95 Path won't pass inspection because of frame? - Nissan Forum

 
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#1 Old Jul 10th, 2007, 01:36 AM
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95 Path won't pass inspection because of frame?

Hey everyone,

I'm JP, first post here. Personally, I own an 06 Mazda3, but my parents needs help on an issue that they have a problem to understand.

They have a 06 Accord and a 95 Pathfinder, that they bought in 98 as our primary car. When the Accord came in, it became the winter beater.

Last year, they had to put a metal plate over the rear-left wheel because of the corrosion that was happening in that area. But now, 12 years after, the path won't pass inspection because "the frame is so fragile it could crack in two", says the garagist. My parents, on MSN, is telling me that they can make holes on the frame part behind the rocker panel with a hammer.

I'm not saying in any way that Pathfinder is a bad truck. For the years that we had it, it was a great reliable SUV. The engine works as great as when they bought it; transmission tight, not leaking oils, etc.. We're just wondering why the frame is going apart so fast when they weren't using it for off-roading. It was only a family car, driving around the city and picking up the kids at school, I actually don't think it saw mud.

Pic 1

Pic 2

Pic 3

Any help on understanding this would be appreciated,
Thanks

edit: Re-linked pics, they were WAY too big. -88

Last edited by 88pathoffroad; Jul 11th, 2007 at 05:47 PM.
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#2 Old Jul 10th, 2007, 05:45 AM
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You need to do a search on this forum. You'll see a number of references to this problem as well as how to fix it.

http://www.cardomain.com/ride/2577101
01 Sentra SE 97,000 miles
97 Hardbody XE King Cab 220,000 miles
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#3 Old Jul 10th, 2007, 06:45 AM
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You don't need to be offroading for the frames to rust just moisture and /or salt.
#4 Old Jul 10th, 2007, 07:10 AM
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First... if you are parking on earth your frame will rust out sooner..... I have dealt with some really swiss cheese frames before and they didn't break in two....but having said that if you get into an accident the rusty sections will fail first...

Here's what to do..

1. Powerwash the frame inside and out to remove the scale and flake rust and any grease....

2. Get a grinder with a wire wheel and clean it all off to determine the extent of the damage (or better yet a spot sand blaster) and take pictures and then quickly prime it with a weld over spray primer....

3. get some 18g steel and cut out pieces that will fit over the damage, hammer around to fit...the better fit..the better the weld..

4. Find a garage or friend with a welder and weld it up....with new beads on the braces... clean the new welds with a wire brush...brass or hard plastic...prime and paint....
#5 Old Jul 11th, 2007, 03:13 AM
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Git rid of that frame.. and buy a new one..
#6 Old Jul 11th, 2007, 05:54 PM
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Calimoxo2: Parking over dirt has nothing to do with rust. Where do you get that idea? The only thing touching the ground is the tires...do they somehow transfer rust to the frame? o.O

leigh08: I'd like to find ANY place offering new frames for ANY WD21 Pathfinder. A lot of people would be in touch with them...

JP3G: 87-95 Pathfinder frames have a terrible reputation for rusting out. It's not just you, and it has nothing to do with offroading. They used high-carbon steel to reduce weight, which meant they could use thinner steel on the frame. High-carbon steel rusts more easily than low-carbon steel and the thinner it is, the faster it will rust away. Hence the problem. They used thin steel that rusts easily and some just fall apart over time.

My 88 has zero frame rust, even on the scratchy parts and I've dunked it in the ocean more than once at the beach, doused it in hundreds of different types of mud and dirt, driven it on snowy roads and more... Go figure.

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'88 Pathfinder: 6" of lift, 33x13.50 Swamper LTB's, Rancho 9000's, L&P Stage 3 steering system, K&N, Pacesetter headers and 2.5" exhaust, Lock-Right locker, 110A alty and electric fan swap, dual batteries, 700W+ worth of PIAAs, etc.
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#7 Old Sep 3rd, 2007, 11:24 PM
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I'm researching to try to figure out a way to fix my 94 Pathfinder frame. I didn't see any drain holes in my frame to let moisture or rain/road water out. Are there drain holes? I was thinking about welding my frame and then filling it with foam "Stuff" to keep the water out. Has anyone tried that? I know the foam breaks down a little in direct sun, but holds uo great otherwise. I figures the foam would keep oxygen away from the metal so the rust can't get worse. The frame flexing a bit could effext the foam adhesion. Thanks for your input!!!
#8 Old Sep 4th, 2007, 11:51 AM
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Filling the frame with foam would be the worst thing you could do, it'll hold water inside and not let it evaporate, no matter how much foam you attempt to put in.

There are drain holes, sure. Ever looked underneath?

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'88 Pathfinder: 6" of lift, 33x13.50 Swamper LTB's, Rancho 9000's, L&P Stage 3 steering system, K&N, Pacesetter headers and 2.5" exhaust, Lock-Right locker, 110A alty and electric fan swap, dual batteries, 700W+ worth of PIAAs, etc.
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#9 Old Sep 7th, 2007, 01:29 AM
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my 88 frame also has NO rust - especially not to the extent reflected in those pics.

mine however was well taken care of before I bought it and I keep it well undercoated (every year or so).

the only thing I have had to weld in was a patch under the rear passenger seat. But again, I undercoated the hell out of it and sealed/painted new floor under the seat.

with that frame, I would cleanup and treat what you can; weld in plates around the mounts (even removing the mounts to do so) - essentially reboxing the frame in the badly rusted spots then seal it then undercoat. . . undercoat. . . and undercoat again.

As far as inspection, Can't really tell what the rest of the truck looks like but for the most part, It really depends on where you are. British Columbia or California for example, GOOD LUCK.

I live in saskatchewan canada. My 88 PF has been written off twice (once in a silly rollover & once by trying to rip the side door off a GMC safari). It has gone through safety (mechanical and structual twice in 10 yrs) the majority of parts are quite cheap and the work is negligable if you are any good with a wrench.

the person doing the inspection is KEY because any mechanic can find any number of things depending on their mood that day. find someone you know or someone a friend knows who can do the inspection - they tend to be more forgiving.

bent frame; Front end parts/ wheel allignment; brakes components; worn bushings/wheel bearing; abundence of rust are some of the big things to look for.

find someone willing to take a quick look and tell you what you need before you take it in for inspection.
#10 Old Sep 8th, 2007, 12:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrakeX

As far as inspection, Can't really tell what the rest of the truck looks like but for the most part, It really depends on where you are. British Columbia or California for example, GOOD LUCK.

There's no inspection of cars in California - except for smog.
#11 Old Sep 8th, 2007, 10:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coolnesss
There's no inspection of cars in California - except for smog.


Must be nice - them again here in Sask., there is saftey (they will pull your car right out from under you at a check stop) but no emmissions control or testing.
#12 Old Sep 10th, 2007, 10:53 AM
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I had to get the frame welded up when I first bought my 95. I found a local guy who replaced the metal from beside the rocker panels all the way to the back.

I have also seen a pic of a nissan pickup where the owner had spent thousands getting the body fixed, and then had the truck break in half when it was put on a hoist at a garage because the frame was so rusted.

However, I was lucky in that the interior parts of the frame back there were still ok. If it had the rust had perforated it on the interior it would have cost an aweful lot more.

Also, looking at those pics the rust looks worse in that it's visibly gone right though. Mine wasn't visibly through in the wheel well and had some flaky spots there, but the repair shop said it was pretty soft in places and they could drive a screwdriver through it. Also, it was rusted right through on the bottom of the frame rail behind the rear wheel in a couple of spots.

I have undercoated since I bought it and basically held the rust in check (I hope), although now it's rusted through underneath of the rear seats.

If you're going to weld it yourself, be careful not so set the vehicle on fire.

marcel

Last edited by marcel_g; Sep 10th, 2007 at 11:01 AM.
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