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Thread: How many hours to replace a floor?

  1. #1
    Registered Member chevynut's Avatar
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    How many hours to replace a floor?

    I typically don't do this kind of work for my customers but I agreed to build a new firewall and fix the transmission tunnel that another shop cut out of the HEMI55. They cut it out from the firewall all the way to the rear seat. I had a section I cut out of another floor that I was going to use and began trimming away the junk welds that the former shop did on the floor. They were apparently going to screw the new transmission tunnel covers (three of them) to flanges they welded to the floor.

    As I got to fitting the pieces I had, I crawled under the car to scribe some cut lines. I noticed several pinholes in the driver's floor pan. There are lots of welds in the rear floor pans, probably from "repairing" pinholes there. Also, the center floor brace has a 10" wide section cut out of it with the ends capped, allowing the floor to sag in the middle. There were also some previous lapped patches on either side of the transmission tunnel.

    After assessing where I was, the work required to fix everything, and the condition of the floor, I decided it didn't make any sense to proceed with fixing what was there. Steve would end up with a mess and my work might be wasted if he decided he didn't like it

    So I recommended that he replace the entire floor in the car. I found one on sale on Ebay for under $900 shipped and he's ordering it to have it drop shipped to me. It's a 1-piece Golden Star floor with inner rockers. I told him that I wasn't sure I wanted to deal with it, but I guess I'm stuck doing it.

    It's a HT but the outer rockers are good (so it seems) so I'm not sure I need to brace the body, though I might anyhow. Taking the body off is easy.

    Anyhow, for anyone here who's done it how many hours do you estimate to cut out the old floor, prep the seams, fit everything, and plug weld and grind the new one-piece floor?
    56 Nomad, Ramjet 502, Viper 6-speed T56, C4 Corvette front and rear suspension

    You can see my 56 Nomad build here http://www.picturetrail.com/chevynut

    For affordable C4 Corvette Suspension conversions for your car, visit http://www.classicedgedesigns.com

    Other vehicles:

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  2. #2
    Registered Member 55 Rescue Dog's Avatar
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    Too many variables, that I couldn't make a guess, other than like most things I try to do that should only take an hour. I should multiply the time, and money by at least 5. Good luck.
    Probably only took less than 20 minutes on the production line when new. Plus employee pay/benefits, etc.
    Last edited by 55 Rescue Dog; 09-19-2019 at 05:29 PM.

  3. #3
    Registered Member carls 56's Avatar
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    being an HT, i would brace it. better safe then sorry.
    ARMY NAM VET, very proud!

    56 210 4dr

    drive and enjoy them while you work on them, life is to short.

  4. #4
    Moderator NickP's Avatar
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    60 hours including trunk on the last HT I did. I did brace it with an X. Included in that hour figure however is mini tubbing cuts in the floor section. Trunk was preconfigured for tubs. The time is not absolute, I'm away from main computer and on LapTop on the beach but it's close.

  5. #5
    Registered Member chevynut's Avatar
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    Thanks Nick. I was thinking of something around 40 hours myself, which sounds like it may be close considering the main floor is about 2/3 of the total floor area. However the rockers have a lot of plug welding that may increase it some. Working from the bottom up I was thinking 10-16 hours to remove the old floor and prep the flanges and other mating surfaces. Then another 8-12 hours to fit the new floor, and drill all the plug weld holes. Then 16-24 hours to plug weld and grind everything. That's 34-52 hours or an average of about 43.

    When I did my Nomad floor it was two separate floor halves and all the braces were loose. At the time an assembled 2-piece floor was over $2700 shipped, without rockers. So I fit and assembled my whole floor myself. It was a big job and took me 6 weeks working a few hours at a time. I'm not sure how many hours it took but it was a lot more than 40.

    There are a couple of bosses and flanges that I'll have to cut off of his Torqueflyte transmission and I'll probably have to split the transmission tunnel to raise it a bit for the trans to clear. The bosses mostly interfere with the toe boards which I'll also be replacing. The last shop cut the toe boards down the middle, so that's extra work I'll have to do.

    Does the rear seat bracing need to be removed or can you work around it?

    I really wonder about the need for bracing because the floor width is determined by the new floor and the trunk will be left intact, so side-to-side bracing is really not going to do anything with the trunk floor holding things together. The firewall and rear seat bracing will help too. The only thing that concerns me is the integrity of the rockers so I'll likely brace the bottoms of the door openings somehow. Can you explain your rationale for cross-bracing?

    I don't think Steve has a problem regardless of how many hours it takes because he trusts me to be fair. In fact he has told me several times that I'm the only guy he trusts to work on the car....which isn't necessarily a good thing . The last shop he took it to really screwed things up and I had to correct it all for him. I tried to get him to take it to Matt (my painter's shop) to have him finish it but that hasn't worked out yet.

    I'll try to keep track of my time and post my results here for future reference in case anyone else does this.
    56 Nomad, Ramjet 502, Viper 6-speed T56, C4 Corvette front and rear suspension

    You can see my 56 Nomad build here http://www.picturetrail.com/chevynut

    For affordable C4 Corvette Suspension conversions for your car, visit http://www.classicedgedesigns.com

    Other vehicles:

    56 Chevy 2-door BelAir sedan
    56 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    57 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    1961 Willys CJ3B Jeep
    2001 Porsche Boxster S
    2003 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax

  6. #6
    Registered Member chevynut's Avatar
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    Well after discussing this with Steve he asked me to take a closer look at the trunk too. It's a mess. Someone cut it in half and replaced the rear half. They patched the spare tire well by putting a rectangular sheet of sheetmetal under it, and welding it from the top. The rectangular piece is still there under the floor. There are pinholes along the weld and it's warped badly. There is rust and holes along the wheelwell flanges and the back corners have been patched, but there's still some rust holes.

    So it looks like we're probably replacing the trunk floor too. I asked Steve to come up and take a look at it because I didn't want to do something he doesn't think needs to be done. I'm not sure what level he wants to take this car to.

    Is there any need for the trunk braces if you're not going to put the stock tank in? Looks like the just get in the way of another tank.
    56 Nomad, Ramjet 502, Viper 6-speed T56, C4 Corvette front and rear suspension

    You can see my 56 Nomad build here http://www.picturetrail.com/chevynut

    For affordable C4 Corvette Suspension conversions for your car, visit http://www.classicedgedesigns.com

    Other vehicles:

    56 Chevy 2-door BelAir sedan
    56 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    57 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    1961 Willys CJ3B Jeep
    2001 Porsche Boxster S
    2003 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax

  7. #7
    Moderator NickP's Avatar
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    Regarding your thoughts on the inner rockers setting the width, I have to disagree. Every floor I've done has required the inners to be refined in their position relative to stock width (I braced everyone (5) in an effort to maintain actual stock dimensions) and found every single one not matching the original dimensions. One, was even 1/2" off. Granted, that's only 1/4" to the side but if you pull the bottom over to match, alignment issues will arise. Let us know how things turn out. Is the trunk to be minitubbed? If so, consider real deal steel's item that is pre done for their wider tubs.

  8. #8
    Registered Member chevynut's Avatar
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    Nick, I was referring to the rocker pinch weld flanges setting the width where they meet the new floor. I assume these are made with the correct width floor panel. If it's not correct, how do you correct it? I'll take measurements before I start cutting. Thanks for the heads up.
    56 Nomad, Ramjet 502, Viper 6-speed T56, C4 Corvette front and rear suspension

    You can see my 56 Nomad build here http://www.picturetrail.com/chevynut

    For affordable C4 Corvette Suspension conversions for your car, visit http://www.classicedgedesigns.com

    Other vehicles:

    56 Chevy 2-door BelAir sedan
    56 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    57 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    1961 Willys CJ3B Jeep
    2001 Porsche Boxster S
    2003 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax

  9. #9
    Registered Member chevynut's Avatar
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    Hey Nick, Steve wants to replace the entire floor including the trunk floor. Did you use separate trunk and main floors, or one that had them already welded together? I see a 1-piece floor from toeboards to bumper but it seems a lot more expensive than the two are priced separately. What "braces" are optional on the trunk floor?
    56 Nomad, Ramjet 502, Viper 6-speed T56, C4 Corvette front and rear suspension

    You can see my 56 Nomad build here http://www.picturetrail.com/chevynut

    For affordable C4 Corvette Suspension conversions for your car, visit http://www.classicedgedesigns.com

    Other vehicles:

    56 Chevy 2-door BelAir sedan
    56 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    57 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    1961 Willys CJ3B Jeep
    2001 Porsche Boxster S
    2003 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax

  10. #10
    Registered Member chevynut's Avatar
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    One more thing....I plan to use GS floors. I noticed that a fully welded trunk and main floor are around $2500 with free shipping. The main floor separately is around $900 and the tunk floor separately is around $800 for $1700 total shipped. What does the $800 difference in cost buy you? I know it saves some welding of the floors together but it seems like a lot of money for a few spot welds.
    56 Nomad, Ramjet 502, Viper 6-speed T56, C4 Corvette front and rear suspension

    You can see my 56 Nomad build here http://www.picturetrail.com/chevynut

    For affordable C4 Corvette Suspension conversions for your car, visit http://www.classicedgedesigns.com

    Other vehicles:

    56 Chevy 2-door BelAir sedan
    56 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    57 Chevy 210 4-door sedan
    1961 Willys CJ3B Jeep
    2001 Porsche Boxster S
    2003 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD Duramax

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