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post #1 of (permalink) Old 06-13-2009, 05:57 PM Thread Starter
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Oh NO! My frame does have some rot! Now what?!?!

Guys,

I've checked over my entire frame - everything is in good order except for the area around the rear spring shackles attach in the back. I was in the middle of replacing the rear shackles when I noticed how bad it was at the very end of the frame.

I can feel a soft spot on the very rear inside edge of the frame. You'll also notice from the attached pictures that I had been hit from behind just enough to push in the back connecting section of the frame.

Pictures can be seen here:

Picasa Web Albums - John - Frame Rot

What do you suggest?

Thanks,

-John
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 06-13-2009, 07:24 PM
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Well, there's a right way and a slew of wrong ways. The right way is to take a welder's chipping hammer and whack the tar out of the tubes every quarter inch or so until it barely makes a dent. Cut it off on a diagonal at that point and replace it. You'll want to remove the body mounts so that you can lift the body from the frame. It makes the whole process a lot easier. You don't have to take it all the way off - just lifting it a foot or so in back is a big help.

Make the frame tubes out of two pieces of 10-gauge hot-rolled that you bend into angle irons. Cut them to size and weld them together at the corners. Make the rear crossmember out of a piece of 3X3X1/8" square tube and cut away everything that doesn't belong. Fit it all back together and butt-weld it on.

You can probably do it with basic hand tools plus a grinder and a MIG welder. You can do a much nicer job with a TIG welder and a plasma cutter. You can see some of the process on my website.

Most of the wrong ways involve welding plates to the outside of the frame tubes. That's a bad idea because it's impossible to seal the area between the original frame and the patch. Rust grows like crazy there, and the whole thing will fall off in a few years.

EVERYTHING's easy for the guy who doesn't have to do it.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 06-13-2009, 07:55 PM Thread Starter
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Ugh... ok.

How do I lift my fiberglass body a foot off the frame? How many mount points are there to remove?

There must be other items I'm going to have to disconnect to get the fiberglass uni-body off the frame - yes?

-John
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 06-13-2009, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
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Does the rear crossmember (out of a piece of 3X3X1/8" square tube) have to be 10-gauge hot-rolled as well? Any recommendation on where I can find 3x3x1/8" material suitable for the cross member?

-John

Last edited by homepagez; 06-13-2009 at 08:47 PM.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 06-13-2009, 10:57 PM
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Quote:
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Ugh... ok.

How do I lift my fiberglass body a foot off the frame?
unbolt the body mounts, fuel filler neck, and lift it up. while up have some one position some blocks, or jack stands to hold it up.

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How many mount points are there to remove?
8-10 on the tub.

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There must be other items I'm going to have to disconnect to get the fiberglass uni-body off the frame - yes?
-John
yes, fuel filler, maybe some electrical wires to watch. clutch linkage, steering. but I don't think you'll have to lift it all that high.

The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness. - Joseph Conrad
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 06:26 AM
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Quote:
Any recommendation on where I can find 3x3x1/8" material suitable for the cross member?
In St. Louis Missouri you go to Shapiro Supply & Salvage, or call them at 800 833-1259 or look them up on the internet and have them ship it. If you're somewhere else, look up "Steel" in the yellow pages.

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post #7 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 08:19 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info.

I've never cut (with precision) anything that thick. How would you suggest I cut the 1/8" steel so it doesn't look like a hack job?

Thanks,

-John
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 09:02 AM
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you'd be surprised what ya can do with a sawzall

if ya get off of your lines a little then that's where the grinder comes in.

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post #9 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 10:10 AM
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What Jeep Girl said. Also a wafer wheel on a 4 1/2" grinder is a great tool, but patience is probably your best tool. There are places where you'll have to make an inside angle cut. You can run to the corner of the cut with a Sawzall, then start the new cut with the wafer wheel. Once the slot is opened up, go back to the Sawzall. Cut a little to the outside of the line and then clean and straighten the cut with a grinding wheel.

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post #10 of (permalink) Old 06-14-2009, 10:51 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for the help. Looks like I have about 12-16 inches on the driver side which will need to be cut off and replaced on the frame.

Amazing how much rust/crap was in the end of the frame tube.

-John
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