|Antique Tractor Paint and Bodywork|
Re: Cleaning to Bare Metal & Priming Question
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You don't really have that big of a mess on your hands, so I hope you aren't stressing out too much about it.
The wire wheel is going to get it back off the fastest. Some guys don't like to use them because they "polish" the surface...we haven't really had a problem but you could get a box of scuff pads or 320 sand paper and abrade the metal after cleaning with a wire wheel if it concerns you (it definitely won't be a step backwards). If you can't primer all at once and paint in your situation, I would suggest priming as you go as mentioned before. When it comes time to paint, scuff the cured primer yet again with some scuff pads, do a final seal coat of primer, then spray your paint on within recoat windows.
I always recommend against cheap primers, and you definitely don't want a primer that is going to "roll up" under whatever you do the final scuff with when the time comes...you'll have a whole new mess on your hands.
Another option would be to massage one of the phosphoric products into the metal with a scuff pad, section by section. Keep drips at bay and be careful with it -- get the rust dissolved as best you can then wipe *clean* with a damp cloth, then move to the next section. Again with this I would recommend scuffing once it comes time to prime/paint fully...I'm not a fan of trying to paint over hardened products of any sort without a good scuff to get things to adhere. I would recommend rolling out plastic under your tractor while you do this to keep concrete spots at bay if you drip a bit here and there.
Your primer cannot be an acid based primer to go over the phosphoric coating. I'm a fan of Kirker EnduroPrime epoxy primer these days. Fantastic product at a great price. It does take a couple hours to flash off for paint, but you might be able to turn your heat up to like 80* for a bit once done spraying to get around that...it sounds like you are a little pinched for time like the rest of us.
The only way in MY opinion that you will avoid re-scuffing whatever you put on the metal is if you prep the entire piece, prime, paint all with in a couple days.
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