I haven’t had a lot of time to play with my Audi this week but I did manage to steal an hour or two here and there.

What I’m trying to achieve at the moment is to strip everything from the car that I need to so that the rust can be fully assessed and then repaired. I’m going to get a pro to do the rust repairs but I want to hand them a car that’s as ready to go as it can be. This will save them time (and me money) and I can be sure that no parts will get lost. If any parts are broken I know about it and what they are. Once the rust is sorted I can think about getting everything else assembled and working and get the car on the road.

The carpets are all out now. The carpets themselves are in reasonable condition and when I clean them and re-fit them properly they should look decent.

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The floor looks pretty good. There’s a lot of old insulation which is cracking and flaking off, but minimal rust. The wiring is pretty scary looking but that’s a job I can sort out. Eventually!

There has been a leak at the back of the dash making some of the insulation foam hold water and rust the central tunnel. This is most likely because a cover that should have deflected rain from going down the heater motor hole was in the boot.

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I did actually fix something this week! The gas struts for the boot lid had completely failed and the lid is surprisingly heavy! Propping it with a piece of wood wasn’t really safe as it’s heavy enough to cause serious injury if it drops, so I got on the Googles and found a UK company. SGS Engineering, who supply replacements for the stock struts. They were very reasonably priced at just over $100 including delivery and arrived in about four days!

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Now that it was safe to work on the boot I stripped the liner from the lid, finding that it had been glued on. This will take some cleaning up!

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I also removed the driver’s side door card and the wing mirrors. The mirrors were a bit fiddly to get out. The wires run down through the door, through the flexi and under the dash, and connect to a plug there. So to remove the mirrors the chunky plugs have to be pulled all the way back.

Next I decided to be brave and look at some of the wiring. I found out from a previous owner that the car once had an alarm fitted. From what I could see, a lot of the alarm had been disconnected, leaving wires everywhere that go nowhere and end in soldered and taped joints. One of the more obvious non-factory parts was the black box you can see hanging in the footwell shot. I traced the wires and found that it was mostly connected to the electric window switches, so it must have been a total closure type alarm. After a bit of work cutting and re-connecting wires it was out. The car still still started, but the windows didn’t work any more. A second look and I found that I’d missed a couple of the factory wires that had been cut and folded away, so I reconnected them and all was good. And the windows no longer worked with ignition off, which they used to!

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As I had the window switches working I decided to look at the passenger electric window which apparently hasn’t workd for ten years. The motor worked but no movement happened. After some tinkering, a small amount of blood from my hand and some cursing I got it to move this far:

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I just bought some silicone grease spray so I’ll get the runners all lubed up then try again.

And finally I found that my car has the talking dash! This should be amusing!

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Follow the full Project Rusty build here.

My build thread is on our forums here.

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