Welding mild steel to hardened steel
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  1. #1
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    Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    I'm trying to weld some braces (mild steel) to the back side of a snow plow cutting edge (hardened steel). I'd like to mig weld them with my mild steel wire. I've been told that the best bet would be using a 7018 electrode and preheating the steel. Do you guys think I'll have any luck with my mig machine, or should I just go with the stick electrode for best outcome? Thanks for any tips, Nick.

  2. #2
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    first of all...what kind of plow is it?

    ...zap!


    I am not completely insane..
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    Professional Driver on a closed course....
    Do not attempt.

  3. #3
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    snoway

  4. #4
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    well i have no clue what a snoway plow looks like..
    can you post a pic of what your trying to do?

    ...zap!


    I am not completely insane..
    Some parts are missing

    Professional Driver on a closed course....
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  5. #5
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    I can't post pics now, but here is the jist of it. I need extra height out of my plow. plow mount on truck is too high. Going to mount another cutting edge onto the original cutting edge for extra height. I want to weld braces made from either flat bar or angle to the back side of the old cutting edge(making it permanently attach to the plow) and to the back of the plow blade frame. From the increased cutting edge length, I will have increased leverage to bend the plow where the original edge bolts to it. I am trying to make the bottom of the old edge stiff so the extra leverage won't bend anything. Still the basic question, mild to hardened. Doable?

  6. #6
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    well i know with a fisher cutting edge it is hardend..but only on the outside..
    about .030 deep..
    if the whole edge was hardend all the way through it would just snap when you hit your first sewer cover..

    so i say grind about .030 off where the weld is going and go from there..
    no pre heat..no post heat..

    a mig should do the job..
    but i'd use 7018 with a stick welder..
    if you can then go that route..

    ...zap!


    I am not completely insane..
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    Professional Driver on a closed course....
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  7. #7
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Are the cutting edges actually hardened? I was told that they were roll formed which is harder than cold rolled steel but not as hard as hardened steel. I just used a couple of pieces of cutting edge from a meyers plow to make some brackets to lower the undercarriage of my snow plow setup and I was able to drill them and weld them without a problem.
    Sure, I can fix it... I got a welder!!!

  8. #8
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    I'm not exactly sure if it is hardened or not. I'm looking into it now. I do know that I had a really hard time drilling holes in the edge, and had to eventually take it to a machine shop and have them drill the holes. I will give it a shot and see how it goes. If the steel is going to crack on the cool down, than it should probably do it right away. If it doesn't weld well, then I'll have to think this one through a bit more.

  9. #9
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Quote Originally Posted by fwalz3
    Are the cutting edges actually hardened? I was told that they were roll formed which is harder than cold rolled steel but not as hard as hardened steel. I just used a couple of pieces of cutting edge from a meyers plow to make some brackets to lower the undercarriage of my snow plow setup and I was able to drill them and weld them without a problem.
    There are a ton of varieties out there depending on which equipment and intended usage. Really tough to say about one unless you have prior experience or knowledge of that particular brand or OEM. Some are very weldable and others you can just glue to without jeopardizing the integrity of the cutting bar. The latter will be subject to bead cracking. Heavy equipment like crawlers will have the latter type or maybe graders too.

    I'd guess if it's a wear bar for a pick-up plow it'll be fairly doable for small brackets. Just take it easy, little preheat (warm), no large fills and don't use anything quick freeze. Good chance that heavy welding in one spot at one time could put a warp in it too.

    Just a guess here.

  10. #10
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Ok, so I found out that the cutting edge is C1080 high carbon steel.

  11. #11
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Well, I don't think it is going to work very well. I tacked a piece on and then gave it a whack with a hammer. The weld broke away on the cutting edge side. It tore the steel off. I can only imagine the same thing happening while I'm pushing snow. It would be worse backdragging.

  12. #12
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Hey zap is what case hardening is?

  13. #13
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    If the old cutting edge is a bolted on simple flat shape, could you replace it with low carbon steel? Maybe you could get your new height, strength and cutting edge mount out of one well thought out clean design. And… maybe reuse that edge you where going to weld up.

  14. #14
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Quote Originally Posted by denrep
    If the old cutting edge is a bolted on simple flat shape, could you replace it with low carbon steel? Maybe you could get your new height, strength and cutting edge mount out of one well thought out clean design. And… maybe reuse that edge you where going to weld up.
    Actually, that is my next approach. I'm going to have a new piece made out of low carbon steel. It will never see any scraping, so it should be fine. I should be able to weld braces to that and then to the moldboard frame.

  15. #15
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Kent
    Well, I don't think it is going to work very well. I tacked a piece on and then gave it a whack with a hammer. The weld broke away on the cutting edge side. It tore the steel off. I can only imagine the same thing happening while I'm pushing snow. It would be worse backdragging.
    Now that you know it is simple carbon steel rather than some complex manganese or chromium alloy, things are simpler.
    The test you did is a standard way to check your preheat. Fire up a tiger torch and heat the edge until spit dances on it. Tack weld your piece on with a one inch bead and let cool. If you can snap it off with the bead tearing out the carbon steel then you need even more preheat.
    If the weld holds and bends a bit or even breaks in the bead of the mild steel piece then you will have reasonable success with your modification.
    You still should use E 7018 at the very least. I would be inclined to use E 8018.
    If you tack the assembly together cold keep in mind that every tack will be a crack site. It is best to warm the assembly when tacking. Locate your tacks so that they can be ground out as you weld up the unit hot.

  16. #16
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Quote Originally Posted by jdwelder
    Hey zap is what case hardening is?


    case hardening is where only about .020-.030 on the outside of the whole piece is hardend..

    if you grind .030 or so deep you will get to the base metal wich is not hardend at all

    picture it as a hard protective coating..
    but to case harden metal you use low carbon steel and heat it red hot..
    dip it in some case hardening powder..
    the powder melts and sticks to the metal..
    after its "coated" you re-heat it red again then quench the piece in cold water..(no it wont break or crack)..

    i still do certian shafts and things on occasion...

    next time i do it i'll post pics..

    ...zap!


    I am not completely insane..
    Some parts are missing

    Professional Driver on a closed course....
    Do not attempt.

  17. #17
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Quote Originally Posted by lotechman
    Now that you know it is simple carbon steel rather than some complex manganese or chromium alloy, things are simpler.
    The test you did is a standard way to check your preheat. Fire up a tiger torch and heat the edge until spit dances on it. Tack weld your piece on with a one inch bead and let cool. If you can snap it off with the bead tearing out the carbon steel then you need even more preheat.
    If the weld holds and bends a bit or even breaks in the bead of the mild steel piece then you will have reasonable success with your modification.
    You still should use E 7018 at the very least. I would be inclined to use E 8018.
    If you tack the assembly together cold keep in mind that every tack will be a crack site. It is best to warm the assembly when tacking. Locate your tacks so that they can be ground out as you weld up the unit hot.
    Wow. thanks for the great advice. That does sound fairly involved. I think a better solution might be making a new piece made up that will be easier to deal with in the long run.

  18. #18
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Kent
    I'm trying to weld some braces (mild steel) to the back side of a snow plow cutting edge (hardened steel). I'd like to mig weld them with my mild steel wire. I've been told that the best bet would be using a 7018 electrode and preheating the steel. Do you guys think I'll have any luck with my mig machine, or should I just go with the stick electrode for best outcome? Thanks for any tips, Nick.
    Nick I currently own a snoway 29 series plow. How much to high is the truck?? The A frame on the plow should be about level when the blade is down it can have some angle downward to it as well. The push bar on the truck is adjustable and should be about 11" high (I think measured from the bottom of the bar). I am assuming you put a lift kit on the truck is the reason why the truck is to high?? You could try adjusting the height of the pushbar?? When you add the extra cutting edge on the plow you are going to change the length of the lever arm of the tripping action on the moldboard effectively weakening the springs on the blade. Therefore if will trip easier and you will want some sort of compensation. Also the cutting edge takes the grunt of the abuse on a snowplow and IMO will have a hard time holding up as a two piece blade. It seems with snowplows nothing is 1 dimensional. Hope this helps you.

  19. #19
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    It sounds like AR plate. Abrasive resistent. I would heat it up to over 70 and weld it with 7018. It doesn't need alot of heat, just enough to keep it from being a cold weld. The Mig will cause it to crack under stress. Or even go with a flux core if you want to use wire.

  20. #20
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    Re: Welding mild steel to hardened steel

    Quote Originally Posted by Robo48
    Nick I currently own a snoway 29 series plow. How much to high is the truck?? The A frame on the plow should be about level when the blade is down it can have some angle downward to it as well. The push bar on the truck is adjustable and should be about 11" high (I think measured from the bottom of the bar). I am assuming you put a lift kit on the truck is the reason why the truck is to high?? You could try adjusting the height of the pushbar?? When you add the extra cutting edge on the plow you are going to change the length of the lever arm of the tripping action on the moldboard effectively weakening the springs on the blade. Therefore if will trip easier and you will want some sort of compensation. Also the cutting edge takes the grunt of the abuse on a snowplow and IMO will have a hard time holding up as a two piece blade. It seems with snowplows nothing is 1 dimensional. Hope this helps you.
    There is no lift on the truck. It just has the suspension modified so that it works properly. 96 F250 Diesel. I subframe is set as low as it will go, and I am still high. 2-3" below level. I need the height. I'm willing to deal with the added leverage, and hence weaker springs. I can tighten the springs up a bit though. I also realize that the added cutting edge will want to bend the moldboard where the edge mounts to it. I am going to weld bracing onto the backside of the old edge to the moldboard. If done right, there shouldn't be any problems with the plow. I'm going to make up a new piece of edge using a low alloy or mild steel. that way I'll be less likely to be welding in the middle of a snow storm.

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