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Chassis / frame support modification

Discussion in 'Modified Alpine' started by Mbgardner, May 14, 2018.

  1. Mbgardner

    Mbgardner Donation Time

    Does anyone have any pictures, insights or opinions on a chassis modification I saw on a BRG SV in Cleveland Ohio where a piece of square tube was welded in between the X-frame from the front leaf spring shackle to that point on the X-frame where the chassis goes over the front end?

    It basically, squared the sides of the X-frame inside of the rocker for long term support and to prevent or remedy the body sagging under the doors.

    If someone know what I'm talking about, I'm wonder how deep (as in involved) the welding would be beyond removing the carpeting and undercoating and protecting the car from other than obvious flammable hazards.

    And also, whether the job could be done the car upright (wheels down) on a lift and if so, some insight on where one thought the car should be supported to pre-stress the frame before fitting the square tube?

    Not interested in a frame off restoration and no offense will be taken of any criticism.

    Have had one SV for 40+ years, now two and possibly one more soon, if I'm not careful.

    I'd like to show some pictures to my posse if anyone has any. I think the guy's name was Steve in Cleveland. He and his father did the mod in a frame off restoration.

    Thanks, all.
  2. DanR

    DanR Diamond Level Sponsor

    Detail pictures of your frame and underside would be a place to start. Otherwise there is basically no way to determine the extent of rust or other damage from a wreck, etc.,

    I have some pictures of the undercarriage of a stock Alpine...now to locate them,

    PROCRAFT Donation Time

    I did this way back and in my opinion it doesn't work as these guy think it doe's
  4. Mbgardner

    Mbgardner Donation Time

    Hi Dan:
    I've been off the forum for a while, but I'm back. And very seriously considering buying Fred Brace's car in Buffalo this weekend. I've uploaded 2 pics he sent me of my primary area of concern with his car. He represents this condition has existed for some time and has been stable, no better or worse. The car body work was done 30+ years ago by a prior owner. From what I have seen, the car underbody is in good condition.He has had installed new leaf springs and coils. The front leaf spring shackle area is the weak point in my original SV from which I have concluded that mine is beyond the reasonable repair..

    I should note that i just bought a 65 Alpine in November from a local guy who had the car shipped here from CA. It's legit. Solid body for real. Doors close like new. But the car needs mechanical work and the OD conversion I have always wanted to be the driver of my dreams. I bought it with the idea of it being the perfect donee for any mechanicals needed from my original SV which have already been done. Last year I lost a piece of leaf spring from my original SV, from which I have concluded it's time to abandon ship and move on to something that will be worth maintaining for the duration of my time.

    Which leads me to buying Fred's car, which is already there, for not much more than it would cost me to get the OD from Jeff Howarth to me for the 65 i just bought..

    But for this concern with the door sag on the passenger, it's a no brainer. But I haven't seen the car yet.

    I am just thinking down the road, if the car is sagging after the failure or poor workmanship of the 30+ year old restoration? Or if there's more too it that I might find down the road that would lead me to try this chassis/frame support concept I once saw. I know my original SV is beyond this investment. The 65 I bought doesn't need it now, but may in the future. And Fred's may or may not need it but seems like it might still be worth it if necessary.

    So I'm really just trying to figure out what might be involved in this chassis/frame mod which I viewed as an improvement/remedy of the problem. Although Procraft feels otherwise.

    your opinion matters to me. and any leads you have on exploring this modification.


    Attached Files:

  5. Ken Ellis

    Ken Ellis Donation Time

    So when you open the passenger door, and lift up and down on it, does it move? Without seeing the rest of the car, it's possible that hinges/pins or straight mis-adjustment could be the issue. Worth finding out for sure before surgery.

    So, about the '65...
  6. Mbgardner

    Mbgardner Donation Time

  7. Mbgardner

    Mbgardner Donation Time

    Very good point Ken. I'm still of the mindset of the owner of my SUV that i've given up on restoring.

    what can i tell you about my '65 from california car sitting here in cleveland . it may be back on the market soon.
  8. greenbean

    greenbean Donation Time

    I had some concern about sag issues versus alignment issues on a car many years ago. Seems to me to check for body sag, someone told me to jack up the car in the front, and then the back, and open the door while jacked up to see if the body remained rigid. IIRC (as it was 25 plus years ago), the door remained stable and it was just an shimming/alignment issue. Not sure that is any help and maybe someone else can chime in and see if I am crazy:eek::eek::eek:
  9. DanR

    DanR Diamond Level Sponsor

    Mb. Here are a few Documents taken from the SAOCA Alpine Guide that might give you an idea on repairs.... and a few PIC's taken of a couple of my Alpines... all for possible ideas. In regards to the Guide, I recommend it as a great reference tool for "all" Owners.

    Just beware of excessive rust. The Alpine has lots of areas where there were no drain provision built into the body. Even in those areas that have the drains they get stopped up with trash easily. Clean them and KEEP THEM CLEAN is a must.

    While the last PIC looks bad, the metal proved to be very solid. Surface rust was removed easily and them prepped with POR15.

    Attached Files:

  10. Mbgardner

    Mbgardner Donation Time

    Here are some undercarriage pics of the '67 SV in Buffalo i'm heading to see next wednesday now. Still no good explanation for why the p-door looks squeezed into the side of the jamb and not so much hitting at the top.

    I have place additional undercarriage pics in a media gallery "White '67 in Buffalo" accessible by all members.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: May 17, 2018
  11. Ken Ellis

    Ken Ellis Donation Time

    Looks way better than mine. Still holding out hope that the problem is the hinge rather than chassis.
    You can measure the door opening size of your other Alpines as a baseline. Something easily repeatable to the nearest 1/16" or better, making sure it's bodywork-to-bodywork, no trim involved.

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