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I have a 67 coupe with a damaged drvr. side front frame rail. It is completely rusted through in a spot, and looks to be near rusting in a few others. However, the damage is confined to the narrower front section of the rail; it is fine from about 6 inches rear of the shock tower and back.

I have read some stuff online about patching/bracing frame rails, and was wondering if anybody had any experience with such a repair. I'm not worried about having an original looking, car, just a safe one. Also, can I just replace the rusted section or must I replace the whole rail.

I would appreciate your opinions on the pros/cons of each repair, and a (rough) estimate of how long it would take.

Thanks,

matt k.
 

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Just got through having this done on my 68, same place. Mine was a little worse than what you are describing. There are a couple of ways to fix it. If you want it to look like the factory, you can get a one piece plate that runs the length of the outer rail, which I bought. When I took it to the body shop, the guy told me it would be a lot cheaper just to weld in a couple of patches, which he did. They don't show and it took him half a day. Mark
 

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Just some guy
67 coupe, 69 Sportsroof, 86 hatchback
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My 67 had a gap under the battery you could put you foot through. Evidently the battery had burst at some time while it rested in a barn for 10 years. I replaced the radiator support, fender apron, right front frame rail, and outer left frame rail. If you can cut. grind and weld some it's not too hard. NPD and others sell partial frame rail pieces which are a hell of a lot easier to replace than the whole rail. These are the normal repro quality-they don't fit!- but they can be dealt with. I am VERY pleased with the end results. This was my first time cutting and welding on anything like this, but it turned out to not be that difficult.
I used a patch piece on the left side because the bumper brace nuts that are welded on the inside were stripped/broken. Since the right side went so well I figured the best thing to do would be use a patch there too.
Don't be scared off by the "NOT FIT". The patch pieces are solid and well made. The dimensions are not precisely what they should be. They do fit, just not as well as you'd prefer. The slight differences will never be visible when the car is back together. One thing to be careful of is the location of the bumper bracket mounting bolts. If I had mounted the right side outer patch as is, the bumper would have never bolted up. I had to move the patch 1" forward and then trim the excess off the front end of it. The identical left side outer patch was right on the money, stupid Taiwanese.
If you think you can do stuff like this, I'd say go for it. Measure the heck out of everything and compare your new parts to the old before you start. Like I said at first, it wasn't really that hard. Just some irritating details. In my case I had all the front fenders and stuff off the car before I started. I recommend you do the same. I left the suspension alone-just taking the wheels off, which made a couple of welds a bit difficult but not that bad.
If you want to know more, just ask.
 

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Hey Matt,
Like GypsyR stated if you can cut & weld go for it. I did a frame repair to my 65 Fastback on the l/s inner part of the frame where a drain hole was that had rotted to about the size of a tennis ball. Bought the patch piece, cut out the rotted section with a cut off wheel, cut the new piece & welded it in. Not hard just time consuming.
 
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