The only rust through in my floor pan is the battery tray. It's completely gone. Any suggestions on ways to repair it short of a new pan? Or is that even an answer. Thanks
The only significant rust on my '64 from Phoenix was in this exact area- second time around, as a matter of fact. It had been repaired with a brazed-in quarter-section eons ago, and that had then re-rusted through! You may read that brazed-in sections of a pan are less sturdy and not the best way to go, and that only welded-in sections will hold up. Hogwash, basically. That brazed-in section of pan was a real b***h to get out. I ended up grinding away and chiseling the braze points, and then ground away all rusted metal to a smooth contour. I neutralized any old battery acid with a healthy dose of Sodium Bicarb (good old Arm and Hammer) , and then I took a replacement pan section (Empi) and pounded on it with body hammers until it fit pretty good. I pop-riveted the section in place (heavy rivets here!) , and seam-sealed with a good silicone sealant. Everything got a double coat of chassis black rust killing primer, inside and out, followed by black Rustoleum paint. The outside then got sealed with a double coat of undercoating rubber. You can barely tell it has been repaired, but it's VERY strong, and only took a day or so, not counting dry-times. Not a concourse restoration, but mine is a daily-driver. I put a fiberglass battery tray on the floor, and strapped the battery down with a rubber snubber with sheet rubber underneath it. Finally, isolate the battery terminals from the springs of the seat bottom with a sheet of rubber or the first time your heavy friend bounces down on the back seat bottom, the terminals will short out on the springs and your bug will start burning. (no joke!) This procedure is outlined in more detail in John Henry's website on VW restoration. (thanks, John!) Of course, you CAN weld in a replacement pan or section, but why would you for a daily-driver?
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