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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    16

    Default Cold weather stick welding??

    'Evening ladies and gents! I'm am now the proud owner of the Thunderbolt XL ac/dc unit. Bought it off a certain auction site the other day and hopefully it'll be here soon!! Having just joined the boards this is my first post and hopefully not the last! lol

    I work for the County Engineer's office, the Highway Dept. to be more exact. During the summer I am a lift bridge operator. During the winter whilst it is shut down I am transferred to the garage to pretty much just do oddball stuff, busy work, to stay on payroll. In some of my down time I've be teaching myself to stick weld with a Lincoln Idealarc ac/dc unit. After two weeks of almost daily practice I'm getting to the point where I'm feeling pretty darn comfortable with my quality. Not where I want it to be but good enough for small projects. I bought the Thunderbolt to keep here at home as I'm definitely going to use it- I'm rebuilding a Jeep Wrangler from the ground up, swapping in a straight 6 in the process. Muhahahaha. I've removed the engine mounts and I'm at the point where I need to weld them in their new positions. This is where my problem lies- I'm completely out of the elements- in a car port but I'm not out of the cold. Up here on Lake Erie it is finally getting cold and I guess I'm wondering if I need to prep the work before welding in freezing temps. Do I need to heat the work area?? Also what rod would you recommend? The surfaces are clean so would 7018 be a better choice than the 6011? I've only worked with AC so far- would DC have any benifits in this situation? Hmmmm... okay, can't think of any more questions right now! lol I guess this will just be the tip of the iceberg!!

    Thanks for taking the time to read this guys!!

    Scuffy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Toledo,Ohio
    Posts
    14

    Default Preheat

    It never hurts to preheat. Use a propane torch and you'll see the moisture work it's way back. I've seen I-beams drip water when heated in winter. As for the rod, if the weld area is ground clean,use the 7018 on dc. TJ
    Miller Syncrowave 250
    Miller CP 200 w/S21-E & Spoolmatic 3
    Miller Bobcat 225

    Hobart R-300

    "There are two kind of people in this world. Those who can weld and those who can't." Jesse James

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    16

    Default

    TJ- Thanks a lot man! I kinda figured as much, it seemed like it was common sense but being fairly new to all of this I wanted to check it out first. Although a slightly different situation I like to adhere to the"Measure twice and cut once." mentality!

    I'll get some pix posted of my progress and some of my fun!

    Scuffy

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Salem ,Ohio
    Posts
    3,913

    Cool

    I live in NE Ohio and we are having Monsoon rains like almost everybody else and i have the same Thunderbolt and i use 7018 DC everyday, rain, shine or snow....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

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    16

    Default

    Howdy Bob! I'm actually up here in Ashtabula. Good to see some local representation! :-) Hope ya keep afloat!
    Last edited by Scuffy; 01-16-2007 at 12:04 AM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Startford, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada
    Posts
    304

    Default

    Hey man and welcome! I have been told welding on preheated metal does wonders... I tried and it really does, When I stick welded I found it was easier to weld a clean looking weld and maybe it was jsut me but it didnt stick as easy? But if you are on a clean surface I think a 6011 would be an excelent choice but if you are looking to make a weld look good then go with a 7018 but really if it was for engine mounts it shouldent matter but your choice both would work very well.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Alberta Red Deer
    Posts
    373

    Default rods to use

    if u are welding motor mounts i would recommend a 7018 it will be the best for that application. because it is a dynamic load rod and it will look the best. just recommend you use a up hand progression or in the flat position they are not mad for down hill progression.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    16

    Default

    Wow! Thanks for all the responses guys! It really is appreciated. The wait continues though. Hopefully I'll have my Thunderbolt by the end of the week. It's already driving me crazy! Nothing like doing something you love outside AND freezing your butt off. The north coast is gonna get it this week, or that's what they tell us anyway!

    Question for ya while I'm thinking of it. Is there really and difference between the Idealarc AC/DC units I've been working with and the 300A Thunderbolt AC/DC units?? Why is the Ideararc so much larger??

    Scuffy
    Last edited by Scuffy; 01-16-2007 at 12:06 AM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    163

    Default

    preheat makes a difference on weld quality with some of the hardened/tool/alloy steels but mid steel is more forgiving. The lincoln is bigger because its an industrial machine and has a much longer duty cycle, made to weld all day long, everyday. The smaller units will overheat if you weld too long with them but shouldn't be a problem in your situation/setting.

    Do you plan on using thru bolts in addition to the weld?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Western, NY
    Posts
    28

    Default

    Due to the fact of what you are doing I would definetely use 7018. The new motor mounts may be mild steel but the frame will probably be a little better grade. Some truck frames are in the 100,000 lb tensile strengh category. Perheat is a definite also. Even if you only get it up to a 200 degrees it will make a big difference.
    I have done a lot of work on truck frames over the years. Haven't had one let go yet. You will want to weld them uphill if they are vertical welds and try not to get any undercut on the edge of the weld.

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