10 Because of 57 years of corrosion, trying to find the factory spot welds to drill out on the old floor would've been nigh impossible and extremely time consuming. To get the rest of the old floor removed where it was welded to the inner quarters, we started by using a grinder to knock off some of the edges left, and split the metal in a few places.
11 We found some rust in the driver side corner down low. We'll clean and patch up this area with some metal before we install the floor. Be prepared for this on your car.
12 After using the grinder, we grabbed a heavy hammer and a large flat-bladed screwdriver, and split the remnants of the old trunk floor away from the quarters. It took some time and patience, but was still faster than hunting down all the factory spot welds.
13 After all the old metal was removed, we went back with a clean up or "flap wheel" to dress the flanges on the inner quarter where we'd be welding the new floor in so we'd have good, clean welds.
14 If this were a normal trunk floor install, we wouldn't have to remove the back seat brace. But since we're going to mini-tub our car, it has to come out. On this one we used our Eastwood skip-proof spot-weld driller (PN 11276) to drill out all the factory spot welds.
15 With all the spot welds drilled, all it took was some light prying and the back seat brace popped out. In the next part of our story, we'll cover the modifications to the back seat brace that are necessary to go along with the mini-tub install.
16 Before slipping in the new trunk floor, we went back with a body hammer and dolly to flatten out the flanges on the inner quarter.
17 Here's our new Classic Industries Deep Tub Trunk Floor, PN TF400952. It comes with the tailpanel brace already installed and with the factory spare tire well deleted. The area where the wheelwell cutouts are has already been narrowed, saving the installer a lot of time.
18 AntiVenom Performance's Greg Lovell is the Herculean type, and he muscled the floor into place by himself. For most, it'll be good to have a second set of hands ready to help you get the floor in place.
19 Supported by a couple of jackstands, we had the floor set in place to check fitment, which was perfect. It lined up beautifully with the Classic Industries passenger floor we installed back in the 2013 issue of Chevy Classics. From here, we clamped it in place.
20 With the new, narrower floor and the stock wheelwells still in place, you can see how much width is allowed for the mini-tub modification.
21 From the inside, here's how it looks. Part of the mini-tub job will involve modifying the rear of the passenger floor, which we'll cover in the next issue. But in the picture you can see how it fits like a glove with the passenger floor.
22 And there you have it. We only have the floor clamped in right now, since it will have to come back out for installing the mini-tub kit (also from Classic Industries), but in the next installment we'll cover welding in the floor, mini-tubs, and the new tailpanel. After that, our '57 will be ready to have what's left of its original Matador Red paint blasted away and the body prepped for whichever chassis we decide to mount underneath it.