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Unread 02-04-2017, 12:29 PM   #1
gpj
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Location: Louisville, KY; North Captiva, FL
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Default Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

Here it is, the slowest buggy on North Captiva Island, FL:

IMG_1215.jpgIMG_1216.jpg

It's a 2003 Club Car DX series drive, probably one of the last DXs made with tapered roller bearings in the front hubs. To be fair, it's probably no longer the slowest cart on the island. After getting the new batteries broken in and changing the rear differential oil to Royal Purple SAE 30, the cart seems to have picked up a couple of mph. We top out at 15 mph with a single rider. Torque is great. I can pull a BIG trailer full of vegetation, etc. We have had six people in the cart while also towing a bicycle rider (I just pedal alongside, grab a rear seat support, and get a free electric assist). North Captiva is golf carts-only and many residents have upgraded their carts so they really haul arse! Some carts are definitely hitting 25 on the relatively rough sand roads. At least our kids are no longer begging us to get a faster cart!

In real life I am a mechanical engineering faculty member who teaches/researches topics related to ground vehicle technology and machine design. I can't tell you how impressed I am with these CC DS carts from an automotive perspective. For what they are, they are just as good as passenger cars. The stock suspension, steering, braking, and powertrain systems were made using high-quality components, and are robust and easy to maintain. The CC aluminum frame is a work of art. Driving the cart around the island or even riding along as a passenger is a barrel of fun!

In addition to the new batteries and differential oil, I have repaired the main brake and parking brake linkages, and swapped the old rusted wheels for a like-new set of take-offs. I've been fixing/upgrading things as I can, but it is difficult because everything has to be hauled to the island via ferry. If I suddenly realize I need some PB blaster or a new bolt, I can't hop in the car, drive a few blocks, and pick it up. If I can't bum the needed item from a neighbor or come up with a work-around, it means waiting to complete the job until the NEXT vacation visit. This logistics problem is one of the reasons I appreciate this forum so much: the advice and comprehensive knowledge available here helps me plan out a job so that I have a chance of bringing everything I'll need and getting it done the first time.

So... after the longest introduction in the history of BGW, I come to the subject of this post. On our next visit I plan to "renew" the front suspension. At the very least, the leaf spring and spindles need new bushings. Corrosion is a problem on the island, and whatever paint or powdercoat the suspensions had is long gone. While I have the front wheels off I will probably hose down, wire brush, and paint the parts. I am considering either traditional paint or POR 15 rust preventative coating. The POR 15 is expensive (around $30/pint)! Has anybody tried POR 15 for a suspension or underbody application, and does it hold up well enough to justify the cost? Thanks!
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Unread 02-04-2017, 02:03 PM   #2
Gone Wild
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

I have used por 15 on many different vehicles, jeeps, cars, and trucks. I have never used it on a golf cart but I'd imagine it will work the same. Your environment is rough on steel salt water, salty air, island living. I am jealous. I recommend por 15 it should hold up in this environment. The better the prep work the longer it will last.
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Unread 02-04-2017, 02:17 PM   #3
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

What about an undercoat or bed liner?
I live by a beach and humidity sux here, rust is emanate.
On my yami, rust is there and I can't decide what to use either.
I'd first treat the rust with ospho rust treatment or any other rust treatment product.
Then prime or just paint it thick or bed line.
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Unread 02-04-2017, 02:25 PM   #4
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

Once salt eats into metal, no wire brushing will remove it. Only slow it down. It seems you have enough sand on the island, do you have a way to whip some at the rusted parts? Then prime and paint, or POR.
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Unread 02-04-2017, 02:44 PM   #5
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

GPJ,
Salt environment is definitely harsh. I deal with it myself.

Is there anyway you could rent or borrow a small sand blaster if you can get to clean metal, wash with soap and water then prime and paint you might be good longer term.

I use Rustoleum, not expensive easy to find. Only pain is it drys slow. Por 15 has a great reputation but I have no experience using it.

George
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Unread 02-04-2017, 03:10 PM   #6
gpj
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

Quote:
Originally Posted by dundeebarnbuggy View Post
Once salt eats into metal, no wire brushing will remove it. Only slow it down. It seems you have enough sand on the island, do you have a way to whip some at the rusted parts? Then prime and paint, or POR.
You're right: plenty of sand! Unfortunately, I don't have a sand blaster down there, or a big enough compressor to run one!
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Unread 02-04-2017, 03:19 PM   #7
gpj
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

Quote:
Originally Posted by BLACK DEATH View Post
What about an undercoat or bed liner?
I live by a beach and humidity sux here, rust is emanate.
On my yami, rust is there and I can't decide what to use either.
I'd first treat the rust with ospho rust treatment or any other rust treatment product. Then prime or just paint it thick or bed line.
I thought about spray-on undercoat, but was afraid it might trap moisture if it cracked or came loose without completely falling off. I googled "ospho" and it sounds like a rust converter might be a good strategy to use with regular paint. There's also an equivalent Rustoleum product that seems to be about half the price of Ospho. That might be worth a try.

Good luck with your fight against the elements!
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Unread 02-04-2017, 03:27 PM   #8
gpj
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2016CTD View Post
I have used por 15 on many different vehicles, jeeps, cars, and trucks. I have never used it on a golf cart but I'd imagine it will work the same. Your environment is rough on steel salt water, salty air, island living. I am jealous. I recommend por 15 it should hold up in this environment. The better the prep work the longer it will last.
Thanks for the suggestions. You're right about the environment: absolutely brutal. Club Car seem to be the preferred brand on the island due to the aluminum frame. During the rainy season the roads have puddles you have to see to believe. Many people get oversized wheels and a lift just to increase their practical wading depth.
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Unread 02-04-2017, 03:39 PM   #9
gpj
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

Quote:
Originally Posted by gkcooper View Post
GPJ,
Salt environment is definitely harsh. I deal with it myself.

Is there anyway you could rent or borrow a small sand blaster if you can get to clean metal, wash with soap and water then prime and paint you might be good longer term.

I use Rustoleum, not expensive easy to find. Only pain is it drys slow. Por 15 has a great reputation but I have no experience using it.

George
I'm already known as the biggest bum on the island: a semi-Yankee DIYer who has to borrow all of his tools from the neighbors! Thank goodness for southern hospitality! Based on the suggestions (including yours), I'm inclined to take a drill-mounted rotary wire brush to the parts, clean and dry them to remove residual salt, coat everything with Rust-Oleum rust reformer, followed by Rust-Oleum undercoating or paint (probably the latter). At the very least I should get 3 or four years out of the job.
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Unread 02-04-2017, 03:55 PM   #10
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Default Re: Paint recommendations for a 2003 DX front suspension rebuild...

I'm also guessing that maybe it's better to use a brush or a roller vs a spray gun as they would put it on thicker or you could spray several coats with a gun.
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