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Simple question about metal

rjbez

Freshman Member
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So I'm planning to cutout and replace some of the floor pan/misc this weekend but I'm not sure what gauge steel to get. Does anyone know what original was for the drive shaft tunnel and the floor pan?
 

Jim_Gruber

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So the question becomes are you planning on creating your own patch panels and reinventing the wheel or using available panels from the usual sources. Since a Spridget is a unibody and those panels are the actual structure of the car, reinventing of the wheel has the potential for jeopardizing your safety. Tell us more about what you are planning to do.
 
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rjbez

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Reinventing the wheel! The previous owner cut out the floor pan where the driver/passenger feet go (the small square) and the drive shaft tunnel. Problem is, he didn't know what we have doing and basically just put in a BUNCH of rivet and 'welded' it on...and when I say weld I really mean a large bead of metal that tacks the metal every 6 or so inches. After removing the rivets I was able to give the floor pan a whack with a hammer and it popped right out. So now I'm just looked to replace the floor at those points. The areas aren't big and I have a certified welder friend that will be doing the welding.

I'm also replacing the area under the drive shaft tunnel because there are so many rivet holes it just makes sense.
 

Jim_Gruber

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Replacement floorpan sections are fairly inexpensive from usual sources. The DS Floorpan is not flat. There is a depression for the footwell and mounts are needed for the gas pedal. The panel has a couple of ribs in it to add strength. It is fairly simple to replace. A rotisserie is nice, or if drivetrain is out front and back, the car is down to around 400 lbs. and it can be carefully rolled on its side, so it can be welded on bottom as well. I'd be very careful removing the transmission tunnel. This is a major structural member and careful bracing is needed before rewelding. Otherwise, doors will not close and car will not track straight. I'd consider tunnel patching vs. wholesale removal. Sounds like DPO screwed up this car. Your job is not to screw it up further. Safety first. I'll defer to others but be careful before cutting. A couple of good You Tube Videos out there.
 
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Small patches on floor and such ... just use 18 ga. Go thicker for larger patches.
 

tlthorne

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I prefer to use the same gauge as the original, makes for better welds. I tend to like to overlap plug weld and seam weld both sides. This I found to be the strongest weld, definitely not the fastest. I did some various destructive tests to come up with this way. Some panels I make myself others I buy, no fun spending time on a panel that doesn't fit! most of the crappy fit panels come from the far east.
 

Jim_Gruber

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AH Spares pretty good stuff most of the time. Shipping an issue from across the pond. MOSS & VB if British Motor Heritage usually good. Although there are Chinese parts from them depending on what you order.
 

markberry

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18 gauge has been the closest shet metal match I've found during my restoration.
 
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rjbez

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Replacement floorpan sections are fairly inexpensive from usual sources. The DS Floorpan is not flat. There is a depression for the footwell and mounts are needed for the gas pedal. The panel has a couple of ribs in it to add strength. It is fairly simple to replace. A rotisserie is nice, or if drivetrain is out front and back, the car is down to around 400 lbs. and it can be carefully rolled on its side, so it can be welded on bottom as well. I'd be very careful removing the transmission tunnel. This is a major structural member and careful bracing is needed before rewelding. Otherwise, doors will not close and car will not track straight. I'd consider tunnel patching vs. wholesale removal. Sounds like DPO screwed up this car. Your job is not to screw it up further. Safety first. I'll defer to others but be careful before cutting. A couple of good You Tube Videos out there.

I do have the care on a rotisserie. Where are these cheap replacement panels? I've only seen ones that cost 3x what sheet metal would be. If I can find them for a reasonable price I will do it.
 

mightymidget

Jedi Knight
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when you purchase a molded floor pan they are complete length of floor pan, where you are buying the amount you need.
I do not see any problrm in patching properly. done correctly no strength has been lost. the biggest issue to me would be how perfect do you want the car for resale. if you want the big money at hammer time don't patch, if the car is for a driver to have fun in, patch away
 

Jim_Gruber

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A Bugeye has significant upside Resale Value if restored correctly. A really well restored Spridget has a tough time getting $4-5k max. A BE in the same restored condition will be $8-10K with perfect examples commanding over $20k. One of the contributors to this forum with an absolute perfect Concours quality BE sold his for > $25K. It all depends on where you want to go and what you want to do with "YOUR Car". A BE replacement floorpan around $150. Yes more expensive than sheet metal but it fits, and is correct for the car. We can't tell you how to spend your money but we can advise you on how the get the most money for it when you decide to resell it.
 
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rjbez

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A Bugeye has significant upside Resale Value if restored correctly. A really well restored Spridget has a tough time getting $4-5k max. A BE in the same restored condition will be $8-10K with perfect examples commanding over $20k. One of the contributors to this forum with an absolute perfect Concours quality BE sold his for > $25K. It all depends on where you want to go and what you want to do with "YOUR Car". A BE replacement floorpan around $150. Yes more expensive than sheet metal but it fits, and is correct for the car. We can't tell you how to spend your money but we can advise you on how the get the most money for it when you decide to resell it.

Yeah, I have a MKII so I know I'm not getting more than $5k for my car on a good day.

I'm willing to spend $150 on floor plans, but from what I can tell here: https://www.mossmotors.com/Shop/ViewProducts.aspx?PlateIndexID=29311#8 I would need both the right and left (or is that just referring to left hand drive vs right hand drive). If I only need the one for $150 it is sold.

The second question would be...how do you get the old one off nicely? With all the current welds of the corss member section, bulk head, etc I think it would be hard to get it off without replacing the lot of it...suggestions?

-Ryan
 

Jim_Gruber

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Ryan.

Spot Weld Cutter will allow you to get it apart but it will take lots of time to cut spot welds. Cutting the tunnel becomes a serious structual integrity issue. Things need to be properly braced and reinforced or you stand the risk of creating a pile of scrap metal. Make sure cross braces are in place or the body shape will change and doors will never close. Can you post pics of what you've got that might help the collective group get a better handle on advice to give you.

Not sure if Ray McCloud's? Web Site where he cut a Spridget apart to attack some serious structural problems and put it back together is still around, I thought it was raysmg.com or something like that. Anyone got the link.

Attach some Pics, Pixel Size is limited so edit and resize down to a smaller picture. We can help you fix this one.
 
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The moss pans are listed per side. So about $300 for both sides, but the section under the transmission is not included.
Removing the old pans requires drilling out the spotwelds and cutting along the edge of the tunnel where it will be seemed.

Honestly, if the pan is solid everywhere but the footwell then I'd patch it and drive one. If the entire area under the seat is rusted out, then I'd look at replacing the whole pan with the stamped pan from Moss.
 

Rut

Obi Wan
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I bought a set of these for my BE @ $99.00 and was very disappointed with the quality of the stamping and fit so I returned them. The seller was great to deal with and offered to let me keep them at a reduced price, but I didn't. Ashley Hinton makes some good panels as well.
Rut
 

nomad

Yoda
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Used to be able to get the whole bottom pan but I suppose freight issue's ended that. The fender patch panel's I had for my midget were so thin that I only used them as a pattern and made my own. If you can get the indent for the foot well right I would not think floor pans would be a big deal to make.

Kurt.
 
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