View Full Version : Right type of Welding?

12-26-2012, 08:53 PM

I'm new to the forum (just introduced myself on that thread) and thought I would jump into it with both feet and ask a question of particular relevance to my 1952 CJ-3A project.

I'm at a point in the process where the frame needs some repair in some pretty specific places. Some minor, some major (details can be seen toward the end of this blog post (https://jmichelmetz.wordpress.com/2012/12/26/willys-jeep-framing-the-situation/), with lots of photos). The question comes up as to which type of welding is best for the frame.

According to Moses Ludel's Jeep CJ rebuilder's manual, he says that he prefers the oxy-acetylene welding method for the frame because he doesn't like the concentrated heat of a MIG welder and because he doesn't want to leave the frame rail scarred.

I confess I know very little about the different type of welds, even though I've been practicing the MIG welding process at a local tech shop.

Can anyone offer advice on this? Consider me an eager sponge for information and advice. :)


12-27-2012, 08:45 PM
Hi J ,
Im not much on the difference of welds but I have found to be true is a grinder will make any weld look go if you get enough on, as for the scares your grinder and a good paint job will look great....but if the heat may weaken the frame you should weld in gusset to strengthen the frame, Good luck

1948 Cal Willys Pickup
12-28-2012, 10:00 AM
Be careful on any major frame rail work. If you are replacing an entire section you may want a pro to do it. The frame has to be level and straight before welding and many places use a jig to line everything up. The most important thing about your welds is did they penetrate the metal. If you practice before hand and weld two pieces together in a "T" shape you should be able to bend one end of the"T" all the way without the weld breaking. Chances are the metal will break first if you have a solid weld. For frame with major repair I would use arc or flux core mig. They usually get better penetration but take more skill. Good luck.

12-28-2012, 11:49 AM
Thanks for the advice, guys. I've been asking around since I posted this and my suspicions have been confirmed - this is probably something that I shouldn't tackle myself with my limited welding experience. I had been trying to weigh the pros/cons of doing it myself, but I think the final outcome is far too important to get right rather than risk some sense of ego or pride of being able to say "I did it myself."

I've ordered a couple of parts and will be bringing it in to a framer next week. I'll be showing some before/after photos if everything turns out all right (or even if it doesn't, come to think of it...)

Thanks again for the advice. :)

1948 Cal Willys Pickup
12-28-2012, 01:20 PM
Cant wait to see the photos. You should be able to kock out any of the minor welding yourself. Jc has it right though, a grinder works wonders.

12-29-2012, 11:55 AM
Yeah, I can't wait to see the finished product photos too... :P

In the meantime, there are some "before and in-progress" photos (https://jmichelmetz.wordpress.com/2012/12/26/willys-jeep-framing-the-situation/) that I posted a couple of days ago if you're curious.


1948 Cal Willys Pickup
12-30-2012, 10:10 AM
The pictures are great, they tell the whole story. I noticed your pivot eye bracket wear. Not sure from the pic if it was front or rear. If it was front the the wear may have come from added side pressure due to the front crossmember being completely broken especially if it was on the inside part of the bracket. When you drive, the vehicles natural tendency is to go toe out would put a lot of pressure on that spring causing the wear. If you havent already, look at your front suspension components really well before you reinstall them. When you stripped down the frame it really revealed alot of hidden issues. I have to say I am a little worried not. I havent had mine stripped yet but will soon. Hope I dont have any hidden gems. Thanks for posting the link to the picks.

12-30-2012, 11:40 AM
1948 -

This entire project has been one of "what surprise is about to be revealed now?" If you go back to the original moment when I decided to get the Jeep, the engine ran (https://jmichelmetz.wordpress.com/2012/01/10/jeep-bringing-it-home/) and it looked solid enough - just really dirty. Then again, since that time I've gotten better at knowing what to look for, of course, but at the time unless I had seen something drastic I wouldn't have really known what I was looking at.

I had thought that I would actually be able to fix a couple of things and then actually might have a drivable Jeep at first, but that was shot to hell almost immediately. Now, after removing part after part, I'm really really glad that I didn't try to do something like that. Other blog posts have pretty pictures about the cornucopia of surprises I've found.

Thanks for the advice on the front suspension components. I've already purchased new leaf springs and bolts, and was going to try to take the axles apart this week (but the rain had killed that idea). More fine-toothed combing to do...