I cut out this rusty trunk! ‘68 New Yorker

Isaiah Estrada

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Forgive me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think I’ve seen anyone else do this job here on the forums before! I am sure most of you are familiar with me and my build by now, but if not - here’s a little background. Early 2020, I was 18 about to be 19 and bought my very first old car… a ‘68 New Yorker that’d been abandoned for 40 years. I’ve been working on restoring it ever since. All the work that’s been done to it has been done by me (except for big things like the engine / trans rebuild etc…) and the help of my great friend and mentor!!

We are close to getting this baby running once more for the first time since 1980! The trunk was pretty bad, the metal was eaten up by rust and there were holes that needed rid of.

C51B4876-212B-42D6-B466-A60466A51139.jpeg

61BF995C-9382-4DC1-8E3C-F196BA970259.jpeg


We figured it’s best to do this repair work first before we even try to get this baby running due to having to drop the gas tank and all that fun stuff… So we did just that. Dropped the gas tank out which was by now completely dry. It actually had a drill hole where Tom Merkel, the previous owner drilled it out to drain the gasoline. Long story short - this guy was a little nuts… he had about 1,800 cars rotting in the Cuyama desert of CA. The state was not happy about this, due to environmental hazards or something like that. They made him drain the fluids of each car or else they were to be confiscated and crushed / scrapped. He did JUST that… which also explains why a lot of the things we’ve found on the car were remarkably clean like in the engine compartment and whatnot. Anyways back to the story.

My mentor has been building Kustoms and Hot Rods most of his life. He’s been a big Mopar fan and has built mostly Mopars! However they’ve all been pre 1960s Mopars. This is the first C Body he’s had a hand in building, and this is MY first car in general! So we had a bit of learning to do when it came to learning about the structure and frame work of the car. Initially I thought “Oh cool, I can just outline where I’ll cut with soapstone and do it all real easy!”
Well I was wrong! Since we are dealing with a unibody, a lot of the cutting had to be done underneath the car first. It was really hard for me since I’ve never used powered cutting wheels in my life. Basically I was cutting around all the sub frame work and supports that give the trunk strength, as well as cutting around where the leaf springs mount etc… It was a bit of a challenge, but in a few days time I got it done!

B206C007-2876-44D6-97D2-1C7F51FE3A88.jpeg


Now you can see INTO the frame and see the supports that connect to both sides and give the trunk the support it needs. I ground all those spot welds and popped off the remaining floor panels off the frame to expose the bare skeleton of the car.

Next step is to treat and kill the rust with acid, and grind down some of my jagged cuts to have a really smooth work area! Also just to use a flap wheel and clean up all the surface rust and make sure it’s all completely gone. After that, we will take the new trunk pan and set it where we need it to be. From there I’ll go underneath the car, stencil it out and mark where we should drill holes to redo the spot welds and hold that new pan in nice and tight! Slowly but surely this baby is coming along. Once everything is in place, I can repaint the trunk area and have it upholstered! Underneath, I can shoot on some rubberized undercoating and install the new gas tank and sending unit.
29D2A2CE-9408-4BC5-A7EF-B68144EEEF4D.jpeg


From there, we can move to the firewall for some patch work, as well as priming, blocking and painting it! At the same time we’ll remove the windshield front and back and do some metal work. I’ll pull the dash frame and install all the pieces I’ve put together for a “new” dashboard. Shannon at Redline Gauge Works is currently restoring my cluster to brand new! It will be amazing to see everything in place once again. Here’s a photo of me and my New Yorker only a few weeks ago. Here’s to many more memories and learning experiences!!

17E158E4-D32C-4D81-92F0-09FD7110AD21.jpeg
 
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HWYCRZR

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Looking good.
There are select few on this site that have tackled the trunk pans to your extent. I am not one of them. When I started my restore I was thinking I would do it but decided against it as I didn’t have someone with the knowledge to ask advice at that time. Plus this was the car I learned to drive in at 5 or 6, so I did want to screw it up.
Keep going and get it on the road.
 

Ironwolf

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Good job !!!!!! nice to see a "YOUNG'N" working on one of these big beauties !!!!

Sadly for me it brings back many memories of 1976 :steering: :thumbsup::lol::thumbsup: :steering:
 

1970FuryConv

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Wish I had a mentor like yours when I was 19. You're very fortunate.
Hope all your hard work brings about a stunning c-body success.
 

mrfury68

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Keep up the good work young man! The skills you are learning from your mentor will be with you the rest of your life. You will also see the results of all of your hard work as you make progress on your New Yorker. Thanks for keeping us posted.
 

440Chrysler

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Looks Good! Keep posting!

When I first started into repairing my New Yorker, I used the floors to teach myself rust repair and metal forming. Once you finish these repairs, you should be ready to take on any exterior rust. I look forward to seeing your results!
 

1970cat

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measure carefully. those c2c pans don't fit right around the wheel wells. you'll have to bend flanges on the sides for the drop offs too.
if you bought the c2c drop offs, they don't fit good at all. you'll end up having to slice and reform them to match the area at the rear and flange them to fit the bottoms of the quarter panels. you have a nice project. keep up the good work.
 

Isaiah Estrada

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measure carefully. those c2c pans don't fit right around the wheel wells. you'll have to bend flanges on the sides for the drop offs too.
if you bought the c2c drop offs, they don't fit good at all. you'll end up having to slice and reform them to match the area at the rear and flange them to fit the bottoms of the quarter panels. you have a nice project. keep up the good work.


Thanks! We traced the pan out and hammered it to the contour of the trunk before I even began the cut. I used body hammers and other tools. We have a 1/2 lip for it to rest on.

E7CEC5A2-F179-4277-8EF8-2D199F10E8EC.jpeg
 

bigmoparjeff

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Looks like it will get the job done.

Being a California car, the drops and rest of the quarters should be in good shape.

Jeff
 

cantflip

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Forgive me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think I’ve seen anyone else do this job here on the forums before! I am sure most of you are familiar with me and my build by now, but if not - here’s a little background. Early 2020, I was 18 about to be 19 and bought my very first old car… a ‘68 New Yorker that’d been abandoned for 40 years. I’ve been working on restoring it ever since. All the work that’s been done to it has been done by me (except for big things like the engine / trans rebuild etc…) and the help of my great friend and mentor!!

We are close to getting this baby running once more for the first time since 1980! The trunk was pretty bad, the metal was eaten up by rust and there were holes that needed rid of.

View attachment 480329
View attachment 480330

We figured it’s best to do this repair work first before we even try to get this baby running due to having to drop the gas tank and all that fun stuff… So we did just that. Dropped the gas tank out which was by now completely dry. It actually had a drill hole where Tom Merkel, the previous owner drilled it out to drain the gasoline. Long story short - this guy was a little nuts… he had about 1,800 cars rotting in the Cuyama desert of CA. The state was not happy about this, due to environmental hazards or something like that. They made him drain the fluids of each car or else they were to be confiscated and crushed / scrapped. He did JUST that… which also explains why a lot of the things we’ve found on the car were remarkably clean like in the engine compartment and whatnot. Anyways back to the story.

My mentor has been building Kustoms and Hot Rods most of his life. He’s been a big Mopar fan and has built mostly Mopars! However they’ve all been pre 1960s Mopars. This is the first C Body he’s had a hand in building, and this is MY first car in general! So we had a bit of learning to do when it came to learning about the structure and frame work of the car. Initially I thought “Oh cool, I can just outline where I’ll cut with soapstone and do it all real easy!”
Well I was wrong! Since we are dealing with a unibody, a lot of the cutting had to be done underneath the car first. It was really hard for me since I’ve never used powered cutting wheels in my life. Basically I was cutting around all the sub frame work and supports that give the trunk strength, as well as cutting around where the leaf springs mount etc… It was a bit of a challenge, but in a few days time I got it done!

View attachment 480332

Now you can see INTO the frame and see the supports that connect to both sides and give the trunk the support it needs. I ground all those spot welds and popped off the remaining floor panels off the frame to expose the bare skeleton of the car.

Next step is to treat and kill the rust with acid, and grind down some of my jagged cuts to have a really smooth work area! Also just to use a flap wheel and clean up all the surface rust and make sure it’s all completely gone. After that, we will take the new trunk pan and set it where we need it to be. From there I’ll go underneath the car, stencil it out and mark where we should drill holes to redo the spot welds and hold that new pan in nice and tight! Slowly but surely this baby is coming along. Once everything is in place, I can repaint the trunk area and have it upholstered! Underneath, I can shoot on some rubberized undercoating and install the new gas tank and sending unit.
View attachment 480331

From there, we can move to the firewall for some patch work, as well as priming, blocking and painting it! At the same time we’ll remove the windshield front and back and do some metal work. I’ll pull the dash frame and install all the pieces I’ve put together for a “new” dashboard. Shannon at Redline Gauge Works is currently restoring my cluster to brand new! It will be amazing to see everything in place once again. Here’s a photo of me and my New Yorker only a few weeks ago. Here’s to many more memories and learning experiences!!

View attachment 480335
It's good to see younger folks doing this much work and choosing a C Body for their dream car.

Looking at your pictures... gotta say it... in the rust belt, those trunk pans could have looked like that in the first year :), as the other Jeff said, CA car meant you didn't have to do frame rails or magic with the supports. Don't feel left out... awful work taking care of rust damage, there are a few who are masters at it around here. I don't love the C2C quality, but still better than the flat sheets I once did that crap with when I was in the rust belt.

Nice job and keep us informed as you continue the project. :thankyou:
 

fury fan

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Agreed on having patch panels, and TIG welders are so cheap nowadays that you can surgically weld that thin stuff in much better.
This was what I had to do back in 1993 - used OEM sheetmetal was the only thing available, but no ebay or good internet to find sources for it though.
So 14 ga steel, a sabresaw, and a $350 fluxcore welder were my option. And lots of scissoring on cardboard patterns...

1641949804651.png
 

MONC440

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Good job so far. I just started doing mine on my 70 Fury but mine was much worse as it was eaten away into the wheel wells. I didn't have a complete pan so I just used sheet metal for the center. You can check it out in my V10 Fury build thread.

I'm glad to see some young bucks take up the hobby and willing to get the job done. Keep it up it will be worth it!
 

Fury Man Van

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Forgive me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think I’ve seen anyone else do this job here on the forums before! I am sure most of you are familiar with me and my build by now, but if not - here’s a little background. Early 2020, I was 18 about to be 19 and bought my very first old car… a ‘68 New Yorker that’d been abandoned for 40 years. I’ve been working on restoring it ever since. All the work that’s been done to it has been done by me (except for big things like the engine / trans rebuild etc…) and the help of my great friend and mentor!!

We are close to getting this baby running once more for the first time since 1980! The trunk was pretty bad, the metal was eaten up by rust and there were holes that needed rid of.

View attachment 480329
View attachment 480330

We figured it’s best to do this repair work first before we even try to get this baby running due to having to drop the gas tank and all that fun stuff… So we did just that. Dropped the gas tank out which was by now completely dry. It actually had a drill hole where Tom Merkel, the previous owner drilled it out to drain the gasoline. Long story short - this guy was a little nuts… he had about 1,800 cars rotting in the Cuyama desert of CA. The state was not happy about this, due to environmental hazards or something like that. They made him drain the fluids of each car or else they were to be confiscated and crushed / scrapped. He did JUST that… which also explains why a lot of the things we’ve found on the car were remarkably clean like in the engine compartment and whatnot. Anyways back to the story.

My mentor has been building Kustoms and Hot Rods most of his life. He’s been a big Mopar fan and has built mostly Mopars! However they’ve all been pre 1960s Mopars. This is the first C Body he’s had a hand in building, and this is MY first car in general! So we had a bit of learning to do when it came to learning about the structure and frame work of the car. Initially I thought “Oh cool, I can just outline where I’ll cut with soapstone and do it all real easy!”
Well I was wrong! Since we are dealing with a unibody, a lot of the cutting had to be done underneath the car first. It was really hard for me since I’ve never used powered cutting wheels in my life. Basically I was cutting around all the sub frame work and supports that give the trunk strength, as well as cutting around where the leaf springs mount etc… It was a bit of a challenge, but in a few days time I got it done!

View attachment 480332

Now you can see INTO the frame and see the supports that connect to both sides and give the trunk the support it needs. I ground all those spot welds and popped off the remaining floor panels off the frame to expose the bare skeleton of the car.

Next step is to treat and kill the rust with acid, and grind down some of my jagged cuts to have a really smooth work area! Also just to use a flap wheel and clean up all the surface rust and make sure it’s all completely gone. After that, we will take the new trunk pan and set it where we need it to be. From there I’ll go underneath the car, stencil it out and mark where we should drill holes to redo the spot welds and hold that new pan in nice and tight! Slowly but surely this baby is coming along. Once everything is in place, I can repaint the trunk area and have it upholstered! Underneath, I can shoot on some rubberized undercoating and install the new gas tank and sending unit.
View attachment 480331

From there, we can move to the firewall for some patch work, as well as priming, blocking and painting it! At the same time we’ll remove the windshield front and back and do some metal work. I’ll pull the dash frame and install all the pieces I’ve put together for a “new” dashboard. Shannon at Redline Gauge Works is currently restoring my cluster to brand new! It will be amazing to see everything in place once again. Here’s a photo of me and my New Yorker only a few weeks ago. Here’s to many more memories and learning experiences!!

View attachment 480335
I know that this is an Old post but if you don't mind me asking where did you get your trunk pan?
 
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