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Discussion Starter #1
I'm planning on installing a Heidt crossmember in my 1947 Mercury Coupe. Are there any probelms with this crossmember I should know about and what is the proper way in install this piece? Also, how far back from the front of the rails is the member mounted? I am new to this hobby and need all the help I can get.
 

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Welcome, Cool Merc. Heidts should provide you with the installation instructions. There are some things they may or may not tell you, so I will hit some high spots. First, get yourself a couple of pieces of angle iron and tack across the top and bottom of the frame at the very front so this width does not change. Second, use jack stands to level the frame. Third, remove the old front end including the steering sector and the bracket that you bolt it to. Fourth, remove the front cross member by removing the rivets. Make sure you back the frame/cross member right beside the rivet you are hitting on, or there will be too much spring to get it to move. Fifth, box your frame. Heidts kits should include the boxing plates. You may want to weld in some nut plates for your inner fenders before you do this. Now to your question of locating the cross member. The instructions should tell you how, but I always use the hole in the bottom of the frame that the old I beam axle bumper is bolted into. You want to center your cross member on it. There are other holes in the bottom of the frame back near where the front part of the x member joins the side rails and also on the bottom ot the frame a few inches back from the front. I use these to recheck my centering work on the bumper holes. Don't rely on any measurement from the frame end.

Trees
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Trees, Thank you for the information bu I have a couple more questions. I metal disks from Heidt that need to be welded into the holes on the rail so that should be okay. They only gave me two (one for each side) and I am a little concerned about this. I think I should install one more on each side to strengthen the frame. Also, I still have the body on my car and was wondering how to level the frame. Do you have any advise on this issue?

Thanks,

Coolmerc
 

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Cool Merc, I'm confused. By metal disc, do you mean boxing plate (should be two in the kit, one for each side)? This is a plate that is about the same guage metal as your frame and is welded on the inside of the frame, making the section a rectangular tube, vice the channel. A good plate should be about 18 inches long for your car. That is why you want to weld a couple of nut plates on for your inner fenders because you cant get in there to install the nuts unless you cut out a hole in the plate which takes away some of the strength you just added.

The body being on just makes the job a little more difficult. By leveling, I mean getting the weight distributed evenly on the frame. Since you have the body on, just put your jack stands at the same height and place under the frame just aft of the front door pillar. This way, when the old cross member comes out, the extended frame rails are not subjected to any twisting moment when you weld your cross member in. It may not make a hill of beans difference, but I like to have my frame level from side to side and front to rear so I can check the new cross member when tacking in. With the body on, you will have to check the front to rear level by using the bottom of the frame rail about mid way between front and rear axle points and I would check both sides. Place rear jack stands at the end of the rear frame rails where the last minor cross member is attached and adjust to attain level here also. An assortment of shims comes in handy here. Having a level floor helps.

Trees

Cool Merc, an after thought to my previous post. Set your jack stands high enough so you can finish some other tasks before lowering your car to the floor. This includes installing your motor, tranny and rear end, assuming you will be making /installing new motor and tranny mounts and setting your rear pinion angle (weight has to be on rear axle for this). Being a lazy guy, I don't raise and lower a project any more than I have to.

Trees
 
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