By Jon Maib
One of the problems with working on old Jeeps is that some metal is just swiss cheese and unsavable. Thats the case with my battery tray in Rex. After looking at re-manufactured ones I made the decision that I didnt want to spend the money on a repop one. Instead, I would cut out my old one and measure and build my own. So, first part was to actually grind the rivits off the old one to get it off the frame. As you can see, it was pretty ugly and needed to be replaced.

Once the tray was off, I took some time measuring all the angles and I then transfered all that info onto some stiff cardboard and made a cut-out of the template. I then folded in all the necessary places and did a test fit of the cardboard moc up.

The next thing to do was to go and buy a piece of 18 gauge metal from my local Ace Hardware. A 1' x 2' piece cost me around $8. I brought the metal home and traced my cardboard moc up onto the metal and began to grind the shape out with my grinder. Once cut out, I then used the side of my workbench and a metal shaping hamer to put the bends in the locations I needed. Once I got it all bent up, I did another moc fit to figure out where to drill my holes. With the holes drilled, it was time to attach it to the Jeep. Originally, these were attached with rivits, and since I dont have a rivit installer, I just decided its best to just weld it in.

After getting it welded in, I then placed the battery on top to ensure it would hold well and then figured out where to put battery braces. I bent up 2 L-brackets and put screws in them, mounted them to the battery tray and then painted the whole thing up. Over-all, the tray came out fantastic and only a true Willys expert will be able to tell that this is a non factory part, especially with my big 12 volt battery sitting on top of it! Not too bad for a $8 build.

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