on to other things... like A/C, and the fact that the windshield spraying switch doesn't do anything.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The rust that you have is not surface rust that can just be sanded down. It will have to be cut out and repaired or it will get worse. It is typical of Squarebirds to have rust in these areas. I would guess that both outer rockers and the driver side quarter will have to be replaced. There could be more rust that is hidden by body filler. Once it gets to the body shop you will know for sure where you stand.

                        John
                        Last edited by jopizz; July 17th, 2018, 10:40 AM.
                        John Pizzi - Squarebirds Administrator

                        Thunderbird Registry #36223
                        jopizz@verizon.net 856-779-9695

                        http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Thanks John.

                          Hey, do you have somebody in NJ that you use and trust? I often times like to get two opinions before making decisions on things. I plan to see a guy here on Long Island but since you're in NJ that isn't too far if you have a trustworthy person in that neck of the woods!

                          Originally posted by jopizz View Post
                          The rust that you have is not surface rust that can just be sanded down. It will have to be cut out and repaired or it will get worse. It is typical of Squarebirds to have rust in these areas. It would guess that both outer rockers and the driver side quarter will have to be replaced. There could be more rust that is hidden by body filler. Once it gets to the body shop you will know for sure where you stand.

                          John

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I don't have a body shop that I use. If there's welding that needs to be done I can usually find someone locally who will do it for me and I do the final prep and painting myself. The problem you will have is matching the turquoise paint. I would leave that to a professional body shop.

                            John
                            John Pizzi - Squarebirds Administrator

                            Thunderbird Registry #36223
                            jopizz@verizon.net 856-779-9695

                            http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Understood. I bet that drastically reduces cost. But probably not an option for me.

                              Originally posted by jopizz View Post
                              I don't have a body shop that I use. If there's welding that needs to be done I can usually find someone locally who will do it for me and I do the final prep and painting myself. The problem you will have is matching the turquoise paint. I would leave that to a professional body shop.

                              John

                              Comment

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