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Rust in front trunk

My 74 914 has some rust in the front trunk. Apparently replacement sections are not available for this area. I suppose my options are to have a body shop weld in new metal or weld in a section from a donor car. I am mostly concerned about structural integrity of any repair as the front A-arm connects here. Any advice?

Thanks.

Chuck

Right side of front trunk. Note the rust at the seams. The reinforcement plate near where the A-arm attaches up front has small cracks in it. A-arm connection point looks solid from underneath. The car drives straight and doesn't pull to one side or anything.



Left side of front trunk. Note the rust at the seams. The reinforment plate seems OK. A-Arm connection point looks solid from underneath.
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Old 03-19-2002, 06:05 PM
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I wish my front trunk looked that good.
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Old 03-20-2002, 06:19 AM
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So you're not worried about something "breaking loose" on a hard turn? I'm adding some sticky tires/new shocks/etc and I'm worried about stress...I have visions of loosing my right front tire under hard cornering. Perhaps I worry too much.

Chuck
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Old 03-20-2002, 07:08 AM
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Well Iím worried now. Iím going to double check my suspension mounts. Maybe Iíll have to move my front trunk rust repair up in the priority list? I will say though my teenírs rust is WAY worst than yours and Iíve never ~noticed~ a problem. Maybe Iíve just been lucky?

[Update]
Here are some pics. The suspension is still bolted to good metal, but that rust is getting awful close. Yikes!
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Old 03-20-2002, 06:46 PM
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tim, after viewing the last picture( the one showing the front mount of the control arm) i felt your pain. i would think the cost and hassle of this rustoration would almost be equal to the cost of a good west coast roller. i hate to be negative, so i'll apologise in advance. the damage on your car must be the toll for living in an area where the roads are salted.
Old 03-22-2002, 06:59 AM
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No offence taken. I considered what your suggesting when I went 914 shopping, but two things deterred me from going that route. 1) I didnít want to pay a $500+ premium to have a car shipped to WI. 2) I do all, I mean all, my own wrenching Ė welding included. Had I gotten a rust free 914 I never would have had the opportunity to put my new MIG welder to good use. And I do enjoy that; although from time to time I do have to say to myself ďThis is fun, I enjoy this, I like working on carsĒ.

ďSome people have shrinks, other people have garagesĒ comes to mind, as does ďIím a sucker for a lost causeĒ.
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Old 03-22-2002, 08:05 AM
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tim, are you going to be able to find the replacement panels or will you have to fab up your own? if you lived in wa state i'd let you come over and cut what you needed out of my part car.
Old 03-22-2002, 08:16 AM
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Iíll have to fabricate my own pieces; I have yet to find someone who has pre-fab pieces for the front. Grafting in original pieces from a donor car would be ideal, but I havenít come across the right opportunity for that yet (ie. a donor car close by).
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Old 03-22-2002, 09:00 AM
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Tim--even if you had bought a rust-free west coast car, you'd have still needed the welder. Because there's rust even on a "rust-free west coast car", as well.

(OK, maybe not on Bob D's new Six. But even then I'm not holding my breath!!)

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Old 03-22-2002, 03:34 PM
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Tim,

Thanks for posting the pictures.

I feel much better now

But I still want this spot fixed at some point. I lose sleep over these kind of things!

Chuck
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Old 03-22-2002, 05:10 PM
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Tim, i just looked at your pictures and almost lost my lunch. A good relatively rust free roller costs about $500 or less here (So Cal), you need one in a bad, bad way. I would say that your front end is not safe, and I have driven some, how do we say, unusual 914s.
Old 03-23-2002, 02:44 PM
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i think our east coast, mid west 914 brothers and sisters might be mislead by the rust free or relatively rust free statement. the diff being that for the most part roads in ca.,wa.,az.,nm. and or. are not salted. the regular rust prone areas/problems are still common. but for the most part i.m.o the full scale tub rot is not nearly as common.even if you could locate a "good" sight unseen
roller, the trans cost ,and trust invested could be a step back. not as big a step back as the front connection of the tranverse link coming loose in a hard right hander at speed.
Old 03-23-2002, 03:47 PM
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Rust Free?

Geez, Dave I *hope* my 6 is rust free. I think there have been enough people crawling all over that thing, from mechanics to concour judges, that it'd be hard to miss...but then again we ARE talking 914s here.

Of course, I'll never know anyway, because I can't seem to get the darn car shipped here from the west coast. STILL waiting on the transport company to fill up a truck's worth of deliveries. I feel a little like I've chosen a mail-order bride and all I can do is stare at her picture while she makes the perilous journey from the old country....

Tim, you might want to try giving Brad Mayeur a call at 309-694-1797. He is in East Peoria, IL but that's only about a 4 hour drive from Milwaukee, and he drags his trailer up to WI fairly often as well. He has several good 914 parts cars in dry storage last I knew, and also is very willing to share rustoration advice.

Good luck!
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Old 03-23-2002, 07:53 PM
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It dawned on me that since the 911 suspension fits the 914 that I could use the pre-fabricated 911 front suspension pan and take care of a good portion of the rust. Any thoughts on that?

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Old 03-24-2002, 09:21 AM
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tim i would'nt hazzard to guess. but try this contact i found in one of my old magazines.RESTORATION DESIGN 517-663-4545 if they are still in bus. they are located at 224 N. Main St Eaton Rapids, MI 48827-1200. good luck

found this www.restoration-design.com

Last edited by Kevin Powers; 03-24-2002 at 10:40 AM..
Old 03-24-2002, 10:13 AM
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Restoration Design does not have that panel for the 914. The 911 part is different.

If they begin to manufacture them they will at least have 2 sales lined up.

Chuck
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Old 03-25-2002, 10:33 AM
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While itís true the 911 piece is different, the a-arm bolt/mount spacing should be the same. So by utilizing the 911 piece as a starting point for the rust repair, the amount of custom fabrication needed is reduced. Especially in my case where a good amount of the rust is between the a-arm mounts.

Tim
Old 03-25-2002, 11:40 AM
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That's an interesting point. Given that there is a large empty section in the 911 pan (for the gas tank) I wonder if it would be as strong as welding in a part from a doner car?
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Old 03-25-2002, 04:26 PM
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For my repair job I would have to fabricate the 914 pan/trunk bottom itself and weld that to the 911 piece and surrounding good metal. That ďpanĒ is a fairly flat piece and should be a straight forward fabrication job. Iím sure it can be welded together to be just as strong as OEM. A section from a donor car would be ideal, but without one close by its impractical and would no doubt be costly.

Tim
Old 03-25-2002, 04:46 PM
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Hey Folks, I tracked down the OEM part needed to fix this front trunk pan rust problem. The part number is P91450193811 and lists for $2,157.97 (+37 hours shop time to install it). Maybe this is how one ends up with $35,000 in their $3,500 914?
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Old 03-26-2002, 01:19 PM
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