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1950 Liner "Weeble" - New frame built

Posted 06-19-2017 at 11:37 PM by Bowmans
Updated 06-20-2017 at 05:48 PM by Bowmans

It has been a while since we posted last. I spent last year saving money, planning out the 1950 rebuild and learning to weld. I bought a Miller MIG welder and built two desks for our house, refining my welding skills which were non-existent. I'll add a photo of the desks at the bottom.

This spring, I ordered two #20 aluminum propane tanks, 4 leveling jacks, #5000 axle with electric drum brakes, wheels, tires, baby moon hubcaps, bulldog hitch, front hand crank jack, 7 pin umbilical, 3" ABS plumbing pipe, Valterra valves and $1100 worth of steel. With a week off work, I planned to complete the frame.

I started last weekend, found the area of our yard with the most shade since it was going to be 90-100 all week. Since our yard is on a slope, I dug out and leveled off 4 areas and used cinder block to create 4 level points for the main frame rectangle (2" x 4", 3/16" rectangle tube) to sit on. Took a full day just to get the first rectangle leveled, square and welded but this had to start off right.

I then welded a cross beam and 2" x 2", 3/16" square tube to put the axle at 6" (height of the belly pan) and welded on the shock mounts. I was very careful on measuring the mounts from the front of the frame.

The next day, I welded the tongue and A frame front. I ran a string from the center of the back cross beam and lined up all three centers to figure out exactly center for the tongue. I also measured multiple times from the shock mounts to the tongue and axle ends to the tongue to make sure it was perfectly centered. At the angles or the A frame, I welded on bent plates on the outside to reinforce.

The next day, I cleaned, metal prepped and painted POR15 on the shock mounts and tube so I wouldn't need to remove the axle to paint. I then mounted the springs, axle, brakes, drums and wheels. My first time assembling an axle and I watched a number of videos on packing bearings by hand and torque for all of the bolts. I then took the trailer on a test drive around the neighborhood to see how it tows. It did great. Drove straight. Was a bit bouncy with no weight but as expected.

The next day, I worked on the back end. I wanted to keep the tube coming out the back to keep the back original looking and also have a use for the tube. I will be using it as the air intake for the AC which will be under the rear bed. I put angle braces to tie in the side frame to the tube. The 45 degree angle to tie the rectangle beams to the tube was a fun geometry puzzle but I got them tight after some grinding work. I also put plates on the outside of the back angles for reinforcing.

The next day, I fabricated the propane tank mount for the front. I love the 1979 design so I replicated it but added a straight strap under the curved one. The SS rod can now go through both holes and be a bit more stable.

The tanks sit nice on the mount even without the rod and tie down.

I also made a template for the belly pan curve since I am making it 6" deep instead of the original 5". I really wanted the extra inch for the black and grey tanks to sit inside the pan. I cut out one stringer with the curves on the end and the notches to fit over the 2" x 4" frame. The stringers were fabricated from the metal shop I bought the metal from and are 2" x 6", 1/8" steel, "C" profile.

The next day, I cut out the rest of the stringers. In the image below, they are sitting upside down where they will go. I did cut three oval holes in the center of one stringer which took two hours with a jigsaw and a grinding to clean up the edges. I then took the metal I cut out and weighed it. Under two pounds. The rest of the holes would only save #20 so I decided to leave the stringers solid. I will cut holes for the plumbing once I have the black and gray tanks in hand.

I also needed some ends where the center beams will be separate and one for one side of the step.

The next day, I started by welding the full stringer that goes in front of the wheels and the ends that go behind.

Next I bent a flat piece of 1/8 steel to weld to a front cross beam on the A frame that will tie down the from of the shell. I measured a few times to make sure it was in the right spot based on the axle center so the shell wheel openings line up. I used this tie down to measure the distance for the front stringers and welded them on. The next day, I bent and welded the rear tie down and again, used it to measure the locations for the rear stringers and welded them on.

The finished frame (minus the step frame, angle where the plywood floor edges are and leveling jack mounts):

Next I need to finish a few welds on the frame for the steps, mounts for the leveling jacks and two solid jack points near the axle. Then I will metal prep the whole thing and POR15.

I promised to post a photo of the desks I made last summer so here it is:

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  1. Old Comment
    Bowmans's Avatar
    Adding a comment to add one more photo.

    The propane tanks on the mount:

    Posted 06-19-2017 at 11:48 PM by Bowmans Bowmans is offline
  2. Old Comment
    kevinkatz's Avatar
    Well done and thanks for posting. I have a 1949 Curtis Wright and will have to do the same when I have time. Thanks for the inspiration.
    Posted 06-26-2017 at 09:38 PM by kevinkatz kevinkatz is offline

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