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  #1  
Old 01-04-2019, 12:41 AM
ZackN920's Avatar
ZackN920 ZackN920 is offline
350 Buick
 
Join Date: Nov 18, 2015
Location: Stephenson County, IL
Posts: 926
Rusty frame repair thoughts...

Hey guy's, been thinking more about this. Finally got a welder... Not here yet as I ordered it online. I'm thinking about this for the future

When I get it, I plan to do some small work and practice for awhile as this is new to me. Luckily, my step dad was a certified welder for his work so if I need help, I can get ahold of him and get help.

Most of you know, my frame is in sad shape. Lower part of the "C" is all gone under the skid plate. Surprisingly, the skid plate is fine. Also have a few holes behind the rear wheel on that side. The rest of it is all right.


These pics are OLD. I have cleaned the frame up some and rust reformer'ed it and my rear springs were "resto-modded" around 9 months ago.


I'm wondering how I should go about fixing it. I've seen 2 different ways done on some full size jeeps. I have seen a few plate the frame and cover it up, and I have seen a few cut out and match new metal to the cut out section. I kind of like the idea of cutting it out and matching it, but it seems like it might be a weaker option. I like it because I could grind the welds flush on the front side and have it look stock, but I wonder if it would be strong... Could I do that and add reinforcement to the back side and be fine?


Some examples:

Plating



Matching


What would you do? Like said above, I like the idea of matching, but I think it may need some reinforcing from the backside....or not?
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1990 Grand Wagoneer-"The Crapwagon"
AMC 360, TF727, NP229, 3.31gears, 2" lift
Rancho 44044, Rusty's 2" AAL, TFI
...not too rusty anymore
Plenty of patina

The others
1926 Dodge Brothers Business Sedan 212 I4-CRANK START
1987 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series-5.0 AOD (WD)
1987 Dodge Dakota LE 3.9, A999, 3.90 gear (DD)
1994 GMC 'Burban 5.7, 4L60E, NP241, 3.42 gear (DD)
2001 Jeep Cherokee 4.0, AW4, NP231, 3.73 (limbo)
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  #2  
Old 01-04-2019, 04:23 AM
wiley-moeracing wiley-moeracing is offline
350 Buick
 
Join Date: Feb 15, 2010
Location: arizona
Posts: 1,135
as bad as the rust is I would get a different frame, better, safer and quicker that trying to repair.
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  #3  
Old 01-04-2019, 08:07 AM
babywag's Avatar
babywag babywag is offline
out of order
 
Join Date: Jun 08, 2005
Location: Land of froot loops and cukcoo-nuts, CA
Posts: 9,601
Quote:
Originally Posted by wiley-moeracing
as bad as the rust is I would get a different frame, better, safer and quicker that trying to repair.

x2
Any accident and that thing would likely crumple like an aluminum can.

But if you're dead set on trying box it or plate any repairs.
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  #4  
Old 01-04-2019, 11:01 AM
ZackN920's Avatar
ZackN920 ZackN920 is offline
350 Buick
 
Join Date: Nov 18, 2015
Location: Stephenson County, IL
Posts: 926
If I wanted to do a frame swap, i'd have one sitting in the back of the garage. Every time I had to opportunity to buy, I just kept turning the idea down. I have never wanted to do a frame swap on this. Before I didn't think it was worth it (with all the floor rot/ holes and other body problems), now I just don't want to go that route. Still seems more trouble than its worth. I don't know how it would be faster at all. I'd probably have to change all brake lines, and other plumbing, change the springs/ all suspension/axles over from mine to it, automatic new body mounts (pia), swap the whole drivetrain and all the misc. i'm not thinking of, and on top of that, then get it all set back up. If this was worth $15K+, than it might be a job worth doing but I'm still convinced that my Jeep still ain't worth ...


I dont know Tony, I should have snapped the frame by now in that area if it was that weak. and If you mean an accident at speed, any vehicle will crumple like a can if you hit a barrior doing 70 on the interstate...


I can't box it where the gas tank is!? ...can i? Best I could do would be plate, but as stated above thats kinda obvious that work has been done... But if its strongest for repair, thats the way i'll go. But if I do as much as that example I uses above, im putting some holes in the new material to add some extra weld to the original metal.
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1990 Grand Wagoneer-"The Crapwagon"
AMC 360, TF727, NP229, 3.31gears, 2" lift
Rancho 44044, Rusty's 2" AAL, TFI
...not too rusty anymore
Plenty of patina

The others
1926 Dodge Brothers Business Sedan 212 I4-CRANK START
1987 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series-5.0 AOD (WD)
1987 Dodge Dakota LE 3.9, A999, 3.90 gear (DD)
1994 GMC 'Burban 5.7, 4L60E, NP241, 3.42 gear (DD)
2001 Jeep Cherokee 4.0, AW4, NP231, 3.73 (limbo)
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  #5  
Old 01-04-2019, 11:38 AM
tgreese's Avatar
tgreese tgreese is offline
 
Join Date: May 29, 2003
Location: Medford MA USA
Posts: 11,158
The main problem with cutting and patching is the welds perpendicular to the long axis of the frame. Ideally your welds should be along the long axis, so that they are being compressed and stretched along the length of the weld, not its width. The rail of the frame is like a girder, supporting the weight of the Jeep between the two suspension points (front and back axles). A girder has a top rail, bottom rail, and web that joins the bottom and top rails and holds them in tension and compression resp.

Your main failure is that the bottom rail is pretty much gone on that side. If you can find a decent donor frame, it may be easier to swap it out than to try and repair this frame in situ. Even if your donor frame has problems, you can patch them while the frame sits on sawhorses, and then do the swap all at once.

If you insist on patching this frame, I think the "matching" method would work ok, though I would do it differently. The long axis welds are fine, though I would not weld the ends like that. I would either leave them unwelded, or make a generous fish plate at each end for the rail at least. You can cut the patch so that the existing material has a fish mouth that lays over or fits with the existing frame material.

Another possibility is to make a complete section of the frame to fit in there, of the same thickness and dimensions of the original. The bottom rail could extend the whole length, from spring hanger to hanger, and be sistered to what's left of the original bottom rail. Top rail does not matter so much, since it's mostly in compression. Again, I would fish plate any joints perpendicular to the long axis of the frame.
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Tim Reese
Maine beekeeper's truck: '77 J10 LWB, 258/T15/D20/3.54 bone stock, low options (delete radio), PS, hubcaps.
Browless and proud: '82 J20 360/T18/NP208/3.73, Destination ATs, 7600 GVWR
Copper Polly: '75 CJ-6, 304/T15, PS, BFG KM2s, soft top
GTI without the badges: '95 VW Golf Sport 2000cc 2D
ECO Green: '15 FCA Jeep Cherokee KL Trailhawk

Last edited by tgreese : 01-07-2019 at 04:20 PM.
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  #6  
Old 01-04-2019, 11:46 AM
wiley-moeracing wiley-moeracing is offline
350 Buick
 
Join Date: Feb 15, 2010
Location: arizona
Posts: 1,135
Don't take offense, its just that it takes a lot of time to properly weld and plate but that's only as good as the base metal your working with. I understand its not a perfect truck but still the only real support your getting is the body keeping the frame together. The only safe and long term solution is to replace the frame. yes there will be other repairs and parts needed but you will have to do those anyways. I/we are concerned about you and your families safety. another alternative is to get another rig and use the parts off yours to put it together, this would be a lot cheaper and quicker.
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  #7  
Old 01-05-2019, 01:30 PM
Ristow Ristow is offline
 
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Location: The Great Googley Moogley Midwest.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by babywag
x2
Any accident and that thing would likely crumple like an aluminum can.

.






these cars do that regardless....
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Ristows right.................again,




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  #8  
Old 01-08-2019, 11:47 PM
ZackN920's Avatar
ZackN920 ZackN920 is offline
350 Buick
 
Join Date: Nov 18, 2015
Location: Stephenson County, IL
Posts: 926
Just for S&G's I got on the ground today and poked around some with a hammer and screwdriver. Looks like I have more than enough good material to weld to if I use 2" angle iron and even more good metal if I plate the frame.
Other than that area on the side that rusted through, its all good 1 inch above where the lower bend is. Sturdy, appears to be around 1/8th thick and all. Not sure of the original thickness that it's supposed to be but Ive got some 2" angle iron and flat stock now that's 1/8. I think it should be good to use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tgreese
The main problem with cutting and patching is the welds perpendicular to the long axis of the frame. Ideally your welds should be along the long axis, so that they are being compressed and stretched along the length of the weld, not its width. The rail of the frame is like a girder, supporting the weight of the Jeep between the two suspension points (front and back axles). A girder has a top rail, bottom rail, and web that joins the bottom and top rails and holds them in tension and compression resp.

Your main failure is that the bottom rail is pretty much gone on that side. If you can find a decent donor frame, it may be easier to swap it out than to try and repair this frame in situ. Even if your donor frame has problems, you can patch them while the frame sits on sawhorses, and then do the swap all at once.

If you insist on patching this frame, I think the "matching" method would work ok, though I would do it differently. The long axis welds are fine, though I would not weld the ends like that. I would either leave them unwelded, or make a generous fish plate at each end for the rail at least. You can cut the patch so that the existing material has a fish mouth that lays over or fits with the existing frame material.

Another possibility is to make a complete section of the frame to fit in there, of the same thickness and dimensions of the original. The bottom rail could extend the whole length, from spring hanger to hanger, and be sistered to what's left of the original bottom rail. Top rail does not matter so much, since it's mostly in compression. Again, I would fish plate any joints perpendicular to the long axis of the frame.
Ok, so you say to not make vertical welds...hmm, I always see it when looking up fsj frame repair. I get what your saying about it, but don't understand why its not practiced more often when people make repairs to these frames. Even that "frame repair kit" from teamgrandwagoneer promotes some vertical welds.

I do insist on patching and working with what I got. So you say matching should be fine, all right I like that. Don't like the idea of leaving the ends floating though. I want them solid as well.
Fishplate at the end huh... hmm, how would you do it?-especially since I think i'll be using 2" angle iron. A full fish mouth shape on both the side, and the bottom where I connect to the original frame rail? Or angle it down from the top (of the angle iron) to the point at the bend and vice versa with the bottom?

Which would you do:


What do you mean "sistered"? My plan for the repair is to go all the way (or near all the way that fishmouth will allow) from where the frame is boxed, to very front of the bend going over the rear axle. Ending a few inches past the front rear spring hanger.



Quote:
Originally Posted by wiley-moeracing
Don't take offense, its just that it takes a lot of time to properly weld and plate but that's only as good as the base metal your working with. I understand its not a perfect truck but still the only real support your getting is the body keeping the frame together. The only safe and long term solution is to replace the frame. yes there will be other repairs and parts needed but you will have to do those anyways. I/we are concerned about you and your families safety. another alternative is to get another rig and use the parts off yours to put it together, this would be a lot cheaper and quicker.
No offense taken. I'm willing to put in the time. That and doing this should be better than doing nothing. Heck, i'm driving it as is at the moment when ever I please. I really have'nt been worried about it. Seems strong enough. I used to be concerned about the gas tank, but it hasnt moved in the 3 years i've had this Jeep and where it's held is still nice and strong/uncompromised.
I disagree about that last part, I still don't believe it would be cheaper or quicker. FSJ's in any condition around me are almost always too expensive (heck I still think I paid to much for this "hunk a junk") and it would probably take ME 6 months to complete that project. If I go that far, I might as well fork the money out and do a full resto. That was never the plan.
__________________
1990 Grand Wagoneer-"The Crapwagon"
AMC 360, TF727, NP229, 3.31gears, 2" lift
Rancho 44044, Rusty's 2" AAL, TFI
...not too rusty anymore
Plenty of patina

The others
1926 Dodge Brothers Business Sedan 212 I4-CRANK START
1987 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series-5.0 AOD (WD)
1987 Dodge Dakota LE 3.9, A999, 3.90 gear (DD)
1994 GMC 'Burban 5.7, 4L60E, NP241, 3.42 gear (DD)
2001 Jeep Cherokee 4.0, AW4, NP231, 3.73 (limbo)

Last edited by ZackN920 : 01-09-2019 at 12:08 AM.
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  #9  
Old 01-09-2019, 03:58 AM
wiley-moeracing wiley-moeracing is offline
350 Buick
 
Join Date: Feb 15, 2010
Location: arizona
Posts: 1,135
I understand, we have them all over here, rust free and relatively cheap and I have a different capability than most, just figured its something to think about before jumping in.
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  #10  
Old 01-09-2019, 07:10 AM
77Deepj20 77Deepj20 is offline
232 I6
 
Join Date: Jan 24, 2016
Location: new jersey
Posts: 109
I would remove the rusted out parts and match from the inside, using a continuous piece of angle, although I would use 2x3 3/16 thick. Make the cut lines as straight as possible, and at a standard height, like say 1.5" or 2" from the bottom of the old frame. Then, you can add a piece of flat stock, the actual width of the frame whether its 1/8 or 3/16 or whatever to the outside of the new piece of angle to fill in the void where the frame material was cut out. This will allow a solid weld on the I side of the frame and if you chamfer around the cut, you can fully weld the entire area from the outside and grind smooth, leaving the best "stock" appearance you can without losing much for strength.

Make sure you prep the old metal as well as you possibly can and learn how to make a good weld before working on the truck. This needs to be solid.
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  #11  
Old 01-10-2019, 01:24 PM
tgreese's Avatar
tgreese tgreese is offline
 
Join Date: May 29, 2003
Location: Medford MA USA
Posts: 11,158
Sistering is a term commonly used in house renovation/repair where additional structure (usually joists) of the same size and shape are added side-by-side to existing structure for reinforcement. https://www.bing.com/images/search?q=joist+sistering&qpvt=joist+sistering&FORM =IGRE

If I went with a repair like that, I'd buy a strap the same width and thickness as the bottom rail and cut it the same length as the bottom rail from spring hanger to spring hanger. I'd then clamp it and tack it to the bottom rail, and make a plate that covers the holes between the web and the bottom rail, with diagonal ends. Tacking the plate to the frame and new rail, I'd have one long joint in the new steel between the plate and the sistered bottom rail. The bottom rail could be stitch welded - no need to weld to the old rail along its whole length. Some added stitch welds could join the plate to the remaining good steel of the web.

I'd likely do the same to the passenger side bottom rail, just for symmetry.

Welding on the short axis is not so much of a problem on the web as on the rails. Besides the welds cracking, the main consideration will be the difference in stiffness between the more-or-less intact region and the sistered repaired region. When the frame flexes, the change in stiffness will cause a stress riser at the boundary that could lead to cracking. An angled end (making the plate sort of a trapezoid shape) would be better than straight if you want to close the ends of the patch. Realize that the back side of the patch is going to be open to the old steel anyway unless you remove and replace all the questionable steel.
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Tim Reese
Maine beekeeper's truck: '77 J10 LWB, 258/T15/D20/3.54 bone stock, low options (delete radio), PS, hubcaps.
Browless and proud: '82 J20 360/T18/NP208/3.73, Destination ATs, 7600 GVWR
Copper Polly: '75 CJ-6, 304/T15, PS, BFG KM2s, soft top
GTI without the badges: '95 VW Golf Sport 2000cc 2D
ECO Green: '15 FCA Jeep Cherokee KL Trailhawk

Last edited by tgreese : 01-10-2019 at 02:51 PM.
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