Preservation with Reservation

Preservation with Reservation

This article appeared in The British V8 Newsletter - Volume X, Issue 1 - January 2002

by: Barrie Robinson

When you get yourself really stuck into a rebuild you learn a lot. I say rebuild rather than restore as I am not restoring an MGBGT V8 but building one from a 1970 shell that I acquired. Being a sort of perfectionist... (Yes! I line up the screw slots on my cover plates for light switches.) I have searched for the best possible solution for the various aspects of the build. In this mode I had the shell dipped, and then had it worked over by a metal master, which was a crushing blow to my budget. Then a paint man of mean repute did my paint. This man does work for museums and has a waiting list as he is not only good but reasonable in his prices. So now I have a gleaming GT with equally gleaming Rover V8 engine nestling in the engine bay. What this does is start those horrible visions of rain, sleet, snow, and salt spray, as I do intend to drive this machine even through Canadian winters. And before you say that is foolhardy, I have done eight years like that in a 4 pot MGB GT and loved it. Nothing like tackling a snow storm in an MGB!

Obviously, a corrosion protection plan has to be put into place. Consultation with my paint fellow revealed that the inner dark deep recesses of the body may not be completely covered with paint or primer - a safe assumption. Consultation with members on the MGB, MGB V8 and other "listers" resulted in some excellent advice regarding correcting this situation. One suggestion was to fill up the cavities with paint, Tremclad, POR15 or similar, and then drain it out to be used in the next cavity.

This most sensible idea does not appeal to me because of the difficulty of filling some of the large GT cavities and draining out. It also seems to be quite a messy procedure. It would give great results and this method is used in car manufacturing but maybe, I thought, there could be a less awkward method.

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In the past I have read articles in British car magazines about a product called Waxoyl. Its praises are sung loud and long, so I decided to investigate this route. The theory is simple: You just coat the surface with wax, which like oil, stifles rust. Waxoyl is a thick, almost paste stuff, and some complaints refer to this thick consistency. However, this complaint is the result of being somewhat lacking in thought. There are two solutions to the thickness problem, heat the stuff or add mineral spirits - or both! I became interested in what Waxoyl was and how it worked. I learnt from a lister on that Waxoyl is nothing more than paraffin wax dissolved in mineral spirit with maybe some rust inhibitor. The latter seems desirable but not essential, as the brew will obviously halt more rust forming by blocking the damp, and anaerobic rusting in cavity areas seems improbable. The recipe sounds credible. Purveying of basic materials as a branded product at a high price is not new. For instance, gas line anti-freeze at $2.50 for a tiny bottle is just methylated spirits at $3.00 for 5 litres!

Having also heard of the incredible properties of beeswax, I thought maybe beeswax dissolved in mineral spirits may be even better. Waxoyl probably doesn't use beeswax because of the cost.

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So I pondered on all the stuff I had learnt and from the back of my mind came a name (there was nothing to stop it moving to the front of my brain!) The name was Dinitrol. When I was somewhat younger and in England, I restored a TR3A and was advised to use Dinitrol which had gained a legendary reputation for injecting under trim and such. Being aware of the resistance of North America to import European auto-technology - disk brakes and radial tyres spring to mind - I decided to find Dinitrol.

So I did the old web-search trick. The result was I found a USA based outfit that handles the product with the telephone number of 800-331-4304. But I was absolutely amazed at the different flavours of the product. The USA people said they only were interested in aircraft applications; however, they added that their AV-30 would do the trick for my MGB GT V8. When I asked how long it would last, the response indicated that this was a frivolous question. It lasts and lasts and lasts. Apparently Dinitrol, sometimes called Dinol, does not have paraffin wax, but rather a compound that leaves a plasticky-rubbery-waxy type skin just like those skins one finds on those small Gouda cheeses.

Further questioning revealed that at 800-668-4318 sat the Canadian organization that sold AV-30 at $135.52 (Canadian) for a case of 12 spray cans, or $123.20 (Canadian) for 5 litres. This is about twice the price of Waxoyl, but somehow I feel it is more than twice the product. The chap I spoke to, a Mr. Mike Lissadrello, mentioned in the course of our conversation that AV-30 would creep in between welds and not just float over them as would paint and maybe paraffin wax. So just in case anyone is interested, I am going to get 5 litres and squirt it in all over the place, and 5 litres should amply cover every little place in my gleaming machine.

Only time will tell, but I think I have found the right anticorrosion method; but, at least, I can boast I am using aircraft technology. Incidentally I am using a funny yellow stuff for cleaned out bolt holes in the body to stop rust as used on helicopters, courtesy of my helicopter mechanic friend who says it just does not wash, seep, or dry away! Incidentally, when I asked him about Dinitrol he said they hated it! "It's difficult to remove and it sticks like mad!"

Disclaimer: This page was researched and written by Barrie Robinson. Views expressed are those of the author, and are provided without warrantee or guarantee. Apply at your own risk.

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