There is no such thing as “the perfect build;” every potential dream car has its obstacles, and our Impala certainly was no exception. We could tell that the previous owner had slated this Impala to be a Lowrider at some point, but the car was abandoned mid-project. Unfortunately, the trunk still had the remnants of the additions he previously wanted to add. After looking at the car’s frame, we realized that the only addition to the car came in the form of ’70’s-style hydro racks, which needed to be removed from the car. We knew this was one of the reasons we had a diamond in the rough, as the average Joe had stayed away from this car while it was up for sale.
As soon as we got the car home, we called the pros at Classic Industries from Huntington Beach. With their knowledge of Impalas, they turned us onto their trunk patch panels. Fortunately, we didn’t need the whole trunk floor boards as the car was as solid as they come, minus the repairs that we are showing you today. The metal patch panels are the same thickness as the factory floorboards, and once the metal work was completed, it was going to be protected using some of Eastwood’s specialty coatings. Follow along, as we show you how the Men at House of Pain in Baldwin Park, repair the trunk floorboards on this Impala using Classic Industries parts.
1. Big Lou was on the grind as he used his new Eastwood welding/work table.
2. At some point of the car’s life, it was modified with hydraulics, and the trunk floorboards were modified.
3. We ordered our new trunk panels from Classic Industries.
4. These were some of the tools required to get the job done.
5. With the car back from sand blasting, we knew that the floors on this car were solid and only needed minor patching.
6. Straight cuts were done to eliminate all of the jagged edges, making it easier to weld the panels together.
7. The new Classic Industries metal panel can replace a good section of the trunk. We are only going to use the necessary amount of sheet metal to repair the trunk.
8. With the panel in the same position as the factory metal, we were able to make a stencil of what was going to be removed.
9. We used 3/4 inch tape to get us close to the measurement that we needed.
10. We used a cut off wheel to cut the patch metal.
11. The panel was cut to the size we wanted using metal sheer cutters.
12. This panel was compared and it was ready to be welded in place.
13. The patchwork starts with tack welds.
14. Some of the welding was done from the backside and a block copper was used to avoid blowing holes through the sheet metal.
15. The same process was done to the other side of the trunk.
16. You can see the heat the weld adds when melting metal together.
17. After grinding down the welds, they were covered with a thin coat of fiberglass.
18. Most of the fiberglass and bondo was sanded down.
19. Eastwood sealer primer was sprayed and followed up with their trunk paint.
20. This trunk looks like new and is ready to be zolotoned to match the exterior of the car. Stay tuned for that article in an upcoming issue of Lowrider.