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2G When is rust to much?

Posted by Audiyo, Oct 3, 2019

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  1. Audiyo

    Audiyo Supporting Member

    64
    25
    Joined Jul 22, 2013
    Imperial, Missouri
    I’ve recently purchased a 1999 GSX and I’m currently torn on whether the state of the car is worth building or not. My intentions with this car is to completely restore the car and have something I can enjoy for years to come and build memories with my children. I picked the car up for 500$ but it has rust issues I’m unsure are worth the time and or the effort. I’ll post pictures of the car so people can get an idea of what I’m dealing with as a whole and any feedback or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. If I did decide to keep the car I’d attempt to do the cutting, welding and any body work myself, for which I have no experience doing but wouldn’t be afraid to learn and put the work in.

    Also I feel that mentioning that the engine needs to be completely rebuilt as well and that I already have a sizable amount of parts to do so is worth taking into account. I have tossed around the idea of just flipping this car as I feel I could turn a bit of a profit that in turn could be put into another less rusty GSX. Turning to the awesome community for any advice. Thanks again.

    Where exactly is the rust?
    Both rear wheel wells as seen in pictures (I have hammered, poked and check the rockers to see how far down the rust goes and the rust is isolated to the rear 1/4 of that rocker/wheel well section)
    Passenger side strut tower
    Bottom parts of both doors (the bottom seem?) and the seem of the trunk. This part isn't horrible but I am not sure if this is common or not?
    That's it...the rest of the car is quite clean actually surprisingly considering the extent of the wheel wells.

    TLDR; GSX with rotted rust issues and needs engine rebuild other wise completely stock. Should I repair and build or flip and buy another GSX with less rust for my platform.
     

    Attached Files:

    Street Build 187  1

    1996 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM
    Loading...
  2. motomattx

    motomattx Proven Member

    1,751
    554
    Joined Dec 9, 2010
    wampum, Pennsylvania
    They are all worth saving if you want to put in the elbow grease and some money!
     

    Drag Race Build 3K  16

    1995 Mitsubishi Eclipse GST
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
  3. Dusty Landrum

    Dusty Landrum Proven Member

    41
    27
    Joined Jul 15, 2019
    San Francisco, California
    Dude this car is actually not too bad at all, and every one of these cars should be saved! I have seen far worse, and all its takes is some hard work and perseverance. And of course some money, but the memories you can make with your kids is priceless right? I have had one of the cars since I was 16 and always will for the rest of my life. In my opinion this car is absolutely salvageable and definitely not beyond repair.
     

    Street Build 335  3

    1999 Mitsubishi Eclipse GSX
    awd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    Audiyo and BLACK'98DSM like this.
  4. BLACK'98DSM

    BLACK'98DSM Proven Member

    809
    265
    Joined Feb 9, 2019
    Hoover, Alabama
    Best thing to do is to find a junk donor car and cut the entire strut pillar out of it. Cut the exact same dimensions and shape out of yours and weld the other one in. There's been a few guys on this site that have done it over the past few years.
     

    Road Race Build 2K  25

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM

    332  3

    2012 Murray Explorer Dune
    rwd · automatic · Misc Vehicles

    249  6

    2009 Troy Bilt Bronco
    rwd · automatic · Misc Vehicles
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    Audiyo likes this.
  5. ThunderChild

    ThunderChild Supporting VIP

    2,541
    713
    Joined Jan 5, 2012
    Rathdrum, Idaho
    Too bad, I just junked a complete rust free 96 gsx shell.

    Otherwise that is saveable, and not as bad as some, but it will take some work. If doing it yourself, some sheetmetal fab, welding and painting skills are needed. If not, I hope you've got deep pockets...
     

    Street Build 218  3

    1990 Plymouth Laser N/T
    fwd · manual · 1G DSM

    314  8

    1987 Toyota Pickup/Hilux
    awd · manual · Misc Vehicles

    Street Build 866  7

    1997 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM

    Street Build 1K  1

    1992 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    manual · 1G DSM

    Street Build 2K  10

    1992 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    awd · manual · 1G DSM
    Loading...
    Audiyo and BLACK'98DSM like this.
  6. Audiyo

    Audiyo Supporting Member

    64
    25
    Joined Jul 22, 2013
    Imperial, Missouri
    @Dusty Landrum & @motomattx You all are awesome! Thanks a bunch for the replies. Very positive and yet another reason why I love this community. Looks like my gut was right and that I should save it. Learning to weld and sheet metal fab is in my near future.

    @BLACK'98DSM Right now I have a Spyder sitting in my garage that has rust free strut towers, would it be easier to cut it from that and weld those in? Or cut out the rust and fab up sheet metal? I have never done welding or sheet metal fab before but like I said I'm quite handy and I am willing to learn. I am just not sure which one would be "easier". Would cutting out the rear wells be an option as well? I guess at this point I am not sure which one would be most cost effective and straightforward. I assume 18g sheets will do fine for this type of work?

    @ThunderChild why you make me sad like that :( I also do not have deep pockets (4 kids and a wife that spends my money) but work hard and learn fairly quick.
     

    Street Build 187  1

    1996 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM
    Loading...
  7. SaskTSI

    SaskTSI Proven Member

    38
    1
    Joined Aug 17, 2019
    St. Brieux, SK, Canada
    I'd say as long as your frame isnt full of rust holes it's worth fixing
     

    131  1

    1995 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    awd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    Audiyo likes this.
  8. ThunderChild

    ThunderChild Supporting VIP

    2,541
    713
    Joined Jan 5, 2012
    Rathdrum, Idaho
    The other option is AWD swapping the Spyder shell. If the Spyder is rust free, then it's alot less work. Just have to like verts.
     

    Street Build 218  3

    1990 Plymouth Laser N/T
    fwd · manual · 1G DSM

    314  8

    1987 Toyota Pickup/Hilux
    awd · manual · Misc Vehicles

    Street Build 866  7

    1997 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM

    Street Build 1K  1

    1992 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    manual · 1G DSM

    Street Build 2K  10

    1992 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    awd · manual · 1G DSM
    Loading...
  9. 609DSM

    609DSM Proven Member

    57
    41
    Joined Aug 13, 2019
    Princeton, New Jersey
    My car is a little bit worse, where the rocker panels meet the wheel well is super rusty and it's still savable I believe, although it is a GS so :/. But your car is easily repairable if you take to someone who knows what they are doing, that rust can be cut out and a good welder can put an almost seamless patch that will make it good as new! As long as chasis structural integrity is fine the rest is really just for the look of the car or holding body parts in place.

    If you are dedicated you can fix it, good luck with your project! Awesome find btw!
     

    Street Build 139  1

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    Audiyo likes this.
  10. BLACK'98DSM

    BLACK'98DSM Proven Member

    809
    265
    Joined Feb 9, 2019
    Hoover, Alabama
    If you've never rolled and formed sheet metal then I wouldn't try it (at least not for this project). It takes years to get it near perfect. Easiest thing to do is the cut the other ones out and put them in.

    And you should probably do some research on welding before you start, I would hate for you to get most of the way done and booger it all up.
     

    Road Race Build 2K  25

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM

    332  3

    2012 Murray Explorer Dune
    rwd · automatic · Misc Vehicles

    249  6

    2009 Troy Bilt Bronco
    rwd · automatic · Misc Vehicles
    Loading...
    Audiyo likes this.
  11. Audiyo

    Audiyo Supporting Member

    64
    25
    Joined Jul 22, 2013
    Imperial, Missouri
    I consider myself fairly decent with my hands and would like to hope that this project wouldn't be outside my scope of abilities. Yes, I have never welded before nor done any fabrication what so ever but Id like to think with some research, patience, and hard work that id be able to tackle something like this. I know this doesn't fully transfer but I have built furniture (no, not IKEA. Dinning room tables, end tables etc), remolded homes, restored complete car interiors and built software all off my own thirst for knowledge, research and skills. Id like to not pay money to have someone do the work as it most likely would not be to my standards (I am fairly OCD) and would like things to be done right...the first time. My neighbor has a welder (not sure if its MIG, TIG or stick) but I have seen him do some welding on his truck before so he at least has some knowledge. I like to read/study and ensure I have the proper knowledge before I start any job to ensure its done correct.

    To be clear Id like to do all this work myself or at the very least do a majority. If you all feel, or some of you that have experience doing work like this think that Id be in over my head please speak up.
     

    Street Build 187  1

    1996 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    609DSM likes this.
  12. 609DSM

    609DSM Proven Member

    57
    41
    Joined Aug 13, 2019
    Princeton, New Jersey
    Learn how to weld with scrap metal. Do all the research you can, then when you are good enough you can apply your skill to your car. Until then manage the rust as best as possible and maintain the vehicle. Maintenance is HUGE with our cars, they are often neglected. Wheel hub assembly, brake assembly, coolant flush, power steering flush, check the integrity of the engine. Get used to everything on the car and taking things apart and putting them back together. If you need to replace something that is a performance critical part like a fuel pump or a turbo that has play in the shaft, just upgrade it! Do this and your project will be accomplished.

    NEVER cheap out on parts!! RESEARCH everything!

    What I've learned from my GS is that it some maintenance was just overlooked, at times when I'm fixing something I get frustrated and it's my only car so if something goes wrong I'm screwed... but I just take a break and do more research if I have to, get some nicotine and then back to it. Enjoy the process because the feeling of something small like getting that one bolt off to finish a job is the best feeling ever.

    People who buy a car already done or send theirs to the shop wont know the satisfaction of doing it yourself, cant beat that feeling.
     

    Street Build 139  1

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    BLACK'98DSM likes this.
  13. Audiyo

    Audiyo Supporting Member

    64
    25
    Joined Jul 22, 2013
    Imperial, Missouri
    I very much agree, which is why Id like to put in the work and use this as an opportunity to learn new skills and do all if not most of the work myself.

    Regarding maintenance, fortunately this is not my first DSM so I am well versed in maintaining the car and keeping up with things. I have a closet full of a full new suspension setup from control arms to wheel bearings, full brake upgrade kit, entire engine gasket set, water pump and timing belt and a bunch more parts ready to be showered on a build. Which is why I reached out about this GSX to ensure it wasn't past saving or beyond my skill set.
     

    Street Build 187  1

    1996 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    BLACK'98DSM and 609DSM like this.
  14. 91talonts1

    91talonts1 Proven Member

    544
    204
    Joined Dec 29, 2008
    Spencer, North Carolina
    I'm all for saving rusty cars especially a good dsm. With that said, the answer to your question of it being 'worth' the work you'd have to put into it is all up to you.

    Financially worth it? Absolutely not. I love our platform and will always own one but these cars just aren't that valuable. It'd be almost impossible for you to properly fix all the rust, repaint, rebuild/replace the engine, and who knows what else that you run into along the way, and still flip it for a profit. Even only being $500 in it so far.

    If this car has sentimental value or you just want the experience/thrill of taking on that kind of project by all means go for it. The cars are built by piecing together hundreds of stamped steel plates which makes it like a puzzle. Just drill the spot welds out, remove the pieces, do the same to the donor car and put your replacement pieces right back in. There are a sh** ton of spot welds and drilling them out gets old quick. The top side of the driver's side tower has around 40 alone from what I remember, but it seemed like 400.

    Just to give you an idea, I recently cut out and replaced most of the sheet metal in the front driver's strut tower on my talon. This was all done to prevent a small amount of rust that had not yet eaten through any metal from getting any worse. Had my car not been a 2gb AWD talon I wouldn't have gone through the trouble. Would've just turned it into a beater and swapped my good stuff to a new shell. I sanded/blasted the front/rear wheel wells and engine bay to bare metal and I am in the process of repainting all of that to ensure it never rusts again. By the time I'm done I'll be in it around $1000 and probably nearly 100 hours of work. I didn't have to buy a welder, cutting tools, sanders, shop compressor, die grinders etc. just materials,the replacement metal and consumables such as sandpaper and spot weld bits etc. So keep the tools you're going to need in mind when budgeting. Body work ain't cheap even when the labor's free.

    I also learned along the way that for every bit of rust that's visible, there's twice as much hiding underneath. I live in the south and still went through three donor strut towers before I found a suitable one, all of which looked perfectly fine from the surface. The way they're put together is a magnet for rust. I didn't need to remove any metal from the rear wells but having seen them in bare metal I feel for you. There's a lot of panels that come together in that corner that's rusted out in your pics and that hole leads directly to the backside of the quarter panel on one side and the interior panels on the other. So who knows the extent of what you'll find in there.

    Sorry to go on such a long rant, just wanted to give you my 2 cents since I've been through a similar yet less extreme version of what you're going to be doing. I hope to see it all patched up and looking new soon!:thumb:
     

    Drag Race Build 3K  15

    1997 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    awd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    609DSM and Audiyo like this.
  15. Audiyo

    Audiyo Supporting Member

    64
    25
    Joined Jul 22, 2013
    Imperial, Missouri
    Don’t apologize that’s the sort of stuff I need to know.

    To be clear I have no intentions of flipping the car nor selling the car for a gain after working on it. If I intended to flip the car I’d just sell it now and make a few hundred off of it and get another GSX.

    Based on that I know these cars are worth saving, at least in my opinion, but at certain points the work required isn’t really worth doing. I’m not sure this car is at that point or not. What I don’t want to happen is I spend hours and then get to a point where I’m replacing half the damn car. I’d much rather flip it and make some cash or just build the engine and drive it till I find a clean shell to swap.

    I also don’t want to spend all my time staring at the car in the garage. I want a DSM I can drive. Seems like a lot of people think this one might be worth putting the work into. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that in the back of my head I’m thinking I could find something a bit more cleaner, obviously paying for it, and I’d be able to enjoy it much sooner.

    Let’s say I do flip it in its current state. Is that even worth it? I could see me potentially getting between 1000/1500$ for it. Maybe I’m crazy though.

    Either way thanks for everyone for your honesty and opinions. Means a bunch.
     

    Street Build 187  1

    1996 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    609DSM likes this.
  16. 609DSM

    609DSM Proven Member

    57
    41
    Joined Aug 13, 2019
    Princeton, New Jersey
    Lmao I would give you 950 for it right now man! It's so hard to find these things in Jersey. But I don't really have that right now Haha. I'll find a good gsx to work on when the time is right
     

    Street Build 139  1

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
  17. BLACK'98DSM

    BLACK'98DSM Proven Member

    809
    265
    Joined Feb 9, 2019
    Hoover, Alabama
    Same here
     

    Road Race Build 2K  25

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM

    332  3

    2012 Murray Explorer Dune
    rwd · automatic · Misc Vehicles

    249  6

    2009 Troy Bilt Bronco
    rwd · automatic · Misc Vehicles
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    609DSM likes this.
  18. 609DSM

    609DSM Proven Member

    57
    41
    Joined Aug 13, 2019
    Princeton, New Jersey
    Here's to both of our future gsx, hopefully they are being taken care of to some extent. Or at least sealed off in some barn LOL
     

    Street Build 139  1

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    BLACK'98DSM likes this.
  19. Audiyo

    Audiyo Supporting Member

    64
    25
    Joined Jul 22, 2013
    Imperial, Missouri
    @91talonts1 what did you use to strip the wheel wells? I wouldn't mind pulling things apart and getting a feel for whats all going on, but there is so much gunk, sealer etc that masks these areas. I cant drill out spot welds if I cant even see them. If anyone has any videos, threads or articles I can start reading up on Id very much appreciate it.

    @BLACK'98DSM & @609DSM , heres to hoping you two find a well taken care of GSX/GST for a great deal.
     

    Street Build 187  1

    1996 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    BLACK'98DSM and 609DSM like this.
  20. 609DSM

    609DSM Proven Member

    57
    41
    Joined Aug 13, 2019
    Princeton, New Jersey
    I personally would use a brass scraper it you didnt care about the paint, it you are worried about the paint then a fairly hard plastic scraper. A heat gun used conservatively might help as well.
     

    Street Build 139  1

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
  21. Audiyo

    Audiyo Supporting Member

    64
    25
    Joined Jul 22, 2013
    Imperial, Missouri

    Street Build 187  1

    1996 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM
    Loading...
  22. 609DSM

    609DSM Proven Member

    57
    41
    Joined Aug 13, 2019
    Princeton, New Jersey

    Street Build 139  1

    1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/T
    fwd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    Audiyo and BLACK'98DSM like this.
  23. 91talonts1

    91talonts1 Proven Member

    544
    204
    Joined Dec 29, 2008
    Spencer, North Carolina
    A heat gun and 5n1 tool work pretty good for the thick sound deadener stuff. Wire wheel on a drill works good too. To remove the leftover paint and residue after removing sound deadener I used a sandblaster.
     

    Drag Race Build 3K  15

    1997 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    awd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    Audiyo and 609DSM like this.
  24. 91talonts1

    91talonts1 Proven Member

    544
    204
    Joined Dec 29, 2008
    Spencer, North Carolina

    Drag Race Build 3K  15

    1997 Eagle Talon TSi AWD
    awd · manual · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    Audiyo likes this.
  25. Audiyo

    Audiyo Supporting Member

    64
    25
    Joined Jul 22, 2013
    Imperial, Missouri
    Just found this video, may be helpful for anyone in the future.

     

    Street Build 187  1

    1996 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder GST
    fwd · automatic · 2G DSM
    Loading...
    BLACK'98DSM and 609DSM like this.

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