Frame and Unibody Repair
One of the most stressful things that a motorist involved in an auto accident worries about may be the question: “Is my frame bent?”
We have state-of-the-art Laser measuring systems to find out! We use advanced laser measuring technology to measure the frame and unibody of your car or truck in 3D. The 3D measurements provide our technicians with a complete blueprint of the vehicle.
Our technicians are I-CAR and ASE Certified and won’t stop till your vehicle is returned to pre-accident condition.
We can provide a printout of your frame’s specifications to document the before and after the condition of your car.
- Frame Machines and why are they called that?
The term “frame machine” is used to describe the anchoring and pulling devices used to align the structure and body of all types of vehicles.
- Does my car even have a Frame?
Good question. Modern cars today do not have frames as they once had. They have unibodys, which are more like the construction of an aircraft. The body structure is self-supporting, and the driving public is saved the weight of a separate frame. They get much better fuel economy because of the weight reduction.
Today vehicles are of two main types:
- Body-on Frame, or full frame type vehicles, mostly trucks. The body can be removed or separated from the structural frame.
- Unibody vehicles are mostly cars and smaller SUVs. The body is the structure of the vehicle.
So Trucks still have Frames?
Yes, mostly…the trucks on the road today still have frames. Trucks are designed to haul heavy loads and tow trailers. Trucks with this full-frame type of construction are referred to as “body on frame” or “full frame” designs. This makes trucks capable of dealing with heavy loads.
Vans are the exception.
Vans can be “full frame” like the Ford Econoline and Chevrolet Express vans or unibodys like the Dodge Caravans and Toyota Siennas.
So…What really is a Frame Machine?
An auto body frame machine is used to repair damage to vehicle frames or the unitized structure of your car. Frame damage occurs in about half of all vehicle collisions, so it’s important to choose a shop with the proper equipment and trained professionals who know how to use it. Frame machines do the work that humans simply don’t have the strength to do. Frame repair is accomplished through the use of hydraulics, leverage, and sheer torque of the frame or unibody machine.
Frame repair is usually achieved either by pushing or pulling a section of the frame, depending on the damage and the type of frame. For example, with unibody vehicles, which is what most automobiles have, there is no way to get to the other side of the damaged area to be able to push out to straighten a bent section, so pulling is required. The towers of the frame machine accomplish this by acting from outside the zone of the damage and pulling away from the area with increasing torque until the section is completely straightened. Obviously, the more towers the body frame machine has, the more accurately it can restore the frame’s shape back to its original condition.
Frame machines anchor your vehicle’s frame into a static position so that repairs can be made. Your vehicle will be placed on the platform of the frame machine in a flat area referred to as “the bed”, where the vehicle is bolted down. Chains are attached to pull the frame, and hydraulics rams extend and contract to adjust the tension.
The more modern and sophisticated machines will include computerized measurement equipment, so more accurate adjustments can be made. The measurement system will provide height, width, and length measurements.
Is there any other time a frame machine might be used?
Yes to perform pre-purchase inspections
At times we are contacted to measure vehicles before they are purchased to insure no damage or poor repairs are present.
Call Layton Carcare in Layton, UT today for an appointment to have your vehicle’s frame or uni-body damage accessed, at (801) 593-9200.