Floor pan repair: What would you do?

great white

Grumpy Old Fart
My car was left to sit in a friends field for a couple years. The drivers side inner cowl rotted out around the air horn, the carpet stayed wet and well....the drivers side floor pan is toast. Mice had gotten into it as well and made a home under the back seat. We all know that mice piss and crap where they live, so that ruined a small part of the pan you see around the drain hole.

I've had the car since 1983 (was wife's daily for about 10 years) and it suffered the typical rear seat mount cracking. We didn't have a lot of bucks at the time, so I brazed the cracks and popped a piece of sheet metal over it to give a bit more strength to it.

I ordered a full drivers side floor pan as it was actually cheaper than ordering a short drivers pan (for some reason the shipping was ridiculous on a short pan but cheap on a full and overall made the full cheaper even at a higher buy in price).

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I was thinking I'd just do a full pan since I had it, but after stripping the interior out I'm not so sure. Pulling the windshield and upper cowl out to repair the inner cowl is going to be enough work as it is. If I can cut down on a little bit of work in the floors and still get a solid end product, I'm down with that.

Here's what it looks like:

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Driver pan is toast, so full replacement:

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But the rear pan is nowhere near as bad:

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Despite it's looks, it's solid. There's just the one spot you see around the drain hole. Underneath is still clean and factory paint. The black stuff is undercoating.

A full pan is going to be a PITA. The floor cross brace would have to be cut out and welded back in. mating it all up and cutting it and one heck of a long welded seam on the trans tunnel.

Or; I could just cut a drivers pan repair panel out of the full pan and use a small patch of the rear pan to replace the section of the floor where the seat mount cracked and around the drain hole.

Welding in the patches would sure be a heck of a lot faster and easier than doing the full pan. It would also be the least chance of the unibody "shifting" on me and easiest to line up properly. It would also leave most of the oem spot welds undisturbed. Either full pan or patched I'd have a fair amount of seal to grind and seal, so no big there.

A full pan has the potential to remove the most rust, except for the amount of welding on the panel edges.

Either way the seat mount will be picked up with the subframe connectors so no big there.

Oh what to do?

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I find myself leaning towards the half pan and patching the rear for ease of installation as much as anything else....
 

great white

Grumpy Old Fart
Yeah, re-read my post and realized I was just being lazy so I'm doing the full pan.

Started cutting and it's not as bad as I though it would be:

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That will clean right up. A shot of weld through primer and I'll be off to the races.

:)
 

TrueBlue02058

Post King
Full pan is the only way to go. All the extra work and small details you are putting into this project will pay off when the car still looks amazing and is tight as a drum 30 years from now,

One bit of advice my Father gave me when I was young was "If you are going to do something, Do it Right".

Looks like You are doing everything right on this one. :FordSmile
 

great white

Grumpy Old Fart
Last bit of the rear floor came out this morning.

Cleaned up the rusties and hit it with Tremclad inside the frame rails.

Fitting the replacement pan as we speak.

Then I'll make up a small patch panel where the floor meets the firewall and start burning it all in....
 
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