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Old 06-30-2012, 02:29 AM   #1
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97 TJ Rusted out skidplate bolt hole repair options solicted here...

Greetings from North Pole Alaska,
So, on my 2 week old 97 TJ, Im crawling around still getting to know it, and, I notice that, on the driver side, 2 of the 3 bolts on the skid-plate have been replaced with a larger bolt. The original 3rd fell out in my hand when I wiggled it. Bottom half of it was rusted thread free, and I could feel no threads in the hole when I stuck my lil pinkie up in there. On the passenger side, 2 of the 3 originals are still there, the 3rd, missing and looking like the hole I just had reveal itself on the other side. No thread up there either.
So, Im not sure whether the 2 replacement bolts which are obviously bigger diameter then stock bolts, were put in after somebody re-threaded the holes, or what. My original thought was to break out my large size taps, and retap the 2 holes I found, and go from there. But that frame metal isnt all that thick that it can hold many threads, and I dont know if there were welded nuts on the inside of the frame originally or what. Anyways, I thought maybe someone knew of a better way, like a blind hole fastener for this size metal, or a large self tapping bolt, or what? Im not super fastener savvy, so there could be some trick thing out there that will square me away, and I dont even know exists, so, thought I would call on the gang here and get some suggestions.
Thanks in advance, and have a great day all!

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Old 06-30-2012, 06:30 AM   #2
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You jeep came from the factory with nutserts installed in the frame to hold up the t/c/skid. I had the same issue and replaced all the nutserts with weld in place nuts, which worked great

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Old 07-01-2012, 11:34 AM   #3
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So thats how they did it. I like your solution, however, Im not in a position to be able to do that at the moment, so, Im hoping for something else I can use for just the 2 open holes, until I can properly replace/repair all 6 nutserts. If I try to take down the skid im pretty sure ill break off a couple more. So, I just want to feel the added security that filling the 2 open holes would give....
So, any other ideas kids?
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Old 07-01-2012, 11:45 AM   #4
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You can always go to your local jeep dealer and purchase replacement nutserts , if you search online you can find a diy tool for the installation
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Old 07-01-2012, 01:26 PM   #5
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Do you know what size the stock nutserts were threaded for? The bolt that came out was so wasted you would be hard pressed to guess its original size. I know a place that sells all this stuff, and Id bet dollars to doughnuts that the local Fairbanks Jeep dealer wouldnt have the nutserts in stock. So, if I can get them at the fastener store, I might give it a try. Thanks for all the info by the way.
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Old 07-01-2012, 02:00 PM   #6
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The bolts should be 1/2x13 x 2inch unless you have a t/c drop then you would add another inch in lenth
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Old 07-04-2012, 10:57 AM   #7
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Update:
After spending about 40 bucks, for 2 taps, 9/16 and 3/4, and 2 grade 8 bolts with washers, one of each of the previous sizes mentioned, my skid-plate is as firmly attached again as it was when new. Different deterioration in each hole caused the need for the 2 different taps, but they cut into nice fresh metal, the holes took a great thread, and now that is one less issue to have to worry about.
Thanks again to sjpatg for his input and info, it inspired me.....
Its raining here today, hope you all have a dryer July 4th!

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