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16-May-00 Finish Welding the Frame Part 2

Ready to go to the Body Shop!

ImageThis photo doesn't show what I hoped to show you so I'll need to explain a bit further – When it came time to finish weld the rear 4-bar mounts to the differential we took some extreme measures to make sure that the differential wouldn't warp due to the heat. First we placed the jack stands inward of the welded area. Placing them outward would put the weight of the center section working against us and could cause warping. We also placed 2 cold wet rags on each side of the weld as we worked to cool the metal. Joey stitched about 1-inch at a time and let it cool. He would go from side to side working an inch at a time. This means that the weld will not look as pretty as a continuous weld, but we are going to do a little bodywork on this area to blend it in later anyway.
ImageThe steering box sits so high in the frame that I only had to use about 1/3 of the bracket that ties it to the under side of the frame. Again Joey's welding skills show.
ImageHere's a nice view of the brake pedal location. It's easier to see now that the frame is upside down.
ImageThis is a closer view of the brake pedal mount and master cylinder location.
ImageThis photo shows a finished 4-bar mount on the differential. The small “blotch” weld just in from the left side is my tack weld. This area will be totally smoothed without grinding the weld. The way it is shaped will allow me to putty over the weld and blend it right in with the differential.
ImageWhen the welding was finished and the rear C-cuts were ground smooth it was time to take the frame to the body shop. I rented a stall from Ken Jump (Ken's Auto) in Harrisburg (just outside of Sioux Falls) to do the finish work and paint. Ken's a fellow street rodder and a super nice guy. It's not every day that someone will allow you to rent a stall and use the paint booth in a body shop to do your own work. Thanks Ken! As you can see here the 12 foot long frame fits like a glove in the back of my Durango leaving only about 3 ½ feet sticking out. I'm going to bring it back home the same way because there is no way it can get scratched. Cool eh? I suppose I should have washed the Durango before I took this picture – oh well, you've seen it at it's worse now. I wonder if the body will fit back there…