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Unread 09-13-2011, 06:54 AM   #1
athos76
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Home made corner armor

So, I've decided to make my own corner armor since I can't find what I want premade...

I want diamond plate corner guards that actually protect...not the thin aluminum ones, or the smittybilt plastic crap that came on my TJ when I bought it. Now, I know diamond plate isn't for everyone, but my AtoZ rockers are diamond plate, and I like the look. And since I had the smitty plastic corners on for so long, the look has grown on me for the corners. As for what I will be using them for... mild offroading right now...I just graduated from mud in Miami, to rocks in TX. Nothing too serious yet.

Now to the technical aspect and where I need the advice.

My local options right now are 1/8" or 3/16" steel diamond plate (cheapest option but heaviest)

Or

3/16" 6061-T6 aluminum diamond. (lighter but more $$$)


My tooling options for DIY are limited. I can work with the steel by doing 1/2" bends myself, or by using the telephone pole outside my house...

I know the aluminum is harder to work with, and I've never had to bend any aluminum that thick...I have worked with other thicknesses (.020, .032, .060) while working on aircraft.


Would the 1/8" steel be strong enough for what I need, or should I stick with the 3/16" and suck up the weight issue?

Would I be able to bend the 3/16" aluminum myself, and keep the strength?

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Unread 09-13-2011, 04:36 PM   #2
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Well, I found an eBay source for 6061 Diamond plate that is cheaper than the local shop, and also found another nearby shop that has 1/8 and 3/16 steel diamond in stock in the size I need for cheap... After doing some research, the 6061 will be ok if I'm only doing small bends with little chance of cracks and fatigue.
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Unread 09-26-2011, 09:45 PM   #3
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It seems like most company's corner armor is 3/16", so if you're planning on taking some hits to them, you should stick to the industry standard. I'm interested to see how bending these to match works out for you. May become a project on my list if it works well.
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Unread 09-27-2011, 10:28 PM   #4
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Interested to see this play out as well.
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Unread 09-28-2011, 02:09 PM   #5
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I wanna see how you bend it.... I am in the same predicament. I have the cheap aluminum diamond plate ones and this is what happens:





I'd like to make my own because no one makes the style I like for the Scrambler, they're always way too long, and too pricey to buy and cut down. All I have to do is figure out how to get the radius.
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Unread 09-29-2011, 08:04 AM   #6
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I had my local steel supplier put the radius bend into the 3/16 that I am using to build my armor. These are 21" tall and 78" long (being used on yj stretched to LJ specs) they only cost 236.25 that is the steel and the bending compare to some of the vendors whose blanks would have been over 600 with shipping! I know we are comparing full length armor to corner armor, but my point is it may be worth talking to your steel supplier about putting the bends in for you. I dont recall the breakdown but I know it wasnt much to have the bends done.

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Unread 09-30-2011, 01:36 PM   #7
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I had my local steel supplier put the radius bend into the 3/16 that I am using to build my armor. These are 21" tall and 78" long (being used on yj stretched to LJ specs) they only cost 236.25 that is the steel and the bending compare to some of the vendors whose blanks would have been over 600 with shipping! I know we are comparing full length armor to corner armor, but my point is it may be worth talking to your steel supplier about putting the bends in for you. I dont recall the breakdown but I know it wasnt much to have the bends done.

What bend radius did you use? I *think* Jeep corners are a 6" radius. Your corners look pretty tight but it's hard to tell from a picture. Let us know how they work.

I've got an LJ that I want to stretch in the spring, and I can find corner blanks but they are all cut high in the front so they'd need custom rockers or they'd have a gap. I've got a 20 ton press in my garage, but I don't think I'm going to try to bend this.
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Unread 09-30-2011, 04:35 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LilViper95 View Post
I had my local steel supplier put the radius bend into the 3/16 that I am using to build my armor. These are 21" tall and 78" long (being used on yj stretched to LJ specs) they only cost 236.25 that is the steel and the bending compare to some of the vendors whose blanks would have been over 600 with shipping! I know we are comparing full length armor to corner armor, but my point is it may be worth talking to your steel supplier about putting the bends in for you. I dont recall the breakdown but I know it wasnt much to have the bends done.
Very cool idea. I'd be interested in having that done as well... It'd make a great starting point for home built rear tube fenders. Would you be able to post the bend measurement?
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Unread 09-30-2011, 06:01 PM   #9
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Let me start by saying that the counter guy at the steel supply shop I have is the man! When ever I need things bent up he just asks me to bring in a cardboard template of what I need!

All that I did for these was put a piece of heavy duty cardboard under the corner of the tub, mark it out with a sharpie and then cut along my marked line. I had to do a little shaving with a razor blade to get a nice tight fit.

reenacted it real quick tonight for ya!





Cut out the area without the squiggles and took in the part with the squiggles.

This is how they fit the tub of the Jeep! Like a glove if I do say so myself!



Here is where I have started to fit it to the door jambs and a couple of the countersunk bolts.



I used this same template method when I built the rocker armor for my JK.

Started with this



ended up with this (although I have since painted them to match the jeep with base clear)

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Unread 09-30-2011, 06:41 PM   #10
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Them corners fit better than GenRights. Looks good.
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Unread 09-30-2011, 08:00 PM   #11
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Man, that looks fantastic. I may start looking for a local bender.
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Unread 09-30-2011, 08:10 PM   #12
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My suggestion is make good friends with the counter guy at your steel shop. Stop in once in a while just to drop off some food and say hi! Don't be that guy who wants to walk in at 3pm on a friday and walk out with your steel bent! I always give my guy at least a few days to a couple weeks turn around time. The shop I use does a lot of industrial fabrication, my 200 dollar corners are not high on the priority list I am sure. I do my best to take care of them so that they will take care of me!
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Unread 09-30-2011, 08:41 PM   #13
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lol, its great you use a local shop... i work as a fabricator by trade and ive built all my own stuff too.. what you did is what i did on mine.. its cheaper and better quality.. next time you do it ask for pickled and oiled steel so you will have a great surface for your paint to stick... what you have was just hot rolled, which means it has scale on it and could fake off after you paint it..unless you sandblasted it..
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Unread 09-30-2011, 08:51 PM   #14
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Thanks for the info, explains why I had to repaint my rockers on the JK!
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Unread 10-01-2011, 10:21 AM   #15
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Very nice work sir! If I ever get my LJ ruby I may be ringing you to get a set of those corners shipped out. Ever thought of making aluminum ones?
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