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Discussion Starter #1
Hey y'all, working on my daughter's '93YJ 4cyl. At a crossroads. Have to repair the frame at the rear shackle mounts (both sides) and the rear shock mount (right side, only). Was looking at Safe-T-Cap (and equivalents) for this, but also found a solid '95 YJ 4cyl frame (and axles) that is in good shape, somewhat close by.

The overall costs would be equivalent, though I am only a novice welder equipped with a secondhand Lincoln EasyMig 140 (gas ready). What are y'all's thoughts on this choice? I'm leaning to the replacement frame, even though it'll be a PIA to transport (annoying but not impossible), as opposed to diving into frame welding as a novice.

Thanks, fellas!
 

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Hands down replacement frame!
ASSUMING it's in really good shape that is....
 

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These things rust from the inside, out.
If you patch one area, the rest of the frame is still as old as where you patched.

Replacing a frame is a REAL big job, but then it's done and no more worries.
Not knowing what you have for a tool kit and shop, it's hard to recommend one way or the other.
If you have a dual post lift, then I'd say "Go for it". Also, if your shop has a strong overhead (rafters) or if you have a gantry crane I'd say "Go for it".
It can be done with four 55 gallon drums and a couple 4X4s but you still need a good system to lift the tub plus a motor crane (engine hoist).

Harbor Freight has a engine hoist and a gantry crane. It'll be fairly easy to sell the engine hoist once you're done. The gantry crane, not so much unless you let it go cheap.

Let us know what you end up doing and please post some pics.

Good Luck, L.M.
 
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4 guys can lift and carry a tub pretty easily
 

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The frame on my '94 was seriously rusted at the rear shackle mounts. The rest is in beautiful shape, good metal and clean. I opted to repair the rust with Auto Rust Rear Shackle Mount Sections from Morris 4x4. Worked perfectly and no more worries. Cost to cut out the bad then weld in the good at the shop I use was $200. So for a hair over $500 I have a good frame without the hassles of swapping. If you go this route be sure to paint or coat the inside of the new frame sections before they get installed.

https://www.morris4x4center.com/auto-rust-rear-shackle-mount-section-right-art-42r.html

Shock brackets can be found at

https://mountainoffroad.com/collections/wrangler-yj

https://www.morris4x4center.com/auto-rust-center-wrangler-upper-rear-shock-mount-art-123.html

https://www.morris4x4center.com/m-o-r-e-universal-shock-mount-to-axle-individual-mor-98200.html
 

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The benefit of new frame is you can seal and protect every inch if it properly before install. Best choice uf available, reasonable, and you intend on keeping it a long time.
I did the saftcaps on my tj, and it just moved the issue further down the line.

Sent from my SM-T380 using Tapatalk
 

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The benefit of new frame is you can seal and protect every inch of it properly before install. Best choice if available, reasonable, and you intend on keeping it a long time.
I did the safe t caps on my tj, and it just moved the issue further down the line.

Sent from my SM-T380 using Tapatalk

Thing is, unless you are doing a virgin frame (to the tune of $2400) there's no guarantee you will have all the rust out by treating and coating. Depending on how bad the OP's frame is, repair is an option that's all I'm saying.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you, all for the advice on this! I couldn't figure the best way to go, and I didn't want to 'learn welding' on frame patches for my daughter's rig. Was cool with paying either way.

Went up to PA, and saw the frame. It's in surprisingly good shape, with some superficial rust, and a big improvement over the current one. For $250 (plus trailer rental), we now have a frame. Figure I'll clean it up, sandblast, and seal it up the best I can. Gotta get smart on the best way of doing that.

Was able to salvage good e-brake lines, fuel lines, a gas tank, and good calipers, too (parts bin action!), so I'm really glad y'all took the time to advise me. The axles are for a 2.5 auto, so other than their 'core charge' value, I don't see the value in holding onto them.

IMG_1236 by pencilrunner, on Flickr

IMG_1230 by pencilrunner, on Flickr
 

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If it were me, I would have that frame media blasted so you can see exactly what you're working with, repair any abnormalities then coat it with POR-15.


Don't have a clue what your budget is or if you're in need of quick transportation. This would be the perfect time to replace the bushings, mounts, suspension, steering, brake/fuel lines, fuel pump, so on. Everything is so much easier to get at without the tub.
 

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Around here, the pair of axles are worth more than you paid for the rolling chassis.
A local "Jeep" salvage yard quoted me $1800.00 for a pair of good 4cyl axles. I thanked him and told him that's way outside my budget. Then, I found a pair of 4:10 axles but the rear had the axle end and backing plate torn off. The guy started at $600.00 for the pair and went to $500.00.
Eventually I bought a set of good 4:10 axles for $500.00, but I had to take them out myself.

If I were you, I'd follow mudbugs advice and media blast the frame and axles. Then give everything a coat of POR15 and then a coat of paint. I strongly suggest following his advice about taking care of the details that are easily accessible with the tub off.

If you can buy or rent a tow bar, you can save the cost of a trailer rental.
I bought a used tow bar off CL for $50.00 that actually bolts directly to the front of my Jeep's frame rails.

Keep us posted as to your progress and show us the pics as you go.

Good Luck, L.M.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
This would be the perfect time to replace the bushings, mounts, suspension, steering, brake/fuel lines, fuel pump, so on. Everything is so much easier to get at without the tub.
For sure! Eating the elephant, one bite at a time - buying those items, keeping with Moog parts where I can, and stocking them in the garage. It's for my daughter, so I want it done well.

Around here, the pair of axles are worth more than you paid for the rolling chassis.

If I were you, I'd follow mudbugs advice and media blast the frame and axles. Then give everything a coat of POR15 and then a coat of paint.

Good Luck, L.M.
Brother, I wish. This was a 4 cyl auto, 3.73 ratio. I can try and sell them, but not sure I'll get much. It's from a '95, though, and it appears to have the larger U-Joints at the front, so if they don't sell, I may just use the axle stubs on my '90 Rat.

I was able to grab a real nice backpack sandblaster for cheap, so once she's stripped, it'll be blasted in place, repaired as needed, and POR'd / Painted.

That looks solid, thanks. Only question is how often do y'all actually use these? Other than towing behind an RV, what do y'all use them for?
 

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Brother, I wish. This was a 4 cyl auto, 3.73 ratio. I can try and sell them, but not sure I'll get much. It's from a '95, though, and it appears to have the larger U-Joints at the front, so if they don't sell, I may just use the axle stubs on my '90 Rat.

That looks solid, thanks. Only question is how often do y'all actually use these? Other than towing behind an RV, what do y'all use them for?
Are you sure the axles are 3:73? I haven't heard of YJs with 3:73 axles.
All I've ever heard of are 3:07s and 3:55s in 6 cyl YJs and 4:10s in 4 cyl YJs.

If what you have are actually 3:73s, they'd be perfect for a 6cyl running on 31" tires. They might not sell for quite as much as 4:10s, but still worth advertising.
Find a gear ratio chart and check it out. Even the 3:55s with 31" tires is right back to very close to the same final ratio as 3:07s with stock tires. The 3:73s would be a bit better than that for a daily driver.

The only time I used my tow bar was when I towed my Jeep to the media blaster. It was stripped down to paint, so no lights or seats. The tow bar was way cheaper than two tow bills.
Now if my 32 year old heap breaks down, I can call my wife to throw the tow bar in the back of the truck and have her come to get me.

Let us know about the axles. Pull the covers and look at the numbers on the ring gear. You might be surprised.

Good Luck, L.M.
 

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Let us know about the axles. Pull the covers and look at the numbers on the ring gear. You might be surprised.
I'll do that. I like surprises! On a related ask, I will probably reuse the leaf springs off Clementine, as they look to be in decent shape (but with new bushings). What do you think of reusing u-bolts? Not the nuts, I'll get new Grade-8 nuts, but the bolts themselves?
 

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I read that you're supposed to get new U-bolts and nuts.
When I replaced my springs about 4 years ago, I reused the U-bolts and nuts. I went to re-torque the nuts after a couple weeks and the nuts didn't move. I check on them during my twice a year oil change and service, but they haven't loosened up since I installed them.

The companies that sell springs might tell us to use new U-bolts out of "an abundance of caution".

Good Luck, L.M.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Are you sure the axles are 3:73?
- Just verified, sir. 3.73 per the ring gear.

they'd be perfect for a 6cyl running on 31" tires . . . for a daily driver.
- This is exactly the runner I can use on my Rat (currently 3.07) with 31" tires on my 'dream sheet', so I'm probably gonna swap the axles (and get the benefit of larger u-joints, as well). Thanks, so much, LM!
 

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NICE FIND!!! I never get that lucky, for the money you saved you'll be able to pick up lots of Cool New Tools......
 
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