Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums - Reply to Topic
Thread: Body Filler and Lead: One Man's Opinions Reply to Thread
Post Icons
You may choose an icon for your message from the following list:

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


  Additional Options
Miscellaneous Options

  Topic Review (Newest First)
09-08-2017 09:38 AM
kirk Thanks for all the info. So much that I'll need to read over again.
06-02-2017 02:14 AM
spiderdave99 Very interesting, I read the whole post and agree with most all said overall, a couple of points on my giulia ss I have had to make almost the whole car, I've used a lot of gas welding and followed up with lead to the joints. I never finish in lead preferring to leave a little room for a thin coat of filler? On a previous restored car, and I still have it , I had problems with each primer not sticking to the lead? In a couple of places I have had paint lifting? The filler I use is ultima, special formulated for use on most surfaces most notably Galvanised panels. And it works ,
I aim to finish of the prep of the car with the new type of filler/primer (urathane based, as shirwin williums, mentioned earlier) I'm also about to sandblast the entire she'll and aim to use an epoxy each followed by paint and stone guard, not sure on the brand, make of each yet though , any thoughts?
05-13-2015 12:38 PM
65Sprint Thanks for the update. You are probably correct regarding galvanizing. Sounds like you were able to virtually remove the dents. Excellent work. I find working the metal the last 1/4 to 1/8 inch difficult.
05-13-2015 10:20 AM
BobHalfa I'm going with the body being galvanized. I was able to work the dents out to where there is was less than 1/16" of filler required. I left a few small spots of bare metal exposed on purpose all winter and there wasn't the slightest hint of any rust formed on them. the car was in a unheated garage with a wooden floor that was built on a hillside with plenty of air circulation underneath it.
11-04-2014 12:00 PM
BobHalfa I still haven't found a definitive answer about the S4's being galvanized, but if you do use Bondo, the gold or platinum variety adheres to galvanized bodies. I was planning a full repaint after I retire but an unavoidable deer running down the middle of the road bumped my time frame up a bit. Luckily (??) it hit the driver side front fender right at the wheel arch. The wheel took most of the impact, creating a shimmy at 55 (probably knocked the wheel weights off), moved the orientation of the steering wheel a bit, and increased my negative camber by 1/2 degree since my last alignment. A trip to the alignment shop fixed everything except the camber. I have adjustable upper control arms ready to be put in. Another S4 paint issue is that you need to use flexible primer for the plastic bumper skins and add a flexibilizer to the bumper skin clear coat. I also used that primer on the mirrors and cowl grill and will be using it on the rocker panel covers. All of the fender damage was easily accessible from behind which made the repair a lot easier.
03-01-2013 06:15 AM
65Sprint Well, I am not positive either but I doubt galvanizing was used. You asked a good question and I look forward to other responses. I have similar ding/dent issues on the '88 Spider.
03-01-2013 05:50 AM
BobHalfa I'm saying that it's galvanized only because I read it in an Alfa book that I have and have seen it mentioned on a few threads in the Spider forum. Other than that, I'm not sure.
03-01-2013 05:45 AM
65Sprint That raises another question. Are you certain the sheet metal on your S4 is galvanized? If this were the case, I think it would be a much bigger issue from a welding/sheet metal repair stand point than from a dent repair stand point. My understanding is the fumes produced from welding galvanized metal will make you sick if you breathe them.

Regarding dent repair, I defer to the experts for details but there are a lot of options. With the right tools, you can get to the back side of most of the body panels on a Spider. My personal goal is to avoid using any more than 1/8 of an inch of filler on a repair.
03-01-2013 04:38 AM
BobHalfa I have a question that hasn't been covered in this excellent thread. My S4 has a galvanized body. What's the proper procedure for bodywork over galvanized? I'm talking about repairing small dings ect. that can't be reached from the backside. I plan to eventually paint my whole car but would prefer to not take it all down to bare metal. I've been spraying lacquer for nearly 50 years on furniture and cabinets but have never done a car.
06-23-2012 04:46 AM
JETMORE yes, you can fix with epoxy. see, epoxy does not shrink like polyester, and it is an adhesive, whereas, polyester is not a very good adhesive. also, epoxy is amazingly strong, compared to a talc filled polyester, and does not absorb water like a talc based polyester. the reason boats that stay in the water eventually blister on the bottom is due to the migration of water into and through the polyester. epoxy does not do this, or rather, takes an extremely long time to allow this. i am happy to explain how to do this, but it is not rocket science. once you fix a few things around the house with it, you won't know how you survived without it. using epoxy with the correct fiberglass fabric that is strong, light, and easily conformable, will, literally, revolutionize your rapairs in many instances. areas that rust a lot (spare tire buckets in the trunk), i thought of simply molding a new bucket out of fiberglass with the identical dimensions of the original, and then it can be installed by a backyard bodyman by using the correct adhesive. no welding, and no rusting, ever again. the problem is, a lot purists want metal only, but, if you drive the car a lot, i see it as much more practical.
06-22-2012 04:33 PM
180OUT Interesting post. I think what you're talking is something that is considerably in advance of the usual low rent chicken-wire and bondo type of repairs.

Are there places on old Alfas where modern composites/adhesives/chemicals can work as well as traditional metal replacement i.e., welding? Could you fix, say, rockers and rust around windshields?
06-22-2012 02:02 PM
Body work

Coming from the marine composites industry, i have a little different experience on the use of some products, and would like to add two cents in, that i think most amateurs will find invaluable.

If you are not in a position to weld a hole or imperfection, or pay to have something welded, clean down to bare metal with 36 grit, brush on unthickened west system epoxy (two part, 5:1 mix ratio) and then "sand in" the wet epoxy to the metal surface with a clean metal brush, then thicken some unthickened epoxy with colloidal silica until it reaches a peanut butter consistency, and apply to the panel, making it a little "proud". Once cured, scrub off the amine blush that occurs on the surface with a watered scotch brite red pad. Once dry, sand with 36 grit, and you can fill or paint with any polyester products (duratec, evercoat, rage gold, upol...) and they will adhere. The thing is, only west system epoxy will "accept" polyester products, whereas, no other epoxy distributor will. They have a really good formulation. The rust will not come back if you clean it down to bare metal and do what i tell you. Over twenty years of working with this stuff. The primary reasons you don't see body shops use this, i think, is because epoxy will not cure nearly as quickly as the 30 minutes polyester, and vinylester products, and epoxy, especially west system epoxy, costs 3 times the amount. But still, this is a lot cheaper than paying someone to weld a little hole. I can rust proof any piece of metal you have. If anybody on here needs something rust proofed, send it to me. I won't charge you a dime, unless it is huge. I try to help out fellow car guys if i can. Thanks
07-03-2011 06:04 AM
Eastwood Lead-Free Body Solder?

Has anyone here used the Eastwood lead-free body solder? They claim it has all the benefits of using lead, but is easier to work with and isn't as toxic.

07-16-2009 06:07 AM
Originally Posted by Russell View Post
Also, it seems to me the term etching implies an acid based bath or "picling" agent to destroy any oxidised particles? Like using flux in soldering or brazing?
Lifted from Vantaaj's other sticky on paints

Etching or Direct to Metal
Some paints are direct to metal, some are not and require a primer. DTM paints have a small amount of acid in them to etch the metal they are applied to form a chemical bond to the underlying metal. Make sure you know which you have. If you spray a non DTM paint directly on metal, it will flake off, and conversely some DTM paints will blister most primers. Self etching and DTM are the same thing.

A lot of great information on this board. Just not enough hours in the day to read it all.
07-16-2009 01:55 AM
Russell Cna you define the term "block out" for me? Also, it seems to me the term etching implies an acid based bath or "picling" agent to destroy any oxidised particles? Like using flux in soldering or brazing?
This thread has more than 15 replies. Click here to review the whole thread.

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome