Rear frame rail repairs - Vintage Mustang Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 02:56 PM Thread Starter
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Rear frame rail repairs

I have read some of the previous threads about frame rail repair vs replacement but an not too sure what's the deciding factor in each case other than experience... I've attached a picture of what I'm looking at, but basically the rail is pretty solid except for where the bracket was previously attached and there seems to have been a patch there before. So I'm wondering now with the bracket removed, if it will be adequate to remove the old patch and make sure I get to the edge of the rust before making a new patch? Or is there some reason to avoid a patch here all together?

The whole trunk and everything is together and does not need any work, so this would be adding a good bit to the restoration, but if its likely to continue being a problem I figure I should just deal with it now, right?

Any advice is welcome for this and also just in general when a rail should be replaced.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 03:01 PM
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Replace only as much as you need to- if you can get away with a small section, then go that route. If you start digging into it and find it's worse than thought, replace a larger piece of it. The difference between a small piece and a large piece will also be dictated by which is physically easier to do. It doesn't make sense to spend tons of time repairing a section when the entire piece can be replaced quick and easy, right? In your pic it almost looks like you've got pinholes on the bottom side too. I'd recommend cleaning and grinding the paint off 1st, tap it with a pointed hammer and see if you go through anywhere, then replace as needed.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 03:40 PM
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Must rust-finding method: get a fairly sharp awl and start stabbing the offending part relatively hard. It'll dent or puncture thin spots.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 04:50 PM
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I would/did trace around the bad spot on a piece of paper taped on the frame rail cut out the bad copy trace to sheet metal cut and weld


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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 05:11 PM
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I would patch that but I haven't looked to see if you can get sections of frame rail patch in that zone. It would help a lot if you can.


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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 05:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd 66 View Post
I would/did trace around the bad spot on a piece of paper taped on the frame rail cut out the bad copy trace to sheet metal cut and weld
An even better way, use actual tape ! I cut out the metal, run masking tape across the hole, then either run your nail along the edge to make a cut line, or run a utility knife along the edge of the hole to make the cut. You can then take that piece and stick it on your new metal, and trace it with a sharpie.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 07:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, for the input. Tape method is very clever to get the right shape. I actually started pulling away some metal to see what it was like underneath. I removed the patch and the part of the frame with the hole in it. Overall the metal seems ok past that and like a lot of the rust was under the bracket I removed probably from having water stuck in there.

I'm thinking I'll probably just go back to the next holes with a patch. My plan is to use 14 gauge steel and weld one piece along the bottom of the rail and another along the side to be able to match the curve of the rail in this area. I think butt welds will be better from a strength point of view, is that typically how its done?

Let me know if I missing anything
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 07:29 PM
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"I would/did trace around the bad spot on a piece of paper taped on the frame rail cut out the bad copy trace to sheet metal cut and weld. "

+1

Replace only what you need to..especially in your case. Make sure that you clean out the entire area and use weld-thru primer before welding back over..then try to undercoat the inside thru an existing hole nearby.. Amazingly, It looks like someone already patched the same area before on your car! Go figure! Weird!

You're doing great. Keep it up!

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 07:35 PM
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Sometimes its easier to cut a bigger piece of metal and slide inside the frame rail especially in your particular instance and weld it in that way. Gives you more to weld to and easier to make the repair unseen when done. Could also make an argument to being stronger a repair versus butt welding. Bearing in mind your welding abilities must be taken in to account and ease to get to the area being repaired. bottom line that's how I would approach that repair.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2018, 08:03 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NEFaurora View Post
"Amazingly, It looks like someone already patched the same area before on your car! Go figure! Weird!
Yeah, made it stick out even more when I was checking out the frame. I guess they didnt get all of the rust out last time. Especially since there was a good bit under the bracket that I took off... Hopefully I'll get it all out this time.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-29-2018, 09:02 AM
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Everyone, probably with more experience than myself has pretty well covered things.
My only addition is this: DON'T buy a frame rail patch! Buy the whole frame rail and cut off what you need. Most, if not all, the patches are only just a few steps above what you could hammer out from a piece of scrap metal. They resemble the part if you squint your eyes but the metal is thinner, the dimensions are off, holes and internal pieces are off or not there.
I bought patches for mine, got into one and sent the other one back in disgust. Much more satisfied with the one I repaired.

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