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Sagging floor panel on 2000 Sunsetter VLV

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Ok, so there is a floor panel that starts just under the back seats in the center and extends up to just along side of the back of the drivers seat. It appears to be the only removable floor panel in the in the back seating area. It has the socket for the table upright in it and two screws at the front corners of the panels. My whole floor used to be very solid, but I just noticed this last time out this panel now sags in the middle in the front if you are standing on it. I figured I would takeout the two screws and lift the front while sliding the whole panel toward the front of the boat to gain access to underneath and see what support I had lost and fix.

Now for the bad news....After taking out the two obvious screws and lifting and prying any way that felt like Iwas not doing any major damage, it will not come up at all. Does anyone know any tricks to get this panel out? I tried using a larger machine thread screw in the clearance holes for the mounting screws and I could not get a bite to jack it up. Kinda feels like this is a fiberglass panel and it will damage easily.

Any thoughts?

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On my '99 and '01 VLX there was only the 2 screws on the front corners of that panel. To get it up, you need to slide one or two flat head screwdrivers on that front edge to use to pry it up. The back part just slides under the vertical support for the back seats.

I think Pete attached a pull loop on his to pull up after he got his up the first time.

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Thanks jwl, that's what I figured, but the damn thing is making crunchy noises when I try to pry it up, like I am damaging it.

Is it the white solid plastic I have seen in other areas of the boat, or is it fiberglass? With the carpet on top it's hard to tell.

If it was the plastic material I would not mind prying a little harder. Maybe two 1" putty knives to get a better grip and cover more surface area for the pry....

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I think it is actually like a wafer board style material so something sturdy but wide using a couple should not do much damage. I did make indentation in mine using the screwdriver but it wasn't really noticeable. It's a tight fit so whatever you use will need to be fairly sturdy/strong.

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Try threading slightly larger screws into the holes but only into the cover, not into the framing below. Then grip the screws with a vice grip or similar and pull up. Worked for me.

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Thanks Mark,

Had tried that, #14 screw in a #10 clearance hole, no luck. I don't think it has ever been removed before. I'll get the boat uncovered this weekend and try again!

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I had mine out last year (I have an 01). I just did as others have stated, mine was tight but not as bad as yours sounds, maybe wet the seam with water to help free up?

Great idea to put a pull loop once out, wish I had. I can't understand why it would suddenly be weak. Careful it is easy to crush some of the wafer.

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