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Thread: Advice on bracing for welding table project

  1. #1
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    Advice on bracing for welding table project

    I'm working on my first project, a welding table/ work bench for my garage. It's fairly small at 30" x 48", but that's what I have space for. My local metal shop only had some 1/8" 2 x 4 tubing in stock. My only other option was paying an arm and a leg for shipping or wait for them to order a larger quantity for another vendor and get some extra....so I went with the 1/8" I had originally planned to use a 3/8" plate, but after seeing the price on that .. I decided for my small projects 1/4" would work just fine.

    So far I've welded the frame to the topper, and I've attached 1 of the legs. My question is how much bracing do I really need for this? I had originally planned to use the 1/8" tubing and run in between all the legs about halfway up on all sides except the front. Now I realize that **** is going to be HEAVY, and I'm wondering if it's really needed. I have so 3/16" 2 x 2 angle I could use as well to brace the legs. Would that be enough?

    When I attach the legs I have been welding the tops of the legs to the bottom of the plate, but I was also figuring I needed to tie them in to the frame. There is about an 1/8" gap when the edge of the leg and the edge of the frame. Is it possible and safe to just try and close that gap with weld?

    I included a photo of my first test weld to get some pointers. I'm using a 110v welder with flux core .030 wire.

    Thanks in advance
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    That angle will be plenty. I would add a lower shelf using the angle for support. For that small size and the heft of the legs and frame you probably don't need any more bracing.
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Be careful how much weld you put on the table top or it will warp. I'd put about a 1" weld every 8 inches.

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Welcome to the forum. Your closeup weld looks pretty good.

    May be too late, but I probably would have put the legs in the corner and run the tube between the legs. Also you may wish you had allowed more overhang for clamps, ground clamp, etc. Your bracing plan to run around 3 sides is good if you want to sit at the table. MJD advised a shelf which is a great idea. You could consider a “H” connecting the 2 short sides with one long length between them.

    The good news is there is no right or wrong answer. Build what you want, then redesign if you want later.

    I hope you did not weld the top to the frame too much. A few short welds are sufficient and reduces the chance it will warp the top.
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Ah the idea of the legs in the corner makes more sense, well you live and you learn. Thanks for the advice.

    I have been welding in short little 3 to 4 inch sections for the frame to plate connection so hopefully I'm good.

    I may go without braces, I'm just kind of scared of my welds being bad and a leg coming loose. The shelf idea is a good one.

  8. #6
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Don't put 3-4" welds to hold the top on. I used 2" welds on a 1/2" thick table.

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    If you don't want a shelf underneath, you can use gussets instead of the bracing.

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Listen to welder Dave's suggestion, I built a motor adapter for an airlock at the smelter where, the motors that came on these things were a notoriously poorly design, spline driven & the motor armature had no bearing on the output end with the splined shaft, I did the prototype mount, tacked it up & got pulled off for a while so I got a buddy in the boiler shop to weld it out,it 1/2" plate about a foot wide, with a vertical plate to "flange" mount it to the gearbox, & a couple of gussetts, when I got it back, it was warped so BAD the I couldn't get it flat by milling it no how, no way, it was warped that bad, over 1/2 inch across the the thing. Number one mistake by noobies is overwelding!
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  13. #9
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Too late I guess, but you should complete the frame, then tack the top to the frame. Don't weld the legs to the top, weld them to the tube frame.

    When running flux core, don't whip. The ripples are an indication of whipping, or jerky weld progression. Just drag the gun with a side to side motion as you progress. Toe to toe. Never go back into the puddle, flux core freezes too fast to really manipulate a puddle with any degree of success...……..unless you're aiming for the rippled look. You'll get it, took me a while to figure it out.

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project


    Noidea87


    Quote Originally Posted by Noidea87 View Post
    I'm working on my first project . . . Thanks in advance . . .
    I would not pay 'scrape weight' - for your final product -
    You have done everything wrong - that can be done wrong -

    Paint it Green - and hide it in the Tall Grass . . .

    The WW has answers - but you have to ask -
    Concept - design - engineer - and build last . . .

    hth


    Opus







    .
    Last edited by OPUS FERRO; 06-03-2020 at 01:45 AM. Reason: . . . punc . . .

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  16. #11
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Quote Originally Posted by OPUS FERRO View Post

    Noidea87




    I would not pay 'scrape weight' - for your final product . .

    hth


    Opus

    .
    Must be a full moon...
    Opus made a spelling error.


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  17. #12
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Turn table top and frame over, check for flatness BEFORE doing anything else.
    It's easier now to grind welds out then after.
    Flat bar on diagonal can be used for gussets


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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Quote Originally Posted by Welder Dave View Post
    Don't put 3-4" welds to hold the top on. I used 2" welds on a 1/2" thick table.
    I went out and measured and my longest weld was actually only about 2.5" so hopefully I'm OK. The top is slightly warped but doesn't seem to be that bad. It's just a work bench so I'm not too concerned as long as it doesn't get worse.

    Quote Originally Posted by farmersammm View Post
    Too late I guess, but you should complete the frame, then tack the top to the frame. Don't weld the legs to the top, weld them to the tube frame.

    I thought about this originally, but figured I would get extra support by setting the legs inside the frame, obviously I was wrong. Is it worth grinding the legs back out and re-welding to the frame at this point or will that do more harm than good?

    When running flux core, don't whip. The ripples are an indication of whipping, or jerky weld progression. Just drag the gun with a side to side motion as you progress. Toe to toe. Never go back into the puddle, flux core freezes too fast to really manipulate a puddle with any degree of success...……..unless you're aiming for the rippled look. You'll get it, took me a while to figure it out.
    Thanks for that, I think it was probably jerky progression that caused it but I could also be going back into the puddle. I'll practice not doing that today I have some scrap I can practice on.

    Quote Originally Posted by OPUS FERRO View Post

    Noidea87




    I would not pay 'scrape weight' - for your final product -
    You have done everything wrong - that can be done wrong -

    Paint it Green - and hide it in the Tall Grass . . .

    The WW has answers - but you have to ask -
    Concept - design - engineer - and build last . . .

    hth


    Opus




    .

    haha, well good thing I'm not trying to sell this then. As long as it stays standing at the end of this and I can set tools on it I will be satisfied at this point. I did draw this out before building it, based on designs I saw online.

  19. #14
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project


    John T


    Quote Originally Posted by John T View Post
    Must be a full moon . . .
    I suffer Mid & Ring finger dyslexia - both hands fire from muscle memory,
    when I type - my fingers think they are cleaning my nose [scraping].



    Noidea87

    Quote Originally Posted by Noidea87 View Post
    . . . longest weld . . . The top is slightly warped . . .

    It's just a work bench so I'm not too concerned . . .

    As long as it stays standing at the end of this and I can
    set tools on it I will be satisfied . . .

    I did draw this out before building it, based on designs
    I saw online.
    'based on designs I saw online' . . . 'It's just a work bench' . . .

    A 'welding table' is the most passive tool you have in your shop - but, the most used.
    Every element - in its construction - is a something, and serves a function.

    You fell on your sword - before you even bought the metal.


    Weld Table
    101 -

    The top surface is 3/8" plus - laser/plasma [to maintain plain] - not sheared.

    Legs & Support members - are recessed from the perimeter - to accommodate 'your
    cadre of clamps' . . .

    Legs are not welded to the top plate - only tacked/fixtured to intermediary members.

    Fast Forward -

    Your 'under structure' - is grotesquely overweight, over welded - and likely exceeds
    the weight of your table top . . .

    Table tops - typically exceed the understructure weight - up to 10X . . .

    Anything with your Negative Coefficients - needs to be Green/in the Tall Grass . . .

    Concept - design - engineer - and build last . . .

    hth


    Opus



    ps - ask, before you ruin any more metal . . .



    .



    .
    Last edited by OPUS FERRO; 06-04-2020 at 01:13 AM. Reason: . . . syn exchange . . .

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    I understand for most of you with actual "workshops" and who weld professionally you may need your table to be some perfect design with every facet thought out, but this was my first project and I was using what materials I had access to. My table will accommodate my clamps as I used a few last night to cut the last of my pieces. This is a hobby for me, and I will be using this table as a general workbench probably 90% of the time and only welding on it occasionally. It serves it's purpose even if it is an affront to everyone who has ever picked up a piece of metal.

    For what it's worth I finished last night and the table is not warped, sits evenly on all for legs and does what I need it to do.

    My next project is building a table for our back porch with some .065 square tubing. I'll post the design so you can rip it apart.

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Your table should be fine.

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Quote Originally Posted by Noidea87 View Post

    For what it's worth I finished last night and the table is not warped, sits evenly on all for legs and does what I need it to do.
    I consider this a successful project. Will you think of ways to improve it? Sure, but learning by doing is the best experience.

    Congratulations!
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    If, when done, you can use the table to work on the projects you have in mind, you have built a functional welding table. In my years on the job, I have used every conceivable configuration of welding table.
    The one I use now is about the same size as yours, but two feet tall, because I like to sit whenever I can, plus, if I have a project sitting in it, like a propane tank for a smoker, I can still reach the top easily.

    Interestingly, mine has a square tubing frame, which goes around the perimeter, and is flush with the edge. My clamps don’t have any problem opening far enough to accommodate the tubing. Maybe it is magic, or something.
    Congrats on your project.

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Quote Originally Posted by Noidea87 View Post

    For what it's worth I finished last night and the table is not warped, sits evenly on all for legs and does what I need it to do.
    Great... Now YOUR modifications will start. A Kick plate shelf (why a kick plate shelf? you will kick that plate... and it's a shelf.) OHH a Bar to hang my clamps on... or a reciever for my vice, or or or... you have your starting point, now you can move forward with everything else. In time you may need a bigger or heavier one and you will look at this one and say well I like this and I will incorperate it into the next design, this on the other hand didn't work the way I wanted it to; so out that goes.

    Practice and errors are great teachers, as well as resorces like this. The cost of over welded material sucks, but learn from it. You said it will typically be a work bench that you may weld on; OK use that and remember that you can always build another if you wish.
    I haven't built anything I can't throw away. Perfection is the journey.

    Mac

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Definetly add a bottom shelf or 2. Here's my latest build, little overkill for what you're wanting, yep, but hopefully a few ideas for ya.

    Sent from my SM-G970W using Tapatalk

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    thanks for the advice everyone. I've already started trying to decide how I want to mount my vise, and some storage options for clamps and tools.

    JayWal that bench is insane! incredible work.

    I say I will only be welding on this table occasionally, but since finishing this I have been itching for another project.

    I've got enough material left to make a small table for our back porch to set stuff on while grilling, place platters for parties etc. What I'm thinking about doing is a frame with my 2x2 angle using the 2x4 tubing for legs. I plan to use 2x6's for the top screwed into the frame.

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Quote Originally Posted by Noidea87 View Post
    I've got enough material left to make a small table for our back porch to set stuff on while grilling, place platters for parties etc. What I'm thinking about doing is a frame with my 2x2 angle using the 2x4 tubing for legs. I plan to use 2x6's for the top screwed into the frame.
    Here’s an idea for your porch table. Go to a local granite countertop place and look for a cutout from a stove or cooktop. You can get them cheap. Makes a flat, durable, attractive table top. Use 1” or 1 1/4” angle iron to frame the sides.
    Burt
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Quote Originally Posted by wb4rt View Post
    Here’s an idea for your porch table. Go to a local granite countertop place and look for a cutout from a stove or cooktop. You can get them cheap. Makes a flat, durable, attractive table top. Use 1” or 1 1/4” angle iron to frame the sides.
    ah cool never knew that was a thing. My wife wants a wood top to match the table for this, but that may be a great idea as a present for my mom.

    What would you use to attach the granite to the angle?

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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    Quote Originally Posted by Noidea87 View Post
    ah cool never knew that was a thing. My wife wants a wood top to match the table for this, but that may be a great idea as a present for my mom.

    What would you use to attach the granite to the angle?
    Gravity is more than enough. That granite is heavy! I made one about 10 years ago. It sits on our screen porch year-round so it gets wet and frozen with no problem.
    Remember to allow for the slight radius of the angle iron when measuring for the frame.

    Here is a picture of my frame. I’ve tried every way I know to re-orient the picture. Sorry.

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    Last edited by wb4rt; 06-07-2020 at 04:43 PM.
    Burt
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    Re: Advice on bracing for welding table project

    here's a picture of the final monstrosity. I used it today to weld up a smaller table for our back porch.Name:  20200603_221948.jpg
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