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Thread: Weight of S.S. frame vs. Stock, coated frame

  1. #1
    Senior Member SupercoolBill's Avatar
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    Weight of S.S. frame vs. Stock, coated frame

    Anyone know the weight of the stainless steel frame vs. The OEM frame with a protective coating on it?

    Does anyone have CAD type drawings of the MT frame with ALL the dimensions? Not just attachment point measurements.

    Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk

  2. #2
    Guy with a DeLorean Mark D's Avatar
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    I'd contact Josh / DPI directly and he should be able to give a weight comparison.

    From what I remember in past discussions, the design of the SS frame was changed and improved quite a bit. The stock frame has many areas where there are multiple layers of steel that are sandwiched together and stitch welded along the edges. Not the greatest from a corrosion standpoint as any crack in the epoxy allows water to wick its way between the layers.

    For the SS frame I think this design was changed to thicker gauge material to simplify and improve strength. Stainless isn't necessarily 1:1 in strength when compared to steel of equal thickness. I don't think the stock frames were built using particularly high strength steel to begin with, but there would be areas that would likely need to be made thicker or reinforced when using stainless vs mild steel.

    Josh could tell you more about the FEA or other design analysis that was done to ensure the frame (and suspension parts) were as strong or stronger than the stock components.

    As far as the dimensions go, I doubt you'll be able to get more than a few key dimensions of the SS frame since the time to design and develop something like a frame assembly is considerable, and the info would be proprietary.

    In another thread Rhye shared a 3D PDF of a model he created of a stock frame, although I can't speak to how accurate it is. In the PDF you can snap 3D measurements.

    https://dmctalk.org/showthread.php?1...D-model-in-PDF

    More info from DPI on their stainless frames in this thread. There's another thread out there as well that has more info on the design process for the SS frame. Can't seem to find it though.
    https://dmctalk.org/showthread.php?8...-in-Solidworks
    VIN 6125: Now with 300% more banana in the tailpipe for headache-free cruising comfort.

  3. #3
    Senior Member SupercoolBill's Avatar
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    Mark thanks for your reply.
    I learned a lot from it.
    I didn't realize that the stainless frame was a total reboot. I assumed it was just an exact copy of the original only in SS.
    My first impression of the stainless frame was "Wow that's awesome!" "That thing won't rust!" But after thinking about it for a while I don't really get the point. Stainless weighs more, changes size based on temp more so than mild steel, it's more expensive, and it would make a DeLorean not original anymore.
    I guess the pros would be that it looks cool and doesn't rust. Also if you later decided to resto-mod it the stainless would be easy to work with vs grinding paint or epoxy off a mild steel frame. I get the no rust thing but how many people are driving a DeLorean in the snow? I know for me, mine will only be driven on nice days.


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  4. #4
    Senior Member 82DMC12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SupercoolBill View Post
    Anyone know the weight of the stainless steel frame vs. The OEM frame with a protective coating on it?

    Does anyone have CAD type drawings of the MT frame with ALL the dimensions? Not just attachment point measurements.

    Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk
    Not sure about the SS frame but a stock frame weighs around 220 lbs. It's most hollow so it's "easy" to move with two people picking it up, or I have moved one around on a furniture dolly no problem.
    VIN 11596 Jan 1982 build - owned since Nov. 2000!

    Photography and Backpacking is life.

    Was Fargo, ND
    Now Olathe, KS

  5. #5
    Senior Member Bitsyncmaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SupercoolBill View Post
    Mark thanks for your reply.
    I learned a lot from it.
    I didn't realize that the stainless frame was a total reboot. I assumed it was just an exact copy of the original only in SS.
    My first impression of the stainless frame was "Wow that's awesome!" "That thing won't rust!" But after thinking about it for a while I don't really get the point. Stainless weighs more, changes size based on temp more so than mild steel, it's more expensive, and it would make a DeLorean not original anymore.
    I guess the pros would be that it looks cool and doesn't rust. Also if you later decided to resto-mod it the stainless would be easy to work with vs grinding paint or epoxy off a mild steel frame. I get the no rust thing but how many people are driving a DeLorean in the snow? I know for me, mine will only be driven on nice days.


    Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk
    I'm pretty sure a block of stainless steel is a little lighter than a block of cold rolled steel. Now you may need more SS to get the same strength which would make the frame weigh more. It drives me nuts when people say the DeLorean must be heavy because it's SS.
    Dave M vin 03572
    http://dm-eng.weebly.com/

  6. #6
    Senior Member SupercoolBill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bitsyncmaster View Post
    I'm pretty sure a block of stainless steel is a little lighter than a block of cold rolled steel. Now you may need more SS to get the same strength which would make the frame weigh more. It drives me nuts when people say the DeLorean must be heavy because it's SS.
    SS is 2.4% heavier from what I have read.

    Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    Senior Member Bitsyncmaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SupercoolBill View Post
    SS is 2.4% heavier from what I have read.

    Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk
    I looked it up on internet and one source shows these values which does show SS is a little heavier.

    304 SS 7.93 grams/cm3
    Cold rolled 7.87 grams/cm3

    If my math is correct that makes SS 0.76% heavier.
    Dave M vin 03572
    http://dm-eng.weebly.com/

  8. #8
    Senior Member 82DMC12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bitsyncmaster View Post
    I looked it up on internet and one source shows these values which does show SS is a little heavier.

    304 SS 7.93 grams/cm3
    Cold rolled 7.87 grams/cm3

    If my math is correct that makes SS 0.76% heavier.
    When the first SS frames came out (Pearce) I seem to recall they were nearly the same weight as the OEM frame since it was said that the mild steel + epoxy (which weighs a lot more than you might think) is about the same weight as bare SS.
    VIN 11596 Jan 1982 build - owned since Nov. 2000!

    Photography and Backpacking is life.

    Was Fargo, ND
    Now Olathe, KS

  9. #9
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by SupercoolBill View Post
    Anyone know the weight of the stainless steel frame vs. The OEM frame with a protective coating on it?

    Does anyone have CAD type drawings of the MT frame with ALL the dimensions? Not just attachment point measurements.

    Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk
    DMCH weighed a stock frame last year and posted the results on Facebook. It was 207 lbs.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by CFI View Post
    DMCH weighed a stock frame last year and posted the results on Facebook. It was 207 lbs.
    Almost as much as a single "heavy" quarter panel!

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