Tub re-assembly

WK2Burner

Well-known member
While fixing the crossmember I had to pull the tub apart to replace some pieces. The lower brace was bent on either side so I drilled out the spot welds and straightened it out. Haven't decided on reattaching yet but test fitted the new rear panels and caps. Just wondering what others have done with where all the spot welds were. We may give a spot welder a shot, but likely rivet. Do others just rivet the sides using the cap holes and forgo the spot welds? Also the horizontal row across the back where the wheel well pieces attach to the rear panels. Thanks


 

Napalm00

Well-known member
While I have never done this I will say that the hundred twenty volt spot welder I bought at Harbor Freight made really quick work of sheet metal spot welds. It was so easy, I used it when building a couple aks
 

WK2Burner

Well-known member
While I have never done this I will say that the hundred twenty volt spot welder I bought at Harbor Freight made really quick work of sheet metal spot welds. It was so easy, I used it when building a couple aks
My buddy is a welder and says that spot welding aluminum is possible but tricky. He doesn't have one with long enough arms, so that's the first issue. We'll keep trying while I tackle other parts. I assume 99% of people/shops don't spot weld repair. Mainly wondering if they just panel bond and go with whatever else is riveted.
 

Napalm00

Well-known member
Oh shit I didn't know you were talking about aluminum. I assumed you were talking about some steel spot welds.

Totally clueless on aluminum
 

rherl

Member
When I build my tub I took it to an experienced aluminum welder and had him weld it. Even then it was tricky because of the thin metal. He took his time and it turn out great. We drilled holes where the spot weld should be and he then filled the holes with weld. Aluminum spot welders are hard to find and expensive, but if you can find an experienced aluminum welder with a good machine it can be done. The cost was reasonable but I honestly don't remember what he charged me.
 

AdamSanta85

Well-known member
I don't have much to add other than I am jealous that you have an entire barn to work on your truck in.
 

WK2Burner

Well-known member
I don't have much to add other than I am jealous that you have an entire barn to work on your truck in.
wish it was mine. it is the dream though. came with the house my buddy bought. first was indoor horse arena, then warehouse where the PO concreted the floor to the tune of $85k or something. I somehow convinced him to let me build there, as it all started as me replacing the cross member since it was bent in on either side an inch or so. He's a welder by trade so, was supposed to be a weekend deal. now we are building a crossmember and it's just rolling into 900 other small projects since the tub is off. NAS style roll cage is next, but want to sure up the tub first before I start that.
 

WK2Burner

Well-known member
When I build my tub I took it to an experienced aluminum welder and had him weld it. Even then it was tricky because of the thin metal. He took his time and it turn out great. We drilled holes where the spot weld should be and he then filled the holes with weld. Aluminum spot welders are hard to find and expensive, but if you can find an experienced aluminum welder with a good machine it can be done. The cost was reasonable but I honestly don't remember what he charged me.
It's quite a bit of welds. I highlighted what I drilled out in red. Took quite a bit of time as I made all the holes in the replacement parts rather than the sides of the tub. This required drilling most from the inside, then grinding down the alu nubs.

 

rherl

Member

When I built my tub, I built it from new factory parts so the only piece that needed to be welded into place was number 13 above. You would have a lot of welding with what you have shown. I drilled the holes into piece 13 and then he just filled the holes with weld. There was a little metal distortion when he welded the tabs on the wings. It wasn't bad and it disappeared once it was prepped and painted. You're definitely doing more work than I did.
 

WK2Burner

Well-known member
yeah, was trying to keep the cost low(er), as most of the labor i can do in house....or at least try. thanks for the info.
 

O2batsea

Well-known member
Welding is quick. That's why they use it on the line. If it were me, I'd use panel bond. You get adhesion over the entire surface area of the overlap, whereas weld is, well, spotty.
 

JimC

Well-known member
Someone mentioned a long time ago that they replicated spot welds on bonded repairs by just stabbing a pencil eraser into the wet primer.
 

Uncle Douglas

Well-known member
I use 5200 on that horizontal joint. It's a 3m marine adhesive/sealant. I try to only put rivets where they already were.

Have to admit I have used them to plug random holes on some trucks.
 

WK2Burner

Well-known member
Would someone mind giving me the hole spacing/measurements on where the square euro lic plate holes are on the left side rear panel. I will probably put alu rivnuts in, but want to make sure I use the correct spacing for the larger square type plates. For now, I'll make a metal plate to put my PA state plate on, but will probably have one made for vanity sake. Much easier to drill and rivnut before I put it all back together. Thanks.
 

JimC

Well-known member
Euro plates don’t come with holes, most people use plate holders but some punch the plate to fit the car and then use colored screw caps to disguise the screw heads. Seems that most UK plates are bonded on these days. Neither new defender rear ends I’ve had came with holes from the factory.
 

WK2Burner

Well-known member
Euro plates don?t come with holes, most people use plate holders but some punch the plate to fit the car and then use colored screw caps to disguise the screw heads. Seems that most UK plates are bonded on these days. Neither new defender rear ends I?ve had came with holes from the factory.
Thanks for the info. I could just punch for the NAS style plate holes and make an adapter plate if needed. I could also just use tape to do it as well, but not sure if I fully trust that.
 

Uncle Douglas

Well-known member
curious, you usually eyeball that setup or have some sort of template you go by?
I use a US license plate and a sharpie, pretty low tech but perfect every time. Sorry can't tell you how to best achieve what you want to do.

I remove foreign plates and have them mounted/displayed on the insides of the doors of the shop
 
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