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Picked up a used trunk lid today and now I’m not sure I can use it. I think the guy I bought it from came to the same conclusion after stripping the paint off half of it. It must have sat for a good while in his barn because the stripped side had considerable surface rust. After stripping the other half and knocking the rust off it I found some issues. The seam along the back edge is not rotten but there are some pin holes on the top side. Also there is a dent near the key cylinder, which I somehow missed. To deal with the dent, I’ll have to pull it with studs I think. As far as the pin holes...weld em up? I bought it so I had it for body alignment while I replace the quarter skins. I think it will be a fair bit of work. Worth it?







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Discussion Starter #3
I welded more than that on my trunk. I think it would fine. Doug
There are 3 or 4 pin holes like the one in the picture above. The backside looks really good. The 3 or 4 other lids I’ve looked at, including the original one that came off the car were much worse. They rust out right on that back seam. I wish that one side hadn’t been left bare for so long though. I feel like I’ll need to treat it with something special before even sealing it with epoxy.


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1968 Chevy II Nova, Central Arkansas
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I think it will be a fair bit of work.
Looks like you already have a "fair" amount of work into it. Sounds like it is the best one out of 4 or 5 prospects. Your into it this far I would say go ahead and see if you can't make a keeper out of it.
 

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My concern would be rust "down the road." AMD and others sell brand new ones pretty cheap and the fit is good.
True. Funny story, I searched around locally trying to find one. Had called a friend of a friend who has his own personal junkyard. Also called and spoke to people at JWNova and AMD. Was about to just order a new one, literally, and the guy finally called me back. I’m talking seconds before I placed the order. So I ran over there and looked at it. New would have been $400 with shipping. I paid $150 for the used one. I really wanted to get this sorted so I could have it on the car while I did the quarter skins. I’ll use it for that then try my hand at some bodywork on it. If it works out to my satisfaction, I’ll use it. If not, I’ll get a reproduced one. AMD would be my 1st choice but they were back ordered like 3 months. JWNova had one, they were great to deal with and I would have ordered it but, this one came home with me.

Been watching some videos on how to treat the surface. Think I’ll hit it with phosphorus acid at least to stop the rust while I get on with the quarters, which is what I really want to be working on.


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Put in on the car and working on adjusting it. It looks like I’ll have to pull the right quarter in 1/8th and push the left out an 1/8th. Have the lid as far back as possible while keeping the front of it uniform across the rear windshield area. Not bad. I was pleased with how it fits so far. The real PITA was putting the hinge springs back in.




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The rust issues I have dealt with and seen on an outside surface of a panel are normally just the tip of the iceberg. The rot I've seen around the wheel arches on my 73 and 74 Nova's, the rot I've seen around the taillights on other 73/74 Novas did not look like much until I dug into it.
I also had some 74 fenders that I stripped all of the outside paint off and had NO pin holes or anything on the skins but once I got them back from being chemically dipped to remove rust, I got the fenders back with some through holes on the back bottom corners. I'm SO glad I had them dipped because I know right after they would have been painted some bubbles or pin holes would pop up.

This was an exrelations 68 Dodge Dart that I cut open the quarter to investigate the depth of the rust and it was a lot more than what was seen from the outside.



Jim
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The rust issues I have dealt with and seen on an outside surface of a panel are normally just the tip of the iceberg. The rot I've seen around the wheel arches on my 73 and 74 Nova's, the rot I've seen around the taillights on other 73/74 Novas did not look like much until I dug into it.
I also had some 74 fenders that I stripped all of the outside paint off and had NO pin holes or anything on the skins but once I got them back from being chemically dipped to remove rust, I got the fenders back with some through holes on the back bottom corners. I'm SO glad I had them dipped because I know right after they would have been painted some bubbles or pin holes would pop up.

This was an exrelations 68 Dodge Dart that I cut open the quarter to investigate the depth of the rust and it was a lot more than what was seen from the outside.



Jim
I looked inside, along that seam, as much as I could see, and it does not look rotten. I can’t explain it. For now, it’s there and I’ll use it to line up the gaps as best I can. I’ll practice some body techniques possibly down the road, if I can make time and have the patience. I may even try to fabricate a spoiler on there, especially if it makes the problem a non-issue. I may just scrap it and get a new one before I paint the car. Lord knows I’ve changed my mind on this project dozens of times since I started it.


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I would counter sink the holes and braze them in with a 0000 brazing tip this keeps the heat low but cover the area with damp rags or used compressed air to min. warpage.
 

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I have 4 trunk lids at the moment (2 project cars and 2 parts car), they all look worse than that. The rust is always on the rear seam area, you could try welding in the holes and see how solid it appears. You have excellent fab skills, it wouldn’t be hard at all to replace a section or two, if needed. The green phosphoric acid will run down into the seams and provide good protection down the road. I brush a thick coat on the backside and turn the lid 90’ to let all four sides soak. And it also works well on surface rust.
 
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