Welding on the road?

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02 Nov 2012 21:45 #1 by dandjcr
dandjcr created the topic: Welding on the road?
Forum Home > On the Road > Welding on the road?

Dandj
Member
Posts: 367
I always take some rudimentary welding gear on our travels but never had to use it.
What bush welding has anyone had to do and how did you do it?
I'd love to get a Readywelder while our $ is high. It would add MIG capability to my crappy old arc welder as well as provide a battery welding capability. But how often would I use it on the road? None of our major breakdowns have needed welding, so far...
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David and Janet Ribbans, Oka 148

July 2, 2011 at 9:41 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Peter & Sandra James Oka 374
Member
Posts: 413
I've carried the rods and leads off the Easy welder on most trips, have made repairs to everything from box trailers to springs over the years, mostly on other travellers rigs, either in our group or others. Even rescued a tour group once with broken suspension arm on a Patrol.
Light stuff two batteries and small rods, heavy stuff 3 batteries and big rods.
Welded up a fellow travellers Range Rover draglink on the Anne Beadell one trip, it lasted all the way home and then for many years afterward.
DC welding is much easier than AC, very smooth to use. Reverse the polarity too neg to the rod and pos to the job(ground).
There is an excellent article on bush welding and how to do it on the Lcool Toyota site in the tech section.

Peter
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Oka 374 LT Van

July 2, 2011 at 10:27 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Dandj
Member
Posts: 367
Thanks for the feedback Peter, yes the Toyota site (here) was the inspiration which got me thinking about bush welding.
Interesting that most of your fixes are to other people's vehicles, our ratio is about 70:30, others to ourselves.
All our major problems so far have been "bolt-on" issues (springs, suspension pins, bullbar bolts, brakes, steering box leak) or electrical.
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David and Janet Ribbans, Oka 148

July 2, 2011 at 12:34 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Dave and Pauline Gray
Member
Posts: 84
At our Lake Disapointment campsite in 09 I discovered a problem with the top mounting bracket on the Oka:s rear airbags [ the only part made and fitted by a so called professional spring and suspension person] anyhow we got set up with our batterys welding gear etc when a convoy of vehicles pulled in and one kind gentleman professed to be a boilermaker and had done numerous repairs with the setup we had took over and welded a substanial repair which is still in place today and then last year with a group from Exploroz fame witnessed a very good repair on a couple of cracked steel rims with a battery operated mig an expensive little item but certainly paid for itself that day so we carry the basics knowing that it is possible to make a repair if only to get to the nearest help.
Cheers Dave
July 2, 2011 at 2:35 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Paul Scherek
Member
Posts: 136
Hi all,
Thanks for a very interesting topic. I had planned to take my small inverter stick welder and run it off my 1500 watt power inverter, but the maximum I could get with this set-up would be about 80 amps. Using the batteries seems a much better idea, and less weight to carry.
The Readywelder certainly would be nice, but the budget would need a bit of a stretch. This direct battery idea is just brilliant. And with the weight I save, I could pack the angle grinder.......

Cheers,
Paul

July 2, 2011 at 3:08 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Peter_n_Margaret
Member
Posts: 198
I carry a Readywelder II. Brilliant piece of kit. Would not be without it.
200A plus on 24V, lots more on 36V.
And I have used it in the side of a track in the Kimberley.
When I take a tinny I also carry a hobby size argon and aluminium wire.
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Cheers Peter, OKA196 Motorhome. www.oka4wd.com/xt196.htm



July 2, 2011 at 7:07 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Peter & Sandra James Oka 374
Member
Posts: 413
Another thing I forgot to add was that several times I've welded on and off for a few hours on a set of batteries and they have shown bugger all discharge wise. Still started their respective vehicles as per normal, not even slow to crank.
Dave would that have been Mick O with the split wheels? We've done several trips with him, weren't on that one though.
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Oka 374 LT Van

July 2, 2011 at 7:10 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Dave and Pauline Gray
Member
Posts: 84
Your right Pete It was Mick with John and Scotty doing the welding on 2 of Micks big jiggers wheels it was quite extrodinary as they both cracked in the cutting on the same sand hill and we were only crawling along and had been for a few klms. Suzette and Gabby and us gave them valuable moral support, Mick supervised .lol.
July 2, 2011 at 8:17 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Peter & Sandra James Oka 374
Member
Posts: 413
That sounds about right. They were apparently cheap rims which he has since replaced with better quality heavier ones.
Had he lost a wheel on the back when you were with him? I think it was later on that trip he had one come off while mobile, trashed the bin behind the wheel under the tray. It was about the same time he removed the spacers he had on to widen the rear wheel track to the same as the front ;-)) We all told him they would cause grief, there is a very good reason they are illegal for on road use.
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Oka 374 LT Van

July 2, 2011 at 8:22 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Peter & Sandra James Oka 374
Member
Posts: 413
I forgot something else to mention under this topic. I guess most would have seen the bloke welding coke cans with alloy rods using either LPG, MAPP gas or some other form of (relatively) low heat source at shows and field days.
They really do work for small alloy repairs, I've welded up alloy power steering pipes that have had a hole rubbed in them, same on alloy radiator and also a thermostat housing that had cracked. I usually use a MAPP gas torch but have done ok with an LPG torch as well.
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Oka 374 LT Van

July 2, 2011 at 8:28 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Dave and Pauline Gray
Member
Posts: 84
Before, Ihad arranged to meet them south of Broome and show them an old track in which would take them in close to the DTS and we were going to go with them but we had to pull out the next day as Pauline was not to well which was a shame but we are planning to to go back in that area next year after you have shown us a bit of the Simpson.
July 2, 2011 at 8:31 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Hal Harvey
Site Owner
Posts: 510
Here's a possible alternative suggested by Brian Carr, owner of #203 and a welder by profession. He speaks highly of the Unipower product, which is made in Malaga (suburb of Perth) and is in use by many mobile fencing contractors, amongst others.

I've uploaded the brochure to the site too. Brian is unfortunately unable to directly contribute to this conversation for the next few weeks, as he's about to do a lap of the midwest and southern Pilbara in a vintage tractor, as you do. But those who understand this welding game more than me might have some input.

The advantage of the Unipower appears to be the always-ready setup, and AC output; whereas the ReadyWelder means removing and replacing batteries, but no requirement to have the vehicle within a few metres of the job. The Unipower is the more expensive of the two I'm told, but I haven't followed up on an installed cost.
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Hal

July 7, 2011 at 3:39 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Peter_n_Margaret
Member
Posts: 198
I have a product at home that is very similar to that. Came off an emergency services vehicle.
For sale if anyone wants it, but you will have to wait until I get home in about a year (or so).
Great idea, but not as versatile as the Readywelder II Mig. Needs a long set of heavy cables to get to the back of the vehicle.
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Cheers Peter, OKA196 Motorhome. www.oka4wd.com/xt196.htm



July 7, 2011 at 6:56 PM

David and Janet Ribbans - Oka 148
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