Advice on installing subframe connectors needed. - Vintage Mustang Forums
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-01-2019, 01:58 PM Thread Starter
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Advice on installing subframe connectors needed.

Alright, the car is quickly approaching the time it needs to go on the rotisserie. Before it goes on there, I need to install the global west SFCs I have waiting to go on. I do NOT have a lift to put the car on to install these...I dont even have ramps for that matter. Is it possible to lay on the ground and weld just one or two sides and leave the others until the car is on the rotisserie? will that give enough hold that the chassis wont flex when suspended at the front and back? Also...the engine is out of the car, do I need to reinstall the engine before installing the SFCs? Or can I just have a couple friends hop in the engine bay to simulate the weight? Or is it just not needed? Any suggestions for installing SFCs without a lift are appreciated...at least good enough that I can finish up any welds when the car is up in the air.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-01-2019, 02:40 PM
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If it's not a vert.
If it's an empty shell.
If you're confident all is in order with the unibody.
I would install SFC's while it's on the rotisserie, and weld 'em on nice and pretty.
Empty shells were hoisted all over the place during original assembly, even the verts, so Ford had no problem dangling and swinging them around.

I installed mine by jacking up the rear axle housing with the engine in and full weight on the front suspension. But I would've really liked to do it on a rotisserie. I tacked first, everywhere I could reach fairly easily and then went back in for beads the same way. Once I knew they were on there good and solid I took it down and jacked up just one side of the car at a time for better access to the rest. I'm a pretty good upside down "get an angle on it" welder, but I truly hate welding on my back. It just isn't any damned fun.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-01-2019, 06:42 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by 4ocious View Post
If it's not a vert.
If it's an empty shell.
If you're confident all is in order with the unibody.
I would install SFC's while it's on the rotisserie, and weld 'em on nice and pretty.
Empty shells were hoisted all over the place during original assembly, even the verts, so Ford had no problem dangling and swinging them around.

I installed mine by jacking up the rear axle housing with the engine in and full weight on the front suspension. But I would've really liked to do it on a rotisserie. I tacked first, everywhere I could reach fairly easily and then went back in for beads the same way. Once I knew they were on there good and solid I took it down and jacked up just one side of the car at a time for better access to the rest. I'm a pretty good upside down "get an angle on it" welder, but I truly hate welding on my back. It just isn't any damned fun.
At this point I am getting pretty good at upside down and vertical welds(and even getting them to come out relatively pretty) but laying on my back is another matter...nothing more miserable than getting spatter and/or slag down your shirt or in your hair as you are welding...and I could avoid that with the TIG I suppose...but I cant operate a foot pedal for anything while laying down which is why I was considering the heavy tack welding while the car is on the ground, then going back and finishing up on the rotisserie with the pretty beads....the big question is if I try that metod...is anything going to move?

Also...its not just the global west connectors...I have a set of USCP contoured SFCs that I am going to cut up and weld to the sides of the GW connectors...and to the floor the entire length...essentially making the GW connectors attached to the floor the entire distance and ending up with a double-box tubular design...but that portion can wait for the rotisserie
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 11:15 AM
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Wow this is a good question. I did mine just like 4ocious, Front wheels on ramps or blocks (I don't remember) with garbage bags under the tires, third member on jack stands. You really want the frame at fighting-weight. I would be willing to say that SFC made the biggest difference of anything I ever did to my car. I noticed them backing out of the driveway, and I have a rust free California car. you can watch door gaps change when you lift a mustang without SBC on a frame mount lift. THat is why I think it is important to get them right but that is admittedly a gut feel. I'd be disinclined to do it on a rotisseri unless you were careful to brace the frame at fighting weight and hang it carefully from the reinforcements, but heck, the best way to brace the frame is SFCs...



At the very least, I would have the doors installed and make sure the gaps are how you want them as once they are in, the gaps are fixed...


Good luck!
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 01:42 PM
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What do you think about building these stands out of 2x4ís? They give me plenty of room to work under my car and you just slide them in after you jack up the car, one end at a time.

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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 02:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dobrostang View Post
Wow this is a good question. I did mine just like 4ocious, Front wheels on ramps or blocks (I don't remember) with garbage bags under the tires, third member on jack stands. You really want the frame at fighting-weight. I would be willing to say that SFC made the biggest difference of anything I ever did to my car. I noticed them backing out of the driveway, and I have a rust free California car. you can watch door gaps change when you lift a mustang without SBC on a frame mount lift. THat is why I think it is important to get them right but that is admittedly a gut feel. I'd be disinclined to do it on a rotisseri unless you were careful to brace the frame at fighting weight and hang it carefully from the reinforcements, but heck, the best way to brace the frame is SFCs...



At the very least, I would have the doors installed and make sure the gaps are how you want them as once they are in, the gaps are fixed...


Good luck!
if you think Subframe connectors made a huge difference(and they do) Try a set of front Torque boxes, They'll give that wet noodle a real stiffy


Brad
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 02:29 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by rusty1161 View Post
What do you think about building these stands out of 2x4ís? They give me plenty of room to work under my car and you just slide them in after you jack up the car, one end at a time.

Rusty
That's much too simple. My mind cant comprehend when something is easy. I think I will try that
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 08:44 PM
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That's much too simple. My mind cant comprehend when something is easy. I think I will try that
wooden cribbing blocks for automobiles
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old Today, 10:06 AM
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What do you think about building these stands out of 2x4ís? They give me plenty of room to work under my car and you just slide them in after you jack up the car, one end at a time.

Rusty
I really like those. Did you just use wood screws?

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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old Today, 10:16 AM Thread Starter
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I really like those. Did you just use wood screws?
I know you weren't asking me...but being a carpenter once upon a time I feel confident in saying that using either wood screws or even drywall screws would be sufficient for this task. There is no force that the screws need to resist, all the force is going straight down with the two 2x4s at the top only acting as wheel chocks.

That being said, I would use 4 screws at each corner.

On another note, you could probably come up with something similar with cinder-blocks...though you would want to be careful to keep the wall of of the cinderblocks vertical(Dont lay them on their side...cinderblocks are very weak on their sides)

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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old Today, 12:19 PM
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Why wouldn't you do this on the rotisserie?

I can understand that if someone has an already built car with body panels and all else already aligned and fitted, that they might not want disrupt it. But with your car already apart and the extensive work you're already doing it doesn't make sense to me.
Legit question, not a criticism or jab.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old Today, 02:03 PM Thread Starter
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Why wouldn't you do this on the rotisserie?

I can understand that if someone has an already built car with body panels and all else already aligned and fitted, that they might not want disrupt it. But with your car already apart and the extensive work you're already doing it doesn't make sense to me.
Legit question, not a criticism or jab.
Global West recommends their SFCs be installed with the suspension fully loaded to avoid any unibody flex resulting in the subframe connectors holding the unibody out of shape compared to the way it left the factory. IE...throw a car on the rotisserie and it will sag in the middle(or peak if the car is upside down). Of course...that logic applies to a full weight car and assumes no torque boxes or other chassis stiffening mods, so its hard to say if the unibody of a stripped car will flex weighing in at most at 1500lbs....and since making wooden cribbing(or using cinder blocks, etc) wont take me much time at all(I can lift the car in a few seconds using the forklift to set it on the cribbing) its worth the hour or so it will take to make cribbing and wooden gunnage to safely lift the car using the forklift and then get under there and lay a few good beads.(but who knows?...you are probably right anyway...I doubt a single chassis that ever came out of the ford production facilities was ever even close to perfect)

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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old Today, 02:18 PM
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I really like those. Did you just use wood screws?
Like Wicked said, wood screws are fine. I think I had some deck screws laying around and used those. I predrilled just because lumber around here sucks and tend to split at the ends. They work great for me and pretty cheap to make.

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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old Today, 02:45 PM
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As has been mentioned, they're supposed to be done on the rack...... a drive on rack.
You could do it if you had a pit as well. Those are the two ways that for sure will keep you
out of trouble.
I've seen it done on a flat floor with like 6 or 7 of those cement 12x12's under all four tires.
(I'd definitely have jack stands in "catch mode" with this concept though)

We always MIG'd them on Mustangs but on some of the newer cars with HSS floors we TIG'd
subframes. (like on newer Camaros, etc)

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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old Today, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by wicked93gs View Post
Global West recommends their SFCs be installed with the suspension fully loaded to avoid any unibody flex resulting in the subframe connectors holding the unibody out of shape compared to the way it left the factory. IE...throw a car on the rotisserie and it will sag in the middle(or peak if the car is upside down). Of course...that logic applies to a full weight car and assumes no torque boxes or other chassis stiffening mods, so its hard to say if the unibody of a stripped car will flex weighing in at most at 1500lbs....and since making wooden cribbing(or using cinder blocks, etc) wont take me much time at all(I can lift the car in a few seconds using the forklift to set it on the cribbing) its worth the hour or so it will take to make cribbing and wooden gunnage to safely lift the car using the forklift and then get under there and lay a few good beads.(but who knows?...you are probably right anyway...I doubt a single chassis that ever came out of the ford production facilities was ever even close to perfect)

Sounds like the GW recommendation is based on an already built car. I would think that at the stage your car is in, it would be better to square it all up, getting as close to the Liskey diagram specs as you could, weld in some metal bracing and put it on the rotisserie since you're already putting it up. With all the other work you've done, the "load" is not going to affect the body the same anyway. But this is just my opinion based on nothing, and you've clearly done a lot of this type of work before.
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