Underbody and brace repairs continued


We've got a LOT of work to do here.




One last area to inspect is the area at the front of the bed referred to as the "smugglers box".


Thankfully no surprises here!  It's interesting to note that this area is simply the the same floor pan as any other GM A body car.  There are even the seat belt mounts and anchor for the rear seat.


Starting with the floor brace ends I cut out the rusted area.





 After removing the end of the mount it revealed the inner rocker also rusted through.  I'll have to start that repair first.  Again the damaged area is cut out.



Again cardboard was used to make a template...



...and that was transferred to sheet metal and cut out.




Everything was cleaned up and a protective coat of paint was applied.  The final fit of the part and clamped down..



 Welded in and the welds dressed.



I'm using new braces to provide the area I need to replace.


The piece is fitted and welded into place.  This will be performed on 2 other brace ends.



The center brace is almost non existent it's rusted away so badly. After drilling out the few remaining spot welds it just falls off the car.




Comparison of the new and old riddled center braces..




After repairing the inner rockers on both sides I placed the brace in place.  I used self tapping screws to hold it in place and get it pulled snuggly against what's left of the floor.

The ends are clamped to the inner rocker panel to ensure a nice tight fight. 


After welding the ends to the inner rockers ll the braces are back to like new condition.  I have a strong foundation to repair the floor pans now.


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