Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

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sharrar
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Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by sharrar »

Hello All,

My car (1984 Excel) went in for it's NCT today (the Irish equivalent of the MOT :o ) and it passed on all areas except for a comment of "Advanced corrosion on nearside rear cross member - integrity of the body is affected". The tester seemed to think it would be a simple fix by bolting on a support plate ('a small job' to quote him!). It's with my mechanic now and I'm hoping to hear by end of the week but I wanted to ask here if anyone has had or heard of a similar issue before? I see it's very common with Elites, but didn't find much on here for the same issue on Excels - which makes me nervous...

Do you guys think repair sounds viable? Can the entire rear cross member be replaced (I did see this for sale https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/393503879307 ... SwScJhFkYv but honestly this is something entirely new to me!)

All the best

Richard

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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by Pete Boole »

Advanced corrosion on an Excel chassis is really rare. You need to find out exactly which bit is corroded - get a photograph. They aren't just talking about the rear seat belt anchor plates, for example. which most definitely do corrode.

Pete

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Lotus-e-Clan
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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by Lotus-e-Clan »

Pete Boole wrote:
Tue Nov 23, 2021 16:57
Advanced corrosion on an Excel chassis is really rare. You need to find out exactly which bit is corroded - get a photograph. They aren't just talking about the rear seat belt anchor plates, for example. which most definitely do corrode.

Pete
+1 for Pete's thoughts. It's gotta be the seat belt anchor, surely?
Peter K

sharrar
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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by sharrar »

Hi Pete and Peter!

Many thanks for the rapid replies! That's interesting and gives me some hope - I'll try and get a picture when the car is on the lift.

One extra thing the tester said was that a 8 inch (i think he said 8") plate bolted over the existing area should fix it - if that fits the anchor plate situation? He did also show me a video of the issue and it seemed he was able to waggle the corroded part back and forth - something seemed loose or flimsy. Location wise it was near the front of the back wheel but the car was on the ground and it was hard for him to point it out.

Is there a picture of the seat belt anchor plate in relation to the cross member anywhere you could point me to? (just out of interest). On the positive side I would think the problem could not be something carrying any weight (I don't think they would have let me drive off!)

Out of curiosity if I was unlucky and had corrosion is the link I pasted earlier something I could consider?

Thanks again chaps, just when I thought I'd had or read about most issues this comes along :?

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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by AndyC »

This car for sale has a pic showing rear seatbelt anchors.

https://car-from-uk.com/sale.php?id=19350
https://car-from-uk.com/ebay/carphotos/ ... 179745.jpg In that image, which is taken from the rear of the car looking forwards, you can clearly see the joints in the exhaust just after it splits at the Y. In line with those exhaust joints (at that viewing angle) you can see two rusty things that have lots of black spots on them. Those are the rear seatbelt anchors/ plates. One surface is horizontal the other main surface goes up the back of the seat area, then it has a little closing plate at either end for the seatbelt to bolt into.
https://www.picclickimg.com/images/g/46 ... -l1600.jpg

This blog also shows them from another angle
https://majcd213.blogspot.com/2017/10/i ... curon.html
https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6nbDa6Jedew/ ... 012001.JPG The floor is in the RHS of the image, the bit of the body that's going away from the camera is the near-vertical seat back, and you can see a nbit of chassis and driveshaft visible.

Hopefully one of those angles will be similar to the view you were given.

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Lotus-e-Clan
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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by Lotus-e-Clan »

Yes the description seems to match Andy's reference photos. I'd put (Pete's) money on it! :wink:

Replace them with stainless steel items and Bob's your uncle. I got my stainless ones from SJS many years ago for £21 each. Don't know about current availability, or prices.

The inner seatbelt bolts can be a begger to get out (corrosion) ... otherwise painless! :)
Peter K

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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by Hawaiis0 »

Will it not be the main chassis cross member that's corroded. To which the link attaches to?

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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by AndyC »

"Near the front of the back wheel" does hint at seatbelt mounts, the subframe at that point is really just the centre backbone. Just before halfway of the wheels it then forms the cross of the T that is used to attach the suspension uppers etc.
https://www.diyelectriccar.com/cdn-cgi/ ... pg.122719/

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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by Hawaiis0 »

AndyC wrote:
Tue Nov 23, 2021 19:50
"Near the front of the back wheel" does hint at seatbelt mounts, the subframe at that point is really just the centre backbone. Just before halfway of the wheels it then forms the cross of the T that is used to attach the suspension uppers etc.
https://www.diyelectriccar.com/cdn-cgi/ ... pg.122719/
That's it the T cross member I reckon. The Seat belt mounts are too far away.

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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by barker_001 »

I had an MOT advisory a few years back for "Nearside Rear Vehicle structure has slight corrosion (6.1.B.2)", which turned out to be the rear seatbelt mounts. It turned out "slight corrosion" was rather kind and I removed most of them with a dustpan and brush! :shock:

I hope this is the case with yours, Sharrar, since actual chassis corrosion on the Excel is rare because they are galvanised, however the seat belt mounts were not. The good news is, as others have said, the mounts are reasonably easy to replace and are not actually a cross member or part of the chassis.
Bryan

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sharrar
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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by sharrar »

Thanks everyone for the great comments! I think you have helped identify it for sure. Andy's picture from the car for sale (nice car btw) was a big help - and funnily I'd come across the majcd213 blog picture also earlier this evening - and was going to post it back here to ask you all about it !!

In the video the tester took of the issue he seemed to be flicking part of the rotted mount away from the body and it did seem heavily corroded. So thanks again to everyone.

I also did check SJsports and they do seem to still have them (https://www.sjsportscars.com/parts-and- ... U1359K.htm) for around £50 but the postage on top to Ireland will probably make my eyes water! :lol:

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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by barker_001 »

sharrar wrote:
Tue Nov 23, 2021 21:45
the postage on top to Ireland will probably make my eyes water! :lol:
A good excuse to buy a load of parts for one postage hit! Definitely worth buying 4 new bolts at the same time, if I recall they are an Imperial size commonly used for seat belts. Three of mine came out intact, but I had to take an angle grinder to the last one to release the remains of the mount from the body. Also pick up some rubber penny washers and fit them inside the car against the fibreglass body, they will ensure the bolt holes don't let any water in from under the wheelarch.
Bryan

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Re: Rear cross member corrosion - Advice needed!

Post by MetBlue »

Lotus Bit's had them in Stainless for about the same price.
I changed mine last year. As said, most of it can be just torn off, but the captive nut end plates can be a right pain. Not so bad if you can get the car on a ramp.
Tony
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