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Old 02-07-2012, 06:44 PM   #1
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1971 31' Sovereign
Watson , Louisiana
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Frame Opinion

I finally dropped the belly pan on my 71 Sovereign. Looking at other posts here I got really worried and was expecting the worst even possible full frame replacement. The street side bumper rail is completely rusted through but other than that I don't see a major amount of damage and required repair. Let me know what you think about how bad the damage is and what and how it needs repair. Here are pictures of what I saw.
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Old 02-16-2012, 09:57 PM   #2
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I finally dropped the belly pan on my 71 Sovereign. Looking at other posts here I got really worried and was expecting the worst even possible full frame replacement. The street side bumper rail is completely rusted through but other than that I don't see a major amount of damage and required repair. Let me know what you think about how bad the damage is and what and how it needs repair. Here are pictures of what I saw.
That is completely repairable. Check out what I had to deal with..start here.
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Old 02-17-2012, 12:37 AM   #3
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Followed

Hi Marzboy. Thank you for the determination. I thoroughly followed and enjoyed your thread. Read every page. Looking at yours is what made me think mine wasn't so bad. You were also my inspiration for the repair. I believe it was you that used sheared strips of 12 gauge steel and made your own rails. That is my plan. I am currently in a "holding pattern" while I work on another project but when I resume the frame repair and support for the black water tank is on the list. I was surprised that the aluminum C-channel was in pretty decent shape. I am anxious to start towards construction instead of demolition.

Todd
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Old 02-17-2012, 12:43 AM   #4
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1971 31' Sovereign
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More pictures

Here are more pictures after the rotted flooring was removed.
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Old 02-17-2012, 02:06 AM   #5
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It does not look that bad. Get all the funk off it and see what you have. The cross members and outriggers can be replaced pretty easy.

Perry
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Old 02-17-2012, 10:04 AM   #6
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Hi Marzboy. Thank you for the determination. I thoroughly followed and enjoyed your thread. Read every page. Looking at yours is what made me think mine wasn't so bad. You were also my inspiration for the repair. I believe it was you that used sheared strips of 12 gauge steel and made your own rails. That is my plan. I am currently in a "holding pattern" while I work on another project but when I resume the frame repair and support for the black water tank is on the list. I was surprised that the aluminum C-channel was in pretty decent shape. I am anxious to start towards construction instead of demolition.

Todd
I had the steel bent into the specs I needed for my particular patch. What you dont see is the couple feet of boxed channel that is behind the patch. If you need more specific pictures you can pm me. Also a structural engineer/welder told me to cut it at an angle and weld it that way. Dont worry about the next phase so much . Focus on the task at hand. Someone told me ..."you are eating an elephant sandwich small bites and deep breaths." You can do it! Believe me Ive been there
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Old 02-18-2012, 03:34 AM   #7
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I am doing my rear at the moment although i'm doing a shell-off due to the front also needing work, your's doesn't look bad at all and is certainly just a chop out and replace, over here you can't buy 12 guage steel the closest is 2.5mm so my fabricator is bending the stuff up himself and welding it in, he says that the angle isn't necessary but i've asked him to do it anyway (whether he will who knows?) as i think it makes sense.
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Old 02-18-2012, 09:48 AM   #8
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I am doing my rear at the moment although i'm doing a shell-off due to the front also needing work, your's doesn't look bad at all and is certainly just a chop out and replace, over here you can't buy 12 guage steel the closest is 2.5mm so my fabricator is bending the stuff up himself and welding it in, he says that the angle isn't necessary but i've asked him to do it anyway (whether he will who knows?) as i think it makes sense.
When you butt weld two pieces of metal together the area surrounding the weld is weakened. So in a typical butt type weld the stress of the frame bouncing up and down would eventually crack the welded area. Cutting a 30 or 40 degree angle carries the stress of the turbulence over a much larger area to reduce stress fracturing. I just added in the bolts and plates because I am paranoid. The guy that welded the structural part of my frame was an old angry Navy structural engineer. He knew what he was talking about and he kinda scared me so I just did what he said.
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Old 02-18-2012, 11:23 AM   #9
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The guy that welded the structural part of my frame was an old angry Navy structural engineer.
Ya know, I'd listen to him too. Go Navy!

I'm totally with the crowd here. That frame is very repairable. Just take it one step at a time.

Chris
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Old 02-18-2012, 09:12 PM   #10
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No problem

Thanks guys.

Marzboy, I did tell my welder about cutting and rewelding at an angle. I plan to buy 2 - 10 ft. pieces of 5" and 4 - 10 ft. pieces of 2" 12 ga. sheared steel. I will see if this is less expensive than bent. It is a good idea to box it in. I will make sure we do that as well as the mending plates across the welds.
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