Boot floor trouble

Thomas Aczel shares his story of the issues he found after lifting his boot carpet.

I’d long regretted carpeting the boot in my MGB, (in 1985), but with its bare painted floor, articles being carried in the boot were forever scratching and marking the painted surfaces. It just never looked tidy, always deteriorated and “unfinished”.

So, 35 years later, I finally got around to taking the carpet out again.

Initially, things didn’t look too bad! Just a lot of hard rubbing, leaning over into awkward angles. BUT, around the fuel filler, clearly things weren’t so happy. Much rust, which looked like surface rust predominantly. But also emerging were former patch repairs (x2) to the boot floor, and, as you can see in the photo with the screw driver pointing, some small perforations appeared in areas well away from where corrosive and rust promoting fluids had collected in the off-side rear quarter recesses.

One significant disadvantage of having to go to work was my not being home when the soda blaster came. He had assured me that he could protect the surrounding paint and only blast in the boot. Nonetheless I carefully masked off around and inside the boot carefully, including boot lid hinges, prop, wiring harness and filler neck. I also masked around the perimeter of the vertical panel separating the cabin from the boot to stop the dust getting in to the cabin. To mask inside the cabin, I removed the parcel shelf carpet. Unfortunately it would seem the this was interpreted by the soda blaster as me asking for the parcel shelf to be blasted, which was entirely unnecessary. The result was a cabin with dust everywhere! In some places there actual piles of sodium bicarbonate a centimetre and more high, and in many places forced into narrow inaccessible crevices.

Small pinholes, and more than just pinholes (!!) and not unfortunately not localized to just one area. Things are looking more serious!

The last photo is of some of the foam I extracted, placed on each side between the corner boot floor panels behind each wheel arch on the sides and the inner surface of the mudguard, still there from when the car was first assembled in Enfield, Sydney, at Pressed Metal Corporation, in September 1965. It was all still in there, intact and complete, and, remarkably, utterly dry.