How to Repair an ATV Frame

by Emily Beach

All Terrain Vehicles, or ATVs, are becoming increasingly popular. They are used by recreational riders to go off-road, and are ridden through woods, fields, and in any other large, open space. Though they are designed to be ridden through tough conditions, ATVs can be damaged like any other vehicle. Because of their unique suspension, frame damage must be repaired immediately before the vehicle can be used again. Fortunately, most minor ATV frame repairs can be made at home, though this will require patience and some specialized tools, such as a welder.

Repair minor cracks in the frame by welding them with a spot welder. Your local dealer can do this for you, or you can rent a portable welding machine from your local home-improvement store. This solution works best for cracks that are not located at suspension points on the frame.

Fix severe cracks using a gusset. A gusset is a piece of steel the same diameter as the frame. It is generally filled, not hollow, and helps prevent over-flexing when installed at cracks along suspension points. The gusset is simply welded in place using a spot welder.

Cut away any severely bent sections of tubing using a hacksaw or a pipe cutter.

Purchase ATV frame parts at your local dealer or find scrap parts online. Measure sections that are the exact length as the one you cut away and cut them to match.

Insert the new sections of tubing into your frame. Weld them carefully at both ends.

Followup any repair work with a thorough sanding to smooth away excess welding material. Use touch-up paint to restore the appearance of the ATV after all repairs are complete.

Tip

  • check Wear proper safety gear when using your welder. A welding mask with a full face shield is best.

Warning

  • close Don't attempt to fix major structural damage on your own unless you have previous experience. Contact your local ATV dealer, who can recommend a good repair option.

Items you will need

About the Author

Emily Beach works in the commercial construction industry in Maryland. She received her LEED accreditation from the U.S. Green Building Council in 2008 and is in the process of working towards an Architectural Hardware Consultant certification from the Door and Hardware Institute. She received a bachelor's degree in economics and management from Goucher College in Towson, Maryland.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera Wiki Commons