I am working on the same thing right now and here’s what I did/doing if it helps any. I welded a very heavy piece of angle across the trunk opening to keep it spaced properly and also used it to pick up the rear of the vehicle when the time came. Leave you trunk lid on and makes sure it clears the brace, you’ll need it to check gaps during the whole process. Because it was going to sit so long without the trunk pan I added a couple of verticals for added body support. Cut out the trunk pan and prepped everything. I am sure you’ll find the trunk close off pieces on both L/R sides are shot, the replacements are terrible and I really worked on some metal forming skills. When the time came to install the trunk pan I unbolted all the body mounts except the two up front (left them loose) and I used my engine crane hooked to the brace to lift the rear of the car. Right now I have trunk pan screwed and clamped in place and have all the sheet metal I am replacing primed and ready to weld.
I just did this , Good job of bracing ! If I made a mistake it was not taking the time to brace properly, I also added mini tubs , I the floor pan I ordered was not cut for mini tubs but the trunk pan was this also caused more work for me . Looks good have fun with it eh !
Question. Is the rear brace needed if I ordered a complete pan?
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You did the right thing by ordering the complete pan. I did not and later wished I would've. The time savings of not having to cut off and reuse all your old small parts and having your tail brace welded on in a factory jig is worth the extra money.