Quick updates from today- I rebuilt the leaf springs by replacing the bushings and threaded sleeves, and bought new fasteners for them , as well as cleaned up the shackles. I got really lucky with my purchase of the old truck front end as it wasn't rusty, and the seller included the pieces to rebuild them. I'm using as much of the OEM pieces as I can as they seem fine, they have grease fittings, and I already have them (meaning less money spent on new bolts). I also mocked up the front spring mounts, tacked them in place, and started on the rear mounts. My goal is to get these done and tacked on the car so the springs can hang before I have to pick it all up.
The vertical bars clamped on the frame is just for measuring purposes.
Today I finished up the inner bracing, which is just a couple of plates to help laminate the metal. It's plug welded as well as around to perimeter, and this should complete the frame reinforcement. I also added the metal in front closing off the ends of the frame rails, making sure I welded all the way through to make sure I had enough material to safely radius the edges. Included is one pic showing material that went through.
Next I'll start mocking up the front suspension. This will only be tacked in place as I have no idea where the car will sit without the drivetrain yet, but I need to start somewhere, and with this on at least I'll have the possibility of rolling the car on its own.
Today's update includes some pics of the cutting and blending of the old frame into the new rails, and the exterior detail/ reinforcement that I added to the frame. I was going to make this solid at first but then I decided to make more work and add some holes. Tomorrow I hope to add some plates on the inside. these will be small and simple pieces as I don't quite know where my crossmember will be so I don't want to make anything extravagant that will cause me hassles later on, and then weld on the plates to cover up the fronts of the frame rails.
I made a little more progress today by getting the new rails cut out and started to weld into place. I have some frame rail blending, welding and reinforcing tomorrow, as well as making plates to fill in the frontal area. It'll be covering up the prettier of my welds, of course, ha ha