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Discussion Starter #1
Ok Today I picked up the Jeep from Beat95YJ's Shop. He had the Jeep on a lift which made it easy to see that the front passenger side control arm bracket was bent. I was under their just a few days ago because I remove the Rancho Skid plate from there that got forced down and bent in half. I remember when I put it on the lip that is supposed to hook on the side was not getting a good bite. I also had a heck of a time trying to line it up. Now I think I know why it failed. When I was right up on the bracket it is hard to tell how much it was bent. Up on the lift it was apparent. I should where my glasses more this getting old is for the birds. That front control arm has taken some good hits. I initially thought that it was from a hit. Beat thought it was from articulation which really makes sense the way the bracket is bent on both sides like it was tweaked by the arm. Jeep did not see it that way they saw the rock hit marks and said they would not cover this because it is from a hit. So now I have to come up with a fix. Any Ideas or products available?????????????

First thoughts
Realign with BFH then weld on gussets? Then........... OR new brackets???
Swivel links (Superlift) non adjustable to exert less pressure on the brackets?
Poly adjustable Control arms not sure how much they will swivel to relive torque?
 
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BFH and welding. The brackets are welded to the axle anyway so if you can straighten then and add some support you should be fine. Don’t go too far back and under because you need to leave room to install/remove the control arm bushing.

I don’t think any brand of control would help the bracket, it’s just weak and exposed and you more than lightly hit the bracket on a rock and bent it that way. Best thing to do is strengthen it.

 

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Here's one fix

I agree with Alec W. BFH and start welding. The brackets are welded on only one side, so you definitely need to weld the other side before it breaks off, as one did last year on a friend's JK coming out of the Rubicon. I added skids and bar across to hook tiedowns on when trailering, which is seldom. There is another thread on here with some more info. Go tohttp://www.jkowners.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2136
 

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The brackets are welded on only one side, so you definitely need to weld the other side before it breaks off, as one did last year on a friend's JK coming out of the Rubicon. I added skids and bar across to hook tiedowns on when trailering, which is seldom. There is another thread on here with some more info. Go tohttp://www.jkowners.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2136
Welding in on the other side isn't going to help a whole lot because that flimsy 1/8" steel will still bend. You need to add strength through structure. Alec and I tied the two tabs together which adds a lot more strength. Gussets aren't a bad idea either.
 

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It would appear that the steel is stressed adjacent to the weld. That is where the bend and peeling paint are.

I am not sure how much articulation stock JK arms allow, but a more free bushing looks as though it would be beneficial.
 

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Welding in on the other side isn't going to help a whole lot because that flimsy 1/8" steel will still bend. You need to add strength through structure. Alec and I tied the two tabs together which adds a lot more strength. Gussets aren't a bad idea either.
When I worked for the Navy and we wanted a temporary hanger, we would weld just one side to the overhead, use the hanger, then smack it with a hammer toward the weld to break it off, which it would easily. If we wanted the same hanger to stay there we welded both sides. then bending it back and forth would not break it. The brackets I've seen break off Jeeps broke at the weld when the bracket was bent toward the weld. Not the flimsy metal but the weld broke. Sure some metal from the soft, flimsy metal Jeep uses broke as well, but the problem was primarily in the fact that the piece could lever over and break the weld. So I have to respectifully disagree that welding the other side won't help much. I certainly agree that some further strengenthing needs to be done, such as welding a plate across the bottom or otherwise tying the tabs together. That setup has lived well through 4 trips so far through the Rubicon, some Baja running and more. Here's a before and after photo of that bracket. No weld on the inside on the before shot.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
When I worked for the Navy and we wanted a temporary hanger, we would weld just one side to the overhead, use the hanger, then smack it with a hammer toward the weld to break it off, which it would easily. If we wanted the same hanger to stay there we welded both sides. then bending it back and forth would not break it. The brackets I've seen break off Jeeps broke at the weld when the bracket was bent toward the weld. Not the flimsy metal but the weld broke. Sure some metal from the soft, flimsy metal Jeep uses broke as well, but the problem was primarily in the fact that the piece could lever over and break the weld. So I have to respectifully disagree that welding the other side won't help much. I certainly agree that some further strengenthing needs to be done, such as welding a plate across the bottom or otherwise tying the tabs together. That setup has lived well through 4 trips so far through the Rubicon, some Baja running and more. Here's a before and after photo of that bracket. No weld on the inside on the before shot.
So did you weld first then use the BFH?
 

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So did you weld first then use the BFH?
I first answered this one with the things below, then came back and added this:
If you mean when I fixed hangers on Jeeps, the answer is "it depends." If I thought bending the hanger back would break it off, then at least a few tacks before the BFH. Best to get everything all supported good before whacking on bent hangers lest they come off and you get parts falling on you. The next-to-last guy's hanger was laying on the ground before he got stopped, so we just took the whole lower control arm off and straightened out the attached hanger pieces on a handy rock.
Now the answer if you meant the Navy experiences:
We had a lot of special flat bar and other hanger pieces with holes in one end. We welded the other end to the overhead, attached our lifting apparatus to the hole, lifted and moved the stuff, then used a BFH to whack the hanger toward the weld so it broke off cleanly. Newbies would try to smack it the other way or, worse, weld both sides. They they had to grind or torch the hanger off because bending it back and forth wouldn't break the welds. Jeep brackets usually bend over only one way. If that's toward a weld and it isn't welded on the other side, you get a guy like me crawling around under someone's Jeep welding the hanger back on with my Power Welder or one of those neat mig welders that use 2 batteries. I have both. Double welded hangers usually just bend the metal, which is soft and bends easily. Like any other metal, you lose strength when you bend it back due to stress cracks. So, if it's just bent once and double welded and no cracks in the metal, I would usually leave it be on the trail. Then it could be dealt with properly back at the shop. There is no easy "sound bite" answer to leaving it or going after it with the BFH and the welder. You have to look at the individual case and decide from your experience(s).
Here is a tip I'ved learned the hard way: If you are the guy on the trail with the welder, always ask if there is someone there who is a good welder. Someone usually volunteers and they are one who gets to crawl around in the mud, rocks and dirt getting holes in their clothes while you enjoy the beverage the grateful Jeep owner bestows on you for "saving" him with your welder. Don't tell anybody I do that. :grinpimp:
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Here is a tip I'ved learned the hard way: If you are the guy on the trail with the welder, always ask if there is someone there who is a good welder. Someone usually volunteers and they are one who gets to crawl around in the mud, rocks and dirt getting holes in their clothes while you enjoy the beverage the grateful Jeep owner bestows on you for "saving" him with your welder. Don't tell anybody I do that. :grinpimp:[/QUOTE]

Now thats funny :beer:

I will tack before I wack.

Thank for all the great info. I will start this process tomorow. I will try to post pics.
 

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Lensman, both of us are staying up too late! If you are ever in the Sacramento area, give me a shout and stop by. I have a 2 post rack you could put yours up on if you like.
Jim
916-375-1122
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
OK here is the fix

First the OE bracket got tacked on the sides that were not welded. Then the bends were massaged back into place. Then out came the BFH which I used to fine tune the bends LOL. Then I installed the Rancho skids I had to check where to put the gussets. I made 2 one small one, no picture that ties one side of the control arm OE bracket to the shock bracket. Then another, triangle style gusset to the axle and bracket. Then I welded the sides of the Rancho bracket to OE bracket. Should be able to take some rock hits now. :grinpimp: Yes I know my steering stabilizer is shot. I got the woods relocation bracket that will be installed next week. I will buy a new stabilizer tomorrow at 4 wheel parts Truck Fest.

The rear axle housing will be replaced a week from Monday.
 

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Nice work, Lensman! That should hold it! Adding the triangle gussets (as also CO Hummer mentioned and Alec W showed) is a good touch as well. :beer: Every JK should come with a certificate to buy a welder or at least a self-darkening helmet if it's meant to be wheeled. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Lensman, both of us are staying up too late! If you are ever in the Sacramento area, give me a shout and stop by. I have a 2 post rack you could put yours up on if you like.
Jim
916-375-1122
Hi Jim

I will be up in your area on business in a couple of weeks. I will give you a call as the time draws near. I will be in a rental car. I would really like to see your Jeep mods and talk to you about them in person.
 

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Hi Jim

I will be up in your area on business in a couple of weeks. I will give you a call as the time draws near. I will be in a rental car. I would really like to see your Jeep mods and talk to you about them in person.
Deal! Do it!
 
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