Thanks for the kind words, but I promise I can blow a hole or lay some turd-looking welds on there just like everyone else.
Getting a nice weld does involve a little skill, but mostly it's in the prep (making sure it's clean), making sure it fits well, and getting the machine set correctly.
BTW, I learned to weld out of embarrassment...
When I started doing this years ago, I started working for a person rebuilding total-loss wrecks. I worked as an apprentice but quickly advanced because of attention to detail...In other words, the less I did that he had to correct, the more responsibility I was given. Speed was important to him, but quality was top priority. However he had only one person that he trusted with his welding, and it wasn't me. It was the older guy working on the other side of the shop. I would get something ready, cut it, fit it, tack it, then sit back and watch someone else finish my job.
I couldn't stand it. I had a family member who was a welding instructor, so I would go home every day from work and practice welding on anything from damaged fenders to plate steel. My welding skills started to improve.
One day, the guy who normally did the welding was out sick...so the boss relented and asked me to weld the floorpan only on a top and tail section. He would save the A pillar and rocker panels for his 'welder'. The next day he was out. And the next. Finally the boss asked if I was comfortable welding the rockers and windshield posts. Of course I agreed and from that point forward, I did all my own welding. Eventually, I replaced the experienced bodyman, but only after learning everything I could from him. Not all good, but knowledge nonetheless.
The boss? I still work with him on a regular basis. Primarily on old car restorations, but we still build a few total loss vehicles along...
Sorry for the thread hijack...
great story and inspiring, especially about the determination. I have that drive in me too. Funny how you mentioned things you did in your garage helped you when the light was shined on you. Same thing for me in a way cause when I cut out little patches and kept welding them in I had no idea it would prepare me to do a hudson where I had to metal fab a bunch of stuff. Funny, I looked at the Hudson and asked the boss... "how and the hell is anyone gonna fix that with no parts??? Who's gonna weld it?" Then he told me I'd be doing it. So for the first week into it I was REALLY nervous til the confidence started to build. Learned a lot about welding since then but there's plenty of more to learn as well.
Any more pictures of progress, or other truck projects?
I guess the guy doesn't have money this week to pay for work to be done on it. It's just sitting there with only the step and cleaning up some things. Funny, this thing will be cleaned up on it's rear! Would be funny if it totally destroys the cab corners rolling it over. I'll take a pic of that. That ought to be funny.
Just realized I have no new pics cause I need to save memory card space for filming but tomorrow I'll be sure to take some pics from some different angles since there will be nothing noteworthy to film tomorrow.
Well when I do mine I'm planning on making a steel tube stand that will have plug in pieces both front and rear to roll it over either front or back. The cab will bolt to it at the mount points. I may even end up doing a funky rotisery deal, using the upper door hinge points and the latch point, these will also be the support jig, as well as for measurement purposes so there is no crappy weld it in deal for support etc. I'm a strict factory original person doing these trucks.
that rotisserie is gonna be really helpful for the step cause there's no need to do all your plug welds from the front. Makes it much easier to cutt it out by simply drilling it out instead of using a spot cutter. Also very helpful to do the inner cab corners.
I wish we had one. This job would be a lot faster.
Well got the cab off, the wood hoist beam worked great. Lifted at the upper door sills with a cherry picker engine hoist, that the beam setup was cross bolted to, center of gravity was right at the front seat mount beam in the floor for front and back CG.
The rotisery deal can be made from a couple of cheapy harbor freight engine stands lengthened up to allow the swing and the rotation made horizontal instead of at the angle they are at. And could be mounted either to the door openings via that upove idea, or a cradle that goes under to the cab mount points. It all shouldn't set ya back more than say 200 at the most for materials.
Be VERY careful using cheap engine stands as a rotisserie because they don't have a wide footprint and can tip over easily when you rotate the load. It can be difficult to center the load properly on an engine stand that isn't meant to hold that type of work. I don't know what it costs to make a good stand but you can get plans online and I believe they are free. A customer of mine brought us a couple cars on a rotisserie he built and it was much more stable than engine stands that another customer brought and I refused to use.
Originally Posted by icrman
Here's a picture of the good rotisserie.
Last edited by Len; 04-09-2011 at 12:06 AM.
04-10-2011, 02:20 AM
I agree about the foot print of the engine stands. And that may need to be fixed, but the basic stuff it there to work with, and the cost is about the same as the materials and way cheaper than the fab work, a simple weld a wider bar is all it takes along with the moving up the upright post. I've dealt with things that weigh in the 40 ton range so a 500 to 600 pound cab if its that much is like a feather. I can pick one side up, so it can't be too bad.
My biggest problem is the lack of space, I'd have to roll it outside before turning it and not sure yet if I have the height to even do that. We will see. It is sure nice to have the cab off to do the interior and front and rear windows.
04-12-2011, 02:48 AM
Will that spot weld cutter work with out those clamps? As there would be no way to use them on the step area of these trucks???? Thanks
Originally Posted by MARTINSR
04-12-2011, 09:11 AM
Yes it will, however, if you open your mind a little big you find that there IS a way to get behind the weld 95% of the time. I don't know about the particular place you are talking about, but you can usually take an air chisel and cut away metal that you are going to be removing anyway and gain access for the spot weld drills clamp. I have removed floors and inner quarters and such that when first looking at it using the drill wouldn't work. Spot welds all the way out in the middle of the panel for instance. Then you start thinking about it and that panel is going to be removed and tossed anyway, so just cut away the panel and there you go, access to drill the welds with this tool.
There is NO WAY I would do this work everyday without it. I am amazed at the guys I watch at work using all kinds of tools that create more work and MUCH HARDER on the back (hunched over like a raped ape) work and spend their money buying all kinds of BS tools and tool boxes and carts and other BS instead of this tool. They will drill out a hundred welds on a floor with regular hand drill their arm must fall off by the end of the day. Or worse yet, grinding them with the die grinder throwing sparks all over the place and BREATHING all that metal! When this tool would get it done much faster and cleaner, I don't get it.
04-13-2011, 02:17 AM
I guess you are very correct. So is the cutter flat with no little tit or what ever you'd call it?
And where do you get them at, for a reasonable cost?
04-29-2011, 02:46 PM
They have almost no pilot at all, nearly flat. On the good prices, I don't know, eBay maybe?