The bright, calm days continued and prompted me to start on tarting up Stella. I had a nasty surprise when I went to a couple of specialist car sprayers and asked what it would cost for a respray, provided I stripped all the trim, door handles, lights, bumpers etc, both estimates, allowing for a couple of wheel arch repairs were five thousand pounds. Three thousand was what I had in mind, but that was from watching two many episodes of Wheeler Dealer that were probably recorded ten years ago.
Generally the panels are OK its around the trim edges where black mastic has been used and the lower sills so I decided I would have ago with spray cans. I started on the drivers side sill, there was no rust, it just looked very cruddy and the slim stainless trim that ran the length of Stella was already starting to flap about.
As well as this piece of trim, I removed the TRIUMPH engraved tread plate that had also been stuck down with black mastic and the stainless section that holds the carpet and fuzzy rubber door seal in place and then peeled back this rubber seal. I cleaned all the gunge away, thoroughly rubbed down with 600 wet and dry paper, filled the surface cracks and rubbed down again with 1000 grade paper.
I carefully masked up with newspaper and applied two coats of white primer. The next day I again rubbed back with 1000 grade paper, I made sure all residue was wiped away and sprayed on three coats of Rover White. I carefully removed the masking tape and news paper. I waited a couple of days for the paint to harden during which time I cleaned and polished the trim and then fitted it back into place with new clips and screws. Not bad even if I say so myself, trouble is, it now makes the other side look so much worse, but it will get done in time.
A previous owner had also used black mastic behind the door handles and as elsewhere this was drying and coming away so I decided to remove the handle and fit a proper black rubber gasket behind it. I quickly realised that I would have to remove all of the locking mechanism to get at one of the bolts holding the handle to the door skin, a deep breath and I unclipped the operating rods and unbolted the lock, hoping I woild be able to get it all back in. Handle removed and all the gunge cleaned off the handle bolted easily back onto the door looking so much neater, but it took a couple of goes to get the lock mechanism operating correctly. When I come to do the same to the passenger door it should be so much easier.