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61 chassis construction


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I have read some original sales literature on my 61 Chrysler and I am looking for some clarification. The brochure talks about unibody construction.

Just how different is this from the standard body and frame construction? Are there any areas of concern (weakness) that I should be looking at as I work on this vehicle?



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In body/frame construction, a separate frame has its suspension and running gear bolted to it, then the body is bolted on. In unibody construction, imagine building the car "backwards". You have a complete body but no frame, suspension or running gear. You make up two subframes out of heavy sheet metal, one for the front and one for the rear. The front subframe will carry the suspension, engine and transmission while the rear subframe will connect to the rear axle and suspension. These subframes are then welded to the floor pan.

Basically, a unibody car has two subframes connected by the body. Obviously, the main area of concern for a unibody car would be rust in the floor pan. Inspect the areas where the subframes meet the floorpan as well as the floorpan itself. Any rust to the floorpan weakens the connection between the front and rear halves of the car.

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