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Need opinions on old welds on 1957 travel trailer frame part 3

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  • Need opinions on old welds on 1957 travel trailer frame part 3

    This is part 3 of a thread that started. For more information, see parts 1 and 2.
    Part 1 http://www.millerwelds.com/resources...r-frame-part-1

    Part 2 http://www.millerwelds.com/resources...r-frame-part-2



    Part 3 continued
    Here are two videos of the underside that might help. I am not concerned with the dip on the ends of the front cross member as indicated in my two videos. I have since found out that this is typical of the trailers of that time.




    Video 1
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WsFd3u1rEow


    Video 2
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEXLNmfqcog




    Last week, I paid a welder to come out and look at the trailer, He welded some 3” gussets from the front crossmember to the base of the tongue and deemed it very strong. He also added a little weld to the rear of the huge steel plates. The little weld connected the rear of the steel plate to the underside of the C channel frame. He had a little experience with trailer frames, though, despite that, he felt that it was sufficient. Was it?


    Here is an image of the gusset repair.




    Here is the entire gusset repair gallery
    http://s174.photobucket.com/user/Tea...?sort=2&page=1




    Here is a video that I call the tunnel C channel Video . It shows how the tongue lifts up as well as the condition of the C- Channel.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WUfI...ature=youtu.be




    For reference, below are two images of a trailer frame from the same model of trailer that i have. One image shows a red arrow. This points to an additional cross member that was welded on to that trailer frame as part of a welding repair for that frame. Otherwise, the trailer frame is the same as mine.












    My concerns:



    1.Is the original repair sound?
    2.Did the original repair make a difference and will it strengthen the tongue enough so it won’t snap or crack at the front crossmember? I am concerned with the section where the bending starts upward. This is just forward of the front crossmember. In the “tunnel video” down the C channel to the tongue, I see a slight outward twist where vertical “boxing” to the C channel was done. This is where the tongue is welded(meets) to the frame. I assume this was original.
    3.Will that twisting be a weakness?
    4.Do I need to level out the tongue so it is level with the rest of the frame?
    5.Will that weaken the steel from its condition now?


    2 months ago, I towed the trailer 200 miles from the previous owner and it trailered very well.


    I am not concerned with the dip on the ends of the front cross member as indicated in my two videos. I have since found out that this is typical of the trailers of that time.


    Thank you.


    Rod
    Last edited by 4 Sons; 01-05-2015, 05:49 PM.

  • #2
    Originally posted by 4 Sons View Post
    [B]
    1.Is the original repair sound?
    2.Did the original repair make a difference and will it strengthen the tongue enough so it won’t snap or crack at the front crossmember? I am concerned with the section where the bending starts upward. This is just forward of the front crossmember. In the “tunnel video” down the C channel to the tongue, I see a slight outward twist where vertical “boxing” to the C channel was done. This is where the tongue is welded(meets) to the frame. I assume this was original.
    3.Will that twisting be a weakness?
    4.Do I need to level out the tongue so it is level with the rest of the frame?
    5.Will that weaken the steel from its condition now?
    1 - Define sound... Its a camper trailer and it was designed to be as cheap as possible and still hold. If you went 200 miles and it was fine, it seems sound to me.
    2 - From what I can see, and it isn't much, the original repair didn't do much except to add more heat and damage the frame more. Once a tongue is bent, the only solution is to make it straight and then sister up the frame.
    3 - As long as the welds are sound, it should be fine.
    4 - If the trailer is fine and handles properly, then leveling out the tongue can do more damage then good. All depends on how bad it is.
    5 - If you sister up the tongue with another piece of channel, it will be fine.
    6 - That added on gusset didn't do much of anything either except to add more heat to the frame already.

    This is all based on information given, but a real answer must be given while looking at the frame up close.


    I personally would grind off all repairs, level the tongue, sister up the entire frame, and it would be good for another 10 years. But I am also a welder myself and it would be cheap for me to do.

    Comment


    • #3
      Rod, I feel bad for you because the guy who did the repair work for you called himself a welder, and by the standards of anyone here, he is NOT a welder, but how were you to know!! This might be some of the ugliest work that has been posted here. The guy can't run a bead, and he seems to be vaguely aware of this because he ran pass after pass, adding more and more metal, not that it will do any good. He has no clue as to how to use doublers, how to size them or to taper them out. Rebar has no place in this project, and just the WAY he has used the rebar has me scratching my head. Tell us you didn't pay him actual money, Rob; tell us he isn't passing himself off as a professional!!! in other circumstances, I might think you were pulling our legs, with some sort of elaborate hoax. If this guy is building trailer hitches, somebody should inform the state DOT before innocent people get killed.

      What might save the project is the fact that with mild steel, even some fairly horrible welds can hold up for a long time if not stressed too much. Go to a local shop that sells welding machinery and supplies, and ask them for the name of a local welder that they KNOW is competent. Have that welder come take a long close look at the trailer and advise you. Or maybe you could tow the trailer to a nearby technical college and have the welding instructor take a look.

      As to the photos of the bare frame that is like yours, the added brace (with your red arrow) won't hurt but won't do much either. That is a light-duty and very flexible frame; possibly they were depending on the trailer body to add stiffness. Personally, I'd want an x-member in the middle of that frame, but maybe that's overdoing things.
      Last edited by old jupiter; 01-05-2015, 11:13 AM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Sorry Bud but the guy who posed as a "weldor" took you to the cleaners.
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        Comment


        • #5
          Thank you for all your responses so far.

          There seems to be some confusion. The only work that the most recent welder did are the gussets and one tag of weld behind the large rectangular plates. Nothing else.

          The rebar and rectangular plates are the old mystery welds that were done by someone else years ago.

          Thanks,

          Rod

          Comment


          • #6
            weld repair..

            Originally posted by 4 Sons View Post
            Thank you for all your responses so far.

            There seems to be some confusion. The only work that the most recent welder did are the gussets and one tag of weld behind the large rectangular plates. Nothing else.

            The rebar and rectangular plates are the old mystery welds that were done by someone else years ago.

            Thanks,

            Rod
            Are you kiddin me? If you hired someone to caulk your house and his caulk job looked like thoose welds would you pay him? This is why i quit doing small job and repairs, i would qoute my mininium fee of $300, people would get pissed and find someone else. However your repair is a great example of what a nonprofessional, cheap, uninsured, hobby welder does as a side business. I just hope im not behind that trailer on the highway.
            Kevin
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            Comment


            • #7
              Rod, I guess I was one who was confused, but, if the gusset I see in your top photo above is the recent welder's work, well, it doesn't look much better than the old welds.

              Again, you need a real welder to take a close look.

              Comment


              • #8
                Why are there 3 separate threads on this? Just like we keeping adding posts to this thread so can you. Perhaps next time just make a thread and then add more information to subsequent posts in that thread.

                This is sad to see. Such poor quality work. How did you find this welder to do the work? Are you in a rural area with little services? I have lived places like that and have had very little option when it comes to goods and services. Just a fact of life I guess. Good luck with the rest of the repair.
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                Comment


                • #9
                  4 Sons,

                  There is only a 4 image limit per post. There can be as many pages as needed.
                  Ed Conley
                  http://www.screamingbroccoli.net/
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                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by elvis View Post
                    Why are there 3 separate threads on this? Just like we keeping adding posts to this thread so can you. Perhaps next time just make a thread and then add more information to subsequent posts in that thread.

                    This is sad to see. Such poor quality work. How did you find this welder to do the work? Are you in a rural area with little services? I have lived places like that and have had very little option when it comes to goods and services. Just a fact of life I guess. Good luck with the rest of the repair.
                    Hi,

                    I didn't know how else to show the additional images. That's just what I came up with. I realize it's cumbersome.

                    As for the welder that did the gussets, I found him on yelp with good reviews. I live in an urban setting in the greater Los Angeles area.

                    cheers

                    Rod

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've never gotten advice on anything from Yelp (knew nothing about them) and now I know I never will, so thanks for that, Rod.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Frame has been repaired

                        Update:

                        I had the frame repaired recently including the removal of the worthless gussets. The frame was aligned and leveled out or flattened to eliminate the tongue uplift. The old iffy welds were removed. The front outrigger that was attached to the frame with the iffy welds was also removed and new steel was welded on. All the other outriggers were removed, replaced and rewelded in the process because they were too short on the ends. I had a cross member added at the C- Channel bend at the base of the tongue that tied in the top of the C- Channel to eliminate what caused the the tongue uplift/frame sag in the first place. A truss strap was added down the middle from the rear of the tongue jack to the center of the last outrigger.

                        All new steel was 2" instead of the original 1 3/4" steel. BTW, I did not use the welder that did the gussets.

                        Pix are available here. http://repairingyesterdaystrailers.y...2#.Vdh3Dl_n_4g

                        Cheers.

                        Rod

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Need opinions on old welds on 1957 travel trailer frame part 3

                          Looks like a fun and expensive project Rod. I'm actually building a new, retro style teardrop camper at the moment. I had my hands on an old, small trailer like yours I could've used, but chose not to after a few beers...I mean, short deliberation. While reusing the old trailer would've saved me money, the time it would've taken to clean, repair and repaint the old one was too long and probably not worth the effort, so I decided to build a brand new one. Plus I like to build stuff. My plan is to sell it off when I'm done "learning" about building a teardrop camper and build another, all aluminum one (the current one is steel and wood). So gents, prepare yourself for some aluminum fab questions coming...probably a little later than sooner, but we'll see.

                          Rod, I hope your little camper comes out as you expect.

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