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Help with coilovers

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Good afternoon gentlemen,

 

I recently removed four of my stock struts to add on to my new Mckinney coilover kit. I live in San Leandro and I am currently looking for a skilled welder to weld my kit together.  I do not have any welding skills and this would be a big help for me. 

 

Please help me point to a local shop or a private welder, i would really appreciate it. 

 

Thank you ! 

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I'm still learning to weld, but I do not trust my skills against someone else's life, if that makes sense. I can tell you that Dando's Automotive and Z-car garage can do it. Dando's did my coilover perches way back when, however, this was over 12 years ago.

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Thanks Auxilary ! I actually work across the street from them. They told me that i have to bring my car in so they can test it out. My Z is currently going through a full brake and suspension work at this time. Its sitting on jack stands and I need the struts to be done alone. I was thinking about looking for a welder on yelp but i figure giving HybridZ a shot first. 

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Not too familiar with McKinney kit, but I am guessing you have to chop the strut housings and weld on the MCK kit. They should be able to just do an estimate based on parts, so you should be able to just bring them strut housings without anything else. 

 

Looks like it's just a shop and weld-in?

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Does your kit also have the weld-in camber plates? Maybe that's why Dando's is telling you to bring the car in. Weld-in camber plates require cutting out parts of your strut tower and weld in the plates.

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yes its a chop and weld in. I purchased the kit with a top hat camber plate that goes under the stock strut for the stock look. It does not require any welding. I went to a few local shops near by and they didn't want to weld the kit together because they were not familiar with it and it might fail. 

 

I would pay anyone that has skills either if they are at home or at a shop. I really want to get these done, please help guys !

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I'd say just bring your strut housings to Dando's. That's what I did with my coilovers back in the day; they just ground off the stock perches and welded on the GC ones. I don't see this being much different than sectioning strut housings. In fact, it's easier. Since you work across the street (I assume big T), just bring your strut housings with coilovers, maybe they'll get a better picture with physical pieces in front of them. I'd like to help, but as I said, I am not comfortable enough with my skills to trust safety of suspension components and another individual's life. (Plus, it'd probably be an ugly weld)

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The bead isn't hard to lay, but I hear ya, I would be hesitant to offer the service to someone. 

 

Whoever does it, I would suggest finding someone with a TIG. MIG is fine, but someone who can use a TIG is usually going to be more aware of the penetration and how much heat they are putting into it. Remember the piece is dense so you have to make sure it gets quite a bit of heat for adequate penetration.

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Agree with seattlejester: since these parts will be off the car, a TIG will be much better and cleaner than a MIG. 

 

Another issue with welding my garage: 15 amp circuit :| (I rent, not own, so I can't just go in an rewire it). So I can get about 10 seconds of highest setting on my MIG before the breaker pops. So, 1/8 steel is fine, but anything higher kind of sucks

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Do you guys think 1140.70 is the right quote to put the kit together ? I feel like this is kinda high

you're being quoted $1200 to cut and weld 4 strut housings? That's a rip off.  It should be at most 3-4 hours of work, and that includes cleaning the surface and welding. Did Dando's quote you this while physically seeing the strut housings?

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$1140? My goodness. Give us full details I guess.

 

If they are off the car, fully disassembled, cut down to spec and cleaned, I would feel guilty charging more then $200 or so. Most shops here have a rate of $85 to get started and $1 a minute for welding. Something like that would be probably $3-400. 

 

Now if you are asking them to take it off the car, un-install the hubs and all that, clean it up, cut it, clean it up again, weld it, clean it again, paint it, reassemble it with new bearings and such, then press in the stub axle, torque everything to spec, purchase and install the lock nut, then reinstall it back into the car, then that actually isn't a bad price. I think about 3 hours a corner, so 12 hours at shop rate of $80-100 an hour and it adds up.

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I mentioned that i had four of the struts out of the vehicle.I purchased the Mckinney coilover kit with camber top hat that fits stock bolts. I told them that all they needed to do is to have my stocks cut and weld on the new. I do have the all four hubs on with both rear lower control arms still attached with the spindle. That's all they needed to do and i'll install it my self since my car is gutting out.

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Working with the rear struts with the control arms is a real PITA, makes it awkward to try and cut and it is basically spring loaded if you put it on the ground because of the bushings. 

 

Working with the hubs in place is also a real PITA, makes the assemblies much much heavier, harder to manipulate, impossible to clean easily (solvent baths etc). 

 

If you are gutting the car, then I would suggest a full disassembly the front and rear could probably benefit from new bearings anyways, once the strut casings are bare you can even cut a large portion of it off and make it super easy to transport and work on. I pulled mine apart, gave a quick cut and dropped it off at the sand blaster to get all the grime off, you can see the difference, if someone couldn't use a solvent bath or a sand blaster because you had a bunch of parts bolted to it and had to just get the immediate area clean with a wire wheel I'm not sure it would be very good.

 

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You might want to try Datsun Parts and Needs on Facebook, I know a couple of people have used mobile welders on there in california and might have a name for you, there are also quite a few people who offered the service for GC, this would in quite a few ways be much easier.

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