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  • Welding spring steel

    Is it possible under agriculture conditions. I welded a shank on an applicator the other day, the guys at work razzed me about it of course, but I would assume there must be a way to weld it and prevent it from breaking? If not , will it break at the weld , around the weld, or somewhere else? The steel is about one inch thick, 2 inches wide, and about 3 feet long with a curve in it. It's used for applying anhydrous ammonia, and typically runs in the ground 7 to 12 inches at 6 mph. I veed out the break and made 5 passes with a 6011 on ac. on both sides. Any help would be great, as I would love to prove the guys wrong just this one time! It is , I assume some type of carbon steel?

  • #2
    I'm curious to the answer, because I've never managed to successfully weld spring steel. They've always re-broken in the HAZ just beyond the weld... tried it with 7018 and 6010 (the mild rods I commonly have on hand), even tried torch annealing the weld with no success.
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    • #3
      Not knowing what an applicator shank is I had to google it... The one I found looks like a piece of flat bar curved in an S-shape with a chisel-looking attachment on the end that goes in the ground.

      A carbon "spring" steel probably contains .70 - .90 percent carbon like AISI 1070 - 1090 steel. That much carbon makes it sensitive to hydrogen embrittlement as well as formation of brittle microstructures such as untempered martensite in the HAZ. Just joining 1070 steel for a static application would require high preheat, a low hydrogen process with a matching strength filler metal, and post weld stress relief.

      Springs are highly stressed engineered components. The steel is typically through-hardened by heat treatment and the springs are often shot-peened to improve fatigue life. Both of these effects are reduced near the weld by the heat of welding. If a spring broke then it broke at a high stress location. A weld can never match the fatigue strength of un-welded base metal, and a weld is not going to last very long at a location with a high cyclical stress range.

      I'd be interested in hearing success stories, but my opinion is that springs aren't good candidates for weld repair. Try it if you must and if a second failure won't hurt anybody, but order a new part first...
      Bill
      "The more I learn about welding the more I find there is to learn..."

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      • #4
        1090 is what razor blades are made of.
        A spring like that would fall more into the 1050-1060 range I believe if it was old school enuff to be a 10 anything.
        Mixed results would be what you would get. The first and main question is what broke it??

        I would say a "spring guy" could do it for sure. Welded, hammered, properly annealed and reground. Prolly cheaper to get a new sping that way.
        Could you add a leaf to it?

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        • #5
          The applicator shanks used in our area are not spring steel. We just pre heat and weld with 7018. They hold fine until they hit rock with them.

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          • #6
            So it's sorta like a ripper tooth??

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            • #7
              nfinch86- Canadian Weldor :

              HI, I agree with Finney, as I do a lot farm repairs. Preheat at least 3" each side of the break, and weld with 7018!!..... Norm : PS. bBe sure to bevel it out, tack it up real good, weld one side, then Grind the backside back to the first weld. then weld the second side so as to have a weld all the way through!!!! Good Luck !!!..... Norm :
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              • #8
                Originally posted by FusionKing View Post
                So it's sorta like a ripper tooth??
                I kinda had a chuckle at your previous post when you mentioned adding a leaf to it, but I know not everyone has a farming background. That's part of the reason I visit sites like this, to learn about new things.

                Here is a picture of one type of cultivator shank assembly that I found on the web.
                The part he welded up is the curved piece, the spring assembly on top is called the "trip", it is supposed to allow the shank to flip up and over large immobile objects such as rocks. As with anything in life it doesn't always work as planned!!!
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                • #9
                  6011 will leave a brittle weld in this stuff. Use DRY 7018 rods. Maintain a few hundred degrees preheat.

                  What I wonder is how in the heck you found the broken piece!

                  I've done that song and dance of trying to find broken implement parts or dozer teeth in the middle of nowhere and it's a real crap shoot.

                  80% of failures are from 20% of causes
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                  • #10
                    These applicator teeth arent real crowded on the toolbar. Its easy to find them by just going backwards down the same row in the field. Ive had farmers that were "too busy" to go look for the lost parts thinking they would find them the next trip through the field. Sure nuff! Id be out there replacing a tractor tire while they were cultivating...Still too busy! Now in the fall harvest when theyre "really busy" they call me out to replace the destroyed combine tire. This is one reason I dont work on tire any more.
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                    • #11
                      I have welded several NH3 applicator shanks over the years and all I did was vee it out, preheat a little, weld with 7018, don't let it get too hot, and let it slow cool.


                      All it takes is a little time and care.
                      Jeff

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by c wagner View Post
                        I kinda had a chuckle at your previous post when you mentioned adding a leaf to it, but I know not everyone has a farming background. That's part of the reason I visit sites like this, to learn about new things.

                        Here is a picture of one type of cultivator shank assembly that I found on the web.
                        The part he welded up is the curved piece, the spring assembly on top is called the "trip", it is supposed to allow the shank to flip up and over large immobile objects such as rocks. As with anything in life it doesn't always work as planned!!!

                        Yea I would'a laughed too...thanks for the drawing btw.sorta cleared that up for me.
                        Even if you had a farm here the rock we have would bust that in about three seconds. Rock and clay is about it. You WOULD need a ripper tooth.
                        All of my family farms but I got raised and live in a lake/vacation area that doesn't support farming. My sister and her husband has the only self supporting farm in our county and it's a dairy. My in-laws own 2 Cargill hog farms as well. (big)
                        Both my parents were raised on farms also. It sucks being clueless, but thank God I can still learn I have welded a lot of farm stuff but nope I sure as heck don't run them.
                        Reading more and posting less might help also, but what the heck

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                        Miller Dynasty 700...OH YEA BABY!!
                        MM 350P...PULSE SPRAYIN' MONSTER
                        Miller Dynasty 280 with AC independent expansion card
                        Miller Dynasty 200 DX "Blue Lightning"

                        Miller Bobcat 225 NT (what I began my present Biz with!)
                        Miller 30-A Spoolgun
                        Miller WC-115-A
                        Miller Spectrum 300
                        Miller 225 Thunderbolt (my first machine bought new 1980)
                        Miller Digital Elite Titanium 9400

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                        • #13
                          Glad I could clear that up for you and possibly others.
                          Like they say a picture is worth a 1000 words... and I'm too lazy to type that much anyway!!!
                          at home:
                          2012 325 Trailblazer EFI with Excel power
                          2007 302 Trailblazer with the Robin SOLD
                          2008 Suitcase 12RC
                          Spoolmatic 30A
                          WC-24
                          2009 Dynasty 200DX
                          2000 XMT 304
                          2008 Thermal Dynamics Cutmaster 52
                          Sold:MM130XP
                          Sold:MM 251
                          Sold:CST 280

                          at work:
                          Invision 350MP
                          Dynasty 350
                          Millermatic 350P
                          Retired:Shopmaster 300 with a HF-251

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                          • #14
                            here are some nh3 applicator shanks

                            http://www.agsystemsonline.com/webst...fm?Category=15
                            Jeff

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                            • #15
                              spring steel

                              Just got back to town, thanks for all the replys. What I think I understand then is this, vee it out on both sides, preheat a few inches in both directions, use 7018 rod. I just want to see it work so I can quiet the boys down at work! Thanks guys, I knew you could help.

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