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Discussion Starter #1
Due to an overpowering amount of rust i had to cut out the spare pan. in all honesty for the cost of a new one i think i would rather just leave it out (car didnt come with a spare anyway). Considering the placement of the fuel tank i would assume i would need to add some weight to the passenger side of the trunk to keep everything even.

My first thought on this was to use something along the lines of rebar welded into place to reinforce the hole then place sheet metal over it. the rebar should in theory add the missing weight however it would not be at the same height as the tire would have been so it may throw everything off still.

Any ideas are appreciated.
 

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As long as you never intend to sell the car I see no reason not to eliminate the spare tire well. A piece of sheet metal with a few stiffening ribs pressed into it would be plenty strong.

However, if there is ever a next owner, you may get a nomination for DPO...
 

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the rebar should in theory add the missing weight however it would not be at the same height as the tire would have been so it may throw everything off still.
I'd skip the rebar, as I don't think you need to worry so much about weight balance. On a street car, there is always going to be a lot of variation in weight distribution, influenced by whether the fuel tank is full or empty, if there is a passenger, how heavy that passenger is, how many cases of wine are in the trunk, etc.

Your '81 spider probably has its battery in the trunk. Earlier spiders had their batteries in the engine compartment. My point being that Alfa moved a significant mass to the right rear of the car without changing anything or worrying about the weight distribution.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
As long as you never intend to sell the car I see no reason not to eliminate the spare tire well. A piece of sheet metal with a few stiffening ribs pressed into it would be plenty strong.

However, if there is ever a next owner, you may get a nomination for DPO...
its my first project car and I do plan on keeping it at least for a very long time. If I do end up getting rid of it then it may warrant taking out my patch work and putting in a proper pan if it means making more on the car.

I am mostly worried about the weight being even and keeping it low enough as to not effect performance in a negative way.
 

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With that much rust in the spare tire well, I'd be concerned about significant rust issues in the sills and floor pans. How do they look?

Best regards,
 

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its my first project car and I do plan on keeping it at least for a very long time.
Monsai52 said:
With that much rust in the spare tire well, I'd be concerned about significant rust issues in the sills and floor pans. How do they look?
You know, Monsai52 brings up an excellent point. If you plan on keeping the car for a long time, it makes little sense to invest time and money if it is severely rusted. If this were a 1931 Bugatti, the equation would be different, but 81 spiders are pretty common. If you goal is to build a "keeper" you might want to start with something more solid.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
overall rust isnt a significant issue, this particular spot though was really bad. i have pretty much everything removed from the car and am giving it a serious once, twice and third time over before i invest money into putting it back together. Besides the cost of the car ($400) the only money i have spent on it would be about 40 in tools, gloves and bandaids...
 

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If you want to keep your costs down, Wolf sheet metal out of Canada (Alfaparts.net) sells just the bottom, not the entire tub, for around 100 bucks. The way my luck runs, I won't cross the street unless I am carrying a spare tire...
 

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you'll need more bandaids. caio, chris
 

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overall rust isnt a significant issue, this particular spot though was really bad. i have pretty much everything removed from the car and am giving it a serious once, twice and third time over before i invest money into putting it back together. Besides the cost of the car ($400) the only money i have spent on it would be about 40 in tools, gloves and bandaids...
I'd take a pretty close look at your rockers before you conclude all is well. They are structural, and even more prone to rust than the spare well. Floors too.
 

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Pretty good looking solution, if you ask me. Looks like you applied sealer to the top patch to keep out splash water. Good move. If you really need a spare you can use a Ford Focus mini spare wheel. They are only about 4 inches thick. I just got rid of my Focus spare after buying and refubrishing a Graduate steel wheel. My quad is running spuerlites.

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks. I will admit that once the sealant dried clear it looks world's better. I even tested the strength of the patch by placing my 6 year old nephew on it and letting him stomp a little. (Don't worry. I was supporting him in case it gave way!)
 
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