I'm brand-new to this forum, and brand-new to my '97 Jeep Wrangler TJ, and it took me all of a week to break it already. Too rough too soon I guess.
Anybody know of a good Jeep aficionado mechanic?
I've got a rusted underbody, and I busted a couple bolts on the trails this week, dropping the skid plate (and, therefore, all of the innards) a couple of inches. From what I hear, this is probably going to take a good deal of welding to fix. I have a feeling that engine mounts and probably other rusty bits will need to be replaced too. I'd like to take this to a legit mechanic who actually works on Jeeps regularly--somebody that may also be interested in installing a lift kit after lifting my engine and transmission back to where they're supposed to be.
Please tell me you have suggestions?! Preferably in Oakland County.
What "innards" dropped? If your engine/trans really shifted then I would be pretty concerned about the structural integrity of the frame. You're going to want to make sure there's enough good metal left to weld to. After 15 years of MI winters she could be kinda crispy.
Yea I'm concerned about that. Transmission and engine both tilted and lowered about as far down as the plate was hanging on one side. When we lifted the plate the engine straightened out some, but still not back to where it belongs without real work. Tell me this isn't the end...
Hopefully its just the motor mounts like you said. Might be a PITA but doable. One nice thing about Wranglers is that they are body-on-frame as opposed to a unibody. I would expect that that should be a lot easier to weld/repair. I wouldn't count her out just yet.
Great bunch of guys that know jeeps and they do great work.
2013 JK - Metalcloak 3.5" coils and control arms, Bilstein 5160s, Prorock44, Synergy high steer, drag link, track bar and tie rod, PSC hydro assist, RCV front shafts, Reid knuckles, TEN factory rear shafts, 4.88s, 37" MTR, Tom Woods front and rear, antirock front and rear, etc.
Thanks for the suggestions!
Ended up finding a local private shop of some auto enthusiasts that were willing to get creative with the fix. We cut a piece out of the frame and welded in some fresh steel, then just drilled new holes through to the top of the frame to fasten the skid plate back on. Back to being good as new! And it cost me just a couple hundred bucks in labor hours as opposed to $3-4000 to replace the full frame as a couple other shops were suggesting. Will have to give the Fenton place a call when it's time to put the lift on