Welding Procedures

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chuck   100 W

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Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 07 2009 6:13am

Welding Processes for Frame Welding

ARC WELDING PROCESSES, Stick, MIG and Tig.

SMAW. Shielded metal arc welding. Commonly called stick welding or arc welding. There are two main types of stick welding, ac or dc. Many types of electrodes, sticks, that are flux coated. The flux melts, which shields the weld from atmosheric oxygen and provides a cleaning action in the weld puddle. At welding temperatures steel and aluminum oxidize. The flux on the rod prevents oxidation of the weld puddle. There are hundreds of types of rods, along with several dozen sizes. Used on most types of steel, iron and aluminum. Used extensively in industry.

GMAW. Gas metal arc welding. Refered to as mig or wire welding. There are three main types of mig processes. Short circuit, spray transfer and pulse. An electrically hot wire is fed from a spool which melts at the puddle. Shielding gas flows from the welder covering the weld puddle which protects the weld pool from atmospheric oxygen. Three main types of shielding gases are used.

CO2, limited mainly to thicker mild steel, ie 1/4" and larger.

75% argon 25% CO2 mix, the most common mig shielding gas, used on most steels. Has less penetration than CO2.

97% argon, 2% CO2 mix, used on most stainless steel.

The most common wire used for mild steel is er70s-6. Dozens of types of wire, about a dozen common diameters of wires are used. Standard diameters of wire for mild steel range .023, .030, .035, .045 and .056. These diameters cover single pass welding of mild steels from 26 ga to 3/4" steel.

TIGW. Tungsten inert gas welding. Commonly called tig. Once known as heliarc. Originally developed to weld magnesium using helium as a shielding gas. On mild steel tig uses the same wire as mig welding. The shielding gas used is normally pure argon.

This will develop into a comprehensive coverage of welding, ie, more to come

chuck

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Re: Welding Procedures for frame welding

Post by chuck » May 07 2009 7:22pm

Now, whats the best welding process? They are all the best. What are you gonna weld?

A Bike FRAME

Aluminum, steel, chromoly?

STEEL.

1" steel tube 16 gauge mild, pickled.

16 gauge steel tube is about 1/16 of an inch or .0625 inch thick. It weighs about .625 lbs a foot. Let's figure about a dollar a foot right now at the local metal dealer and you will need to buy it in 20 foot lengths. If you use all this steel for your frame the frame will weigh about 12.5 lbs. Probably need some 1/8 inch steel for dropouts and such, 1/8 inch steel, or 11 gauge, weighs about 5 lbs a square foot. Frame will probably end up weighing about 20 lbs.

What is pickled. It makes the steel shiny, takes off the mill scale chemically so you don't have to grind the mill scale off.

This is welding tip number one, your steel needs to be pickled.

Stick, Use a 7014 electrode, 1/16 inch, both tractor supply and northern tools sell this size in 1 and 5 lb sizes and labeled "Hobart". These are real good rods. ac or dc.

Well, someone said 7018's are better and are made for pipe welding. Well thats true, they are better. Ya got a rod oven right. If its humid 7018's are not any good at all in about an hour. In a week an open package of 7018's are unusable, throw them away. Besides, when I pipe welded I never once used a 7018, I used 9018's and there are probably a hundred variations on them, they are designed for high pressure, not bike frame buildingl

6010's are for dc, 6011's for ac, both would work but are a little hot for these small welds. 6013's make nice ugly welds, the weld puddle is about equivalent to welding thru snot, hard to see the weld.

Mig, use er70s-6 in .030 diameter, I don't have a wire feed speed calculator on me, should be running about 100 inches a minute on 16 gauge, please do correct me if I'm wrong, set the welder accordingly. How to figure your wire speed, this is a good site. http://www.weldingtipsandtricks.com/index.html

This is Welding tip number two. Wire feed speed is the most critical aspect of mig welding. Wire feed speed charts are available from welding equipment suppliers, get one.

I heard tig was better. Well, I heard that too.

Tig welding, next

chuck

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Re: tig welding

Post by chuck » May 08 2009 8:05pm

Well, I did it again, I left my welding books at work. Was needing to look up the amperage required for tig welding 16 gauge mild steel.

I'll wing it. Read this first, from the Lincoln welding site.

http://www.lincolnelectric.com/knowledg ... e-moly.asp

For mild steel, from the top of my head, probably set the amps to about 80 to 100 and let the foot pedal reduce the heat. Wire, I just would cut off a piece of .045 er70s-6 mig welding wire, and start from there.

So, what is the best method of joining 1" steel tubing?

I'm a pretty accomplished welder, been welding for about 35 years off and on, professionally. I own a small welding shop. I have all three types of welders. I can make very, very good looking welds using all three methods. All three types of welds will have equal strength.

Myth number one. Tig produces stronger welds. Horse apples! not on mild steel, not on 4130, not on aluminum. What tig does well is as follows. Thin sheet metals such as aluminum and stainless steel oil can when mig welded. For instance, a stainless steel medical cabinet needs to be welded up. Picture a box with wheels and doors. 18 gauge. Three foot long welds on all the corners. This is a tig job, for a very experienced tig welder. After the tig welds have been sanded and polished the welded joint will disappear. Tough job for mig, mig can do it, just not as well.

The problem with both stick and tig on 1" 16 gauge tube. Tacking. It is hard to hold 2 pieces of tube together when both hands are full of welder. Mig tacks with one hand which leaves your other hand free to manipulate the parts to be welded. This is a tremendous help.

Score one for mig.

Mig is much easier to learn than stick or tig.

Chalk another one up for mig.

Mig is pretty much, as on entire process, quite a bit faster than stick or tig. This makes about three pluses for mig.

My advice, to those who want to build their own frame using mild steel, and not break the bank doing it, invest in small mig welder from lincoln, miller or hobart, 220 volt machine, spend about $800 including tax.

chuck

If you have questions time to ask

Up next, my personal experiences with chromemoly 4130

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 08 2009 8:20pm

Welding myth number 2, galvanized metal
005.jpeg
galvanized welding
005.jpeg (27.47 KiB) Viewed 4853 times
006.jpeg
more galvanized
006.jpeg (47.56 KiB) Viewed 4856 times
007.jpeg
starting to get buried in it
007.jpeg (60.53 KiB) Viewed 4853 times
cid_23.jpg
these guys ain't working
cid_23.jpg (62.88 KiB) Viewed 4953 times
What do I weld 57 hours a week, 18 gauge galvanized.

chuck

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Re: Back to mig welding

Post by chuck » May 09 2009 8:52am

Mig welding wire speed.

Found this pdf on the Miller Welding Site,

http://www.millerwelds.com/pdf/mig_handbook.pdf

Welding tip number 4, Use Lincoln and Miller's websites when you have welding questions.

I've chosen 1" tube with a .0625 wall thickness. I have suggested .030 er70s-6 welding wire and I need to calculate my wire speed to ensure that I get a sound weld. According to the handbook on page 8 I need to convert the material thickness to welding amps

.0625inches/.001inches/amp = 62.5 amps

The handbook shows the amperage range of 62.5 is within the limits of both .030 wire and .035 wire. I chose .030 wire. Why? It will work better on these short orbital welds for tacking and establishing the weld puddle.

Most mig welders do not have amp gauges so you have to set up your welder as follows:

The handbook's next chart shows that .030 wire has a suggested wire speed of 2 inches per minute per amp.

62.5 amps * 2 Inches/minute * amps = 125 inches of welding wire per minute

60 seconds = 125 inches of wire
30 seconds = 62.5 inches of wire
10 seconds = about 21 inches of wire

Use a clock with a second hand, pull the trigger of the mig gun for 10 seconds, measure the wire, adjust the wire speed nob until you get real close to 21 inches of wire in 10 seconds.

Now, adjust the voltage of the welder. Make welds at different voltage settings until you find the voltage setting that works best for this wire speed using a piece of steel scrap. Don't change the voltage dial while you are welding. After you find the voltage that works best at this wire speed you will need to fine tune the wire speed to match the voltage. You can adjust the wire feed speed dial while you are welding. On most mig welders the wire speed is infinitely variable, voltage is not.

I just went back to Millers website and found this,

http://www.millerwelds.com/resources/calculators/

This calculator comes up these parameters for .030 wire on 16 gauge steel.

Wire speed of 220 to 250 inches per minute
17 to 18 volts
90 to 110 amps

What is the moral here. Make sure that you have the owners manual for your welder and if there are discrepancies contact the manufacturer of your welder with your concerns. Miller, Lincoln and Hobart have, the few times that I have contacted them, always returned my calls in a timely manner.

chuck

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by docnjoj » May 09 2009 11:06am

Thanks Chuck! This is way cool and informative! Do you have an opinion on that low temp alloy welding stuff that can be used with propane or MAAP?
otherDoc
E-bike stable at our house

Steintrike Mad Max full suspension trike rear Cute 100H going on: Whoops, Cute wheel broke but I fixed it.
Sun USX delta trike EbikeKit small geared front wheel sort of front suspension for wife

Agniusm/A123 AMP 20 36 volts on the Steini has been taken off.
2x16000 Multisport from HK now gone as they died after 2 years
New Luna 10S bottle battery 13.6AH now on mine
Relatively New 10S4Px2 for wife's bike giving 20ah @ 40 volts home made Panasonic from Tumich. BMS's rule.

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 09 2009 3:26pm

Doc,

My knowledge of the art of brazing is limited. This is a web site I found several years ago looking for information on bronze welding chrome-moly. My neighbor has a couple of old norton racing motorcycles from I think the early 60's. These cycles have chrome-moly drawn over mandrel double and triple butted frames that where welded with a bronze process. The welding rods for the bronze process were developed in England I believe, by a company called, I'm sure I'm butchering this, "Euticic", something like that.

First

http://www.handyharmancanada.com/TheBra ... tm#picklng solutions

The Home Page

http://www.handyharmancanada.com/TheBra ... .htm#Index

Joint design

http://www.handyharmancanada.com/TheBra ... htm#linked contents of: The princibles of joint design

Doc, There are no magic bullets with brazing. It is a much more complex science for frame building than is welding.

In the welding world, large cast pieces are often brazed on clean fractures successfully on occassion, I've done it. Not with mapp gas or propane though.

chuck

I

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 10 2009 7:21am

Doc, these are the motorcycles my neighbor has, if you want me too, I'll take some pictures and write a little history on the restorations. Very interesting how my neighbor tracked down the original craftsmen and had tanks, fenders and the oil tanks hand crafted by the original builders of these bikes. These motorcycles are true works of art.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Featherbed_frame

I was prompted to write this welding series after reading this thread,

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=10046

This thread is for those who do not know how to weld.

What qualifies me to write a series on welding?

When I was about 5 years old I and my 4 brothers and sisters had a 4 seat merry-go-round. One day it broke. My Dad took my wagon put a wood box in it, pulled the wagon to the merry-go-round told me to hold the seat up. Dad pulled the cables out of the box and welded the merry-go-round. I think I got hooked on welding about then.

I was probably about 8 years old, I needed something welded, had to wait for Dad to come home, got everything ready for him. When Dad came home He showed Me how this welder worked and let me do it. I fixed a lot of things after that, neighbors brought stuff by, I had a hacksaw, chipping hammer and a small pile of precious sprap steel to work with. Welding rods were on shelf, I always had plenty of them, I guess Dad recognized when I got low on supply and replenished them.

I was about 12, a couple of guys from Dad's work came by and cut down a mulberry tree for us. Dad gave them that welder in the wood box. Boy, I had a lump in my throat. I never said a thing though.

It was'nt long after that I came home to this:
my welder.jpg
This welder is still in my Dad's garage, I use it often, still have to unplug the dryer to use it, Me and Dad have been planning to put a 220 socket in the garage for it. After 36 years I guess we have just gotten used to unplugging the dryer.

I learned to weld in high school shop, I took all the shop courses. In high school my senior year, I had a job in a residential rafter and truss company. The owner of the shop was an architect and my neighborhood friends' older brother. He also worked for John Deere and Company. We made pallets for John Deere's foundry. One day Mike, the owner, came to me, said that I was a union member, sign this, sign that. Someone at John Deere suggested to Mike that it would be a good idea to have some union members in the shop. There was only three of us in the shop and I was now a union man and shop steward.

The union needed welders and sent me to a short course on pipe welding, no cost to me. I certified in 1/2 wall pipe, then on 2" pipe flanges. I worked three union jobs welding pipe, each lasted about 3 months. On the second job the pipe fitters had busted off a small fitting that was meant for a gauge of some type. The engineer for the company who's pipes we were welding showed me how the tig welder worked and I welded a new fitting to the pipe. I had never heard of tig welding, it was easy and pretty quick.

I fell into the residential siding, roofing, windows and door business as a subcontractor. Which later developed into patio covers and standing seam roofing, which led to commercial metal roofing and metal buildings, which led into welding rafters and trusses for commercial metal buildings. I went to college, took a lot of chemistry, math and physics, took accounting so I could run my business.

So, am I an expert. No. I don't know any welders who are welding experts. I have come across many engineers who are extremely knowledgable on welding processes, a very good resource to me, most can't weld worth a damn though!

chuck

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 10 2009 9:37am

Now I told you I am no expert. I led you to some very informative websites on welding, correct?

Let's dicuss this chrome-moly 4130 business.

Weight. It is a critical factor. If I build my frame with 1" .030 chrome-moly my bike frame will weigh 1/2 as much or about 10 lbs less than using .065, 1020, mechanically welded seam, pickled, mild steel tubing. 10 lbs is critical in racing. In racing, 1 lb may be the difference between winning and losing. Weight is important if you have to lift your bike. But, for normal people, 10 lbs is not gonna make a bit of difference in the power, acceleration, or the energy usage of an electric bike, read this:

http://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewto ... f=1&t=5096

Ya, I'm long winded, I really need to re-write "physics" but suffer through it so that you can get an understanding on weight.

Ok, so you are gonna go with 4130.

Ole Jerry was a salesman. He worked for a Dallas tent and awning company. He sold all kinds of things. These bistro awnings covered with canvas at the exclusive places, they covered the patios where the little round tables sit. Where you sipped your coffee, ya git the picture. I usually built the frames out of aluminum, I ran the aluminum square tube through a roller to form arches, bent corners with small radius bends etc.

Jerry calls me, needs some awning frames made from 4130 round tube. Well, I worked with a lot of round tube. No problem Jerry. Now, hear me, these were not small structures, they needed to be strong and light, and they would have tremondous wind loads on them.

I put that tube in the metal cutting bandsaw, it did'nt cut. Took the teeth off the bandsaw blade. Why not use my abrasive saw. Can't do that, the architect said so. Heat and contamination I guess. My bandsaw blade supplier is in a little shop in downtown dallas underneath the skyscrapers in a little old building with a wood plank floor. Sells me the correct blades to cut 4130. They don't last long, but they cut it.

Now I got an old fasion tube bender, works great on mild steel. Now if you read welding tips and tricks. com Mr. Collier says, you'll bust your left testical, or something like that bending 4130. Well, that tube did'nt budge. I bent the arm of the bender. I have a re-bar bender, if I jumped up and down on the 6 foot lever I was able to collapse the tube pretty well. All right now, I got a 40,000 pound shop press, that'll bend it. I made diffent jigs, just could'nt bend 4130 well, certainly not to spec. Farmed the bending out.

Now I got arches to make. My Dad has a ring roller, big one. Me and Dad have never figured out its capacity. I've run 6" square 3/8ths wall tube through it, smooth as butter. 4130 comes out flat and straight, not arched. Farm that out to the guy bending my tubing.

Now, I gotta notch this stuff. I have a good ole tubing notcher made by blu-mole. Not happening, Dad has a horizontal milling machine, order a 1" carbide tip end mill. Ya, I was able to notch it now.

I'm about to call Jerry up and tell him where he can put his 4130 when the phone rings. It's Jerry. "Hey Chuck, the guy does'nt want 4 of these, he changed his order to 20." Now, Jerry's a salesman, he can talk anybody into doing anything. Now I got 20 of these things to make.

chuck

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by docnjoj » May 10 2009 1:29pm

Keep up the tales! They are quite interesting, Chuck! Anyway I'm a good reader! The alloy I was refering to was 6061 T6 aluminum and the stuff that supposedly welds it is here: http://www.durafix.com/
Any comment?
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E-bike stable at our house

Steintrike Mad Max full suspension trike rear Cute 100H going on: Whoops, Cute wheel broke but I fixed it.
Sun USX delta trike EbikeKit small geared front wheel sort of front suspension for wife

Agniusm/A123 AMP 20 36 volts on the Steini has been taken off.
2x16000 Multisport from HK now gone as they died after 2 years
New Luna 10S bottle battery 13.6AH now on mine
Relatively New 10S4Px2 for wife's bike giving 20ah @ 40 volts home made Panasonic from Tumich. BMS's rule.

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 10 2009 2:42pm

Doc,

I have an old camp trailer where I hunt. One day the hinges broke off from age, fatigue and a good wind gust. I went to home depot, bought a propane torch and a coated brazing rod that said it was good for aluminum, it worked for a quick fix. Still holding up after several years actually. I'd be scared to death to pull this trailer down the road, scared the door would fall off and hurt someone. The rod was cheap for a 3 foot stick. I think a pack of 5 sticks was about $10. My brazing skills and knowledge are probably less than yours Doc, unfortunately.

Wait a minute, In fact I used that same home depot rod on another quick fix. The compressor fan on my central ac started clanging one day. The fan was made of aluminum and had separated from its mount. I removed the fan from the motor, tapped the fan back to straight and used the same brazing rod to fasten it back to its mount. Reinstalled the fan onto the motor, don't live there anymore but as far as I know it held up.

There is quite a bit of difference between brazing on a tab to hang a light off of than trying to braze up a load bearing joint.

Quick search on the internet:

http://www.thefabricator.com/AluminumWe ... fm?ID=1458

"Papa", on this thread is more qualified than I to answer your question,

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=10046

Now Doc, my honest opinion of durafix is, after reading the web page pretty thoroughly, snake oil. The rod from home depot would probably be a much better option. Neither the home depot rod or durafix would be a good choice for frame building on 6061.

chuck
Last edited by chuck on May 11 2009 5:31am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by mud2005 » May 10 2009 8:35pm

HI Chuck, very informative thread thanks much :D I had no idea 4130 would be so difficult to work with. I learned a lot reading this.
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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 11 2009 5:29am


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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by Link » May 11 2009 5:41am

chuck wrote:When I was about 5 years old I and my 4 brothers and sisters had a 4 seat merry-go-round. One day it broke. My Dad took my wagon put a wood box in it, pulled the wagon to the merry-go-round told me to hold the seat up. Dad pulled the cables out of the box and welded the merry-go-round. I think I got hooked on welding about then.

I was probably about 8 years old, I needed something welded, had to wait for Dad to come home, got everything ready for him. When Dad came home He showed Me how this welder worked and let me do it. I fixed a lot of things after that, neighbors brought stuff by, I had a hacksaw, chipping hammer and a small pile of precious sprap steel to work with. Welding rods were on shelf, I always had plenty of them, I guess Dad recognized when I got low on supply and replenished them.

I was about 12, a couple of guys from Dad's work came by and cut down a mulberry tree for us. Dad gave them that welder in the wood box. Boy, I had a lump in my throat. I never said a thing though.

It was'nt long after that I came home to this:
my welder.jpg
This welder is still in my Dad's garage, I use it often, still have to unplug the dryer to use it, Me and Dad have been planning to put a 220 socket in the garage for it. After 36 years I guess we have just gotten used to unplugging the dryer.
OOOOOOOOG. I never got to do anything cool as a kid. :x
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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 11 2009 5:59am

Hi mud,

It was your thread that inspired me. Thank Papa for showing up!

Papa said it best, "Interesting thread.. some good info, and some.. well.. not so good."

I wanted to keep this thread to electric arc welding processes since that is what I am comfortable with.

A short discussion on brazing. Brazing uses lugs to gain surface area on joints, It is never to be used on chrome-moly. The brass cracks the chromoly.

Bronze welding. Higher temperature than brazing, less temperature than welding. (the following is to the best of my knowledge) Does not use lugs on joints. Does not have brass in the rod. Developed to weld chrome-moly in the 40's and 50's before there were arc processes that could weld chrome-moly. Bronze welding is not brazing, it should not be refered to as brazing. Schwinn bicycle company and Norton motorcycles were some of the early adopters of bronze welding.

This frame is the best deal out there except. Read carefully. They use a brass rod and do not use lugs

http://www.thunderstruck-ev.com/jackal_fab.htm

Maybe someone can explain to me how this company builds chrome-moly 4130 frames using brass rods when the tech sheets for 4130 strictly forbid it?

chuck

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by spinningmagnets » May 13 2009 1:04pm

Chuck, first of all, thanks very much for sharing this information about your experience, and also the links!

My question is for enthusiasts who dont have a welder, but want to make a quick repair to a steel frame or possibly put together a trailer, motor mounting plate, or battery tray from angle-iron they got from a trash-day "bed-frame".

After some practice, and accepting that first few welds would of course be somewhat "ugly"...I have read that car batteries can be used for emergency welding. 36V for thicker steels, and 24V for thinner. I have no experience at this, what have you heard? is there a particular rod that would be good to start with if this is possible?

I have also read on 4WD off-road sites that a fat alternator that bypasses the stock voltage regulator (providing full output voltage back into the armature by flipping a switch) can provide up to 120V (adjustable by engine RPM's?) can be used as a welder for emergency road-side welds.

I recall a site that used an old lawnmower engine and a car alt to make a home-brew welder, but he admitted he had no adjustability, but that it worked well for bed-frames? thoughts? advice?

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by docnjoj » May 13 2009 8:37pm

Thanks Chuck! My new "late midlife crisis" trike won't need welding and I have to say I am grateful. Finally I can just ride and not fix stuff every day! It's made out of something called ST51 drawn tubing. Whatever that is!?!?!?! At least it is steel.
otherDoc
E-bike stable at our house

Steintrike Mad Max full suspension trike rear Cute 100H going on: Whoops, Cute wheel broke but I fixed it.
Sun USX delta trike EbikeKit small geared front wheel sort of front suspension for wife

Agniusm/A123 AMP 20 36 volts on the Steini has been taken off.
2x16000 Multisport from HK now gone as they died after 2 years
New Luna 10S bottle battery 13.6AH now on mine
Relatively New 10S4Px2 for wife's bike giving 20ah @ 40 volts home made Panasonic from Tumich. BMS's rule.

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by mud2005 » May 14 2009 12:33pm

It's made out of something called ST51 drawn tubing. Whatever that is!?!?!?!
I think ST51 is mild steel.
Future's all yers ya lousy bicycle!
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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by mybad » May 14 2009 4:19pm

Hey Chuck , Very basic question about arc welding.How far away do you keep the stick from the surface ? do you make contact ?

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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by Papa » May 14 2009 8:20pm

spinningmagnets wrote:My question is for enthusiasts who dont have a welder, but want to make a quick repair to a steel frame or possibly put together a trailer, motor mounting plate, or battery tray from angle-iron they got from a trash-day "bed-frame".
Without welding or brazing? Then you are pretty much limited to 'fish plating' using nuts & bolts, or epoxy.

Re: the bed rails

I don't fool with bed rails. Bed rails are typically high in carbon which causes embrittlement within or near the bead when welded. Using E7018 rod helps, but is no guarantee. The high carbon rails are also brutal on drill bits and other cutting tools. If you really need angle iron, then spring for 'cold rolled' at your local steel supplier - it's relatively cheap too.

mybad wrote:How far away do you keep the stick from the surface ? do you make contact ?
Page 6 in the following download:

http://www.millerwelds.com/pdf/guidelines_smaw.pdf
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Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 15 2009 8:07pm

Thanks Papa,

I appreciate your input and admire your skills and experience.

I have read a about using a battery to weld with, 36 volts sounds a little high, I'd start with 24 volts and a 7014 3/32 or 1/8 rod. Now sparks fly when stick welding, keep the batteries a safe distance and shield them. I am not endorsing using batteries, just heard about it. Now, why use batteries?

I agree with Papa on 7018 rods, slick, especially with a dc arc welder. The problem is rods aren't exactly cheap and storing 7018's is darn near impossible, read this

http://www.thefabricator.com/Consumable ... e.cfm?ID=9

Most professional welders love stick welding, If I could only have one welder it would be a good stick welder.

A cheap stick welder from Northern tools, $89.00

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/ ... _200355916

Spend a little more, $450.00 and get dc capability

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/ ... 175_384175

Good lincoln stick welders retail about $250 similar to what I pictured earlier.

Am I recommending stick welders for bike frame building, no, a small mig would be better. If you do not have a garage that you can weld in, then, welding outdoors rules out mig. But, mig welders can be run with flux core wire outdoors and are still a lot easier to LEARN to weld with than a stick welder. Flux core wire leaves a slag coating that must be chipped off just like stick welding. I use Hobart brand flux core wire on occasion and it welds great.

Welding on old bed frames and any old metal, even repairing old rusty trailers.

For a satisfactory weld, the metal must be clean. No paint, no oil, dirt, rust, no millscale. Or moisture. There should be no contaminants anywhere near the weld. If you have prepared the metal for welding by grinding and the paint is still melting, turning black near the weld, you have not ground off enough paint. Paint and primer ruin welds, significantly. On 16 gauge steel I would say all paint within 3 inches of the weld should be removed. If the weld is to meet a code requirement and will be tested 3 inches would probably be to close, the weld will probably fail the visual. Paint fumes get into the weld pool turning the weld dark with visual inclusions. Again, PAINT RUINS WELDS. Inbedded primer ruins welds. Rust ruins welds. Millscale makes welding on short welds on thin steels difficult, the weld is likely to cold lap, (lay on to top of the scale). The weld will fail to penetrate into the steel.

weld tip number 5
Buy new steel at a local metal supplier, pickled is cheaper than cold rolled, cold rolled is stronger, but jeez, 16 gauge hot rolled tube is plenty strong enough for a motorcycle. 1" 16 gauge tube is cheap because it is so common. Thin gauge cold rolled angle welds, well, spectacularly. As do all cold rolled mild steels.

What's my thing with mild steel. Well this is for the beginner. Mild steel has one property that no other steel has. It is designed to be rolled, formed, bent and hammered on. It is easy to work with. So what, you say. Well after going through all these processes it loses none of its original properties like strength. It is also designed specifically to be arc welded by mig, tig or stick without losing any strength. Why is it the cheapest steel? Because of the properties I just mentioned, its demand makes it so common everyone carries it, lowering its price.

chuck

chuck   100 W

100 W
Posts: 118
Joined: Apr 30 2007 8:21pm
Location: Texas

Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 23 2009 6:32am

Welding Equipment and supplies for frame building

Both Tractor Supply and Northern Tools carry a very well stocked supply of Hobart brand arc welding supplies.

Personal Protection

Sleeve Protectors,
These protect your arms, are much lighter than leathers, are designed for welding comfort . Much better than a long sleeved shirt. The green ones from Northern Tools are a little cheaper but do not last as long as the black ones made by Hobart at Tractor supply.

http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/wcs ... cial=false

Hearing Protection.
Not for noise, Keeps the welding spatter out of your ear canal. Mandatory. If you weld you will know what I am talking about. A 5000 degree ball of molten metal in your ear canal is a ............
I use the foam insert ear plugs, about $10 for 50 pairs at Harbor Freight

Safety glasses
Mandatory, when grinding cutting

Gloves
Cheap at Harbor Freight tools. I use longer lasting gloves for work made by Hobart but they are a bitch to break in. Harbor Freight gloves last me about a week, Hobart gloves last about 3 weeks welding 60 hours a week.

Helmet
I use the Hobart brand fixed shade #10 auto darkening helmet for 90% of my welding , mig, on metal gauges less than 1/4 inch. It is a fantastic helmet. Tractor supply sells it for $59 on sale a couple of times a year.
http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/wcs ... cial=false
Northern Tools sells the same helmet for $109
It has a advertised reaction time of 1/3600 of a second. Now I showed you earlier what I weld at work. I make thousands of tack a day, 10's of thousands of tacks a week. My eyes have never been affected.
What I like about this helmet. Instant on. No off on switch, A lot of helmets turn off automatically after a while, you find out its off when you start welding. This helmet lasts and lasts, several years. Non replaceable battery.

My second helmet, rarely used, is a variable shade auto darkening also made by Hobart, I believe it has a 1/12,000 of a second reaction time and variable shade from 9 to 13. I buy them on sale at Tractor Supply for $89. Has a sensitive setting. Handy when welding outdoors so the sun does'nt darken the helmet. Sensitive setting is also handy indoors when others are welding near you. You set the switch so their welding does'nt darken my helmet. Uses replaceable batteries
http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/wcs ... cial=false

What do I like about my Hobart welding helmets versus the cheaper auto darkening helmets from Northern tools and Harbor Freight. ACCESORIES. The head band is much bettor on the Hobart Helmets. And, Tractor Supply has replacement headbands in stock. Also,
http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/wcs ... cial=false
If you need reading glasses, these magnifiers are in stock, available in 150x, 200x and 250x. I use the 150x.

I also use the Harbor Freight helmet, the headband breaks in about a month, bring it back in a year and they replace it free, the whole helmet. Nice helmet, cheap head band, often on sale for $39. Sign up at Harbor Freight's website, they email me a 20% off coupon almost every week for a single purchase. The variable shade knob on this helmet is on the outside of the helmet, handy right? Ya, it's big, catches on everything and breaks off.

The optics on the Hobart and Harbor Freight helmets last. The few Northern tools cheap helmets I have purchased lasted a couple of months.

Visibility is the key to welding. When welding with any arc process. When mig or tig welding you must clearly see the puddle, the wire entering the puddle, and the edges of the joint being welded. You cannot use a number 15 shade on 16 gauge. In a well lit work shop a nine or ten for mig and maybe 10 or 11 for tig. You must position your head so you can see the weld. Do you need 4 photo sensors on your helmet versus 2. No. But. On larger view helmets, yes. The standard size viewable area is about 1 1/3" x 3 3/4", and 2 sensors work fine. Maybe once a week my 2 sensor helmets with the standard lense size fail to darken. Is this harmful, no. The lenses are uv protected on or off. Do the larger lense sizes help. No. They just cost more. I used to buy them til I figured this out.

Auto darkening versus fixed shade. Fixed shade works fine outdoors stick welding 1/4" and larger steel when the sun is up and shining brightly. If its cloudy and dreary, fixed shade does not works so well.

Auto darkening versus fixed shade. There is no argument. Auto darkening is superior. People will argue about anything, even when they know nothin about what they are arguing about. Your helmet determines how well you weld on thin gauge metal. You will weld better with an auto darkening helmet.

Hand tools

Files
A few sizes of chain saw files, a large flat file should get you by.

Hacksaw
For cutting tube, I'll show you how to cut tube later, buy a good one.
The best hacksaw blades are made by bosch and porter cable, I know lowe's lumber had them last time I was there. Get some in 24 and 32 tpi, tooth per inch. Dewalt and Milwaukee are overpriced and not as good.

Wire brush
Stainless steel. Why stainless steel? Stainless steel is harder than regular wire brushes and cuts better. Forget what you hear about regular brushes cantaminating aluminum. Aluminum oxide is tough and hard and is easier to remove with stainless steel.

Bench vise
Lowes has a real nice 4 1/2 inch bench vise for $20. Best deal of the century, made by Wilton, I just bought one, a lot better than the Northern, Harbor or Tractor brands and cost less.


Welding clamps
Five pack cost about 25 at Northern, probably not to useful for frame building though. One Vise Grip brand clamp costs about 25.

Power tools

Bench Grinder
Cheapist you can find, look for a 6" with at least a 1/2 hp. Harbor freight's aren't bad

Hand Grinder
A must have. I use milwaukee and porter cable, I prefer the porter cable's for many reasons, mainly ergonomic. At home I use the cheapist Harbor Freight grinder I can find, they work just as well. Use the 4 1/2 inch size, because there are many attachments you will use that fit the 4 1/2 inch spindle. Such as wire brushes, cutting discs, grinding wheels, sanding discs. Buy all the grinder accessories at Harbor Freight, just a good as the commonly available name brands like dewalt, norton, milwaukee etc. but a lotttt cheaper, all I use.

Sabre saw
Works great for cutting sheet goods, rod, angle and tube. Porter cable makes excellent blades, available at Lowe's, again, 24 and 32 tpi. The t type blades fit t type Sabre saws. I have a dewalt and a bosch sabre saws, both with the t type blades, can't say one saw is the better of the 2.

Drill Bits
The absolute best deal of the day!!!!!!! Harbor Freight Tools, got your 20% off coupon right?
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/d ... mber=36891
I own a set of milwaukee cobalt drill bits for my shop. Best damn drill bits made. Probably paid about $300 for em. I bought a set of these cobalt drill bits at Harbor Freight last year for my job, not my shop. Outstanding drill bits. They have 3/8 inch shanks so they fit in a 3/8" drill.

A good name brand 3/8 inch drill cost about $50, while a good 1/2 inch drill cost about a $100.

You know, you can sharpen any twist drill bit with a bench grinder right? Yep, you can, takes a little practice, helps if someone can show you how.

Welders

chuck   100 W

100 W
Posts: 118
Joined: Apr 30 2007 8:21pm
Location: Texas

Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 23 2009 1:43pm

Welders

I don't know where to begin a discussion on welders. Like I said earlier, If I could only have one welder it would be a stick welder.

But we are talking about frame building here, for the non advanced welder. Hopefully someone who has a garage to work in. Who wants to build something like this.
motorcycle, springer fork, disk brake.jpg
motorcycle, springer fork, disk brake.jpg (53.8 KiB) Viewed 3485 times
I have a tig welder, yet, I would mig this frame. Why? That's easy. Mig is just as strong and quite a bit faster than tig. If all the pieces were cut how long would it take me to mig this frame together? About an hour for me.
If all the pieces were cut, how long would it take me to tig this frame? Probably about 5 or 6 hours.

I went to my shop today and took pictures of some of my equipment with my cell phone which I will post later.
I have in mig welders the following, Lincoln 180, lincoln 250, Hobart 210, Hobart 187. The 2 most used welders in my shop are the Lincoln 180 and the Hobart 187. They are smaller and easier to roll around. I once owned a Lincoln mig that ran on 115 volts, nice little welder but slow. It was stolen out of my shop. It was the best 115 volt that Lincoln sold. It was dedicated to welding stainless steel duct and did a nice job.

My employees gravitate towards the Lincolns. To an experienced welder the Lincolns weld a little better, a little quicker. Lincoln has nice electronics that make a better arc.

At work my employer uses Miller. I use a 250 millermatic with a wire feeder. It welds identically as compared to my Hobart 210. Great welders. Hobart and Miller are now the same company. In mig welding the workhorse of the industry is the 250 millermatic.

What brand lasts the longest. If you buy a Miller, a Lincoln or a Hobart, you will never wear them out in a home shop. In 30 years I wore out a Hobart 187. It had a life of about 15 years and I estimate I ran about 10,000 pounds of wire through it. It had to go in for repairs every now and then, generally less than a $100 dollars. One day It POOFED, up in smoke. I bought another Hobart 187 to replace it.

My Dad bought a Century brand welder once, big one, 250 amp, piece of s...,

Accesories for Mig welders. If you stick to name brand 220 volt welders there are aftermarket suppliers of mig guns. A good 100 amp mig gun with a 15 foot length cost about $125 through online retailers.

The battle of the brands, well I hope not.

Tig
My tig welder weighs 750 lbs. It will do things you have never heard of. Has 100 foot leads. Built in forklift rails. A good miller 250 synchwave I think run about $5000 with accessories and weighs probably 300 lbs. A miller Dynasty weighs under a 100 lbs and costs 3 to 4 thousand depending on the accessories.
I am seriously considering purchasing the new Miller Diversion. Inverter based it weighs I believe about 50 lbs, cost to me about $1200 ready to weld, add a bottle and some tungsten tips in in various sizes I'll shell out about $1500 including welding wire. Kind of pricey for a home shop when it won't weld any better than a mig.

chuck

chuck   100 W

100 W
Posts: 118
Joined: Apr 30 2007 8:21pm
Location: Texas

Re: Welding Procedures

Post by chuck » May 24 2009 8:58am

Learning to weld

I have been welding for over 30 years. 98% of my welding is with mig. I am still learning. With all of my experiance I can just pick up 1/16 diameter electrode 7014 and use my Dad's lincoln 225 amp ac stick welder and weld up the above pictured bike frame out of 16 gauge 1" round tube. No I can't. I am going to get 2 pounds of rods and practice on scrap metal for an hour or two. Welding is a skill that takes practice. Lots of practice.

To learn to stick weld.
Go to the library and check out books on welding. Go to a sheet metal shop and have them shear 16 gauge sheet metal. Get a 100 pieces cut to 4" x 8" and 200 pieces cut to 2" x 8". Buy 50 pounds of rods. Get to work. Practice welding up, down, horizontal, flat. Practice tacking. Practice practice practice. Practice all of the positions and all of the types of joints in all of the positions. Is 50 pounds of rod enough? Probably not.

Are you going to be a good welder after practicing stick welding a week or two. Hell no. Probably good enough to make decent and strong welds on the above bike frame. When welding round tube to round tube you'll quickly discover that welding around a tube is a lot more challenging than welding in a straight line. Stick welding round tube though, is easier than tig welding round tube. Think about it. Remember that game twister you played as a kid. If you liked twister you will love tig welding round tube!

Learning to mig weld
Go to the library and check out books on welding. Go to a sheet metal shop and have them shear 16 gauge sheet metal. Get a 100 pieces cut to 4" x 8" and 200 pieces cut to 2" x 8". Buy 30 pounds of 0.30 wire. Get to work. Practice welding up, down, horizontal, flat. Practice tacking. Practice practice practice. Practice all of the positions and all of the types of joints in all of the positions.

You will find welding round tube to round tube with mig to be much easier than with stick or tig. Probably be able to make good looking strong welds on 16 gauge after a week of welding. If you're lucky and know a professional welder, show him you're work. Let the professional show you his work and you will quickly be humbled.

Welding school is great. I work with a welder, shown in the pictures on welding galvanized steel. The young man on the left. He went to the Waco school of welding in Waco Texas. Paid them $20,000. Still paying. Smart young man. Talented. This is his first welding job, fresh out of school. This too, is my first welding job, I have been with this company for about a year, the young man about 6 months. It took me about 3 weeks to make good looking welds on 18 gauge galvanized steel using .035 wire. I have been welding over 30 years. Took me about 3 months and, lets see here, I use about 30 lbs of wire a week, times 12 weeks, 360 pounds of wire to learn to make excellent looking welds on 18 gauge steel. The young man under my tutelage welds almost as well as I do when I show him the little tricks I picked up. Now the young man has been with the company 6 months, used probably over 700 lbs of wire and is really becoming a pretty decent welder!

Due to welding economics the company I work for only carries .035 er70s-6 wire. If my company used .030 er70s-2 wire I would have been making excellent looking welds in a week after using 30 pounds of wire. We get lots of overtime where I work, a week is 57 hours of welding.

Learning to tig weld
Ya know the routine, go to the sheet metal shop, get...........

I learned tig welding on my own, I am not real good at it. Compared to professional tig welders. I learned before there was such things as high frequency starts, ac balance, foot controls. I bought a book and sat down and learned it 25 years ago. You like the mister twister game right? I am 48 years old, did'nt like mister twister when I was a kid and don't play it now. But when I tig weld I sure wish I was good at that old game. If you decide to build a bike frame tig welding you'll get a lesson in mister twister and in bike frame flipping.

The young man I work with went to the welding school in Waco. Learned to tig there. For most of his lunch periods the last 6 months he has been practicing his tig welding. He has gotten good enough now that the supervisor let him tig weld an out side corner joint, a flange on a piece of round 16 gauge cold rolled steel, the weld was about 6 foot long, the pipe about 2 foot in diameter. The young man did a pretty good job. Thank god when they mate that flange to its mount that weld won't be visible.

A fair mig welder can make welds on steel that look as good or better than someone who is considered to be an excellent tig welder.

chuck

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mud2005   10 kW

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Location: Eugene, OR

Re: Welding Procedures

Post by mud2005 » May 24 2009 5:40pm

very good read, I am actually shocked at the amount of time and $ that would be involved to get started welding. For me for now I think the best approach would be lots of reading and looking into a welding class at the local community college. I had thought I could pick up a welder and be making awesome frames a week later :roll: shows what I know.
Future's all yers ya lousy bicycle!
-Paul Newman
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

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