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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Lake of the Ozarks MO
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    3,530

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fishy Jim View Post
    FK, do you actually build to an engineered design, or is it seat of the pants material spec?



    I'm not an engineer if that is what you are asking. Are you?(seriously) You came across quite condescending there. (what's up with that?) Do you need an "engineer" to design/approve everything you do before you can build it?
    Just because a design is on a set of prints does not mean a engineer designed it. Believe me I know when I need to get the real engineers involved. In most of my work the "engineers" have usually fallen a little short and that's where I come in. Too many "engineers" don't know jack about using aluminum and don't factor in things like cycles and HAZ's. They try to use shortcuts and use steel welding techniques on aluminum. Maybe they need a little more "seat of the pants" experience.
    BTW My father in law is an engineer, my son went 4 years to an engineering university (and has his masters and is presently working on his PHD) and one nephew is an engineer with his masters degree.


    Like I said earlier, you need far less volume of steel to accomplish the same strength. So in common practice (build to design strength rather than volume), it is cheaper to use steel than AL. But, if volume is the only comparison (such as a heavy jig made of a solid chunk), AL is cheaper. You need more AL by volume than you do steel to achieve a specific load capacity. At the same strength, the AL will be much lighter than the steel (and will have cost you more).

    I got what you said the first time, so you didn't need to repeat it.
    Even on the link you just provided size for size, on the sizes I checked, aluminum was NOT cheaper but was almost the same or slightly higher. Big chunks too I don't think it (your link) is a very good way to compare the two anyway...comparing your best deals out there is the real world method. When I do that, for me, aluminum IS higher. In fact I don't recall a time aluminum was ever cheaper than steel.
    But I do get what you are saying.
    In my area steel is a good bit less than aluminum size for size. I get a very good price on new steel but I buy a LOT more weight of aluminum.
    I wouldn't consider buying metal online unless it was very short pieces of an odd size. They always seem too high to me. I have 2 steel supliers within 5 miles of my shop that happen to be on the way to work. I use 2 aluminum suppliers that deliver to my shop and one of them runs a free truck delivery once a week.
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  2. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Mpls, MN
    Posts
    1,790

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    Discount is one of at least 6 steel yards that are all about 5 miles from my house/shop. They simply have a retail online catalog which makes it easy to get rough prices when quoting. They were charging 3/lb for drops, while Garelick (a block away) was only charging 2.25. The difference is in what's available. Garelick doesn't have much variety in drops due to not having a sawing/cutting operation as part of their business. Garlick will deliver anything that they can put on a flatbed free; discount wants 60 bucks.

    I have yard hook ups at Discount as well, so I don't pay retail on full sticks either and I typically get a scale "reduction" on my drops too.

    Most everything I make is pretty small, so I don't buy high volume.
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  3. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oahu, Hawaii
    Posts
    2,469

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    yeesh!!! You guys make me so jealous!!! Basically, we just have one shop that supplies aluminum....they got the market over here....I wish I could buy a container full of aluminum, (as would everyone), but renting a lot to store it,
    organize it and such, with the cost of land over here, that's why we pay so much....sorry I forgot to call and get prices....I"ll try on Monday as they are closed tomorrow....
    bert
    p.s. and no, it's not on the way to work, but not too far away either...
    with traffic, maybe 20 minutes away....
    I'm not late...
    I'm just on Hawaiian Time

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Lake of the Ozarks MO
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fishy Jim View Post
    Discount is one of at least 6 steel yards that are all about 5 miles from my house/shop. They simply have a retail online catalog which makes it easy to get rough prices when quoting. They were charging 3/lb for drops, while Garelick (a block away) was only charging 2.25. The difference is in what's available. Garelick doesn't have much variety in drops due to not having a sawing/cutting operation as part of their business. Garlick will deliver anything that they can put on a flatbed free; discount wants 60 bucks.

    I have yard hook ups at Discount as well, so I don't pay retail on full sticks either and I typically get a scale "reduction" on my drops too.

    Most everything I make is pretty small, so I don't buy high volume.
    We are not all that different...I have to use several places to work out my best deals, depending on size and availability and personality.
    And Integrity has been a factor as well. With that said it is the warehouse with the biggest liars that I end up using the most because they have the extrusions I use the most and deliver for nothing... as opposed to the really helpful guys that use a local delivery truck that delivers everyday that costs me an extra $20 or so.
    Miller Dynasty 700...OH YEA BABY!!
    MM 350P...PULSE SPRAYIN' MONSTER
    Miller Dynasty 200 DX "Blue Lightning"

    Miller Bobcat 225 NT
    Miller 30-A Spoolgun
    Miller WC-115-A
    Miller Spectrum 300
    Miller Spoolmate 200
    Miller 225 Thunderbolt
    SPEEDGLAS 9100XX

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