|Replacing a Model T Touring Seat Box (Click for full screen)|
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New Sheet Metal
Comparing old and new
Old and new (side)
Ready for Seatbox
The rear seat box on my 1923 Touring was totally rusted rotten. I no longer had a place to store things under the seat. Lang's sells a sheet metal seat box repair item, so I bought one and tackled the job. The picture above, is the seat box prior to disassembly. This is definitely not for the feint of heart because I used some large tire irons and an 8 lb maul to beat some of it out.
The first thing necessary is to disassemble it. There are 4 screws and nuts holding it to the frames.
There are also screws holding it to the wood. Remove all these.
Here is a picture of the removed sheet metal. Everything was rusted. This is a major support for someone sitting on the rear seat.
The above shot is the new sheet metal, primed and painted, ready for installing.Measure the inside dimensions and when reassembling, ensure the wood rails are wide enough.
For a comparison, here is the old and new seat box, side by side. Notice the deteriorated metal.
Another comparison shot. I really had to destroy the old box, pulling it out. At this point, there was no going back. Although I painted the new seat box, it got really scratched up beating it in place.
Under the old seat box was a mouse nest. I have found these in radiators, under headliners, inside door panels and under the valve cover.
The wood was in less than desirable condition, but was fairly solid. I made some brackets out of flat stock 1/8 inch metal from Lowe's. Just for some added stability. I didn't measure the distance between the wood rails. I later had to go back and widen the rails and use flat stock braces.
Screwed in place and a quick shot of paint. Iknow, I know, I should have taken everything off and did the frame, but time was short. Such is life.
Side view of new seat box just before installing. The new sheet metal was pretty decent. I believe it comes from a company in Texas.
Voila! The finished job. It will take an entire afternoon, if you try and put a new one in without removing the body. Large tire irons and a big hammer helps. In hindsight, it would have been easier to remove the body, but the national tour was imminent and I wanted to drive in it. At least the uipholstery should have been removed. I broke the two uprights near the hinge. Replacement will be when I redo the top.