Not the Scout in the video, but a very similar one. (Photo credit: Greg Gjerdingen/Flickr)

The 1970's were a simpler time, friends. And cars just didn’t get put together to the exacting standards we (for the most part) see today. Check out what’s really under the skin of this “rust-free” barn find classic.

International Scout Owners Of The World Facebook group member Steve shared his experience and why you should check below the fenders of a new-to-you old Scout. Even if you’re sure it’s “barn kept rust free original flawless.” Maybe especially so! At least with a rustbucket you can usually see right through to the wrongness.

Let’s see, we’ve got a few pounds of dirt, the corpse of at least one rodent, more dirt, leaves, bugs, and is that a beehive?

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You may already know that the International Scout is a particularly poor example of craftsmanship, which makes opening one up an especially interesting operation. Some of the trucks allegedly left the assembly line already rusty for godsakes! Which is why it’s the perfect vehicle to illustrate just how diverse an ecosystem you can build in the bowels of an old vehicle.

How does this happen? The simple answer is– big holes leading to an even bigger empty space. Dirt, mice, insects and lost cattle can find its way in. And usually expedite the rusting process. Most vehicles, even old ones, won’t have varmint ingress points quite as inviting as a Scout’s but you’re going to want to take a look inside the fenders in any major restoration.

The infestation of Steve’s red Scout II isn’t even as bad as the terrifying bee-takeover we heard about a couple years ago, but it sure made me nervous about the “cargo” I probably don’t know about in my ’75. Hopefully I can get that puppy back on the road soon and shake whatever sand vermin have taken up residence under the skin.