Weld In Your Own Frame Connectors
| Frame connectors
are an excellent way to stiffen the body of your old unitized Mopar. However, dont think it's
only for race cars...Theres a noticable difference in handling and steering
on the street after adding them. These old bodies flex
much more than you'd think. Some basic welding skills
are all thats required, or you could get everything fit and ready, then
drive the car to a welding shop where someone could weld them in for you
in about an hour. You wont be dissappointed
with the results.
|The connectors shown above
were home-made from 2x3x.125 mild steel and they slide right over the rear
The plates on the forward
end are 2x6x.125 mild steel plate. The length of these bars
are 53", but it depends on how much you want to overlap the rear frame
rails. Aftermarket weld-in connectors
dont over lap at all, but just have an angle cut to butt directly against
the leading edge of the rear rails. Thr bars pictured actually
go right back to the spring eye boxes for the inboard leaf springs, and
have a small slot cut in them at the end to clear the old spring hanger
| Holding the bars
up shows that with them lined up with the rear rails they're actually a
bit to the outside of the front rails.
Mark the location and
clean the weld areas well. Weldable primer or coating is also a good idea
as it prevents corrosion in places that arent accessible after the part
When you fit the driver
side, you'll notice the next hurdle. The parking brake cable runs through
the frame right where you're connector needs to be. The original hole can
be seen in the left picture. The right picture shows the front of the crossmember.
Theres a second stamped hole above this. Simply drill through
that hole and through the back side of the crossmember. You can also drill
a whole new hole off to one side or the other. It's all where you prefer
to put it. It just appears cleaner if you use the stamped hole thats there. You must also take care
in removing the old grommet that holds the cable in place in the hole.
Its bound to be close to the breaking point after 30 years. The photo below shows
the new cable location directly above the connector.
A nice clean modification
|In these two photos,
you can just make out the weld line where the connector overlaps the rails.
On the left, it actually goes the full length and butts into the spring
hanger bracket. The bottom continues right back to meet the lower edge
of the spring box. Once you compare these pics to your own car, it will
be evident how a few simple cuts will tie in this entire structure in the
Heres the full installation.
Your car will now act like its 30 years younger. Also note the new exhaust
that took place during these pics. The old Y-pipe can be seen in other