Welding in utility trailer
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    18

    Welding in utility trailer

    I have an enclosed utility trailer that I am going to set up to weld in. It has wood paneling on the walls and plywood on the floor. I am going to buy sheet metal to cover all the sides and then diamond plate for the floor.

    Is it safe to install this over what's there? I don't really want to remove the paneling if it won't create a safety issue.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Central Wa. state
    Posts
    2,565

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by mccorb View Post
    I have an enclosed utility trailer that I am going to set up to weld in. It has wood paneling on the walls and plywood on the floor. I am going to buy sheet metal to cover all the sides and then diamond plate for the floor.

    Is it safe to install this over what's there? I don't really want to remove the paneling if it won't create a safety issue.
    If you're not cutting heavy plate with a torch, you should be fine. Fill the joint between the floor and the side walls with a good heavy bead of sealer (silicone or good bath caulk) to keep the sparks contained.
    I once worked for a construction company that had an old 40 foot furniture van for a jobsite shop, lined with thin sheet metal for fire proofing, we did some fairly heavy work in there.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    1,686

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    You better get some GOOD ventilation in there as well.....

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    2,320

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    I sprayed mine with fire retardent when I first got mine. It cost me about $150 for it. I find I do not weld much in it anyway so I feel it was a wast of time and money to do it. I painted the inside and floor after using the fire retardent. It sounded good but it just does not work. Now it is so full of tools there is no where to weld in it if I wanted to.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    18

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    You got me thinking. I use a fiberglass welding blanket to protect things sometimes. I can buy roll of fiberglass cloth pretty inexpensively and it would be lighter than metal panels on the wall. What do you think?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Long Island, NY
    Posts
    239

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    Funny that you should be posting this topic as my wife just suggested to me that I buy something like an 8.5x24 to use as additional shop space.

    I was thinking of using .030 aluminum on the inside walls affixed with 3m vhb tape (same as on outside) but running the sheets horizontal with the first sheet on the bottom overlapped by the second on top.

    You don't need much to fireproof walls. I was also going to bend the bottom few inches on a brake so that it wrapped onto the floor and then put something a bit heavier/ more slip resistant on the floor.

    And yes, rooftop hvac as well as ventilation.
    Lincoln Invertec V205-T Tig/stick
    Millermatic 211 Mig Welder
    Speedglas Adflo PAPR 9100 FX-Air
    CertiFlat FB2430 fabBlock U-Weld Kit Welding Table
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    8,871

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    I've welded and fabricated pipe on top of gymnasium floors. We would lay down 1/4'' masonite sheets and then another 1/4'' masonite sheet over the first sheet joint. Then place fire blankets on top of masonite. Never had any issues.
    By using sheet metal on the sides, you could end up flashing yourself. It will reflect off the sheet behind you and then to the back to your hood. We had this happen welding in mechanical rooms loaded with duct work.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    281

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    DO NOT use aluminum or any metal for that matter that will reflect for walls! I got flashburn pretty bad from the reflections inside an aluminum dump body. Same principle but with a roof..lol
    Millermatic 185
    Lincoln Ranger 305G
    Victor O/A

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Location
    Phoenix AZ
    Posts
    4

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    I set up in a container, but I used a fireproofing additive you can add paint i got from amazon. I painted the whole floor then put diamond plate over the area I designated for welding.
    Everlast 255 Ext
    Miller 211

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    18

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    I thought about using just fireproof paint coating. The problem is the wood paneling in the trailer is cheap luan paneling and has holes and gaps in it and I'm concerned that hot metal will get behind the panels. Do you think that flame retardant paint could saturate and adhere fiberglass cloth to the panels. That would be pretty cost effective and solve the hole and flash problems.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Location
    Phoenix AZ
    Posts
    4

    Re: Welding in utility trailer

    I don't know how well it would saturate, but i put 4 coats down on the wood. It was enough to seal up all the cracks in the wood and the gaps between boards. Its paint that's a little thinner than regular paint with the additive in it. Keep adding coats until you are happy. You could use silicon or a can of spray foam to seal up any holes you are worried about then paint over it.
    Everlast 255 Ext
    Miller 211

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