I've been fussing with the paint on the grille; it's the one thing I want to look nice. I can't get back to the radiator until the paint is done, so I need something to do. Unfortunately, I'm no painter. For all of the things I have the ability to do, paint is just not something I can do well/
The nuts that are welded inside the frame for mounting the front bumper often break because of corrosion locking the bolt in. There's 5 bolts total on the front of the frame; 1 on the bottom and 2 on the top to mount the bumper, 2 more on the top to mount the sway bar. The 4 nuts on each side are all welded to a thin metal strip that is then welded to the frame.
This Jeep had both pairs of the nuts broken off the top. The outer most nut can be welded on pretty easily; the second one would be pretty difficult. So I decided to remove the remaining nuts and the metal strip and make a new one.
I drilled out the two welds that were at the top of the frame, and cut the strip at the front frame opening. I needed to do a bit of chiseling to get the piece out. You can see in the photo below what was left of the metal strip and nuts, and the holes I needed to drill to remove it.
I got a piece of 1 x 1/8 steel and cut it to the correct length. I scored a line down the length of the piece in the center so I new where the center line was. I then clamped the piece inside the frame and used a center punch to locate the holes I needed to drill.
The nuts for the bumper are 1/2" and the sway bar are 3/8". I drilled pilot holes, then finished drilling the holes. I drilled them 1/16" over the size of the bolt that goes through them. I figured this would make centering the nuts on the holes easier.
I centered the nuts over the holes and clamped them on. I didn't measure, I just eyeballed it. I welded all the way around the nut. Probably overkill, but these things aren't going anywhere.
I sprayed some paint on the one side that was exposed to prevent rust. I taped the outer most nut off so that no paint would get on it since I would be welding there later.
I then slid the new metal piece into the frame, centered it up, clamped it on, and rewelded the two welds I drilled out earlier, and one bead across the front, and a what I could reach on the sides.
I sprayed a little paint on the outer most nut, and the top of the frame where I ground it off to weld. Better than new.
These things will never break off. I only measured the length of my replacement strip; everything else I eyeballed. Nothing here is critical enough requiring it to be perfect and center.