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Buying/Finding a frame

Discussion in '40- & 55-Series Tech' started by ottende, Jul 30, 2003.

  1. ottende

    ottende

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    I am considering rebuilding a cruiser from the ground up. I'd like to do it by slowly transferring the known good parts off of my current 76FJ40 and placing onto a known good frame. The hard part is the 'known good frame' bit. I've never tried to aquire a frame before and I am curious if anyone knows the ins and outs? While I could try to find one in a junk yard or something... yes that is a joke. Anyway, answers to these specific questions and any general comments would be appreciated:

    If I want to use a new frame, does it need a title/VIN, etc for it to be legal?

    Does anybody sell any known straight/fresh frames?

    Where are likely places to find a frame? I am not interested in buying a parts FJ40.

    Anything else that would be helpful?

    Cheers!
     
  2. tclndcrz

    tclndcrz

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    I dont know much about frames but ive seen advertisements for matkins extreme frames. http://matkinsextreme.com/

    They advertise as strongest frames available. They can be Mandrel Bent or Fully Welded.

    I dont really know much on the subject but i figure this is a start
     
  3. ottende

    ottende

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    Matkins is a start... Thx. Looks like the right idea, but I'd like stock strength without the excess body lift (she'll be up high enough when I'm done with her as it is). Can't have everything though... Maybe I'll give them a ring and see who they know or what they can do.

    In the meantime... still looking for answers.
     
  4. nspctr1

    nspctr1

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    there is one on ebay for sale now.
     
  5. 3_puppies

    3_puppies SILVER Star

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    cruiserparts.net has resonable prices, they may have a frame. cruisersolutions has a frame for sale, I think 78.
     
  6. dd113

    dd113

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    Frames are a dime a dozen. I just sold my last 60 series frame and sold the 78 40 series frame last year. Best thing to do is buy a parts truck. it will pay for itself. Frames will get a good coat of surface rust but that does not hurt it. Wire brush will fix it up.I have only seen one or two 40 frames rusted out. 79 and up are worse. 74 and down are better. 80-85 60 are the worst 86 and up seem fine. Frames run around $200 for early to 78. 78 to 84 are expensive! 80-90 60 series run around $300. truth is that it is too good to throw away but too big to keep. BTW: I have a restored 76 frame for sale if needed.
     
  7. customcruiser

    customcruiser Old Member

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    ottende -

    i am considering the same

    my fame cracked and i had it welded but now its cracked again

    matkins are 2G's i think about 1500 for stock strengh

    see the post "questions ABOOT rotting metal" talks alittle about this issue

    let me know what you decide to do -- if you buy a restored frame let me know the cost and condition it is in when you receive.

    matkins have full lifetime warrenty for stage III atleast maybe stage II -- even if trail use only, so you know what you are gettin and yes you pay for what you get!!
     
  8. Degnol

    Degnol

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    There are a couple of frames for sale on ebay right now, with and without titles. The advantage to an older frame with title is that before '67, I believe, there are no smog requirements so that gives you a lot more engine options as well as the option of desmogging your current engine. I run a desmogged '74 Fand 1/2 engine in a '66 cruiser. It came that way, I did not desmog it. It just makes things simpler to work on and diagnose for the likes of me.
    GL
    Ed Long
     
  9. ottende

    ottende

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    All excellent information... Thanx to everyone. Now I know how to find such a thing at the least. I am still curious about the titleing issues, so if anyone has any info on what is necessary to have a LEGAL crusier built from the frame up, it would be helpful. Also, on a side note, anyone know how much it costs to shot-peen a frame?
     
  10. customcruiser

    customcruiser Old Member

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    dont know about shot-peen or even what that is -- i guess somthing like sandblasting.

    i was quoted $35-$40 for the frame which seams extremly cheap, that is where i am starting. b/c for $40 if the frame is totally shot i will only waste $40. if it is shot i will go with a stage II from matkinsextreme.com then i know i will not have the problems i am having now.

    as for the titleing i would just "make it" the old one the DMV will never know -- probally illegal but if you throw away the old frame why cant the new frame be registered as the old one??

    if i do go with matkins this is what i am doing even if it is illegal :D i like to break the law, but dont like to be caught - lol
     
  11. Degnol

    Degnol

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    One of the frames on ebay now has both a title that matches the # stamped on the right frame horn AND the body ID plate that matches it. Many of the cruisers I know are truly FrankenCruisers with parts and pieces from many different years. I'm no lawyer, thank God, but if you have a title that matches the frame #, you should be good to go, and legal.

    I'd also sandblast, it will give you a much better bonding surface for paint than will peening, which is usually done in a cabinet to recover the EXPENSIVE media.
    IMHO
    Ed
     
  12. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Supporting Vendor Moderator

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    Vin numbers are also called frame numbers for a reason. BEFORE you buy a frame, go to your state's motor vehicle division and find out EXACTLY what you need to be doing if you buy a frame. It would be a shame to get one and build a vehicle up only to find out that you can't register it or worse, get it confiscated. In New Mexico, for example, it is absolutely illegal to remove a vin tag from a vehicle body for any reason. If our MVD cops find a vehicle with a tag that has been re-attached, even to the "correct" vehicle, you play hell keeping them from taking the vehicle. I "built" one vehicle out of two recently and I'm damn glad I asked up front what I needed to be legal BEFORE I touched either vehicle.

    In the post above, posession of the body tag is illegal in New Mexico.

    My .02, Dan.
     
  13. Degnol

    Degnol

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    It varies from state to state obviously. Actually, here in Missouri I think it is the came as NM, the technical way around it is to remove a section of metal, leaving the ID tag attached to it, then reattaching the whole thing to the transplant. That way, you've "technically" never removed the tag from the body anymore than you would if you removed the entire tub. A lot of rod builders do that to stay just this side of illegal.
    I'm not trying to propose anythig illegal, and did not mean to imply anything of the kind.
    Ed
     
  14. customcruiser

    customcruiser Old Member

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    do they look at the stamp in the frame -- i think not

    i cant even find a stamp on the frame rail just the id tag on the inside of the drivers door - which has been removed b/c the PO built it from others. i had no problems titleing my 71 -- hell in NC all i did was take the notorized title and proof of insurance and got a tag and new title, still no inspection yet (no way it will pass)

    another option is to move to Tenn, you dont need insurance or inspection -- really anybody from tenn probally doesnt even know what a VIN is, j/k for all you in tenn -- i lived in banner elk about 10 min from tenn

    i say you will be okay with whatever you do -- just play dumb if caught, or better yet when a cop is pulling you over, stop put it in 4wd low and climb that big a$$ hill to your right and roll out thru the woods like the cruiser was ment to do. :D :D
     
  15. cruzer

    cruzer

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    In CT they only look at whats on the Door Jam when you go through inspection....one great thing now though (temporaraly) is there is NO inspections...only vin varification if the vehicle was prevously registered out of state....

    I also know someone that restored a 51 Chevy Fire Truck and had removed the vin tag to paint behind it, reattached it and got arrested for it when he went though inspection at the DMV!!!!

    Stew
     
  16. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Supporting Vendor Moderator

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    Degnol,

    I did not intend to imply you were doing anything wrong. I meant to convey that the EBAY frame with body vin tag that you mentioned could get a guy in trouble in some states.

    Dan.
     
  17. CruisinGA

    CruisinGA

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    I drove my cruiser for a year with a 5 year out of date tag before anyone, including me noticed. The cop that pulled me over obviously didn't care much cause the first words out of his mouth were "How the hell old is this thing?" I even told him that the tag on it belonged to the previous owner, he just let me borrow it. He didn't care. Then to get a new tag we just took title and insurance in to the DMV and got a nice pretty "Hobby/Antique Vehicle" tag.
    The South is a beautiful place. :D
     
  18. 72cruiser

    72cruiser

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    preach it bailey,

    don't even got inspections in sc.
     
  19. customcruiser

    customcruiser Old Member

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  20. Yo_Han

    Yo_Han

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    Run in to some people my past that did alotta rock crawlin and offroading and spoke very highly of Matt's frames. These were JeepHeadz....but I'm sure the quality is the same.