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Does a hardtop protect sills?

This is the section to see what is hidding behind those panels, and how to get rid of the tin worm, cutting out and welding in fresh metal, protection and paint.
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alexcruncha
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Does a hardtop protect sills?

Postby alexcruncha » Sat Sep 29, 2018 9:16 am

Hi Menders,

My understanding of the sill rust issue our cars have is due to the fact water gets in the sills and sits in there, then they rust from inside out. One way water gets in (I think) is because water runs down the rain rail and down the two pipes at the end of the rain rail and somehow ends up running through the sills (maybe I'm wrong but this is what I think happens).

If this is the case then it would make sense that using a hardtop would solve this issue to some degree as the rain rail and two pipes gets disused when using the hardtop.

Does anyone with more knowledge than me have an opinion on this? Essentially I want to know if I should be investing in a hardtop in order to prolong the life of my sills as my car is kept on the road.

Thanks guys
Alex
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blackyb
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Re: Does a hardtop protect sills?

Postby blackyb » Sun Sep 30, 2018 12:21 pm

I'm no expert by a long shot but its my understanding that the main cause of the water ingress is owners failling to ensure that all the relevant drainage points are kept clean. Our 91 Eunos has never had a hard top fitted and as of now we dont have any such corrosion issues.

On the 2003 sport it had a hard top and it had rear sill corrosion issues. So its not a given that a hard top would solve the problem. The cause here was the way the sills are folded and joined, rectified by using a good strong sea.lant along the edges.

Sure Wayne or one of the other master menders will also have something to say when they get in from mending.
1993 1.6 Eunos Roadster (gone)
1998 UK Mk 2 1.6 (gone)
2003 1.8 SVT Sport (Why did I sell it!!!!)
1991 1.6 Eunos Roadster with a bit of bling.

Life is a journey, best travelled topless in an MX5!!
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alexcruncha
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Re: Does a hardtop protect sills?

Postby alexcruncha » Mon Oct 01, 2018 10:21 am

blackyb wrote:I'm no expert by a long shot but its my understanding that the main cause of the water ingress is owners failling to ensure that all the relevant drainage points are kept clean. Our 91 Eunos has never had a hard top fitted and as of now we dont have any such corrosion issues.

On the 2003 sport it had a hard top and it had rear sill corrosion issues. So its not a given that a hard top would solve the problem. The cause here was the way the sills are folded and joined, rectified by using a good strong sea.lant along the edges.

Sure Wayne or one of the other master menders will also have something to say when they get in from mending.


Thank for the feedback. Thats very interesting to hear that your later car with a hardtop has onset of rust before your 8 year older mk1 without one.

I've made a point of keeping the drain holes clear since I had it but its showing early signs (bubbling has only just started right under the rear sill). My issue is that I dont have a garage so the car is permanently outdoors. I also only drive the car once a week to keep it going (not sure if this is a good or bad thing as far as rust is concerned).

Were/are your 2 cars kept outdoors or garaged and are they daily drivers? Also, you mention using a sealant along the edges? Is this sealant you have added yourself?
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blackyb
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Re: Does a hardtop protect sills?

Postby blackyb » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:20 pm

For a while the green one (2003 Sport) was a daily driver and used all year round and kept outside. Its rust issue wasn't due to water ingress via the drain holes but by the way the rear sill/arch was constructed at manufacture in that the seams were not water tight so let water in. The red un (1991 Eunos) has been garaged all the time we have had her and also by the previous owner. She does get wet (soaked in Scotland this year) but is rarely exposed to winter salt.

Sealant wise, both were given a real good coat of waxoil when we first got them and topped up every spring, the various edges around the sills and wheel arches have been given and extra coat to try and stop water ingress, nothing special, just get at it when its fine and dry and slap it on, well you now what I mean.

On the green sport, we had the rear sill/arch cut out and rebuilt but in the process we sprayed every bit we could with underseal. We sold the car a few years later and still see her in the local supermarket and I cant resist having a peek and safe to say no signs of any bubbling.

I'm lucky in that I have a decent sized garage and a three in one car lift that lets me get my cars up in the air about a meter off the ground and then I can rock them so that the front or back is in the air giving me fairly good access to the underside.
1993 1.6 Eunos Roadster (gone)
1998 UK Mk 2 1.6 (gone)
2003 1.8 SVT Sport (Why did I sell it!!!!)
1991 1.6 Eunos Roadster with a bit of bling.

Life is a journey, best travelled topless in an MX5!!
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Re: Does a hardtop protect sills?

Postby Mazda Mender » Wed Oct 03, 2018 10:10 am

In a word ....No
Yes it will stop the rain in the rain rial and drainage trays and drainage tubes as long as they are kept clean any way as the norm, but the sills are double skinned and over lap which water can still creep between to breed tin worm so are the arch lips and owners also forget that you do as a norm get condensation in the boot that also runs down into the arches and sills.
Protection is the key for a long life.
M-m
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