How bad can a BX rust?

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How bad can a BX rust?

Post by BXcitro »

I use my BX as my daily drive and although I love driving it, I have been wondering lately what's going on underneath with all this salt on the road.

I know it can't be great for it but should I really be worried? How have you guys found the long term effects of winter driving in your BX's?

This is the first winter using mine so I'd be interested to know what to look out for.

Thanks
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by Tim Leech »

Rust is what kills most Bx's now, they are more resistant than most cars of the era and can hide it well as its rare to see rusty doors and wing plus the use of GRP for bonnet and tailgate.

A posts, inner from wing on the seam and boot floor all go but the worst is rear subframe mounts which are a pita to mend.

Personally I would try and avoid using it in bad weather if possible as it will degrade and get any affected areas seen to asap.
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by rutter123 »

Investing in a MIG welder is all part and parcel of owning a BX, as Tim says the usual areas also keep an eye on windscreen surround, underneath the screenwash reservoirs at the bulkhead, bases of all the pillars, rear exhaust hanger and chassis rails, sills moreso the rear end.
If your car has been rust treated from new chances are it will have survived quite well but if you do find some rust best to get it sorted sooner rather than later, my advice is if needed get the job done properly by cutting away any rust and having a piece of steel put in rather than patching over the top.
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by BXcitro »

It looks pretty good underneath, and it's been treated with a good dose of wax oil. It's had bits of welding done in the pass in the usual places.

It's got its MOT in April so will be interesting to see how that goes, although whatever needs to done will be done, as I plan to keep her on the road for many years to come.
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by Kitch »

The BX fought rust better than many cars of its era/class, but when they do go, they go bad. Normally all in hard-to-reach areas, and to do a proper repair involves more than just welding a patch over a hole (amazing how many people think that's a good repair! It's not, it's a bodge!)

The trick is to use one that's got a strong shell to start with (if you've had welding already, it's suggesting it might not be) and then go to down with the protection. Waxoyl/underseal is a quick, cheap and messy method of protection. It works well enough if it's applied to good clean factory underseal, but 9 times out of 10 people slap it over the top of grotty looking or even rusty sections of metalwork, and then convince themselves they've done it a favour. They haven't, they've botched it up!
Ideally, you'd grind it all back, treat it with a metal prep fluid and then build up some layers of hardcore paint on it. I used Rustbuster on my Dad's GT in the areas I was working in. Stuff goes off like concrete. His car won't be used as a daily and I tried to make the repairs look all pretty and factory-fresh, but for a daily you could then go at it with a clear Waxoyl or something.

The worst places they rust are:

* Front inner wing joints
* Front A-pillar upper hinges (and all the box section inside, normally accelerated by the sunroof drainage system leaking)
* Front upper A-pillars (see above)
* Scuttle tray under the washer bottles (where the wheelarch, bulkhead and tray all meet together - it's a dash-out job to fix it properly.
* Base of the B-pillars
* Base of the C-pillars (aka Dogleg, sometimes needs the 1/4 panel removing to get to it to repair it properly)
* Upper inner wheel arch (usually on the offside, near the jack mounting clip)
* Rear 1/4 panel itself
* Rear lower front subframe mounts - the mounting plates AND the box section that they're welded to. Probably the hardest bit to repair, but it's doable.
* Rear lower chassis rails
* Boot floor (normally by the corner where the exhaust hanger goes)
* Door bottoms
* anywhere else that you happen to spot!

You could use one daily quite easily, but personally I no longer enjoy driving them full-time as a tool, only as a toy. I'll happily use it occasionally to get to work, but truth be told I prefer using a modern car I don't give a shit about!
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by BXcitro »

Great informative reply Kitch, very interesting to know the hot spots of the BX.
To be fair, I'm not sure how 'well' the under seal was done underneath as I've only had the car for 8 months, but when I took it to Chevronics to have some work done, they said they thought it was a nice original car and looked all good.
If I had a garage to store her, then I'd probably do what you said and get something modern and just use it for shows and dry days. However as I don't I feel it's probably worse for it just to sit in the rain for days without being used....so solution is, buy a bigger house with a garage!!
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by Tim Leech »

Sounds like a plan Colin, mind you, you end up with 10 cars that way like me!
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by Kitch »

BXcitro wrote:Great informative reply Kitch, very interesting to know the hot spots of the BX.
To be fair, I'm not sure how 'well' the under seal was done underneath as I've only had the car for 8 months, but when I took it to Chevronics to have some work done, they said they thought it was a nice original car and looked all good.
If I had a garage to store her, then I'd probably do what you said and get something modern and just use it for shows and dry days. However as I don't I feel it's probably worse for it just to sit in the rain for days without being used....so solution is, buy a bigger house with a garage!!
I've found that cars which sit around outside tend to rust in the places 'up top', like the boot, pillars, 1/4 panel etc. The ones that get used a lot tend to rust underneath, like sills, rear subframe mounts, front subframe, front inner wings etc.
There's no right answer, and being in a garage only really makes a difference if it's been garaged from new. Taking a near on 30year old car and parking it in a garage (which 9 times out of 10 are just as damp as outside) won't suddenly make it tidy, so don't feel bad about it. Perfectly feasable to have a BX and use it as a daily driver. You need to look after it in terms of rot (more important than polishing it, or hoovering the boot) but the same would be said of a 'show winner' (if you're in to that kind of thing).

Personally I think the biggest impact of structural condition is the type of use the car got early in its life. I wouldn't worry, and just enjoy it as long as you know it's good underneath. Go careful if it's all black and gunky underneath though, as it usually hides a myriad of sins.
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by BXcitro »

Tim, one BX is enough to keep me happy although if I had the space and money then 10 cars could be a possibility lol, I've always had a thing for 405's as well as BX's but the BX will always come first!

Kitch, it is a difficult one regarding the rust, like you say there's no right answer. I did try a car cover when I first got the BX, but the plastic bonnet had an allergic reaction to it, so that was that in the bin!
Fingers crossed for the MOT in April but I think she'll be fine for a while yet.
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by Kitch »

BXcitro wrote: Kitch, it is a difficult one regarding the rust, like you say there's no right answer. I did try a car cover when I first got the BX, but the plastic bonnet had an allergic reaction to it, so that was that in the bin!
Fingers crossed for the MOT in April but I think she'll be fine for a while yet.
Covers are useless, I'd avoid anyway. They don't stop it rusting underneath!
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Re: How bad can a BX rust?

Post by rutter123 »

I think covers are bad as they can make the car "sweat" if covered up with a warm engine encouraging more rust, and if you live in a windy area like I do more often than not recovering the cover from next doors garden.
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