I had to resort to military sounding abbreviations for this project, considering part of this post is related to the planned designer camo paint scheme my Toyota truck will get. S.U.D.s is: Simulated Utility Devices. I guess that’s better than Simulated Utility Components. Without the intended camo scheme, er, well, maybe the guy’s startin’ to go “around the bend” a bit, but as part of a faux military look, all is well. In fact, you watch, when this is all said and done, an exciting new trend in vehicle graphics might emerge. ABF is just plain ol’ Automotive Body Filler, AKA Bondo.
The S.U.D. starts as a discarded sign, made from what we call expanded PVC. Just like the stuff pipes are made of, but like it says, kind of ‘poofy’. The stuff is really cool to work with. like a dream for this low rise 3D stuff. Cuts easy and fast, sands easy, is sturdy enough to hold up wherever you need it to. The first couple of pictures show it being drawn and cut. Then I sanded the edges to an angle with the belt sander. Next, I drew lots of measured out marks where the screw holes go. They were countersunk. I’m not sure if it needs filler to make it a smooth transition from the body out to the side of the S.U.D. like something embossed in the metal. After all, the thing has a bunch of mounting holes, why would something stamped out need mounting holes? Ah, two of them, in all their glory. These things are totally fake, inspired by my time at the McGee-Tyson air show. As far as what NORMAL people do, like fix bad rust holes, I have that too. Everywhere you see body filler in the pictures below, the metal was completely gone. I made replacement pieces, riveted them in, and fiberglass bondoed over them. Hmmm, Bondo as a verb. American Heritage Dictionary take note. Anyway, what I’m experimenting with isn’t as important as cold fusion, but still pretty cool for what I do. I paint the pieces front and back, including the body part they get attached to. Then I use rivets dipped in thick oil based paint, to line the inside of the 1/8 inch holes I drilled for them. That way, in theory, everything will be sealed up. It’s really coming along, maybe by this weekend there won’t be anymore body holes. Some people say it would have been easier to buy a new bed, but they don’t know how rusted it is underneath. removing bolts and hardware is more time consuming than people realize. Besides, I want the experience
That reminds me, in the last week I’ve also removed a lot of rust from the frame with a needlescaler, put on brand new brake shoes and drums for the rear axle. The truck has good brake pedal now. Oh, one more thing, I raised the rear shackles a notch, it sits a bit higher, and looks oh so good.