16 After tacking all the new braces in I finish welded some of the square tubing that I could easily get to.
17 In order for the K-member/X-member to work on the frame it needs to support the upper and lower part of the frame. If you crossmember only on the top of the frame then the bottom would most likely have no support.
18 It is hard to build structure around moving suspension parts such as the long CPP trailing arms on my truck. There are tons of ways to add structure to a frame, but this is the way we decided to do it without adding a ton of weight. Notice the trailing arms are clear away from the frame and will not cause suspension bind from hitting or bottoming out against the chassis. Some of the supports also drop down toward the bottom of the frame making the lower part of the frame tie into the new X-member/K-member.
19 Since I already know where the transmission was before, all we needed to do is take a few measurements off the old transmission crossmember. This way we could set the transmission, pinion, and driveshaft angle to where it was before.
20 I made the transmission mount out of the same square tubing that the crossbracing was made out of. With the engine and transmission out, I could now finish weld some of the joints that were not accessible.
21 Wow, that frame is starting to take shape.
22 With most of the top crossmember welded and the chassis removed from the frame table we flipped it over so that we could weld easier.
23 We beveled the edges on the square tubing so that the weld would sit flat on the tubing.
24 Since the frame was turned over it is a good time to fill in all those holes that are on the underside of the frame. It is easier to weld toward the floor than over your head or on your back, plus the weld always looks better when welding straight down.
25 After filling the holes I used an Eastwood 5-inch grinder with a 36-grit sanding disc to flatten the welds on the frame. When everything was said and done I see why people purchase custom frames, because it was very labor intensive. All I have to say is do your homework before building a custom frame yourself and definitely look at the option of buying a frame if that is in the budget.
26 After you sandblast or grind the frame the next step is prepping the frame for paint. I will be using Eastwood single-stage chassis black paint and primers. Eastwood also has an internal frame coating to help prevent rust inside the framerails.