Jun 19, 2024, 11:08 pm


New, New TardisBuilders!

Post how you have protected your box

Started by the-big-glas-box, Jan 24, 2013, 09:47 pm

Previous topic - Next topic


Jan 24, 2013, 09:47 pm Last Edit: Jan 27, 2013, 11:18 pm by kiwidoc
Hi everyone i am looking into tardis box weather protection... I have heared a few different approaches to weather proofing the most common here seems to be rubberized car body undercoat, latex primer and then latex paint over top.

The rubberized car body undercoat will seal gaps i hear but what if you want your box to be out in the garden but be able to be moved also? I'm guessing u cant use silicon sealant from a gun or anything that will seal the gaps complete 9like the rubberized under coat) as you wont be able to separate the parts of the box to flat pack again without breaking the seals.

what are people doing in regards to weather proofing and moving.
Do people once their tardis is weather proofed keep their box in one place?.


My tardis lives outdoors but its not movable (in that it cant be taken apart without major work). I used the rubberizer on the roof and so far its holding up. There is a leak somewhere and rain will get in through windows when its stormy enough so i threw a tarp over it for the winter. Its a chicken coop and i got tired of cleaning out the wet pine shavings after every rain.
the tardis has been up for 7 or 8 months, i'm guessing, so its seen 100+ degree days and rain. I should repatch/caulk/paint it in the summer since the wood has swelled and contracted enough to create cracks


With regards to the rubberized paint method, given that all you need is a thin coat there is nothing to say that you couldn't spray all of the pieces separately and then paint them before assembly.  The only concern I might have there is if there is moisture inside the wood and what it might do once trapped inside.


Mine has been outside since June last year  and hasn't leaked, although there has been a  certain amount of water seepage through the sloping roof panels. I intend to redo those when the fine  weather arrives but this time fibreglass over the wood. Other than that it has been fine. When i built it all the wood pieces had five coats of sealent inside and outside and the  paint is Dulux weatherproof satin Oxford blue - four coats in total.  PC050066.JPG


I think you just have to make a tradeoff. If you want something weatherproof you can't have something that can be disassembled.  And if you want something that can be disassembled it isn't going to be weatherproof. 

I suppose with the proper tools and skill you could put some kind of gasket at each joint; maybe flashing and/or counterflashing, but water is tricky in a wet climate.  It gets in through the tiniest cracks.  For example before I found the right screws I had a couple screws that went through the wall by around 1/4".  Even with paint and caulk, I run into water making its way inside through those screws.

The other thing is, again, ventilation.  If you work out a way to get airflow it helps the thing to dry out inside even if it isn't completely waterproof. My floor isn't secured. It is basically a pallet inside the walls with a plastic vapor barrier sheet under it (don't cut that too large because if there is overhang rain will fall on it, run under your floor and be trapped there instead of being absorbed by the ground).  When that wasn't cutting it I drilled a whole under the lamp (I'd initially made the roof completely sealed as my lamp didn't light up) and then added a small gap between the glass and the roof for ventilation.  That, along with judicious caulking, seems to have liked moisture intrusion (fingers crossed).  If it hadn't, my next step would've been cutting holes between the lintel signs (again, I did a cheap simple build so the signs don't light up or anything. It was good enough for the original series, it is good enough for me. ;) ). 
"My dear Litefoot, I've got a lantern and a pair of waders, and possibly the most fearsome piece of hand artillery in all England. What could possibly go wrong?"
-The Doctor.


Thankyou all for your replies. I am liking the rubberized method the best so far i think.
What is fiberglass over wood? is this a paint or something?



Fiberglass is a multi-part product.  First you have the matting (like used on screen doors).  Then you have the resin.
Bill "the Doctor" Rudloff


i think the rubberized method would work the best but your gonna have to compensate for the thickness of the coating when making your parts fit together, that is if your gonna disassemble later on. i think one of the key things to keep in mind is to keep water from pooling up in areas, flat level areas like the sign boxes and the roof steps. a slight angle should help flow water a way. the fiberglass is another good idea but keep in mind that the wood is gonna expand and contract due to moisture and temperature changes and the fiberglass won't resulting in cracks which will eventually let water in to rot it from the inside out. in the end entropy wins no matter what.


I had a go at the rubberised car underbody paint method last year, and it generally holds up really well.

you can see the application process i went through here...

http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?topic=2793;start=15#lastPost (around May 2012)

the only thing I would say its that make sure the wood you use is very dry before you apply it. I have some bubbling issues with one of the sides of the first roof tier I need to attend to later this year.

Also the top part of my roof is covered in fibreglass, which holds up really well.

Weatherproofing really is a bugger to get right, and I'm still not there now. I still get water ingress through the top signs even now. I'm pretty resigned to the fact that you can never make it completely waterproof, but the more things you can do to alleviate the problem the longer your box should last.

As the great man said, Water always wins... ;)


There are also a couple rubber roof applications designed specifically for patching roof leaks.  One of them comes in a gallon can and has the consistency somewhere between tar or axle grease so I suppose that isn't the best.  I also have an aerosol can that my neighbor swears by (for patching roof leaks).  I haven't tried that on a roof yet.  Out here you get about 9 months of rain so I've got to wait for things to dry out a bit. 
"My dear Litefoot, I've got a lantern and a pair of waders, and possibly the most fearsome piece of hand artillery in all England. What could possibly go wrong?"
-The Doctor.


Cheers for your replies guys keep them coming. loving seeing what people have used.

fivefingeredstyre i have looked at ur pics and i can see the fiberglassing of the top. how do you apply it? if its two parts matting and resin.

Im wondering like some of u have said if it would be ok to use a rubberized car body undercoat then the fiberglass then the latex primer and finnaly the latex paint.  

Im also wondering if fiberglassing the majority of the tardis not just the roof is acceptable?  


I just read that fiberglassing must be painted with a gel based paint. so im guessing the latex stuff coulnt work over the top. ?


Jan 27, 2013, 10:36 pm #12 Last Edit: Jan 27, 2013, 10:39 pm by galacticprobe
I don't know about the top, getting mostly direct sun and all, but some years ago (good grief! make that 20 years ago now!)... Anyway, I used some fiberglass (cloth with the resin) to patch a few places on my house's siding where the old (built in the 1950s) asbestos shingles had broken, exposing parts of the "inner hull", if you would. (It's not possible to get replacements for those shingles, and the cost of re-siding the house at the time was galaxies away.)

Once the fiberglass cured I painted it with your average outdoor latex paint (the house is white so the color was easy to match). That paint is still holding up today and hasn't been repainted since, and we've been through several hurricanes and at least one or two heavy snow and ice storms, not to mention that nice hot, humid Virginia Beach summer air (known locally as "air you can wear"). So I think for economical attempts, give that outdoor latex paint a try. I can't remember the brand I used, but it was as I say "average" - not the cheapest, and certainly not the most expensive: middle of the road paint.

"What's wrong with being childish?! I like being childish." -3rd Doctor, "Terror of the Autons"


My rubber undercoating did fine for a year but after another summer/winter its not holding up as well. A number of bubbles between the blue paint and the undercoating. Also where the wood swelled/dried created cracks through the rubber undercoat which then let in water.
I was thinking of fiberglassing the roof in the summer but my dad mentioned that there is a type of coating used for boats that easier to use than fiberglass and stays slightly rubbery so you dont end up with the cracks that fiberglass can get. Anyone know about boat paints/coatings?


No idea on the boat coatings, but I did finally try out the aforementioned spray on roof patch (although on my leaky garage, not my leaky TARDIS).  Fred Meyer's sells it out here and it comes in a large white aerosol can (shaped a bit like a can of pesticide or WD-40).  I've bought it in black and clear and the can is the same except for some fine print so you really have to pay attention when buying it.  It seems to work, once you get enough on, but a can doesn't provide a whole lot of coverage and I think you have to be very patient to get it on.  And you can't paint over it.  Well, you can, but the paint will come off in a couple months.
"My dear Litefoot, I've got a lantern and a pair of waders, and possibly the most fearsome piece of hand artillery in all England. What could possibly go wrong?"
-The Doctor.