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Thread: Pontoon Again

  1. #11
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    Fusion , come to think of it I've never tested a pontoon that didn't have more leaks than whatever I was fixing. All the ones I've worked on leaked where the angles are welded to the top of the logs. I figure the factory's that build the logs probably make a log then pressure check it then add on the angles , etc..
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  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Showdog75 View Post
    Fusion , come to think of it I've never tested a pontoon that didn't have more leaks than whatever I was fixing. All the ones I've worked on leaked where the angles are welded to the top of the logs. I figure the factory's that build the logs probably make a log then pressure check it then add on the angles , etc..
    If they have been running that puppy hard enuff to flap the fins and tear'em off, then there is a good chance it has also been diagonally twisting the entire boat.....which on a pontoon boat, is THE KISS OF DEATH
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  3. #13
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    Good grief,
    Guess I'll start today building a pressure tester I have in mind. Just a way to add the air with a gage and use soapy water. Looks the the very first thing to do is check everything.

    Yesterday, I welded a sample guard and didn't like the results. Instead of adding angle I'll be breaking the guard at the toon edge at a 90.

    Learning allot right here. Thanks for the great advise, I'll keep reading.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    You really don't need to put much pressure into these things. I have used a air pump for filling inflatable toys and you would be surprized how much force that puts on the pontoon. With only that little bit of pressure the pontoon moved and produced plenty of bubbles from the leaks. When I do them at my shop I just jam a air want in the hole and pack a rag around it.

    I do not remember what fusion said but I don't think you would need any more then 1 psi.

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  5. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Hardrock,

    Not trying to give you a hard time or rain on the parade, but I have some real concerns.

    Went back and read a few of your posts from awhile back. Seems you're just getting the hang of this "tig welding".

    The comment about buying aluminum at the box stores raised further questions. Frankly, I don't know anyone serious about welding aluminum that uses that stuff for anything "serious".

    The comment about "getting some 5356" also raised eyebrows.

    I know everyone wants to be able to "do their own stuff", but being a good tig welder also involves knowing when a project may exceed one's experience level. While an experienced tig welder such as FK or Showdog may make this type repair look easy, and they can describe the process they use, it's not an "easy fix" and can go bad in a NY minute.

    I can tell you from personal experience, and I'm sure FK and Showdog will confirm it , that there's nothing worse than having to go in and try to do a quality repair after an inexperienced guy has made things worse. I get it all the time. The owner who loaded a spool of aluminum in his little mig and went to town, the owner who's buddy "knows how to tig weld", and blew holes in the thin material, and God forbid, the guy who took the aluma-weld solder to the damaged area.

    I'm not saying you can't do this repair, but I would highly recommend you do a lot of practice on similar gauge material (scrap) before you even think about putting a torch to the boat itself. A little too much heat here or there and you create a bigger problem than you have now. Sounds like you've got a nice rig there. Would hate to see you create a bigger problem for yourself.

    One thing that FK and Showdog have not brought up is the fact that the tube has already been welded once in the same area (when original splash rail was installed). This created it's own HAZ and somewhat weakened the aluminum in that area. Double pass welds (going back over a previous weld) are something we have to be extremely careful about. Here, you don't have much choice, but it's another factor that enters into the equation.

    Bottom line.

    What seems to be a somewhat straightforward repair may in fact require the services of a very experienced tigger.
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