Rear window seal repair with rust fix.

Conor

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Hi guys,

I set out to repair/re-seal the rear window weather strip on my SL yesterday. What started out as a job following the great guide from Malcolm turned into a bigger rust repair job.

Please note: You should probably read Malcolms guide first as there are a few bits in there, that I won't cover here.

So the steel plate that the trim fixes onto had, some pretty bad bubbling. Here's what I did.

First point is that, Malcolms guide shows doing the work with the roof in a semi open state. This is fine if you are just re-sealing the trim. I found that given the level of work I was doing, it was easier to put the car in to full roof-down mode and just pop up the roof from the boot, as shown.

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But here we go.. First look at the damage.

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Most of the trim had become un-stuck from the base plate, but the two outer ends were still a bit stuck. I used my recently acquired gasket scraper to cut through the adhesive. It was sharp enough to cut the glue, but not too much that it might sever the strip.


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With the weather seal removed, a closer look at the extent of the corrosion.


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Apologies for lack of focus .. I really need to check the photos after taking. Arrgh.

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Weather strip removed.

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Conor

Conor

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Next up.

I did some masking and got my newly acquired die grinder with wire wheel to remove the rust flakes etc. (Oh, I vacuumed up the dusty and dirt before hand)

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(it was at this point I discovered putting the roof into fully closed mode made things easier)


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The underside was just as bad.. or worse even.

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I also used a small piece of 60 Grit paper to get right up to the glass line. I didn't want to get too close with the grinder.

All cleaned up now.


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Next up chemical rust killer/converter. I know people say this stuff is tat. But I had it there.. and also if any are good it's going to be Bilt Hamber, according to the internet.

If you are new to this kind of thing and reading this. Be sure to pour into a separate container before applying. You must not dip the brush back into the main container or you will cause a reaction and ruin the whole bottle.

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Conor

Conor

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I applied this. Waited some time and re-applied another coating at 90 degrees to first. No big deal, but the instructions said so and I said why not.

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This is the point I am at now. Waiting 24 hours before I can paint this. That black is the cured rust converter.
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Frontstep

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Someone somewhere thought it was a good idea to make the strip at the bottom of the screen out of super rust steel, perhaps when they have been making cars a bit longer?
 

Uncle Benz

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Could have put a sheet in the boot to protect the nice furnishings ;)

Nice work though!
 

peterws1957

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Great job there Conor . Probably too late now, but I would paint the treated area with black POR 15. It wouldn't rust again.
 
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Conor

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Someone somewhere thought it was a good idea to make the strip at the bottom of the screen out of super rust steel, perhaps when they have been making cars a bit longer?
It's crazy isn't it.
Could have put a sheet in the boot to protect the nice furnishings ;)

Nice work though!

Thanks!

I absolutely could/should have. I was going to.. but I figured dust was going to get everywhere anyway, as dust does.. I had my Charles vacuum to hand which I used from time to time.

Great job there Conor . Probably too late now, but I would paint the treated area with black POR 15. It wouldn't rust again.

Thanks Peter. I have since read good thinks about POR15 .. But I had the Bilt Hamber stuff "in stock".. I believe it is also good, but fingers crossed.
 
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Next update.

TLDR; Work all done now and seal dry fitted. I just need to add some sealant now and job's a good 'un.


First ever time masking up.. leaves a lot desired I reckon. I was only spraying from rattle can, so no need to go overboard as you don't get the same level of overspray (if any) as a conventional air sprayer. I added the old curtain, just because it was there.

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Couple coats of primer waiting in between each one. In hindsight I made two possible mistakes. I didn't wait long enough for it to cure before painting. And I also didn't rough it up to "key" the surface for paint. Hopefully it's ok.

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Now painted and masking removed. First time ever painting something.... :D

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Some significant pitting there right!? :eek:

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Conor

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Next up was dry fitting the strip before silicone.

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Seems that 90% fits ok. It flares out a bit on each end though, and I'm not sure how I feel about that.

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It's also difficult to determine if the main part of the seal (which is shown on second photo if this thread) is distorted and grabs the surface enough. I am less concerned about this as it will be getting plenty of silicone anyway.

What you think of the outer parts? Will silicone solve them too?

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Seems to be a bit better with compression when the boot is closed. What do people think? Do I splurge on a new strip?

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Conor

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So this has turned out to be a long thread filled with photos. Apologies if it feels long and bloated but I really enjoy viewing these types of threads as a visual learner, and hope others do too. I'm not sure somebody has ever requested less photos and more text LMAO :cool:.
 

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Make sure you have scraped off the rubber bit of old sealant - also make sure you fill the entire strip / painted bit with the black stuff
 
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Make sure you have scraped off the rubber bit of old sealant - also make sure you fill the entire strip / painted bit with the black stuff

Aye aye.

I actually got so frustrated with the butyl tape that I ended up removing with the die grinder, wire wheel. Couple of low spots on the rubber now, but the sealant should prevent any issues.

Thanks.
 

peterws1957

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When adding your sealant you could tape round the end parts of the seal tightly - might seat better until sealant dries and then remove. (your thread is spot on by the way - nothing better than detailed piccies on a How To)
 

peterws1957

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Forgot to mention WD40 easily removes old tape/sealant for future reference- don't know why but it does.
 
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When adding your sealant you could tape round the end parts of the seal tightly - might seat better until sealant dries and then remove. (your thread is spot on by the way - nothing better than detailed piccies on a How To)

Oh yes, hadn't thought of tape, but have a bunch of small clothes peg type clamps that I was going to use.

Forgot to mention WD40 easily removes old tape/sealant for future reference- don't know why but it does.
Oh yes. I actually tried that too, maybe I was just being impatient but it didn't seem to come off that well. I was afraid of my scraping technique slicing the rubber too, if I am honest. I figure a few gouges/low spots with the die grinder wouldn't be as bad..
 

Frontstep

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I would spray some ACF 50 type stuff in behind the rubber onto the painted strip to help keep the rust at bay.

I used it on the infamous W210 rust encouraging door seal after Mercedes replaced my doors some years ago and its rust free.
 
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I would spray some ACF 50 type stuff in behind the rubber onto the painted strip to help keep the rust at bay.

I used it on the infamous W210 rust encouraging door seal after Mercedes replaced my doors some years ago and its rust free.

Ah tis done now.. I'm sure it will be fine. It's not a massive deal. If it starts to rust in 10 years time, i'll be happy to re do it.
 
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Ok.. so last evening I managed to finish up the job.

Started off fixing on the seal with some black RTV.

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Messy stuff.. probably my first time using one of these guns too.. (That I can remember.. :grimace)

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Remember I was concerned about the ends of the trim flaring upwards. I initially tried clamping them down but it was difficult given the profile of the metal plate. I just taped them tight for a while and seem to have done a good job.

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Closed the boot to let cure under compression.. That completes the rear window seal..

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Now, onto the C pillars..

Upon inspection, I found that the lower half wasn't as tight as the upper portion. So I focused my energy here.

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Can easily pry open the lower portion to a significant depth...

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Whereas the upper portion still seems sealed..

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Pryed open and cleaned first..

Used the compressor air gun to blow out the dirt and moisture.

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The next photo is just some reflection on my point... I do not recommend doing this.

I masked up the area and applied some silicone.. then (instead of garden hose) I just used some sockets. I didn't like how things were going so I removed the masking and sockets.

I was afraid that the silicone was going to set as seen and I couldn't get at it to clean up. I was afraid I would need to cut it and risk breaking the paint barrier.

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Conor

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I had to go a bit freestyle. When I removed the masking and sockets there was a bit of a gap between the seal and body. In hindsight this is due to the amount of silicone I put in. I could have just pushed it in possible and cleaned up the excess.

Instead, I applied some silicone over the top and used it as a type of filler. Between the little spike and my finger covered in meths, I was apply to push it in and shape it. Then cleaned it with a meths soaked rag.

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Some pics of how it turned out.. I think it doesn't look bad. I left the roof in semi open state over night so as not to upset any of it while curing.

Sorry for the lack of focus in places.. (Phone camera)

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Oh and this is how it looked mid way through... bit dodgy right? Wiped it up with meths rag and came out fine. Ensuring not leave any residue on body panel. Very important!!

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Job done.. hurrah. I'll post some pics when it's back out in the wild and all cleaned up.
 
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Conor

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I'm wondering if this is eligible to be added to the DIY section by a mod?
 


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