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View Full Version : TR2/3/3A Triumph TR3A Boot Floor Replacement - Looking for help



SteveBones
06-22-2015, 10:11 PM
Hello,

I have a post 60K Tr3A. Looking to replace the boot (rear trunk floor), and would like to hear from those who have already experienced.

The car is in California so overall rust is minimal. Just the boot floor itself where the previous owner welded sheet metal on top of the boot floor to cover a few rusted sections that are mostly pin holes.

The spare tire area is in good condition. I have tripped this down to metal and there are no rust through points.

My question is what is required to replace the boot floor. I plan to order the replacement from boot floor from TRF.

The body is on the frame and I plan to replace the boot floor this way. Will it help if I remove the rear end? It needs to be rebuild anyways since it leaks too much oil (even when just sitting).

I plan to use a cut off saw to remove the existing floor and will first drill out all the spot welds.

Anything else to consider? For plug welding the spare tire section to the floor, should I drill through the boot floor and plug weld from the floor to the spare tire section?

I really would like to avoid removing the rear panel section if I can.

Anything else that I should consider?

Thanks,

TomMull
06-23-2015, 06:49 AM
You are undertaking a difficult task. Looks like you restored your TR4 so are not a novice, which is too bad since I can't use your lack of experience to talk you out of this. I also have to ask what you expect to achieve with this. A concourse boot as original? A driver quality repair that looks good to all but the judges? The latter might be much more reasonable. You can cheat by welding into the original flanges on the edges.
This previous thread might help: https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/showthread.php?66217-TR3a-Trunk-floor-removal-and-replacement
Tom

martx-5
06-23-2015, 07:40 AM
I replaced the boot floor in my post 60k TR3. It's not necessary to remove the rear panel or rear axle if you're just replacing the floor. I started by cutting out the section over the spare tire well staying inside where the flange is. I then cut on the outside of the flange and kept taking it out in sections...drilling out the spot welds. I used a cheap Harbor Freight pneumatic body saw for most of the cutting. I prefer to use stub cobalt 137 deg drills. They're tough and self center. . Just remember to support the spare tire well.

Getting the new piece in is a tricky proposition. I couldn't get it to go into the boot opening. I turned and twisted, but it wouldn't fit. I contemplated cutting a piece off the side, but gave it another go and finally found a way to slip it in. Hopefully yours will go in without a hitch. I plug welded the floor as you have described...holes in the floor welded to the spare tire well. I used several sheet metal screws to hold everything in place and then removed them and welded those holes shut.

It's a fair amount of work, but quite doable. The hardest part is removing all of the old sheet metal and figuring out how the heck to get the new panel in the boot! I got my boot floor from Moss. It didn't have the brackets for the fiberboard panel behind the fuel tank, so I had to make those and weld them on.

sp53
06-23-2015, 09:51 AM
I replace about 80% to 90% of trunk section with homemade stuff on a 61 tr3 once and it came ok. Heck that thing goes all most all the way through. Later I saw one that had the replacement trunk from a vender in it and noticed that they are way different than original. The trunk floor is noticeably different, so if this only has pin holes and is a California car I would talk you out of it also because I like the original ribbing. It all gets covered up, right. I just think you could creatively salvage the old section, and no one would notice, even if the carpet was pull back.

PatGalvin
06-23-2015, 10:37 AM
Hey Steve - trunk floor replacement is a lot of work. I did mine but it was completely shot. I also removed the rear apron, so that I could clean up the internal rust on that part. I can't even begin to count how many spot welds I had to drill out and how many plug welds I had to make. It came out great, but if I had pin holes, I'd just drill them out and reweld those areas. You are going to probably have a carpet or mat over the trunk floor, so no one will ever see your panel replacement.

If you want the floor to look great and you've just got some rough spots (rusty), you could buy a replacement floor and then just patch back portions of the old floor with new, as needed (cannibalize it). If I were to do it again and my floor wasn't completely rotted out, I'd patch it back and reduce the headaches.

Pathttps://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/attachment.php?attachmentid=37966&stc=1

PatGalvin
06-23-2015, 10:59 AM
https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/attachment.php?attachmentid=37968&stc=1
Mine was pretty shot....

SteveBones
06-23-2015, 11:51 AM
Hi Tom,

Thanks for the response. Yeh I did a TR4 restoration but this is the "spoiled" California car restoration. Meaning the body was clean....no rust - even the battery box was usable, and not accidents....I will never find another restoration project.

I need to inspect the boot floor again to see how bad it is. I am willing to be patient and it will be a learning process if I do go ahead and replace the boot floor.




You are undertaking a difficult task. Looks like you restored your TR4 so are not a novice, which is too bad since I can't use your lack of experience to talk you out of this. I also have to ask what you expect to achieve with this. A concourse boot as original? A driver quality repair that looks good to all but the judges? The latter might be much more reasonable. You can cheat by welding into the original flanges on the edges.
This previous thread might help: https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/showthread.php?66217-TR3a-Trunk-floor-removal-and-replacement
Tom

SteveBones
06-23-2015, 12:00 PM
Hi Pat,

I have looked at your work via photos a number of times. You have inspired me! Impressive work. I think this will be an undertaking that I need to say I tried at least once. Thanks for the insights and giving me a heads up on what I am getting myself into. Your work on your TR3 was very involved and well done. I think once difference I can see with your TR3A is the boot floor is in sections and yours required that all to be removed and replaced. Including the side section sheet metal. I am hoping and expecting that the TR3A I need to replace will require less work. I figured if I can just be patient (meaning allow more than enough time to complete), I can make it work. My TR3A was hit in the rear so the floor is uneven as well. I already did quite a bit to straighten the rear section (I will send pictures) so fixing the floor via replacement is the preferred way.

Thanks,




Hey Steve - trunk floor replacement is a lot of work. I did mine but it was completely shot. I also removed the rear apron, so that I could clean up the internal rust on that part. I can't even begin to count how many spot welds I had to drill out and how many plug welds I had to make. It came out great, but if I had pin holes, I'd just drill them out and reweld those areas. You are going to probably have a carpet or mat over the trunk floor, so no one will ever see your panel replacement.

If you want the floor to look great and you've just got some rough spots (rusty), you could buy a replacement floor and then just patch back portions of the old floor with new, as needed (cannibalize it). If I were to do it again and my floor wasn't completely rotted out, I'd patch it back and reduce the headaches.

Pathttps://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/attachment.php?attachmentid=37966&stc=1

SteveBones
06-23-2015, 12:03 PM
Yeh, I did to look again. One other issue with my boot floor is that since the car was rear ended at some point, the floor section has some wrinkles in it that would take quite a bit of time to straight. Also, I did not mention in my first posting, the section of the boot floor that is closest to the petrol tank is in pretty rough shape. I need to take a look again on trying to save vs replace.

Thanks,


I replace about 80% to 90% of trunk section with homemade stuff on a 61 tr3 once and it came ok. Heck that thing goes all most all the way through. Later I saw one that had the replacement trunk from a vender in it and noticed that they are way different than original. The trunk floor is noticeably different, so if this only has pin holes and is a California car I would talk you out of it also because I like the original ribbing. It all gets covered up, right. I just think you could creatively salvage the old section, and no one would notice, even if the carpet was pull back.

SteveBones
06-23-2015, 12:05 PM
Hi Art,

Thanks for the description (and confirmation) on the process. My biggest concern was whether the boot floor replacement would fit through the opening. Thanks for confirming it is possible (though difficult). Thanks also for going through what you used during the entire removal and replacement process.




I replaced the boot floor in my post 60k TR3. It's not necessary to remove the rear panel or rear axle if you're just replacing the floor. I started by cutting out the section over the spare tire well staying inside where the flange is. I then cut on the outside of the flange and kept taking it out in sections...drilling out the spot welds. I used a cheap Harbor Freight pneumatic body saw for most of the cutting. I prefer to use stub cobalt 137 deg drills. They're tough and self center. . Just remember to support the spare tire well.

Getting the new piece in is a tricky proposition. I couldn't get it to go into the boot opening. I turned and twisted, but it wouldn't fit. I contemplated cutting a piece off the side, but gave it another go and finally found a way to slip it in. Hopefully yours will go in without a hitch. I plug welded the floor as you have described...holes in the floor welded to the spare tire well. I used several sheet metal screws to hold everything in place and then removed them and welded those holes shut.

It's a fair amount of work, but quite doable. The hardest part is removing all of the old sheet metal and figuring out how the heck to get the new panel in the boot! I got my boot floor from Moss. It didn't have the brackets for the fiberboard panel behind the fuel tank, so I had to make those and weld them on.

SteveBones
06-23-2015, 12:20 PM
OK - Maybe I need to rethink this. Actually will rethink this.

It looks like the boot floor could be saved. What discouraged me was that a 3 x 3 piece of sheet metal was welded over the top of the boot floor and then covered with a thick coat of bondo. That and quite a few rust sections.

After further inspection, the rust sections look to be surface only , meaning there will be some pitting but with few rust through points.

So I will use an angle grinder to remove all the bondo, then remove the sheet metal to inspect further. I will also use some Naval Jelly on some of the rust areas to see how it turns out. Looking like maybe it would make sense to try and save the boot floor.

Thanks again for all the info. Note - I will post some pictures of work I did on the rear section via metal shaping.

PatGalvin
06-23-2015, 12:31 PM
Hey Steve

A propane torch works great to soften Bondo such that a putty knife will scrape and remove. Don't overheat and shrink the metal. I bet a good heat gun would work too.
There are some great rust removal products out there these days. I've used "A Must for Rust" and like it quite a lot. Bought at ACE. Pickelex is really good (but expensive). Eastwood has some good product too. I think most of these are phosphoric acid-based removers. I've even soaked parts in white vinegar, which works pretty darn well over a couple days and is super cheap and "green".

Looking forward to seeing your photos and maybe seeing you at a show some time. Thanks

Pat

SteveBones
06-23-2015, 07:52 PM
Here are some pictures of the rear section. Two photos are soon after the paint and bondo was removed. The other two photos are more recent. It has been a slow and steady process. So far happy with the results.....it just takes are really long time.https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/attachment.php?attachmentid=37970&stc=1https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/attachment.php?attachmentid=37971&stc=1https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/attachment.php?attachmentid=37972&stc=1https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/attachment.php?attachmentid=37973&stc=1

SteveBones
06-23-2015, 07:55 PM
Hey Pat,

Thanks for the great suggestions on the bondo and rust removal. I will check them out. We have an Ace Hardware store very close by.

I was seriously thinking of attending the Dixon British car show in May. Unfortunately is was on the same day as my son's graduation. Maybe next year.

Steve


Hey Steve

A propane torch works great to soften Bondo such that a putty knife will scrape and remove. Don't overheat and shrink the metal. I bet a good heat gun would work too.
There are some great rust removal products out there these days. I've used "A Must for Rust" and like it quite a lot. Bought at ACE. Pickelex is really good (but expensive). Eastwood has some good product too. I think most of these are phosphoric acid-based removers. I've even soaked parts in white vinegar, which works pretty darn well over a couple days and is super cheap and "green".

Looking forward to seeing your photos and maybe seeing you at a show some time. Thanks

Pat