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Couple of Questions about metal fabrication

Ian's 91ex

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Does anyone know the name of the thing used to cut metal tube so it will fit onto metal tubing?It kind of cuts a half-circle into the end of the tubing so they fit together? Seen one used before, forget the name.Also, what you guys with cages using to bolt them in? Metal plates below the floor and bolting or what? how big of a plate? Did you all use wire feed or arc to weld your cages?any write ups or pics of a cage?
 
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jasonb

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i don't know what all you could use.. but we use a drum sander here at work to cut the half moon. we have a couple of different size sanders that match up to the common tube diameters that we use. works like a charm! a few seconds of contact and you've got the moon cut out.
i don't know how others do it.
 
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tdavis

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Originally posted by Ian's 91ex
Does anyone know the name of the thing used to cut metal tube so it will fit onto metal tubing?It kind of cuts a half-circle into the end of the tubing so they fit together?

A tube notcher. Cheaper ones use hole saws; some use pressure and shears, and others use a mill. A cheap one from Harbor Freight - http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=35782
a more expensive one from Pro Tools - http://www.pro-tools.com/hsn500.htm


Also, what you guys with cages using to bolt them in? Metal plates below the floor and bolting or what? how big of a plate?

You can purchase ready made plates from places like A&A-Manufacturing (http://www.aa-mfg.com/). They have ready made roll cage foots - http://www.aa-mfg.com/pdshop/shop/item.asp?itemid=152

Did you all use wire feed or arc to weld your cages?any write ups or pics of a cage?

Get a wire feed, 220v, 175amp (min), MIG welder. Anything less has some sort of problems (ie, weak welds, duty cycle, slag and clean up).
 
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xploda01

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james t

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use at least 3/16th for the feet, and make the underbody plate a different size than the actual foot plate. i used the cheap hole saw on a drill press method. it works, but its difficult when doing angled notches. tom is correct about the welder usage... i used a small welder on my cage and it took a long time waiting for it to cool off (i.e.- duty cycle). remember, if you get a little "off" on your notch it can be fitted better with a hand grinder.
 
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Broccoli1

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Your roll cage has to be connected to the Frame not just the body.
 
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tdavis

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Originally posted by Boccoli1
Your roll cage has to be connected to the Frame not just the body.

That is debatable.

If your seats are connected to the body, and not the cage, and your cage is connected to the frame, what happens when the body comes loose from the frame?

You should really attach your seats to the rollcage, that way, it's mute - cage, body, who cares - if it comes loose, your still protected.
 
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tdavis

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Let me add - there are times when you want to connect to the frame, and times you don't.

It's all a trade off anyway - first determine what you are trying to do, and then design from there.
 
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Broccoli1

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Tdavis, I agree but I have seen too many "Roll Cages" attached to the floor pan with just a plate top and bottom bolted together. It may be obvious to you (and others) where to connect but I was just throwing it out there for Ian, since he has some questions on fabricating and at some point he will need to install his cage and a true roll cage is not just a tube frame inside the cab.

Ps. I was that idiot that bolted up a "roll bar" to the floor pan (in a previous truck) and was lucky enough to be educated and assistated by a fabricator with correcting my blunder before becoming the public idiot at the OHV area:)
That's why I notice them.

That's what I like about this forum; it helps people rather than berating them for building errors.

Also what would be your "times" for connecting and not connecting. Information is always good.
 
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tdavis

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Originally posted by Boccoli1
Also what would be your "times" for connecting and not connecting. Information is always good.

1) When your seats and seat belts are still attached to the floor pan. Reason? If the body comes loose, you go with the body. If the cage is attached to the frame, it will crush you between the body and the cage. You should really attach the seats and seat belts to the roll cage. Some states won't let you move the seat belts - that's when you leave the factory stock belts AS-IS, and add an aftermarket belt that attaches to the cage.

2) When your frame is way to flexy. The cage will stiffen the frame way up - and can cause the frame to crack. (note - explorers don't suffer from this problem, rangers do a little) see 1970's ford/chevy trucks with the twisted bed to cab pics for a reference.

3) Your vehicle of choice doesn't have a frame (ie, Jeep Cherokee, Unibody construction vehicles)

4) your concerned about vibration in the body. When connect the roll cage to the frame, you can stiffen the body up to the point where the rubber body mounts no longer kill vibrations. Normally not a problem, but it does happen.

If you attach to the body, the plates need to be rounded - no sharp pointy corners!

Your best bet - attach to both. It's a royal pain, but in a high speed rollover, you won't lose anything that way.

You also need to gusset, and triangulate the cage.

My zuk has the cage attached to the frame and the body, and the seats are attached to the cage along with the new seat belts. The body pan is now for looks, and to catch the trail snacks. :D
 
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Ian's 91ex

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Holy crap.Thanks all of you.I saw a thing that was like a big tap..and it lookedd cool.But a holesaw is probably how I will go.As for where to bolt, still undecided. Leaning towards body with about a 6x6 inch plate of quarter inch,and 4 bolts.Keeping factory seats and belts for now.What a great response!
 
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Ian's 91ex

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I was thinking 2 inch tubing...What thickness?
 
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RFR2212

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If it were me, i'd build the cage with plates at the body, but build mounts to the frame, but at the frame, make it like some trans mounts are w/ a poly bushing of sorts...
 
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tdavis

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Originally posted by Ian's 91ex
I was thinking 2 inch tubing...What thickness?

1.75" .120 wall HREW is fine.

2" tube is HUGE.
 
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james t

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tom's answer is the exact reason why my cage isnt tied to the frame (yet). once i finish the rear part of the cage (family add-on), i will ditch the seat brackets and bolt them and the belts to the cage. then, i can run the cage to the frame.
 
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tdavis

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Originally posted by Ian's 91ex
HREW ?

There are three types of material to make cages from.

1) pipe. Please, leave pipe in the house/ground. It can be brittle. This is measured by the inside diameter. So 2" SCHD80 pipe is closer to 2.25" diameter.

2) HREW tube. Hot Rolled, Electric welded tube. Measured by the outside diameter. 2" tube is 2" on the outside.

3) DOM tube. Drawn Over Mandrel. Basically, take HREW tube, and draw over a mandrel, and remove the inner seam.

A bender with pipe dies can not bend tube, and vis-a-versa. You need the correct dies for the material also.

Last, is the actual material the tube is made of. This only matters if your building for the race scene - chances are, you are not (or if you are.. let us know, and we'll get the correct answers for that too)
 
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