Sunday, January 8, 2012

Objects in Rear View Mirror...Are Closer Than They Appear (pt. 2)

In the beginning, I started with Bubba's 30 or 40 pounds of added steel that actually made for a high quality  rear crossmember, but unfortunately for me, is incorrect when trying to restore this jeep back to it's 1944 configuration.  After removing the incorrect crossmember, I needed to do some small repairs to the very ends of both side frame rails.  Evidently, when the original cross member was either cut off, torn off or just plain and simply fell off, the tip ends of the frame rails, including the 90 degree bend ears, went with it.  I had to make and install these, and then make sure the rails were a strict 29.25" apart from outside of one rail to the outside of the other rail before installing the new (and correct) rear crossmember.  Good luck following words just overcomplicated my simple mind.

Enough chit chat, let's look at some pictures.
Driver's side after I have cleaned up the end.  I piece will fit into that void and then make a 90 degree bend to the outside.

The new piece fitted into place and held with the welding magnet.

The passenger side was the same situation, except that I did not need to make it as deep.

Both tabs have been welded into place and the scars removed.  In this picture, I have drilled the pair of holes on each tab, as well as their mating holes on the rear cross member and primed.  The strap is holding the rails at the 29.25" necessary width.
After fitting the crossmember into place, I used 6 different bolts with rounded heads that resembled the original factory installed rivets.  The last thing I may do is to place a small weld bead along the bottom edge of the crossmember to the underside of each frame rail for extra stability.  I am going to wait to do this until I have the tub installed...just incase my measurements were off.  This way, all I have to do is unscrew half a dozen nuts if I have to remove the crossmember.
Driver's side.  Also, you can see two rivets on the side of the frame rail just to the right of the shock mount (behind the tire, Nette!)  There was an area here that I had to grind down and reweld.  Once upon a time the frame had been repaired here.

Passenger side repaired.

From the rear!
Coming up next...time to remove the rear leaf springs and axle in order to properly clean the exterior surfaces.  I am thrilled that this rear crossmember is done.  It was a job I wasn't too excited about when it began.  Also, I completed it much quicker than I had originally estimated.  However, even if I did pay myself an hourly rate, it still would have been expensive!

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