Offroad Trailblazers and Envoys

Custom Upper Control Arms

Any special projects involving a decent amount of fab work (bumpers, sliders, roof racks, etc)

by DirtyBacon04 » Wed Jan 15, 2014 5:31 am

I recently got a contact with some master welders w/ computer controlled plasma cutters. If you can send me your "blueprints" then I can try and give them a call. I've never used him yet, but I hear good things.
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by Moots1288 » Wed Jan 15, 2014 8:35 am

NC_IslandRunner wrote:
JamesDowning wrote:
NC_IslandRunner wrote:Would they be stronger if you just cut them out of a single piece of steel and powder coated it? save on buying the Johnny Joints and no welds that can break?


Like make the whole thing 1" plate? 3 issues I see with that.

1: it would be very heavy, as is each side prob weighs 15 lbs. Solid 1" plate would easily double that
2: you still have to weld on some sort of mounting bushing to the plate. You can't just have a hole drilled in that a bolt goes through.
3: the pinch plate is welded on separately so the angle can be set on two axis, to make the ball joint angle correct. If it was 1 solid flat plate, it would likely be off more than the stock arms are, maybe slightly better.


A friend of mine said he could make it in one piece with bushings, or with adjustable johnny style joints but the pinch plate would be build it and cut at the angle you wanted, the whole thing wouldn't be 1" thick. I knew he had a shop that customized cars and truck for show, but I just found out he bought another shop that builds custom suspensions. If I thought it was worth it I'd put him to making a long travel suspension but a SAS would be cheaper than a full custom IFS, plus my wife would kill me!
But sas had been done already can't wait to see a long travel suspension done.
Last edited by Moots1288 on Wed Jan 15, 2014 9:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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by mikekey » Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:00 am

Isn't the limiting factor to a long travel suspension our CV axles will bind and the differential placement? I assumed that's why there are not lift spindles like there are for Silverado's and things.
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by NC_IslandRunner » Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:03 am

Moots1288 wrote: But sas had been done already can't wait to see a long travel suspension done.


That would be awesome, but the custom CV axles would be a few grand by themselves.
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by Moots1288 » Wed Jan 15, 2014 3:25 pm

how many miles you have on the arms?
Last edited by Trail X on Wed Jan 15, 2014 6:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by Trail X » Wed Jan 15, 2014 3:55 pm

Prob 150ish miles on them so far. Only like 2 miles off road.
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by jonbo2002 » Wed Jan 15, 2014 4:00 pm

so are you inspecting them every couple of day then?
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by Trail X » Wed Jan 15, 2014 4:36 pm

Yeah, mainly looking for cracks in the welds. So far so good.
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by Moots1288 » Wed Jan 15, 2014 6:26 pm

JamesDowning wrote:Yeah, mainly looking for cracks in the welds. So far so good.
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by Wahugg » Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:24 pm

:raspberry: The official Moots testing method
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by Moots1288 » Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:27 pm

Wahugg wrote::raspberry: The official Moots testing method


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by v7guy » Thu Jan 16, 2014 3:01 am

James, aren't you using a Miller 211?
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by Trail X » Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:16 pm

Yep, that's what I used for this.
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by mikekey » Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:23 pm

Do you use gas with that?
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by v7guy » Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:27 pm

I wouldn't really worry about the welds, it seems to get nearly universal praise with the autoset and it looks like you're moving at the right pace. They'll hold just fine.
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by Trail X » Thu Jan 16, 2014 2:07 pm

I did run solid core .030 with gas. I've also ran flux through it. The flux is a bit messier, but does burn hotter. I was on the fence whether i needed flux on this, but the 211 seemed to do well on the pinch plate with the voltage turned all the way up and the wire speed turned down a little. I had enough plate cut for 4 UCAs and used two of the sets as practice to get the heat right.
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by bartonmd » Fri Jan 17, 2014 9:25 am

JamesDowning wrote:I did run solid core .030 with gas. I've also ran flux through it. The flux is a bit messier, but does burn hotter. I was on the fence whether i needed flux on this, but the 211 seemed to do well on the pinch plate with the voltage turned all the way up and the wire speed turned down a little. I had enough plate cut for 4 UCAs and used two of the sets as practice to get the heat right.


I'm sure I'm misunderstanding you, but you do know that there is a wire/gas/voltage/wire speed/material thickness chart under the side cover, right? I recall the wire speed being quite a ways from topped out when the voltage was all the way up. Though I mostly used .035 with it.

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by Trail X » Fri Jan 17, 2014 9:48 am

I am quite aware of the chart. I am still learning how exactly it all works though. The 211 chart does not cover 1/2" plate (even though I think it specifies it can burn it on the box), but the thickest it does cover called out 10/100. I found I was still staying a hair cold at that setting on the 1" pinch plate weld. The weld was a bit humped in the center, instead of smoothing out fully. After I had my first welds reviewed by our master welder here at work, he said the weld would hold as is, but suggested that I turn the wire speed down a bit. I think I went from 100 to 80, and on my second test piece the weld smoothed out better. It's been all about learning for me, and while it makes perfect sense now, I didn't originally understand that turning down the wire speed would increase the penetration.
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by bartonmd » Fri Jan 17, 2014 10:05 am

Ok, I'm thinking about with .035 wire, then, because I remember it being about the same wire speed for 3/8 and for 1/2, but the voltage was higher. It's all from memory though, because my 252 has juice to spare, so they go up pretty linearly. But yes, if you are on the hairy edge, lowering the wire speed actually lowers the current output, but makes the actual filler hotter, so it will penetrate better. Eta: More specifically, you adjust voltage with the dial, and the wire speed changes the current. More wire speed = more current. At the edge of a welders capability, it will usually have voltage but run out of current capacity, so you lower then wire speed in order to get the wire temperature hotter to penetrate deeper.
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by TBYODA » Fri Jan 17, 2014 10:45 am

bartonmd wrote: But yes, if you are on the hairy edge, lowering the wire speed actually lowers the current output, but makes the actual filler hotter, so it will penetrate better. Eta: More specifically, you adjust voltage with the dial, and the wire speed changes the current. More wire speed = more current. At the edge of a welders capability, it will usually have voltage but run out of current capacity, so you lower then wire speed in order to get the wire temperature hotter to penetrate deeper.
Pardon my ignorance but how does less current make the filler hotter? Sound backward. Just trying to understand. ;)
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