Bondo is good! Primer, not so good.

Posted: 2011.09.07 in DOOMED!, General

I must take a moment to extol the virtues of Bondo, “The” automotive body filler. This stuff is easier to use than standard wood filler, sands easier and comes out to a silky-smooth finish. While it sounds like I’m talking about a fine wine, let me tell you. I’ve worked with normal, gritty wood filler, and this stuff is amazing… There is nothing bad I can say about the product.

The weather’s been pretty good over the last couple of days, and I managed to cut, carve and assemble the entire marquee unit for the arcade. My skills with a router, while still in their infancy, are growing. I do still need to make sure I have adequate stock available on either side of the cutting bit, as I dipped into areas where my router should not have cut, but it’s all a learning process. In the end, all in all, I am happy with the results of the cuts, and what I’m not happy with can be fixed up with the aforementioned Bondo.

What I do NOT like, mind you, is the way MDF just sucks up primer. I must have sprayed half a can of primer at the unit, and it still has sections where it looks like nothing is covered. Just for reference, here’s a pic of the machine from in-game. I worked on the marquee section, which is at the top…

…and here is a pic of the rear, showing the 90 degree angled grooves nicely at the top, as well as the inlaid accenting at the bottom. I think I might do a little more playing, however, as I think it needs those little accents that show up near the front of the marquee. In the reference pic, they look to be where bolts might be attached, and you know me. I’m a stickler for those little details! (Even when they take me hours to fabricate!)

In from the front, you will see how the new speakers are going to be installed, and the wood where the fluorescent light will be installed to light the marquee.

Finally, some detail on the way my CarveWright inlaid the speaker routing. (No, I did not do that nice, neat job all by myself. I had the help of a very capable piece of hardware. My computerized carving system is quite a dream.)

One of the Members of the BYOAC Forums has put me onto a product called “spray putty”, which gives an amazing finish, as it looks like it goes on a bit thicker, and is sandable like the Bondo… I need to find something like this, as the primer ends off with a very rough finish – even on uncut MDF. It’s a pain to run your hand over primed MDF, knowing fully well it was smooth before you painted, and now, feels like you’re running your hands across sandpaper. The spray putty will, undoubtedly, be an improvement. As it is, for now, I will continue to sand and re-prime the unit with what I have.

As for today, my Wife and I went over to Home Depot and got some new MDF for the back of the unit. Sooner or later, I’m going to need to clean out a section of the kids’ toyroom (slash “The Arcade”) so that I have room for this beast! Can’t wait!

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