TDK Frame - Paint vs. Powdercoat? Shackle reversal? Other modifications?

jc_chandler

Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Denver
State
CO
#1
I'm planning to call up TDK soon to talk through the frame options and I'm going back in forth with myself on a few things.
  1. Should I have it powdercoated or paint it myself? I'm leaning towards powdercoating b/c of the durability and my lack of confidence in myself to be able to paint the entire thing properly.
  2. Is there any reason NOT to have it galvanized?
  3. Should I get the front shackle reversal? I've read endless threads on the net about the pros and cons and I'm left even more confused than before. Mine will be mostly a driver with just the occasional fire road/trail. I'm leaning towards not adding this simply because the Jeep engineers had to have had a good reason for doing it that way right?
  4. For those who have used a TDK frame, did you find it to be a 100% bolt-on or were there things that were off that needed fixing/massaging prior to paint/powder?
  5. Anything else I should be aware of or consider?
Thanks in advance!
 

jc_chandler

Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Denver
State
CO
#3
That's definitely a good point re: painting it. I'm open to any and all suggestions for a "best" painting method for a galvanized frame. I'll do some more internet research too.
 

rubclt

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Charlotte
State
NC
#4
I powder coated my TDK coil suspension. I used a color that matches a rattle can satin I use for Touchup. Painting yourself with rattle cans is $100, powder is $700... a factor to consider... I welded engine mounts to frame, something to consider depending on your engine option.
D15A0365-20B6-42D7-B2C3-EDEBEC5DA9BB.jpeg C89A88B7-FEF1-46AC-B317-9D17A11628BE.jpeg
 

jc_chandler

Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Denver
State
CO
#6
Very nice, thanks! I think I'm going to go the painting route b/c of the easy touchup if ever needed and b/c of all the unknowns I've read today about powdercoating galvanized steel. If I do it I can ensure I prep it correctly and use the right products. So far I've landed on this combo:
  1. Clean & etch... https://www.rustoleum.com/product-c...ud-kutter/rust-remedies/metal-clean-and-etch/
  2. Primer... https://www.rustoleum.com/product-catalog/consumer-brands/auto/primers/universal-bonding-primer/
  3. Topcoat... https://www.rustoleum.com/product-c...spray-paint/v2100-rust-preventive-spray-paint
 

ag4ever

Average Nut
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Richmond
State
TX
#7
My biggest issue with powder coat is rust migration. I have a trailer that was powder coated, where it was scratched it started rusting. Soon a huge sheet of the powder coating peeled off. The rust grew between the powder and metal.

With a good paint, the rust is isolated to the scratched area.

I‘d opt for their hot dipped galvanized option myself. My dad’s boat trailer was HDG, it was 40 years old when we got rid of it, was dipped in salt water many times, and had 0 rust. My boat trailer is 20 years old, never been in salt water and never will. That said, I expect it to last another 40 years with no rust (or longer). I know of other people that opted for a painted steel trailer and they need a new trailer due to rust.
 

jpnmaine

Active member
CJ-8.com Member
City
East Wilton
State
ME
#8
Used Eastwood chassis black. Base and top coat. Did axles and everything that bolts to the frame with it... Sprayed beautiful for a rattle can and so far very happy with the results. Will probably experiment with their internal frame stuff, just haven't looked into it yet.
 

tower210

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Olathe
State
KS
#9
Hot dipped should last the longest...I think the only drawback there is it having that shiny G235 look. It might have a rougher texture than paint too...
 

93_Fummins

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Edmond
State
OK
#10
What about zinc infused base and top coats (cold galvanizing, to some)? When I worked for an offshore rig manufacturer, we spec'd everything in a three stage zinc infused paint process to a specified mil thickness that seems to have decent luck living in/around salt water.
 

bigwalton

Picture cravin' AK Postal nut
Staff member
SOA Member
City
Dexter
State
MI
#11
On another of your questions. I would not do shackle reversal. With good springs now, the benefit just isn’t there IMO. No one complains about the ride in mine being harsh but many people comment about how well it rides (I outboarded and made my own kit because I did not want shackle reversal and all the aftermarket outboard kits back then had it)
 

wjtstudios

1985 CJ 8
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
SOA Member
City
Rochester
State
Mi
#12
I had mine galvanized and then powder coated. Living in Michigan, I wasn’t taking any chances on the frame. The rear body mounts were 1/2” off and had to be re-drilled but other then that it was spot on. I did do the shackle reversal, but I haven’t driven it yet so I can’t speak to the ride. Here’s a few pictures of it.
 

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