What causes rust

We all have seen all shapes, sizes light and heavy. And no I am not speaking of human beings, but referring to the title of the topic as it relates to the XJS. I received a message this week with a question about an online topic about facelift body panels being made of galvanized steel. So here is my response.

I have personally dismantled around 20, stripped, and painted several panels and I can tell you that I never noticed any difference in the metal nor ever heard of this. Having restored a historic mansion here in the States with some galvanized steel columns, I did not see any benefit other than postponing rust.

When Ford purchased Jaguar in the 80s, they did not have much interest in the preservation of the early or last of the XJS. For this reason, they stopped reproducing replacement parts. So spending more money on the type of metal used does not add up. What could make more sense is the fact that fewer of the early cars were preserved and too many times left to the elements as many people did not want to properly repair them. But the northern states in the US and UK as a rule seem to have the most rusted versions of the XJS.

So the answer could be simple. The earlier cars just have an additional ten plus years of sitting around and all it takes is a small section of the undercoating lifting thereby exposing the bare metal to the road salt and moisture. This is the reason most cars that rust, always seem to do so on the rocker panels located between the wheel-wells and the rear quarter below the trunk/boot area and the fenders/ forward wing just behind the front wheels. So one should always avoid a car with a lot of rust. Never buy into the description that says very little rust because if very little is visible, most times there is much more hidden. There are still plenty of clean rust-free examples here in the States and we are very close to posting some certified pre-owned on our site for sale.

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