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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    6

    Default AL irragation pipe: can you TIG it?

    I have a friend who has some bent sticks of 3” aluminum irrigation pipe. He’d like me to cut out the bent pieces and then weld the straight pieces back together. Although I haven’t measured the wall thickness of the pipe, I’m pretty sure it’s 1/16 inch. I have a Syncrowave 200 and plenty of experience in aluminum welding, so it shouldn’t be too much of a task. Here’s my question, does anyone know if you can TIG weld this stuff? I have no idea what kind of aluminum this pipe is made from. I would guess the pipe is 20 years old, maybe older. There isn't any oxidation on the pipe. Other than each piece being bent, the pipe is in good shape.


    Thanks in advance
    67vw

    (o\_|_/o)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Salem ,Ohio
    Posts
    3,899

    Cool

    Sure you can tig it. Just clean up the weld area first. i have migged lots of it over the years...Bob
    Bob Wright, Grandson of Tee Nee Boat Trailer Founder
    Metal Master Fab Salem, Oh 44460
    Birthplace of the Silver & Deming Drill
    1999 MM185 w/185 Spoolgun,1986 Thunderbolt AC/DC
    Spool Gun conversion. How To Do It. Below.
    http://www.millerwelds.com/resources...php?albumid=48

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    6

    Default

    Thanks for the speedy reply Bob.
    Should I reinforce it, or do you think one good bead would be enough? When the owner sets up the pipe, it will be stationary. He'll leave it there all summer long.
    67vw

    (o\_|_/o)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    701

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 67vw View Post
    I have a friend who has some bent sticks of 3” aluminum irrigation pipe. He’d like me to cut out the bent pieces and then weld the straight pieces back together. Although I haven’t measured the wall thickness of the pipe, I’m pretty sure it’s 1/16 inch. I have a Syncrowave 200 and plenty of experience in aluminum welding, so it shouldn’t be too much of a task. Here’s my question, does anyone know if you can TIG weld this stuff? I have no idea what kind of aluminum this pipe is made from. I would guess the pipe is 20 years old, maybe older. There isn't any oxidation on the pipe. Other than each piece being bent, the pipe is in good shape.


    Thanks in advance
    Yes it can be welded with the TIG process. Look again though, there IS oxidation on your pipe.

    Griff

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    16919 Pole Rd. Brethren, MI 49619
    Posts
    4,376

    Default

    Just butt the ends and weld, you do not need to reinforce it. On thin tubing I occasionally roll the ends or even flare one and cone the other with a small Crescent type wrench, drive them together.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    16919 Pole Rd. Brethren, MI 49619
    Posts
    4,376

    Default

    I have some splices somewhere?
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    16919 Pole Rd. Brethren, MI 49619
    Posts
    4,376

    Default

    In fact I tested open butt at one of the schools Shade organized at Miller, it was one of my pet questions. I had older tubing which didn't help but it can be done but operator skill is a fairly high factor to be proficient. I asked a couple different instructors to do it as a demo and there was a quite a difference. If a guy could practice a little and specialize you could get quite proficient, there is a little time trade, with a better fit the welding time is reduced, with the butt its thin enough that it takes a little effort but the fit time is minimal and simple. If I roll the ends or socket it I can do it with a feeder, its on the edge but can be done.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Salem ,Ohio
    Posts
    3,899

    Cool

    The pipe i welded was flared on one end with a slip joint and it made the welding a lot easier...Bob
    Bob Wright, Grandson of Tee Nee Boat Trailer Founder
    Metal Master Fab Salem, Oh 44460
    Birthplace of the Silver & Deming Drill
    1999 MM185 w/185 Spoolgun,1986 Thunderbolt AC/DC
    Spool Gun conversion. How To Do It. Below.
    http://www.millerwelds.com/resources...php?albumid=48

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by griff01 View Post
    Look again though, there IS oxidation on your pipe.

    Griff
    Yes, you're right. That's what aluminum does. I meant to say that there isn't an over abundance of oxidation, the aluminum isn't flaking off, falling apart, etc.

    Thanks for the help.
    67vw

    (o\_|_/o)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    701

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 67vw View Post
    Yes, you're right. That's what aluminum does. I meant to say that there isn't an over abundance of oxidation, the aluminum isn't flaking off, falling apart, etc.

    Thanks for the help.
    Ok .

    Griff

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