Chassis welding begins and other ramblings.

So today I started working on repairing the chassis.

With the chassis up side down on the two post lift, working on it is so much easier than on the floor or upside down.

The under side of the front legs on both sides, from the front fuel tank/seat outriggers forward is quite badly peppered and has had one or two repairs already carried out to varying quality (including one I did in March of last year).

The plan is to repair each area in a way that depends on how extensive the corrosion was. The shot blasting removes all weak and corroded material quite effectively and where either holed or badly weakened, the original will be cut away and new thicker metal let in. Where damaged without too much thinning, the area concerned will be plated over and the repair plate blended in to the original material.

Previous repairs done with poorly shaped patches and/or poor quality welds, will be cut out and new repairs effected. This will probably expose further areas of corrosion hidden under these plates, so needing further cutting out and replacement.

The final finish that I’m intending to achieve is one that makes it difficult, if not impossible, to spot where the repairs have been done once the chassis has been galvanised.

Having said that, the most important thing is to ensure that not only is all corrosion and weak metal removed, but that these areas have good quality, strong repairs.

I have no plans to make this a show truck.

It will be a well built, strong, reliable truck that can be used as the 4×4 that it was built to be. It will get used off road. Once the chassis has been repaired and galvanised, it’ll be getting a good layer of paint, waxoyl and everything else I can think of to keep the elements at bay.

It also means that while I’m going to generally keep it original to a certain degree, there will be changes and modifications that will detract from originality, but will enhance it’s overal finish, handling and useability for my purposes.

Since the inside of the chassis can’t be shot blasted, this will be cleaned out as much as possible and when being acid dipped etc… in prep for galvanising checked to ensure that all loose material (mud, sand, metal and rust) has been removed, the remaing material will be encapsulated by the galvanising process, therefore preventing any further corrosion happening.

I’m also going to add a few more drain holes to the chassis for two reasons.
One: to help ensure that there is sufficient venting for the galvaning process, incuding acid wash etc…
Two: to ensure there are no dead end traps that prevent mud etc. being jet washed out.

Knowing someone who works at a galvanisers really helps here in ensuring that the best possible preparation is carried out prior to dipping.

Enough rambling on, here’s some pictures taken today.

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