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Thread: Project 2 from agent4573. Category: Welding Table

  1. Default Project 2 from agent4573. Category: Welding Table

    Since I got some awesome X-mas presents I figured it was time to make myself somewhere nice to weld. I have a few wooden work benches in the garage, but I only have a small 12"x24" plate to weld on. Went to the metal supply store today and spent 62 dollars for 2 20' lengths of 1x1x.095 square tubing and a precut piece of 14 gauge steel that was 33.5"x44". I figured that was close enough to what I wanted that I wouldn't even have to cut it. I had to stop for the night because my eyes are getting tired and once they get tired I go cross-eyed and can't judge depth anymore.

    Raw Materials: They cut the 20' lengths in half for me for free, just to make it easier for me to get home.
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    This was my setup for cutting the lengths I need. I used a harbor freight portable bandsaw that someone gave to me a few years ago. I ordered 3 brand new blades for it during my last order, and with a new blade on there, it cut through this tube like butter.
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    This is everything cut to length and layed out to make sure it fits. The four tubes up top are my legs. I ended up cutting two of the tubes to 41.5" instead of 44.5" like I was supposed to. Luckily I always cut the longest pieces first and I realized this before I cut the shorter ones. I just hacked them down to 31.5" and used them as the middle of the table supports, only wasted about 2 feet of material, but I'll turn those into gussets tomorrow.
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    Squared up and ready to tack together.
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    My first welds on the project. 1/16 gold tungsten, 1/16 general purpose filler, #5 cup, 95 amps using the torch switch.
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    My best attempt at trying to square up the legs. Do they sell 3-way clamps to make this easier?
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    I had some 1" stock laying around so I cut 4 pieces and drilled them out. Got one nut tacked onto the leg before my eyes went stupid. Going to put a bolt there here with a lock nut on it, that way I can easily level the table and accomodate my uneven garage floor.
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    This is the how the table stands right now.
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    Tomorrow I'm going to cut some 45 degree gussets for the legs and add some various other odds and ends that I won't devulge until I'm done. I debated putting a full frame around the middle of the legs, but I need the storage space underneath and don't want to fight a bar that limits access. The 45 degree gussets won't be as strong, but will work fine.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  2. #2

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    85 amps may be better for you with the switch and you can use 3/32 tungsten for just about everything thick or thin. As for squaring, if the ends of the tube are cut square I'd just put it against the other piece and weld it. Get yourself a combination square http://www.sears.com/craftsman-16-in...81000P?prdNo=1 they come with a handy scribe for marking metal. You could also use stud mount castors on the legs that will screw right into a welded on nut and still be able to level your table. Ebay is a good source... I think I paid 4 or 5 dollars each for 5" total lock stud mount castors with a 300 lb weight rating.
    2013 250EX : SSC Pedal : I-MIG 250P 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60 p80 torch : 3M Speedglas 9100XX : Evolution Rage 3 DB cold saw

  3. Default

    Never thought about putting castors on it. That's a really good idea to keep things portable.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by agent4573 View Post
    My best attempt at trying to square up the legs. Do they sell 3-way clamps to make this easier?
    Yes. They aren't cheap, but if you do this a lot, they are a joy to use.

    http://www.weldingtipsandtricks.com/...ion-tools.html

    As a DIY project , you could add that feature to the clamps you are using, if you want.
    Long arc, short arc, heliarc and in-the-dark!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by agent4573 View Post
    Tomorrow I'm going to cut some 45 degree gussets for the legs and add some various other odds and ends that I won't devulge until I'm done. I debated putting a full frame around the middle of the legs, but I need the storage space underneath and don't want to fight a bar that limits access. The 45 degree gussets won't be as strong, but will work fine.
    Sounds like you were good this year and Santa took notice! I don't know what you're storing underneath the table, but did you consider making a framed shelf to support the legs, but adding some steel dowels (or tabs and bolts) on the backside that would act as hinges (allowing you to fold the shelf down for room underneath)? Just a thought. Remove a couple of pins or bolts, then pivot the shelf down between the back legs (out of the way). Or what about boxing the sides and back of the table legs near the bottom, but leaving the front unbraced?

    For what it's worth, I use a pair of welding magnets to square legs on projects, one 90 degree magnet on one side of the leg, one on the other side rotated 90 degrees. Three way clamps can be pricey and I'm not sure that the cheap ones are worth the (cheap) cost. If I'm welding thin wall tubing, I cut the ends square with my (used and abused) Wiss airplane snips, but you certainly can't cut anything past 16ga. with those! Your table looks good Agent. I like the idea of putting things on casters too...every tool I own (practically) is on wheels for easy moving!
    Andy
    New Everlast PowerTig 250EX that is begging for me to come up with a few welding projects so it can stretch it's legs. Did someone say aluminum???

    MISC. TOOLS:
    Atlas 618 lathe
    Milwaukee Porta Band with custom made stand
    Dewalt 4-1/2" angle grinder
    Dewalt 14" chop saw

    Strong Hand Nomad portable table
    Juki sewing machine I've had for years (yes I know sewing is for girls)

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by agent4573 View Post
    Never thought about putting castors on it. That's a really good idea to keep things portable.
    You can get mobile base type casters for putting under machines. They have a way to move down so you can roll the table around, then lift up so it will set down on the feet to be more stable for working on. Many people make their own or places like Shop Fox and others have them. They are an option for a lot of woodworking tools as well. I got a bunch from the Sears outlet store that were made to go on table saws, and use them for a lot of things.
    Long arc, short arc, heliarc and in-the-dark!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rambozo View Post
    Yes. They aren't cheap
    Boy, I'll say! Wow! You have to weld a lot of frames together to justify that expense!

    http://store.cyberweld.com/sthawecl3ax.html
    http://store.cyberweld.com/stha3axweclw.html

    Here is an example of the magnets I use....from my least favorite store on the planet:
    http://www.harborfreight.com/7-1-2-h...der-41629.html

    I missed the part about your floor being uneven, so my idea wouldn't work well unless you setup each leg individually, or created one heck of a flat (level) table top for your welding table. I never really counted on any devices to square frames or boxes that I built, but they do help immensely while tacking. After the tacking is done, I simply pull my tape measure out and start measuring diagonals. It's surprising to me how out of square things can become if you allow even the slightest gap (or dirt/metal shavings) between the fixture and your workpieces.
    Andy
    New Everlast PowerTig 250EX that is begging for me to come up with a few welding projects so it can stretch it's legs. Did someone say aluminum???

    MISC. TOOLS:
    Atlas 618 lathe
    Milwaukee Porta Band with custom made stand
    Dewalt 4-1/2" angle grinder
    Dewalt 14" chop saw

    Strong Hand Nomad portable table
    Juki sewing machine I've had for years (yes I know sewing is for girls)

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by youngnstudly View Post
    Boy, I'll say! Wow! You have to weld a lot of frames together to justify that expense!

    http://store.cyberweld.com/sthawecl3ax.html
    http://store.cyberweld.com/stha3axweclw.html
    They can be had at other stores for $145 + shipping http://www.google.com/shopping/produ...ed=0CFoQ8wIwAA
    2013 250EX : SSC Pedal : I-MIG 250P 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60 p80 torch : 3M Speedglas 9100XX : Evolution Rage 3 DB cold saw

  9. #9
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    I didn't realize this, but I think the 2 links I posted show different models of the 3 axis clamp (hence the price jump between the 2). It's still a pretty steep cost if you are planning to buy 4 (or even just 2) of these at $145. I never had luck with the fancy clamps used at my work, and the journeyman welder at work apparently shared my view as I never saw him use them either when tacking or welding. However, I don't know if the ones we had were Stronghand name brand clamps or not. Just my 2 cents.
    Andy
    New Everlast PowerTig 250EX that is begging for me to come up with a few welding projects so it can stretch it's legs. Did someone say aluminum???

    MISC. TOOLS:
    Atlas 618 lathe
    Milwaukee Porta Band with custom made stand
    Dewalt 4-1/2" angle grinder
    Dewalt 14" chop saw

    Strong Hand Nomad portable table
    Juki sewing machine I've had for years (yes I know sewing is for girls)

  10. #10
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    Where I used to work, we would often spend two days building welding fixtures that would save two minutes tacking and welding a part. With runs of up to 10,00 pieces it was well worth it. With cube type items those would pay for themselves in less than a day.

    It depends on what you're building. Also for some places it depends on if you pay your welders by the hour or by the piece.
    Long arc, short arc, heliarc and in-the-dark!

  11. #11
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    I was union so I always got paid by the hour (hence, all the union jokes everyone made). We did our share of building welding fixtures, but I can't think of anything that I made 10,000 of at one time (including hanger straps, which I've made a million of in total!). Of course working in a production sheet metal shop had it's advantages when building jigs as the 10' shear handled 8 ga capacity and our CNC plasma table handled 3/8" capacity on a 126"x63" bed. The scale of work we needed jigs for was minimal to begin with. My comment was more pointed at the home hobbyist who has to pay for his/her own fixtures and tooling (out-of-pocket), who focuses on their own personal projects with very little or no customer work coming in. Someone like myself! I often forget that a lot of people on here work in the welding industry or are business owners, and expensive tooling is seen as a write-off or year-end bonus! Those lucky ducks have it so easy (just kidding!)!
    Andy
    New Everlast PowerTig 250EX that is begging for me to come up with a few welding projects so it can stretch it's legs. Did someone say aluminum???

    MISC. TOOLS:
    Atlas 618 lathe
    Milwaukee Porta Band with custom made stand
    Dewalt 4-1/2" angle grinder
    Dewalt 14" chop saw

    Strong Hand Nomad portable table
    Juki sewing machine I've had for years (yes I know sewing is for girls)

  12. Default

    At 150 bucks each I can't see spending that for maybe one or two tables a year. It doesn't really matter to me if the legs are perfectly square. As long as it doesn't wobble I'm ok and the bolts should take care of that. I need to get some caster for my bandsaw because it always seems to be in the way, so maybe I'll order a bunch and put the table on casters as well. For now though, the bolts will work and hopefully I don't have to move it too much. I was at harbor freight the other day to get those little 90 degree clamps and completely forgot to pick up magnets. I'll have to go back and get some next week.



    Cut my gussets down to size. Used my bandsaw and just marked 45 degrees to cut by hand. Got close on most of them.
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    Everything all tacked together.
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    Switched to 3/32" gold tungsten, 3/32 general purpose filler, #7 cup, 95 amps on the torch switch. I went bigger because the gussets had some 1/8-1/4" gaps I had to fill. Didn't come out too bad.
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    I had all those left over 45 degree pieces from hacking out the gussets, so I rounded one corner on each and tacked them to the right side of the table. A one pound tube of filler fits perfectly in each one, for a total of 6 pounds of storage. I can always add more later if needed, but I doubt it.
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    On the other side I bent some more of that one inch flat stock I had laying around and will use it to hang the cables and torch on when not in use.
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    Thats about it. I'll post a few more pictures once I get it all in place. I sprayed it with a little coat of silver paint just to help prevent rust on the legs and underside. Left the top as a bare surface.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  13. #13
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    It's too bad that table doesn't fold up for easier storage. I like how you used every last scrap of metal though! Do you MIG weld more often than TIG? It might be a good idea to get a piece of (dirt cheap) 24 gauge galvanized sheet metal bent up at a local HVAC shop to cover your nice table top when MIG welding. I messed up a nice table top at work years ago while MIG welding (dingle berries EVERYWHERE!), and from that point forward I had to use the DA to smooth out the top surface after MIG welding. Of course that always promoted rust during the cold weather as the table was outside under an awning. It's impossible to stop surface rust when leaving a welding table outside, even when it's covered up and under an awning!
    Andy
    New Everlast PowerTig 250EX that is begging for me to come up with a few welding projects so it can stretch it's legs. Did someone say aluminum???

    MISC. TOOLS:
    Atlas 618 lathe
    Milwaukee Porta Band with custom made stand
    Dewalt 4-1/2" angle grinder
    Dewalt 14" chop saw

    Strong Hand Nomad portable table
    Juki sewing machine I've had for years (yes I know sewing is for girls)

  14. #14

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    Nice job, I still need to make a nice table sometime down the road. I assume the tubes on the front are for your rods? If so that is a good idea. I also like the idea of welding on the nuts that will assist in leveling the table. The covering sheet for MIG seems like a good idea also.
    Jason
    Everlast 255EXT - Perfection
    Everlast PowerPro 256 - UPS Demolished
    Everlast MTS200s
    12 Ton Shop Press
    DeWalt Hand Tools/ChopSaw

  15. Default

    I don't do a whole lot of mig welding unless its repair work and normally doesn't fit on a table. This table will be used almost entirely for TIG welding. Luckily for me, we average about 5% humidity around here year round, so surface rust isn't a huge concern for me, even if I left it outside uncovered. As far as using scraps, why waste metal if you don't have to? I could have made a much nicer looking holder for the rod, but it would have cost a few bucks in steel to do it. As long as its functional, I don't really care about how good it looks.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  16. Default

    Would an Anti spatter spray (PAM) help with the MIG dingleballs?

  17. Default

    Probably, but if you sprayed your welding table with PAM it would probably end up in your welds before long.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  18. #18

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    I have been eye balling those 3 axis clamps. I am going to invest in a couple of them. Anything to help speed up a process is a worthy investment
    Lincoln Eagle Engine Drive
    Everlast MTS 250
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    HTP Mig 2400
    Everlast Power Plasma 60C --> Just need to finish my CNC Plasma Table!
    Miller Spectrum 375 Extreme Plasma cutter
    Victor cutting torch
    HF 20 Ton Shop Press
    HF 4x6 Band Saw
    HF Air Compressor
    Northern Tool Drill Press


    www.murphywelding.com

  19. #19

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    I've had good luck so far with the magnetic arrow clamps. As long as I've made accurate cuts, watched my fit-up, and tacked opposite sides I've been able to keep everything square. The only problem is after a few days of grinding and clamping, those magnets end up with metal shavings all over them and it can cause you to be off if too much builds up.
    IMig 200

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kendall View Post
    I've had good luck so far with the magnetic arrow clamps. As long as I've made accurate cuts, watched my fit-up, and tacked opposite sides I've been able to keep everything square. The only problem is after a few days of grinding and clamping, those magnets end up with metal shavings all over them and it can cause you to be off if too much builds up.
    I would never have believed it unless I tried it myself but just using a shop brush gets the shavings off of the magnets really well.

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