Protect Your Patina | Tips and Tricks to Retain Your Rust

Everyone loves a glossy yardstick paint job with super cool graphics and brand-new chrome trim, right? You can see your reflection a mile away and sometimes a pretty lady will check her makeup on your shiny hood. But what about driving it every weekend to department stores or cruise-ins? Every single rock chip in the road scares you when it flings up and makes a noise. Every minivan means a door ding and every weekend consists of detailing and waxing your perfect paint. Not to mention the incredibly high cost of a five-star paint job in the first place, along with the maintenance bills that come along with it. That’s a lot of daily stress you’re adding to your life that can all be washed away with some rain and rust if you’re keen on patina.
We intend to drive our ’65 Chevy C10 as often as possible, we are parking it in our driveway outside our house, and we don’t plan to buy a bunch of fancy cleaning chemicals to protect it from the environment. If this sounds like your situation, we have some great tips and tricks to protect your patina. Don’t have patina already? We have a solution for that, too!
When we originally bought this ’65 Chevy C10, we knew the paint would need to be addressed. It had dents and dings on every panel and some teal color poking through some paint-flaked panels. To paint or not to paint, that’s the question. Either way, paint will be last, so might as well make it cool while we save our pennies.

All you need to achieve a faux patina finish is an over-the-counter rust activator like this one from Modern Metal Products. This is water-base and will rust naturally over time if exposed to the proper elements. The rust activator will speed up the oxidation process and create a beautiful, authentic rust finish in minutes.

Jeff Lagasse at Gen One Customs cleaned and prepped the surface before allowing it to fully dry. This will help the chemical bond with the metal and do its magic! Within minutes it was activating and aging. How cool is that!
Moving to the front of the truck, and using Google images as inspiration, Jeff added some more chemical coats in strategic yet natural-looking locations.
With the front and back of the cab coated to perfection, it was simply a waiting game. Once it’s dry, we can sand some of the edges to pull more of the teal color out and use some black spray paint to darken the corners.

 All dry and put back together. Looks great, don’t you think? Now to allow it to get some sun for a few days and then get it protected.


To protect our patina, we will be heading to a paint shop for a coat of KBS MAXX Clear. This urethane clearcoat provides a long lasting and durable finish while keeping its beautiful finish for years. Theoretical coverage is 450 square feet per gallon, so keep that in mind. We will be detailing this process in the next issue of C10 Builder’s Guide. Subscribe now!
Preserving Patina - How To Tips and Tricks | IH8MUD Forum
Until then, we want to keep our patina clean and oxidation free if possible. A few tips for the first-timers include these chemical cleaners and protectors:
* After a solid wash, throw on some rubber gloves and start scrubbing the body panels with CLR (Calcium Lime Rust) and green Scotch-Brite pad. This product is easily available at the grocery store.
* Rust Converter is perfect for under the wheel wells and cab area. This product stops rust on iron and steel surfaces and converts it into a black coating that seals out moisture and protects against future corrosion.
* At this point you can use boiled linseed oil, not straight linseed oil, to rub a heavy coat into the exposed rust and a thin coat on the rest of the truck. After it soaks in a bit, rub as much as much as possible off the paint as you can with paper shop towels.
* Finally, if you want to coat the frame rails and suspension, Fluid Film is a good solution. This stuff is a spray film that coats and soaks into your metal to form a protective petroleum-based film. It does not dry out like the Rust Converter. It collects dirt over time but a quick blast with the pressure washer and the dirt goes and the fluid film mostly stays. It takes about three cans to do the underside of a short bed truck. It’s only about $12 a can.
Now that we have a clean and non-permanent coating on our ’65 Chevy C10, we decided to order a California Car Cover since it’s sitting outside. The Supremeweave cover is the company’s new and exclusive fleece-lined woven outdoor car cover. The fabric includes a water-repellent “Hydromax” finish to protect against rain while still allowing the fabric to be exceptionally breathable.
Supremeweave is a versatile material as it provides excellent weather protection when used outdoors, but it has a soft lining for paint protection when being used indoors on a stored collector car. Washing machine safe, backed by a five5-year limited warranty, and best of all it’s made in the U.S.A!
Features of California Car Cover’s Supremeweave material:
* Durable woven fabric with a soft fleece under lining
* Also great for indoor use as it is dust proof
* Lightweight and easy to use and store
* Highly water resistant yet breathable fabric
* Washer safe for easy care and maintenance
* Custom fit for each vehicle
* Folds to one-third the size of typical outdoor car covers
Next, you unfold the sides and stretch over the front and rear of the truck. Elastic is sewn into the front and rear, which will keep it in place under normal conditions.

Now it can sit and wait for the next opening at the paint shop without affecting our new patina finish.