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Thread: Cutting holes?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    East Central ND
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    9

    Default Cutting holes?

    100_1019.jpg 100_1020.jpg As usual, I am about done with a little project, and decided to ask advice about how I should have done it. I am putting on a new cutting edge on a 60" wide trac hoe bucket. The original edge is part of the bucket, and was not drilled for a replacement edge. So making 10 1" holes in 1" thick very hard steel has been tough going. First I tried my good drill bits. I have drilled out good grade 8 bolts with these cobalt bits with not problems. They would hardly touch the hardened steel of the old cutting edge. So I put the gouging tip on the 80 amp plasma cutter. Massive blow back until I got a hole through. Not happy with what it was doing to the torch head. Tried the oxy/acetylene. First hole not too bad, it blew right through, and I made the hole to size with the plasma = I do not have a big enough oxy/acc tip to do a good job on 1" thick. Next hole the oxy/acc blew down in about a 1/2 inch and stopped. Cleaned the tip, no help. Used the plasma for the rest of the hole. I managed to get all 10 holes opened up by using combination of both units, and will trim them tomorrow to better match the new cutting edge that will be bolted under the old edge. I wonder what the machine shop would have used to punch through? Just a really big oxy/acetylene outfit? The plasma worked well once I had a small hole to start with. This is the first time I have to go through hardened (may be A/R) material that thick. As the front of the old cutting edge is rounded from wear, will welding in a bit of filler to the bottom of the old edge hold to the hardened steel? I was thinking that it should just pack with dirt and not worry about it?
    Last edited by d6joe; 03-12-2013 at 09:31 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    northern NJ
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    Default

    Fastest way is most likely the right size torch tip (#2). If you don't get it preheated enough it will pierce about halfway through as you described. Sometimes I will preheat from both sides before trying to pierce a hole in thick plate.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Milan Michigan
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    Default

    I would have just welded it on, The problem with torching the hole makes it suseptable to tearing at one of your holes because its not a smooth hole.

    I'm not a machine shop and certainly not a cutting expert, They might make a high quality annular cutter that goes into a Mag Drill that might cut through it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    northern NJ
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    Default

    I agree with the holes weakening it. But I most likely also would have burned them in. Judging by the photos a 60" wide excavator bucket with no shanks/teeth is in light duty application. Loading gravel/product, digging in sand or dredging silt so in this application I think it would be fine. Only the OP or equipment owner could tell us though.

    I would also assume that the owner wanted a quick fix instead of replacing the edge.
    Last edited by MMW; 03-13-2013 at 07:10 AM.
    MM250
    Trailblazer 250g
    22a feeder
    Lincoln ac/dc 225
    Victor O/A
    MM200 black face
    Whitney 30 ton hydraulic punch
    Lown 1/8x 36" power roller
    Arco roto-phase model M
    Vectrax 7x12 band saw
    Miller spectrum 875
    30a spoolgun w/wc-24
    Syncrowave 250
    RCCS-14

  5. #5

    Default

    That cutting edge is designed to be cut off and a new one welded on. With the nuts on the top side of the plow bolts like you have and poor sized holes I doubt that you will ever keep that thing tight.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    596

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by oldtimer View Post
    That cutting edge is designed to be cut off and a new one welded on. With the nuts on the top side of the plow bolts like you have and poor sized holes I doubt that you will ever keep that thing tight.
    he will have to tack weld the nuts to be safe.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    28

    Default

    I would have welded it too,remember when you do cut/pierce a hole with O/A as mentioned preheat it but also to back off with your tip a little just as you start to peirce.If you do decide to weld it make sure you get the paint off and I would use 7018 SMAW or wire .045 min. dia. but pre heat and weld it solid front back and sides.These are easy to torch/air arc off it when the time comes for that.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    East Central ND
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    9

    Default

    That is just the "ditch cleaning" bucket for my 200 size trac hoe. I wanted the double thickness as it does hit a few rocks, and I felt it was a built a bit thin for that width. The new edge is a CAT one, about 1 1/4 thick and 12" deep, it is made for a dozer blade, and the old edge is 1" thick. got it cleaned up today and tightened the bolts to about 500 ft/lbs. I have a digging bucket with teeth on it that gets all the rough work when digging, removing trees, using the thumb. I plan to check the bolts to make sure they stay tight, but most of the use will be in sod, sand, and silt getting ditch bottoms back on to grade. I was thinking that welding would require that both edges be pre heated and slowly cooled to not take the hardenes out of the metal. Thanks for the reply's.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
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    Milan Michigan
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    BD1, Old timer is right about the bolts loosening, Tacking them wont help, They wear down into the hole because of a bad fit, Its not because the nuts back off.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    East Central ND
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    Ended up I was real happy with the fit on 7 of the 10 bolts, if they do loosen up, might have to touch up the holes with some weld or beat some steel bushing in to tighten up the 3 I am not real happy with. This bucket only gets about 20 hrs a year, so it should be easy to keep an eye on. The 30" digging bucket gets the crap beat out of it, so I should be ok.

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