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Friday, September 1, 2017

Triumph Spitfire Body Repair #21 - Passenger Floor Prep

Got some time over at the garage this week to continue with some floor prep. Moved along pretty well and, hopefully, I'll be close, if not ready, to tack the floor in at the end of the next visit. With that, here's the video:

What I needed to accomplish was to separate the floor remnants from rest of the body. This entails a bit of a brute force for the spot welds (drilling and chiseling) with some finesse required around areas that are important to preserve, such as the union at the front bulkhead that may be visible.

From my last visit, I had left the forward portion of the floor installed where it is welded to the front bulkhead and the rear portion of the floor where it is welded to the heelboard and rear radius arm support bracket.

The lip-seam requiring splitting. Almost a shame to do it since it appears in good shape!

Not so good back here. Bottom of bracket is in pretty rough shape.

I started at the back since it was a bit more straightforward of a removal process. I used a die grinder and some abrasive disks to remove the paint and show the spot weld depressions. The, I used my Blair Spotweld Cutter Kit to remove the spotwelds. This is the same one I've used the entire time, though I did get new 3/8" bits for it recently as they do have a finite life (though I'm happy with how long they last). That along with some lubricant made short work of that area.

Peeling away the floor from the heelboard and bracket.

My secondary concern was the condition of the rear radius arm bracket. I replaced it on the driver's side due to rust concerns. While this side wasn't as bad, I did have another one in better shape from the black car and I would be silly not to replace it. That decision made, I drilled it out as well using the same process I mention above.

Some holes there on the right. The left was similar.

The new bracket prior to any cleanup. It was is good shape, like the other one.

Bracket area cleaned up and some POR-15 Metal Prep applied to give some protection.

With that area cut away (I didn't do a full cancer assessment back there yet, but I believe it to be in better shape than the driver's side), I moved to the bulkhead.

The factory put a bunch of seam sealer on there, which I chipped away with no problem. Then, I used a normal drill bit (I don't remember the size, but they came in a 7-pack from Harbor Freight...disposable) to drill out the spotwelds. This turned out to be rather easy, fortunately, though I did find some cancer towards the outer portion of the bulkhead-to-floor seam that I cut out. Though similar to the driver's side that I addressed way back in June when I started this whole body repair endeavor (wow, has it been that long?!), it's no where near as extensive, so I'll make a patch piece and get it welded in.

Unfortunately, I didn't photograph this process very well and didn't take any pictures until it was all done. The video does a pretty good job at capturing this, though.

Interior shot of the piece removed.

And exterior shot. You can see the drill bit holes and where the lip "disappears" where I cut it away for repair.

And that was about it for the evening!

Some casualties of the night's work.

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