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Page 4 - Roll bar instalation & other reinforcements

When doing relatively long projects like mine, everybody (and that includes me also) must go through some very familiar psychological conditions - at some particular moment must come "Deppressive phase" when project seems like neverending story, when there is almost no motivation to carry on with project - I think that hopeless is the right word to describe such mental condition.

I had couple of times such moments , when I asked myself why am I doing all this on 20 year old, ugly designed piece of rust, why my face must look after welding like I was sunbathing in Sahara, why my nose would never pass through metal detector on airport, why stupid hammer must always fall on my foot, why I must dance like a freak when incredibly hot sparks from welding always somehow found their way in my socks , and so on ....

Why? I probably never can explain why I am doing all this, but that's not important right now because I am in so-called "Happy phase" hooooraaayyyy :-))

It's of course the totaly opposite phase, when everything looks beautiful, when hammer doesn't fall on your foot, when you are going in the garage with the craziest smile on your face , when you finally see some tiny light on the end of the long, dark tunnel - or more understandable - when you see that you will finish someday your project...

For complete winter I almost didn't do anything on my car - I was just to busy unfortunately - Yugo was parked outside my garage, quietly sleeping through whole winter like a bear that sleeps in a cave and waits patiently for spring to come :-)

Well this old bear needs some serious reinforcements if he wants to survive some turbo torque - roll bar was put inside last summer, but I didn't welded it on chassis , I just place it in position.

I must say that I bought second-hand roll bar from some hill climb prepared racing Yugo that had some minor accident , so it needed some straightening to fit properly - also I don't recomend anyone to try that because I went couple of times "slightly" insane in the process... :-()

Second thing - I don't have some special tools for doing reinforcements and roll bar - everything that's described here was done by electric grinder, drill and simple arc welder - when I cut, grind and place all reinforcements in their position, I will probably borrow MIG welder and re-weld properly everything.

 

To weld a good joint on roll cages and different reinforcements that include round pipes, most difficult & time consuming thing is correct preparation.

Good preparation is the key of strong weld joint (and other "joints" as well:-))))

I wrote that I didn't have some special tools like some angle jig for cutting pipes in various angles, but grinder can serve very well for that purpose if using it very careful. Instead crown saw for cutting round shapes I used little trick: grinding stone with cca. 50mm diameter on a drill.

On the left pic there can be seen my 125mm grinder and grinding stone with very coarse and tough abrasive - but this is not some shitty stuff from hardware store , this is industrial grade stone that last much more.

This are two pipes that are prepared with grinder & grinding stone - this two pipes will be weld to front strut brace to form triangular reinforcement - in next pics more details can be seen about this...

I also decided to weld reinforcements from each front strut to A-pillars roll bar hoop. After some investigation , I drill first "pilot" hole to see approx. position , and then I drill some more holes in circular shape, slightly larger diameter then pipe that will come through.

After drilling all holes then I enlarged slightly every hole in oval shape so I can punch easily with chisel & hammer rest of sheet.

 

 

This is how front triangular strut reinforcement should look like - I saw that idea on some race prepared Fiats, and I liked it very much.

I modified slightly design that I saw, because beside that reinforcement must be removable in my case it must go through firewall, all way under the dash !

You probably ask why - reason is that I need to move windsheeld electric motor to the middle of the car, so I need some space in the middle.

After some fine grinding and careful measuring two pipes are done - on pic there can be seen nice fit for good welding.

This is place where two pipes should meet - all way under the dash, it's the only way to have enough space to mount windshield motor in middle.

But there are few problems that are still unsolved - I must made this reinforcement removable without removing complete dashboard with gauges and instruments, so I must invent some clever design with easy access under the hood with ordinary tools...hmmm, this would be tough :-/

First pipe from left strut to roll bar is cut and shaped - I leave a gap on purpose beacuse I am not going to weld pipes directly on strut - there would be placed some "L" shaped steel plates to spread the load on larger area.

Looking good so far, my idea is to make all reinforcements in front of the car triangular, as this is the strongest geometrical shape.

Hey, today even kids in elementary school know that ;-)

I like welding.

I like welding very much.

Hm, when I think better, in fact I am lying too you -I don't like it - I really, really perversely enjoy in every aspect of welding process and melting metal - but only if I am welding some resonable sheet thicknesses of course, arc welding of thin Yugo sheet metal is deffinitely not recommended for people with serious heart problems...:-(

I bought few days before cheap welding helmet that really makes everything much easier beacuse I can now use two hands - that wasn't the case with stupid, crappy mask that I used before. Anyway, I am improving my welding skills and getting better every day - this is one weld bead example for strut reinforcement - not bad for amateur arc welder, don't you think so ;-)) ?

This is funny how slag peels itself easily when using correct technique with some electrodes...I must admit that I don't get this type of slag every day...

Welded reinforcement in its place - on right strut.

Also note surface rust on reinforcements that I put last summer - car was unfortunately outside whole winter, so I must again remove rust prior to MIG welding - I hate doing stupid things like this twice , AAARRGGHHH !!!

Triangular strut prepared for welding some scrap piece of steel with holes for M10 bolt.

It's very tedious job because everything is finely grinded and re-checked probably dozen times before final welding - somebody maybe mentioned Pain-In-The-Ass type of job ?

Bingo, that's the one!

Zoomed detail on left pipe that goes to strut - note minimal gap for good welding.
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