I found out from a fellow vlx'r that I need 3/8" holes 8 3/4" CTC to drop it, so I guess 11" of 1" square steel tubing would be about right and will take the stock shock bolts. This is definately within my price range! I know I will swap it out for the shock on occasion, how often will tell on how it rides, and added wear and tear*. The cost, looks, and ease of swapping it out makes it something worth trying for me.
I am also thinking about using a larger piece of steel and drilling holes (same CTC) large enough to accept the stock shock bushings. That should help out on frame stress?
*thanks litnin for reminding me that physics still apply!