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Engine & Tranny Skid
 

So how do you carry your aluminum angle stock on your TJ?  You bungee cord it to your side sliders.  Besides keeping your sheet metal out of the rocks, they do a great job of hauling small amounts of metal around town. 

It was time to stop by South West Steel to pick up some 2"x2" angle aluminum in the 6061-T6 variety.  I can tell you how much this stuff costs.....$3.41 a foot.  I bought 10' for this project and have about 18" left over....enough to make an extra brace or replace a piece if I had cut it wrong. (assuming it was not a big mistake)

 

I remembered to snap a better picture of front bracket and the angle aluminum it attaches to.  When I get done with the cutting, grinding, and fitting, I'll get it powder coated.

 

Here is the whole mess of stuff prior to being assembled.  You can get an idea of how it is suppose to look (note, it may not look anything like this by the time I deem the project completed).  The plan is to TIG weld the angle aluminum to the skid plate....making a 3" long bead every three or four inches.  In this photo, the skid plate has not been cut for its final length.  Once I have the angle aluminum attached at the front of the skid, I'll measure for final length and trim the skid plate before welding the sides and rear section into position.
 


With the front end of the skid taken care of, the angle aluminum was tacked onto the skid plate in a couple of places so I could hang the front of the skid from the bracket.  I needed to get an accurate measurement for the overall length of the skid.

 

I decided to attach the new tranny skid to the front edge of the existing t-case skid which went in when my Alumi-flex lift was installed.  I drill and then tapped five holes in the skid for 5/16" bolts.  The plan was to drill five matching holes in another piece of angle aluminum which would be welded to the rear edge of the new skid plate. 

 

Grade 9 hardware will hold the angle aluminum to the edge of the t-case skid.  The Jeep gods were smiling on me as I managed to NOT break a drill bit or the tap when I did the holes.  I found that one of the bits I had in my index was quite dull.  Ever try one of those Drill Doctor sharpening machines?  I hadn't used one before but after doing a couple of mine with it, I was totally impressed at the new edge it put on the drill bit.  Donna is always asking me what I want for a birthday present....I think I just came up with an idea.  Thanks Troy for letting me put an edge back on a couple of my drill bits. 

 

With the rear bracket drilled and cut, Troy TIGs the bracket to the skid plate.  I was unaware of just how much heat gets pumped into the welding process on aluminum.  The alloy sucks up the heat very quickly and with this being 1/4" material, welding two pieces of it together makes the welding machine grunt. 

 

More Tranny Skid

 

 

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