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New Jersey Looking for frame rust repair in NJ


JoeyPhones

New Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2020
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15
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Hoboken, NJ
Greetings from the birthplace of Baseball & Sinatra!!!

I picked up my first Jeep yesterday, a 1997 TJ (Sahara) with 180k on it. I've been looking for a Wrangler for about a year now and I did a decent amount of research so I somewhat knew what to look for. This beauty is originally from NY and had 1 owner prior to the guy I bought it from who had it only a few months. Turns out the body and tub are somehow in fantastic shape for it's age (fenders, floorboards, rockers all solid) but the frame is in pretty bad shape - especially on the drivers side.

I knew going into this I would have a major repair on my hands right out the gate, but the price was right and with the condition outside the frame I couldn't pass it up. However, now I find myself in need of a welder who's had some experience in repairing these things. I figure I'd source the parts needed from Pocono (spoke with them today). I'd like to do the drivers side ASAP as I believe I can get away with the passenger side as-is for another year (it's in much better shape).

Can anyone recommend a shop here in NJ/NY that can handle this for me and not whack me over the head on price? I've attached pics of the rot

All input is appreciated. Thanks in advance!!!

-JT

My First TJ.jpg


TJ Rot Drivers 3.jpg


TJ Rot Drivers 1.jpg


TJ Rot Drivers 2.jpg
 
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Starrs

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Umm what did they pay you to haul that off??? Lol I’m kidding. Obviously you need a new frame. You don’t plan on driving it like that. I’d start pricing a new frame in your area and call some body shops and get quotes. You picked an expensive one
 

Chris

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Florence, AZ
Holy cow... that needs a whole new frame most likely. Hopefully you didn’t pay much for it.

Welcome to the forum though, you’re definitely in the right place! I don’t know anything in NJ, but hopefully someone nearby will chime in soon. I know that you can usually have a rust free frame swapped in usually for around $5000 or so.
 

Flivver250

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Jun 3, 2018
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Dubai/Florida
+1 on new frame and advice from Starrs. If the price was really right, perhaps this could be a parts donor for another rig sourced down south? Finding a shop to do the work in NJ/NY that wouldn't whack you over the head may be like unicorn hunting. I'd suggest you do not drive it. Get a one way ticket to Florida, enjoy the weather while looking for a totally rust free sled with low miles at a good price. Somewhere some old fossil in Florida with a nice TJ dropped dead yesterday, you can count on it. You can probably harvest some usable parts on what you have, and sell some of the components to recoup losses. Your rig is not an impossible project, but doing it right with hired labor may well finance a better buy. With a 180K on the clock, someone who ignored the frame that much probably ignored other areas of concern and expense. Sorry to be a buzz kill, others may be more encouraging.
 
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Daryl

2004 Rubicon
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Since you just purchased it yesterday, is there any chance you can get your money back? The cost of replacing the frame will exceed the value of the Jeep. Not trying to be an asshole, but that’s what I’m seeing.
 
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JoeyPhones

JoeyPhones

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Hoboken, NJ
Fellas, I'm not replacing the frame. The top of the rail still has enough meat left on it to use the frame repair kit and that's exactly what I'm going to do. The purpose of this post is to find a welding expert that can handle it for me. Does anyone know of one?
 

Starrs

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+1 on new frame and advice from Starrs. If the price was really right, perhaps this could be a parts donor for another rig sourced down south? Finding a shop to do the work in NJ/NY that wouldn't whack you over the head may be like unicorn hunting. I'd suggest you do not drive it. Get a one way ticket to Florida, enjoy the weather while looking for a totally rust free sled with low miles at a good price. Somewhere some old fossil in Florida with a nice TJ dropped dead yesterday, you can count on it. You can probably harvest some usable parts on what you have, and sell some of the components to recoup losses. Your rig is not an impossible project, but doing it right with hired labor may well finance a better buy. With a 180K on the clock, someone who ignored the frame that much probably ignored other areas of concern and expense. Sorry to be a buzz kill, others may be more encouraging.
It’s best to be blunt with stuff like this I think. No sense in wasting any more money
 
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JoeyPhones

JoeyPhones

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Mar 11, 2020
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Hoboken, NJ
Guys although the advice is appreciated, I'm really not looking for it. I'm looking for a reputable welder. I know what I got myself into, I understand the costs and the risk vs reward. I've chosen my path. Everyone can tell me "told ya so" if it fails lol
 
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Daryl

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Fellas, I'm not replacing the frame. The top of the rail still has enough meat left on it to use the frame repair kit and that's exactly what I'm going to do. The purpose of this post is to find a welding expert that can handle it for me. Does anyone know of one?
Seriously, no “welding expert” would suggest or weld on that frame. It needs replaced.
 
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JoeyPhones

JoeyPhones

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Hoboken, NJ
You actually asked for the advice you now don't want. Have fun, your money.
I didn't ask for advice at all. I asked for a welder. Apparently I'm in the wrong place. It's funny, the previous owner of this Jeep posted in these here forums and was greeted with much more helpful responses. So much for counting on my home state. Time to go another route.
 
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JoeyPhones

JoeyPhones

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Hoboken, NJ
I will now, however ask a question. Can one of you "experts" please explain to me why kits like this exist? Let me guess - it's not the true Jeep way? I've already gotten quotes (after sending the same pics) on installing these exact kits from shops that specialize in doing this exact type of work but one is out in PA and the other in MD. It was my hope that I'd get pointed in the direction of a local shop as the previous owner told me how accommodating and friendly the users on this board were. Perhaps he was talking about a different site?

repair kit.jpg
 

Daryl

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I will now, however ask a question. Can one of you "experts" please explain to me why kits like this exist? Let me guess - it's not the true Jeep way? I've already gotten quotes on installing these exact kits from shops that specialize in doing this exact type of work but one is out in PA and the other in MD. It was my hope that I'd get pointed in the direction of a local shop as the previous owner told me how accommodating and friendly the users on this board were. Perhaps he was talking about a different site?

View attachment 145647
How much is the labor to install everything pictured?
 
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JoeyPhones

JoeyPhones

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Mar 11, 2020
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Hoboken, NJ
I'm confused. I got one guy from Florida, another from Indiana, and another from Oregon trying to tell me what's up. WTF. Why bust someone's balls that you can't even help?
 
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JoeyPhones

JoeyPhones

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Hoboken, NJ
What do the parts cost?
$500 for the kit I posted.

Now let's say for argument's sake I paid $700 for this thing. There's no rust on the tub (I got under there an looked), the body is also free of rust (rockers, fenders, windshield, motor mounts, etc...all the usual suspects). The interior is MINT. Yes there's high mileage but the clutch is new, as are the brakes. Engine is strong, purrs like a kitten and isn't leaking. The Goddamn AC even works. Plus the original paint is in fantastic shape. Do you really mean to tell me that dumping $2500, or even $3k into this frame isn't worth it? IDK about your parts of the country but around here even rusted out shitbox YJ's are fetching $2-$3k.