Full Cage Fabrication by AtoZ
Junkyard Dog's main focus is to take my children and I off highway in a safe and reasonable
fashion. To that end, the stock 1995 "family style" sport bar installed by good
old Chrysler just wasn't going to be trusted. That meant starting a new cage from scratch. Some of you reading
this would probably say, "why not just add to the family cage with some front bars, some
gussets and be good to go?" When you've seen me wheel with a
healthy fuel injected big block Chevy, you would be shaking your head "NO
WAY!" I drive by brail and my Jeep usually knows the "roll
So with that in mind, it meant a full custom cage complete with seat tie-ins, full harnesses and
enough head room to avoid slamming the noggin.
Many of you would say it's time to buy some DOM, break out
the trusty JD2 and get to bending and burning metal. Quite frankly, I suck at
bending tube. You really could call it kinking instead of bending. The last
time I tried bending tube, I went through a few pieces of HREW and made some sort of really cool
sculpture. I think it's rusting away someplace in my back yard... One other
thing, although my welding is sturdy, it's not very pretty and I certainly
didn't want to risk my family's lives with it. Someday, when I have more time I my hands,
I will learn to bend tube.But for now I'd like to get out wheeling!
I searched the vendors on PBB looking around for someone
with the eye to build a good solid cage that could take a hit and still allow
my kids to get in the back seat with the top on. Yes, we will be running a top,
doors and a dashboard. It needed to have seat and harness mounts, but have full door access. Safety was the primary criteria, but operability needed to have a say
Considering how much searching I did checking out previous
work, weld quality and bend symmetry, I really was quite happy when I found
that Zach at A to Z Fabrication had some time in his schedule to put together a little
something for me instead of building bumpers for Quadratec.
Now I had to trailer the rig down there for him to work on
it. Just another 8-10 hours each way to get something for done for the 'ole JunkYard Dog╔
This seems to be a pattern! I made it safely down there, backed my trailer into his
shop and started unloading the Dog. Zach's kind enough to hook the winch of his
YJ to the back of the Dog to yank it off the trailer╔ Keep in mind that the Dog
just got the axles swapped under it and it's sitting on rollers. No brakes, no
parasitic drag to slow it down╔ I did ask Zach if he wanted to hook something
to the front to work as brakes╔ SLAM goes the Dog into the YJ behind it. I
think my question was a little late!
That really was a nice tailgate╔ also bent the heck out
of my tub.
My poor tailgate! However, the stinger on the other rig was
nice and solid still╔ So considering his work took that hit, I had to have one.
Zach agreed he had time to get ďer done. He also talked himself into a set of
shock hoops, as he didn't like the YJ ones that were in front.
He's a solid family man without fear to wear pink!
As you can see from the pictures, the work is top notch with
great tube work and sturdy bends.
He had another
YJ in his shop that has seen its fair share of rolls in various competitions,
so I have faith in this cage to hold a hit or three. I have yet to try it out; quite
frankly I hope to never have to!
I am thoroughly pleased with my decision to use A to Z for my cage, and look forward to
many years of wheeling this cage and front stinger.
That's Zach, next to his completed masterpiece all loaded up
on my trailer, ready to go home. The stinger's not outlandish but functional,
the radiator hoop is tight to the hood-line and the cage is stout as heck. Time
to head home and install more goodies!
58 South 2nd Street
Cressona, PA 17929