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Old 11-17-2003, 09:02 AM
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Decided on a frameoff

I've decided to do a full frameoff on my 72 Cutlass. I only have a 2 car garage but I can but small things in my attic (I love it, it is like my own play space). I have seen many pictures of people doing frameoffs like the one I have posted. Is this safe? It looks like it's two 4X4 posts onto of sinter blocks. Something else I saw was a guy with two come-alongs used to lift the body. How are come-alongs bolted to the ceiling beams? Is it just a chain that wraps around it?

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Old 11-17-2003, 09:04 AM
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Old 11-17-2003, 02:05 PM
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It's safe. For awhile I had mine sitting on four buckets. A body does not weigh much once it is stripped out. 3 of us lifted my '62 Impala off of a trailer and set it on a square frame with rollers. IF YOU USE A CHAIN HOIST OFF OF THE RAFTERS ...run an 8'-10' 4'x4' across the top of the rafters so it spans 4 or 5 rafters. This will disperse the load. Make sure you fasten the hoist across the 4'x4's midways. Fastening the hoist over or around one rafter will pull down too much weight in one area, and stands a chance of breaking the rafter, dropping the car, smashimg your toes/legs/body and really pissing you off. LOL!! Use common sense and practice safety. DO NOT get under the car while it is hoisted. Only get underneath it after it is supported underneath.

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Old 11-18-2003, 12:16 AM
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First off I'm in the middle of my first Frame off on a 1974 Corvette Stingray, Pics in my photo Gallery. This is a ton of work!! My frame was salt water damaged to the max (you could poke your finger thru it) so it was that or junk it. With your car on jack stands you can R&R the front and rear suspensions, replace body mounts and most anything else. Frame offs are time consuming, very expensive, difficult without the proper equipment, and not really worth it unless your doing a collector car or plan to make a show car. Normal street use will destroy all your detail work.
BUT if you still want to go thru with it by all means do what Kevin said. I made an A-Frame that looked like you could lift a tank and was glad that I did. Even with ALL the body bolts out, the corrosion had glued the body to the frame and I lifted the complete car (engine,trans, wheels and all) about a inch off the ground before it started to swing and I freaked out. Make everything twice as strong as you think you need and realize that it will take twice as long, cost twice as much, and be twice as hard as you think. I don't mean to sound Negative, but had I known then, what I know now, I would not have done this project! I will have a beautiful Corvette when I'm done, and I will have the satisfaction that I did it, don't get me wrong, BUT! I will have way more money and labor tied up in this car than it's worth.
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Old 11-18-2003, 09:49 AM
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I disagree. It takes maybe 3-5 hours to get a body off the frame. Once off you can run brake lines, exhaust, 4 links, crossmembers, and strip and clean frame and underside of car. If you're dumping $20k+ into a car, why not go the extra distance. I hate welding/painting upside down.
My car is strictly driver. I put more functionality into the underneath instead of detail but at least the elements will have to start over, not keep deteriorating where it left off.
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Old 11-18-2003, 11:35 AM
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But everything will be so much easier to access. JC55 said, it would be alot easier to do this with the body off. Besides fully rolling chasis gives me a woody.
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Old 11-18-2003, 02:08 PM
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Yes and Yes. It is a lot easier to work on and really the only way if your spending big bucks and doing a lot of work. My only intent was to give adb2f some idea of what is involved. I had to make an A-frame buy a chain hoist, make lifting straps, make a frame dolly, and make a body dolly. With a 2 car garage, the body will take up 1 stall and the frame the other. My project cost a lot more because of the salt water damage but I now have the chassis done and running and your right it is definitely a Woody. I didn't realize how much was involved when I started and only wanted to share another first timers experience. Now that I have all the right equipment and experience I'll do this again for sure but it was an eye opener for me the first time. Best of luck and by all means take lots of pictures and share with us.
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Old 11-18-2003, 04:48 PM
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I did my frame off using 4 x 4 treated lumber on cement blocks but the big caution is if you have young children or your neighbors do, DON'T LET THEM PLAY UNDER OR AROUND IT. It can very easily fall and crush one of them. Kids can't resist the temptation. Safety First!
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Old 11-18-2003, 06:37 PM
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Thanks Pony for your experiences. I plan to have the body in one stall and when I am working on the frame, just roll it out and back in when I am finished. I too will be using the treated lumber and blocks so I will not be making any a-frames or rotiserries. I already have a compressor and sandblaster. I know it will be awhile before my car is actually ready to drive. This gives me a chance to work out my fuel injection problems. But I really appreciate the pros/cons of the frameoff.
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