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Professionals: rear passenger shock hole too big. What would you do?

mikespine

Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
77
Location
Holly Springs, NC
Last week I was under my 2004 TJ just to take a look at how I was going to drop my gas tank, put in a new fuel pump assembly and install my new rear Dirtworx bumper and tire carrier.

I noticed that the passenger rear shock bolt washer (the one closest to the wheel) was loose and I could spin it with my finger. I tried to tighten and loosen it, but it just kept spinning.

I brought it to the business that did the install. I waited about an hour. They said they retorqued everything and it's ready to go. I checked the washer and it was still loose. The owners son got the technician to come out and tell me what he did. The tech said he put another nut on top of the installed nut...that is sitting on a partial piece of the original manufactured welded nut.
He confirmed it's safe even though I could spin the washer. He told me he would have to air hammer/chisel the nut off. I asked him why it wasn't done in November during the install that I paid for. He got frustrated with my questions and let me know all the work that would need to be done to remedy this situation and that he fixed all four bolts that snapped....he didn't fix them, he rigged them.

It appears they may have tried to drill out the original nut and bolt. They ended up butting up another nut and bolt beside it.

So I will fix it myself. After taking a Dremel with a cut off wheel and pounding the nut off. It appears what was once one hole ,is oblong now. What would you do?
Could I still put in the original size bolt and nut and tighten it down?

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VegasOPM

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Supporting Member
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Jan 12, 2019
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Vegas Baby
You are either going to need to cut off the old bolt and weld in a patch plate, or sandwich plates on each side. The shock is pulling against that area every time you go over a bump- so the shock will start to clunk and then eventually get damaged. I can't believe that a reputable shop would have half-assed it like that.
 
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mikespine

Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
77
Location
Holly Springs, NC
You are either going to need to cut off the old bolt and weld in a patch plate, or sandwich plates on each side. The shock is pulling against that area every time you go over a bump- so the shock will start to clunk and then eventually get damaged. I can't believe that a reputable shop would have half-assed it like that.
I have cut the bolt and nut off. This is what it looks like now: (pic) Looking down: Passenget side shock hole nearest to the tire.

I have done the same to the other hole on the passenger side too. I will speculate that the driver side is similar. (maybe I'm wrong)

I don't know how to weld. Do you think a mobile welder should be able to complete this task correctly? What kind of material/size/thickness steel/stock to make a patch plate? Should I patch both bolt holes to make it level and uniform? Or should I just have it towed to a mechanic?

I can't separate the body mount bolts...the Jeep was in an accident and some of the body mount bolts are bent. (pic of the body mount under driver side door).

Sorry for all the questions, but I just want to get this done right. Thanks for everyone's assistance.



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Armytruck6x6

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 1, 2019
Messages
168
Location
USA
Kind of like this one... can be put in from under side with needing to lift body or come in from the top some how.

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Armytruck6x6

TJ Enthusiast
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Mar 1, 2019
Messages
168
Location
USA
If you were in NH id do it for you. If you had a body lift their may be enough room to get in there and work, other wise you may need to lift off body slightly for working room.
 
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mikespine

Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
77
Location
Holly Springs, NC
I want to thank everyone for the recommendations. At this time I have elected not to do any welding.

I decided to use a flanged bolt running down, shock absorber cross pins to the underside of frame, lock washer and then nylon nut.

I also put in an access hole thru the tub if needed and finished it off with a drain plug. I made a cardboard template for the drain plug hole.

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Fughuert

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Nov 26, 2018
Messages
88
Location
New England
Why? Sorry but what am I missing why did you put a hole in your tub?

You don’t need to lift the tub to drop a bolt through the top of the crossmember.
 
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mikespine

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Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
77
Location
Holly Springs, NC
Why? Sorry but what am I missing why did you put a hole in your tub?

You don’t need to lift the tub to drop a bolt through the top of the crossmember.
I did not put the hole in the tub to place the bolts.

I needed to put in an access hole only on the driver side to remove about a half welded nut: (the "professional installers" tried to drill out the bolt, drilled it out crooked, and put another nut on top of the piece of the original nut to fasten the shock). I could not get the partially welded nut off nearest the frame rail. I tried punches, pry bars of differents sizes/lengths at different angles and entry points. (wish I had an air hammer) My dremel couldn't get near the nut. Once I cut the tub, I was able to reach the nut with a pry bar and hammer . (Passenger side: access hole put in by mistake. I was off the project for a couple of days and started cutting the tub, then realized I was on the wrong side).
 

Fughuert

Member
Joined
Nov 26, 2018
Messages
88
Location
New England
Gotcha lack of tooling sucks.

I cut mine off by going through the hole where the shock sits in the crossmember with a worn down 3” cutoff wheel on a die grinder then air hammering it out, couldn’t get it with a punch either.

Another good idea would be using carbide burrs on a 90 degree die grinder through that same hole.
 
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mikespine

Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
77
Location
Holly Springs, NC
Could you use one of these?

That's what the "Professional Installers" suggested. I don't thinks it's necessary or needed. I think they were just lazy and/or incompetent.

I have a 2004 Jeep TJ: I online chatted with RC customer service and they said it's not compatible with my Jeep...and their webpage said it's for Cherokee 84-01. Everything is good now.
 

billiebob

TJ Addict
Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2015
Messages
4,432
Location
Kootenays, BC, Canada
Excellent job Mike !!

This is a chronic problem with TJs. I've often thought of putting a hole thru the tub floor too to access the shock bolts, and I'd do it the same without welding so it is easy replace the bolts with every shock install.
 
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