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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Ocean City, Maryland
    Posts
    951

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    Thanks for the thoughts. I think when i get my next T.I.G I'm going to get the thumb wheel. All of my work so far has been with the pedal and its been Ok. Alot of bench work. But lately it seems the hand control would be better, just have to used to using it I guess.
    Scott
    HMW [Heavy Metal welding]

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oahu, Hawaii
    Posts
    2,469

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    HMW,
    THANKS FOR THE PICS
    Nice job welding on the pedastals! Haven't tried THAT position yet! (crouched and so on...) Nice boat and tower!
    regards,
    bert
    I'm not late...
    I'm just on Hawaiian Time

  3. #13

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    When welding anodized aluminum, t-Tops,etc.which are too large(and expensive) to re-anodize after fabrication, the anodizing is not grinded off before welding. The welds or painted, hand brush or airbrush with an aluminum color paint found at most hardware stores. Most use the tig process with the high freq. switch on start and use a button type switch mounted to the torch. The switch will close when depressed and the arc should jump to the weld and open when you let off to stop the arc. The process is to create an arc and fill the puddle, stop to allow the puddle to solidify, then move the cup 1/8"- 1/4" and restart the arc. This will produce the "stack of dimes" look. This is one of the most difficult materials to weld due to the anodized coating which makes for a trashy weld.Those who have mastered the technique learn to "throw the trash" to one side of the cap while the largest remaing part of the cap is a shiny silver color. Either way the weld is painted to stop corrosion on the now unprotected metal. I believe the newest techniques use an inverter where the above process probably changes and causes the stack of dimes look to be closer together. I have not tried this new machine, probably a Miller Dynasty, but others who have might comment on this. I think Engloid welds ski arches from anodized. Maybe they use the inverters.
    Last edited by Cracker(Jack); 04-15-2007 at 10:21 PM.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Lake of the Ozarks MO
    Posts
    3,506

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    I am around a lot of marine stuff too (both in factories and in the repair segment)... but what I see is not painted afterward. The weld just takes on a frosty sorta look. I seen some people try it in the nineties with little success. Mainly pontoon railings etc.
    Cracker(Jack) are you seeing people (pro's) actually paint their welds?? On BDA?

  5. #15

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    On pontoon boats, almost all parts are usually fabricated in flat sections and then anodized. The parts are then bolted together in sections. Unlike the tee tops and tuna towers, which are all welded construction and too large to anodize afterwards, especially since they are now three dimensional. The anodizing process is similar to chrome plating which requires an acid tank for the process. Unless your tank is large enough, you are limited to size. Now they can be rotated in the tank but this is usually too costly. It is hard enough to get customers to pay for custom work with the welds being painted. Yes, I have seen and done this professionally and what I have witnessed is done this way. If you take a tee top, try some paint remover on the welds and you will see the paint come off. Look at pic #1, this was definitely painted with a brush.Oh, BDA? Not sure what you mean, refresh my memory.
    Last edited by Cracker(Jack); 04-15-2007 at 10:24 PM.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Ocean City, Maryland
    Posts
    951

    Default

    Thanks for the comments guys. These welds on the tower were definately painted, and looked good. I'm gonna try and find some scrap anodized to see how it works. I painted mine with aluminum colored rustoleum paint, which the owner said would be fine. I'm not sure but it seemed the pedastels were coated with something. Maybe clear coated like aluminum wheels, because when i cleaned them with a wire brush it seemed to take off something different than the normal oxide that builds up. But it didn't seem like anodized

    thanks again, I'll let you know when I find some scrape to play with
    Scott
    HMW [Heavy Metal welding]

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Lake of the Ozarks MO
    Posts
    3,506

    Default

    Cracker....BDA= bright dipped anodized
    In missouri pontoon fences are made of anodized stock that is bent and welded and then left alone...it is the plain silver anodize not the bright polished stuff but is not painted afterward. When welded it just almost matches the finish that it came with. This is aquired skill.
    I have also repaired and modified wakeboard towers but never ran across one that had welds painted. Not saying they ain't out there I just never messed with one or noticed one either. I'll start looking more now.
    I live in Camdenton MO and have at least six of the major pontoon mfgs within driving distance and know several people working at them. My son was a railing welder for some time for both Bass Tracker and later Voyager and they both just weld pre-annodized stock and that is all. (5356 rod) On this particular type it is like the annodize slag or impurities or whatever you wanna call it just floats along the top and then just freezes like that and looks pretty good still. They have been doing that in this region for over 20 years now and you don't see any corrosion altho we are a fresh water enviroment. I fix a fair amount of it myself from time to time and have gotten better at it as time goes by.(pretty welds)
    Indiana has several pontoon mfgs as well and they anodize their railings after they are made and it shows in the quality of the welds. We have several powder coaters here but no companies that anodize large parts.
    Last edited by FusionKing; 04-16-2007 at 08:51 PM.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Ocean City, Maryland
    Posts
    951

    Default

    Fusion King, I was going to ask if the boats were built for fresh or salt water. But you answered it. We have all salt here [Atlantic Ocean] and these welds were for sure painted with something. Maybe with no salt it doesnt corrode bad like aluminum does here? So they don't need to do anything to it, not sure
    Scott
    HMW [Heavy Metal welding]

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Deltaville, VA
    Posts
    2,239

    Default

    HMW,

    Spoke to a buddy of mine today about what he used to paint his welds on anodized aluminun. He prefers a paint made by Sheffield (silver color). He says he has also used the aluminum colored Rustoleum but prefers the Sheffield because it has better shelf life. Says the Rustoleum gums up before he gets halfway thru a small can (1/2 pint).

    This guy has been building boat towers for over 20 years. He built one for me on a 65' Viking Sportfisherman that I sold and it was a thing of beauty. The member from Ocean City, Md., may have seen the boat (Three Sons) since she spends part of the year there (west OC).

    He used to use a Sync 250 for tower building when he and I worked for the same company. He now uses a Dynasty 300 and loves it. Really impressed with the portability. Says he doesn't use a lot of the "gee whiz" features it has, but then again, he's been doing marine fabrication for over 20 years. Ironically, he doesn't even use a foot or thumb control--just a simple on/off switch on the handle. Today he was welding at 191 amps--says he likes to run hot and move fast. His out of position (most tower welds are) look like they were done (in position) with a machine. Needless to say, I can't hold a candle to this guy. Guess that's what 20 years 6-8 hours a day can do for you. (I don't expect to be around that long)

    Anyway, hope the paint tidbit helps.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Deltaville, VA
    Posts
    2,239

    Default

    Sorry HMW,

    After posting, I went back and realized that YOU were the guy from OC.

    One more tidbit. He doesn't do any "prep" of the anodized aluminum. Just, like I mentioned, runs hot and fast. He used to do all the tower building for Bluewater Yacht Sales in Hampton, VA. One of our brokers spends a lot of time over in OC (Brian McDermott). Don't know if you know him.

    Do you take off to fish the White Marlin Open?

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