Well, my Jag tech bud is my hero today … Got the good news that he really got going with Superblack ('92 5.3) 's three long stuck-on wheels today. Turns out all they really needed to break loose from their “mating” were good hard wacks with a RUBBER mallet. Until now, he had been using a 10-lb. sledge w. a short piece of board on them, as I posted some time back, as well as doing the “driving slowly with the lug nuts loosened” trick. Here all these weeks I assumed he was using one of my two rubber mallets in the endeavor. When he found out I had a rubber mallet (actually I own TWO) he gave it his all again and off they came. When I went out to view her she was up on cinder blocks (rear) and low-profile floor jack (front) level, with all four wheels off.
As to the wheels, yep, a bunch of rust on the inside of the three stuck wheels as well as on the wheel hubs. We are cleaning the hubs and inside of wheels up with brake parts cleaner spray (probably more than once over) and a wire brush, followed by spraying and soaking (repeatedly) by Rustoleum rust remover spray gel. Will then take the wheels and tires to NTB for new Cooper tires, two at a time, in Superblue and reinstall ourselves, with some anti-seize put on the contact points. btw, the old tires turned out to be “Prime-somethings Sports” brand … white letters, with the white letters turned inside. I had never heard of those before, and wonder if they are even still made. Possibly they are/were a NE U.S. brand ?
We can now finally have a good look under the car all over, or I should say, at least my tech, can, b/c HE can fit under there He would take pics with his phone, and share them with me (I will post some of them later on here). As to the brakes, all four badly need new pads. There is slight scoring on one of the front rotors, but the rear passenger side rotor has a bit more, but still not “un-usuable”. However, given what a major PITA it is to replace those inboard rotors, we are just going to go with new pads all around and hope for the best, at least for the time being.
We see that most of the underside rust is confined to the passenger side rear, as we suspected, and the patch kit I got from the U.K. for the area that the radius arm on that side mounts to is not going to be quite large enough, so whatever welder we use is going to have to do some additional “fabrication” work. Oddly enough, the arm itself, along with its bearings, seems to be fine, but obviously the “cup” is gone as well as that attachment point b/c of the rust (see my pics posted a few weeks ago). We also can clearly now see the 4 suspension mountings back there. I have the new ones, and I guess it would be prudent to replace them, one at a time, once we have the new tires on her.
After looking things over, me and my tech believe that the car had indeed sat on some swampy or marshy ground for quite some time with the tires flat, leaving the rear section (particularly on the passenger side) to be in contact with (or even partially settled in) some muddy, clay-ish soil for a long time. After the restorative welding is finished, will coat that bottom well with two coats of Rustoleum’s 2-1 Rust Remover + (Rubberized) Coating, as to the immovable and non-exhaust parts. The rest will get that black rust preventative paint (high heat version for the exhaust parts).