My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Discussions about general body work and modifications
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garch65
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:25 pm

My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by garch65 »

Hey guys,


I just recently had my 65 Comet Painted. 2 months later, there is a small crack in the paint (about an inch or more) by the top corner of my rear window near the seam... I recently added Sub frame connectors and sway bars, do you think this could have caused this? Anyone know of a solid way to stop this? i don't see much on this specific topic in the forum. UGH!

Merry Christmas Comet Fans!!

Garch 65
Ken
Last edited by garch65 on Sun Dec 23, 2018 11:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.

garch65
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:25 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by garch65 »

Here is a picture!
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garch65
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:25 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by garch65 »

A better pic of the whole car, after getting my new wheels
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Kingspeedy2
Posts: 261
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:36 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by Kingspeedy2 »

I assume you mean the seam where the roof and sail (B pillar) meet that is originally leaded ? did you remove the lead and weld in steel by chance prior to paint?
I put in crites sub frame connectors and they needed considerable welding and beefing up to mount to my satisfaction so if you had to do similar its possible.
Seems unlikely you moved things that much unless you noticed door gaps changing that it would flex the paint that much. I would most likely suspect an undetected crack in the sail or poor lead bond at the sail panel seam that now shows up In the paint.Seems really quick for it to show though..just my opinion on the matter

garch65
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:25 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by garch65 »

I did have a crack there prior to getting painted. I assume the painter just did basic body work to smooth out the crack and repainted it. I don’t believe any additional strengthening was done. This is my first car I have decided to restore and wasn’t aware of this area needing special attention prior to paint.
This is the area of the sail B pillar and it’s a bummer I didn’t know to strengthen it prior to paint. I guess my question is with my current situation with fresh paint- is it better to start over and weld it or find someone who is good with lead?
I really like the car and want to enjoy it for a long time so I want to fix it.
If you were me what is the best thing to do?? So it lasts another 60 plus years...
my frame connectors are welded solid and the car feels great, with no other body issues.
My opinion, the body shop just overlooked it and filled the crack not thinking it’s a bigger issue.
Thanks again for your opinion!

vicegrip
Posts: 352
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2013 11:12 am

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by vicegrip »

The factory used lead in those areas because it's high stress and lead goes with the flow,so to speak. Unfortunately,the lead guy at the plant wasn't all that concerned about perfect body work. Modern paint and body guys try to straighten it out with plastic filler which doesn't always tolerate the stress. In your case...hard to tell. The lead doesn't always hold up and welds break. You have to get down to the root cause or it will just keep cracking.

Kingspeedy2
Posts: 261
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:36 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by Kingspeedy2 »

I removed my lead a the sail panel to roof and where the rear quarter panel trunk sail come together. The area then had patch panels welded instead of lead
According to a seasoned body shop friend these are the 2 trouble spots on these cars
This is one of the areas I got some professional help with the body work.Here are a couple of pics of the 2 areas to get an idea of the joints .Sorry I don't have a close up of the upper sail joint but it wraps around ImageImage
Last edited by Kingspeedy2 on Fri Dec 28, 2018 6:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

garch65
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:25 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by garch65 »

Thanks for the photos,your car looks great!
This is the question that seems to not have a simple anwser... If I weld it, it can recrack (ugh)
If I use lead, not a for sure fix but more flexible then a weld. I like the welding option more, possibly a stitch type welding but It’s going to be tough to sand that new paint to fix it. We all know the costs of a good painter so it’s a tough decision!
I will assume the obvious,
the original lead is no good and has detached even with the new body filler. I was hoping someone could say, do this “ ? “ and your good.... I appreciate the feedback, I wanted to talk to some Comet owners before researching local shops who have had experience with this type of issue.

Thank You!!

A/FX
Comet Central Member
Posts: 411
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2004 7:07 pm
Location: S.E. Wisconsin

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by A/FX »

I removed all the factory lead from my ‘64 after the body was chemically stripped for two reasons. My body/ paint guy said he would not guarantee his body work or paint if he had to apply it over the factory lead and the fact that the stripping process could have left residue in the lead. ( the lead also has acid in it from the original application) With the newer types of body fillers they should not fail if applied correctly.
Most professional body men use an epoxy primer on bare metal then apply body filler over the primer, the chemical reaction between the two make the bond very durable.
But if your body flexes from engine torque or suspension movement nothing will stay intact.
Jim
'64 Cyclone

Kingspeedy2
Posts: 261
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:36 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by Kingspeedy2 »

I forgot to add that I added a few spot welds to the sail /roof joint as half of the factory ones missed then my seasoned friend patched the formerly leaded areas with steel patches and thin layer of filler

vicegrip
Posts: 352
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2013 11:12 am

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by vicegrip »

Whatever was done to the OP's car obviously didn't work. Time will tell on the rest...

garch65
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:25 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by garch65 »

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Update- I've been gone for awhile, I hope to be more active moving forward as I really enjoy this Forum.
I brought my Comet back to the paint shop and requested they remove the original lead. I decided to do both sides even though only one side had an issue. I took my chances welding it.
Last edited by garch65 on Thu Mar 26, 2020 12:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.

garch65
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:25 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by garch65 »

This was the original picture before starting the process and the prior post was after being welded and it's an image of the weld from the inside underneath the headliner.
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SASSY
Posts: 4095
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 11:32 pm
Location: Wynndel, BC CANADA

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by SASSY »

Ya those spots, there and at the bottom where the panel meets the body and in front of the trunk seem to be the weak spots in these cars.
Keep us posted on your outcome
Fred
Last edited by SASSY on Thu Mar 26, 2020 2:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I'd rather do it myself if it's done right or not,,,isn't that what hotrodding is all about?
Image

garch65
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:25 pm

Re: My Mercury Comet sail panels cracking, passenger side

Post by garch65 »

It was frustrating, but hopefully its behind me now. My last 2 steps of my restoration is installing the carpet and seats. almost rolling again!

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