Well, after considering all my options, it looks like it will be easier to just replace my frame. The previous owner covered up some serious rot with sheet metal and undercoating. F'n awesome! I have a line on a few used frames. The biggest issue is they are 4cyl frames. I have a 4.0. I was gonna pull the tub off regardless. I know the 4cyl engine mounts are located on the frame in a different spot. However, are they the same frame mounts? Can I simply grind them off and move them to the correct location?
Thanks to craigslist, I found a frame for a 4.0 from a 93 yj. Rust free and already repainted and mostalined. The asking price is $650 obo. It sounds like a good deal. Opinions? The seller said it was rust free when he bought it for a 95 yj build but he sold his jeep.
I think he has it priced at 650 because it is already painted and ready to go. I had a chance at one for $400 but it needed sanded and repainted. Plus, it was from a 4cyl and I would have to move the engine mounts.
Well...gonna drive an hour to check out the frame. The seller has some extra parts to include RC extended brake lines, engine and trans mount, stock leaf springs, and new spring plates. Everything but the frame is new. We have tentatively agreed on $700 for all. Good deal??? I think so if the frame checks out. Remember, I am in PA. Near Pittsburgh. The winters are rough here. Clean jeeps are few and far between.
Be careful when buying a frame someone has already covered. I looked at numerous frames before i bought mine and the finished ones with a thick coating can hide a lot. make sure you look inside the frame at all the points that you can see in. Look for flaking internally.
if it is a good frame, you might consider the internal frame coating by Eastwood. i did mine and it really covers nicely.
I bought it yesterday. I looked in the frame rails with my snake camera. Wow was it clean. I paid $700 and he gave me 2 stick rear leaf packs, new engine and tranny mounts, new in box rough country front and rear stainless brake lines, new front spring mount plates(still in the unopened bag), a clean front sway bar, and a new rough country track bar bracket. Plus, he had purchased the rear shackle hanger plates for his old frame. Prior to coating this frame, he had them welded on for reinforcement. I put my snake camera in the rear of the team rails and it was clean inside. I pulled my entire front clip today. It only took 2 hours. Not bad.
I wish I would have found a deal like that when I was looking at repairing/replacing my frame. I ended up going the autorust route since all the frames I found in pa where in the $500 range with the same rust problems. I'm in Lehigh valley and the best frame I found was $950 firm from a 4cyl when I have the 4.2l.
Although the autorust turned out very nice. Believe it or not the first picture was the good side of my frame that I cut off. The other side blew apart when I hit it with a torch. I ended up getting rear ended which cracked the back bumper and right side of the frame. The welds aren't the cleanest or best looking but they hold up just fine with the abuse I put the jeep through. The po saw the rust problem and his fix was to cut the back bumper off and tac plates on the inside and outside of the frame. It was a nightmare cutting out the frame I have no idea how someone could tac a plate on the inside of the frame back where the hump is.