Mud flaps rusting out.

Joined
May 18, 2011
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135
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Little Red River
Any ideas on mitigating the rust on these flaps?? Thinking about removing that rubber, spray it down good with primer, then take some jb kwickweld and put a layer down then apply that spray rubber flex seal over it- Think that will work? Or should I use that or another type of epoxy?
Also, does anyone know if the Toyota on front flaps were originally white like the rear flaps? I bought tire paint pen, thinking about whitening them..
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Joined
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Southern Colorado
If there is enough metal left (unrusted) that they are structurally ok to mount, I would slather the insides (the rusty areas you show in your pix) with axle grease. Any coatings (like paints) will have trouble adhering and getting under the loose rubber, but grease (massaged into the rubber with your palm) will totally prevent rust and creep a bit as needed. And, all the grease will be hidden when the flap is mounted.
 
Joined
Aug 9, 2007
Messages
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Tucson, AZ
@OzarkMtnCruiser and @tmxmotorsports ...Mine were not in a badly rusted state, but the rubber on the metal had dried and peeled. I think that my restoration approach would also work for yours. I recommend you first let yours dry out well. Using a utility knife, cut out any old, loose rubber that covers the metal. If that reveals more water, let it dry out. Safely anchor the mud flap in a vise or otherwise stabilize it, and take a small diameter wire wheel brush in a power drill to those areas to remove the rust and any partially loose rubber. What I did then was paint several coats of black Flex-Seal onto those areas. You can see the result a bit in the photo here. Builds - Sentimental Restoration of Family 1990 FJ62 - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/sentimental-restoration-of-family-1990-fj62.1095049/#post-11944186

When you are ready to reinstall the mud flaps, be sure to use RTV so that you get a good seal to the body panel to try to keep some water out of there. Builds - Sentimental Restoration of Family 1990 FJ62 - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/sentimental-restoration-of-family-1990-fj62.1095049/page-3#post-12126702

I dug up another post with a closer look at what I did. FJ60 Mud Flaps - Please respond again! - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/fj60-mud-flaps-please-respond-again.1038696/#post-11827783

If you are repainting the white lettering on the back flaps, here is a note worth seeing on technique. I explain why flat paint is beneficial. FJ60 Mud Flaps - Please respond again! - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/fj60-mud-flaps-please-respond-again.1038696/#post-11828990

Good luck.
 
Last edited:

CruiserTrash

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Joined
Jul 15, 2020
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632
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Denver
I was talking about this in another thread with some folks.... I think the trick would be to yank out the rusty metal inserts and have some pieces of the same exact shape that go on the outside and sandwich the mud flap. I started some CAD work on them but then got distracted - maybe I'll pick it up this year at some point. To me - and don't get me wrong, I love Mr. T's engineering as much as the next Cruiser owner - putting metal inside of perforated rubber and dangling it above a wet road seems like building in a point of failure. Use some external pieces of metal to accomplish the same task and at least they won't blow out the rubber and you can easily replace them.

If those metal inserts come out in one piece and at least have the outline intact I might pay for you to ship them to me if you're willing. Nothing I have here is usable for tracing.
 
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
135
Location
Little Red River
If there is enough metal left (unrusted) that they are structurally ok to mount, I would slather the insides (the rusty areas you show in your pix) with axle grease. Any coatings (like paints) will have trouble adhering and getting under the loose rubber, but grease (massaged into the rubber with your palm) will totally prevent rust and creep a bit as needed. And, all the grease will be hidden when the flap is mounted.
I took them off today. I'm planning on peeling off all that rubber- it's useless, then priming. I'm wanting future rigidity.
@OzarkMtnCruiser and @tmxmotorsports ...Mine were not in a badly rusted state, but the rubber on the metal had dried and peeled. I think that my restoration approach would also work for yours. I recommend you first let yours dry out well. Using a utility knife, cut out any old, loose rubber that covers the metal. If that reveals more water, let it dry out. Safely anchor the mud flap in a vise or otherwise stabilize it, and take a small diameter wire wheel brush in a power drill to those areas to remove the rust and any partially loose rubber. What I did then was paint several coats of black Flex-Seal onto those areas. You can see the result a bit in the photo here. Builds - Sentimental Restoration of Family 1990 FJ62 - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/sentimental-restoration-of-family-1990-fj62.1095049/#post-11944186

When you are ready to reinstall the mud flaps, be sure to use RTV so that you get a good seal to the body panel to try to keep some water out of there. Builds - Sentimental Restoration of Family 1990 FJ62 - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/sentimental-restoration-of-family-1990-fj62.1095049/page-3#post-12126702

I dug up another post with a closer look at what I did. FJ60 Mud Flaps - Please respond again! - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/fj60-mud-flaps-please-respond-again.1038696/#post-11827783

If you are repainting the white lettering on the back flaps, here is a note worth seeing on technique. I explain why flat paint is beneficial. FJ60 Mud Flaps - Please respond again! - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/fj60-mud-flaps-please-respond-again.1038696/#post-11828990

Good luck.
Thanks- looks like we had very similar idea of how to straighten these out- Did you use the liquid flex seal and brush or tape and spray?
I cleared out the rubber that was falling apart and epoxied two washers in place and since I can’t do anything for the rust on the back side, I’m just going to put a light layer of epoxy and seal one side and give it a little more backbone and then flex coat.. I’ll post up a few pics when I’m done-

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Joined
Aug 9, 2007
Messages
832
Location
Tucson, AZ
I took them off today. I'm planning on peeling off all that rubber- it's useless, then priming. I'm wanting future rigidity.

Thanks- looks like we had very similar idea of how to straighten these out- Did you use the liquid flex seal and brush or tape and spray?
I cleared out the rubber that was falling apart and epoxied two washers in place and since I can’t do anything for the rust on the back side, I’m just going to put a light layer of epoxy and seal one side and give it a little more backbone and then flex coat.. I’ll post up a few pics when I’m done-

View attachment 2887077
Liquid Flex-Seal. Takes a long time to cure between coats, but feels really nice when complete.
 
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
135
Location
Little Red River
Here they are with all the loose rubber pulled off, I did hit it a little with a wire wheel to clean it up- then a light coat of epoxy. The epoxy really made them much stiffer than I expected. I’ll probably hit the epoxy with the wire wheel to scratch them up so the flex seal will adhere better-
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