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How to Temporarily Repair a TJ Frame
(05/02/09) To start off, this is NOT how you should repair a frame. This frame is in need of REPLACEMENT, but that takes 20-30 hours, so here is what I did to help a friend out in about 2 hours. Again, DO NOT think that I agree that this is the best way to do this. It is a TEMPORARY fix and even though it looks good on the outside, the inside portion is still rotting away. It was a TEMPORARY fix to get him through the next few weeks until he can get a new frame and swap it.
With the other YJ frame going to the recycler, I took some good steel from that and cut it out to match the shape I wanted and then held it in place with some C-clamps and started tacking it in place. Once I was happy, I started welding. It was a little tricky as the frame is thinner in places then others due to the rot, but it was all solid steel, so even though the welds look rough, it is a TEMPORARY fix that should get him through the next few weeks. Also, it was a quick job, so that is why the welds weren't ground down.
Lessons Learned
So, welding in shorts is not a good idea, I burned my leg pretty good. Also, make sure you cut a template out of exactly what you are looking to do for the repair, this helped a ton. My friend said it looked like Stacey David was preparing for some fab work. I take that as a compliment.
This is a pretty easy project, but should never be relied upon to provide you a true permanent fix. This is just a patch, but with recycling steel from another frame, the frame thickness was the same and by tying in the frame to the suspension mount, it does add some strength, the only downside is that the back side is still rotting out.

cb (05/02/09)

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