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Thread: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

  1. #1
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    So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Do I turn the heat down and weld on the thin edge of the metal to build up the gap and then turn up the heat to finish up the weld? I keep trying to weld and fill the gap at the same time. Leads to lots of grinding. (I’m still a grinder, not a welder lol)


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  2. #2
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    What welding process are you doing? Stick? MIG? TIG? oxy-acet? other oxy-fuel?
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  3. #3
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    If at all possible eliminate the gaps before welding.
    Mike
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  4. #4
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    If it's Mig just do a bunch of tacks to fill the gap. If you want it to look better grind the tacks down and run a nicer bead over them. Let it cool a bit first. Will warp thin material though.

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  6. #5
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Sorry, mig on 10 gauge.

    Spot weld to build up, check!


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  7. #6
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Also backstep between your tacks to reduce distortion.

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  9. #7
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Quote Originally Posted by lotechman View Post
    Also backstep between your tacks to reduce distortion.
    back before I figured out how to fit my pieces (been awhile) onea the old tricks especially with stick welding is to lay a few sections of rod in the gap with the coating busted off to act as added filler, with MIG ya can run out some wire and fold it back on itself however many times ya need to get it thick enough to fill the gap then grab each end and twist it to hold the strands together... now add a few extra volts and lay a bead right ontop of the filler with a light weave to tie in the toes... when dealing with emergencies out in the field on the side of an interstate or in a truck stop we still use those techniques to bridge a gap, and I'm know for shaving off pieces of plate to lay in as filler when necessary to get a load back on the road... but nothing beats a good tight fitment, that part just takes practice... I've been practicing for 43 years, just about got it now

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  11. #8
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Put a piece of rebar in it.

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  13. #9
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Quote Originally Posted by TimmyTIG View Post
    Put a piece of rebar in it.
    LOL!! Ya know I've actually seen that so many times over the years especially with equipment thats lived on a farm awhile

  14. #10
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    If possible use copper backing if there's room.
    Harbor freight did carry them. Here's an example.

    https://www.eastwood.com/welders-hel...op-plates.html


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  16. #11
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    A 1/4" gap on 10 gauge and you're using Mig. Unless it's the $59.99 special with live wire you can just pull the trigger on and off as needed.

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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4


    TimmyTIG


    Quote Originally Posted by TimmyTIG View Post
    Put a piece of rebar in it.
    ^ ^ ^ AKA / Slugging - At school - you are told never do this - on the
    job, it's the first thing you are told to do -

    Rebar is the Beluga Caviar - of secondary filler . . .


    BhmJeep


    The tech tips you are asking for - is a by product of your poor craft.
    Welding is joinery first - the weld, is just pounding nails . . .

    More, and bigger nails [desperate repair measures] reduce the integrity
    of your weldment - and greatly increases time & material cost . . .

    Invest in some books - the payback is quick - both for work time spent,
    and the respect gleaned from a superior work product . . .


    Opus

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  19. #13
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Quote Originally Posted by TimmyTIG View Post
    Put a piece of rebar in it.
    You can also use fistfuls of old nails that you fish out of the woodstove ashes, assuming you burn pallets...

  20. #14
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Good Fit up is most of the battle, and comes with practice/experience (and has to be learned for each cutting method/tool, and for different materials). IMO anyone can get good with even just an angle grinder if you care, are willing to work, are willing to learn (mentally work and admit you're wrong/change lol), and can practice patience. It shouldn't take long to get competent at measuring/cutting but even if it does it is like prepping for paint, essential for good end results.

    All that being said (sorry, didn't mean to lecture) a copper backing "spoon" is great for helping with gaps when you can fit it in. The premade ones are far too expensive for what they are IMO - I make my own out of copper pipe pieces or couplers. something like this $5 Everbilt 1-1/4 in. Copper Coupling.

    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt...-100192734-_-N

    Just hammer or press it (even a large clamp works) to the shape you want. Copper work hardens easily, if and when it does you can anneal (soften) it by heating to red hot (can do this over a strong stove flame, or with a propane torch, wood/charcoal fire, etc) and letting it air cool or cool under water. Easy to change shape for corners etc.

    Filling the gap with consumable (rod, wire) is an old school trick that works great.

    Unfortunately it's mostly just like sheet metal welding, a game of patience and time. Spot here, wait, spot there, wait, etc etc etc. Pretty boring lol, which is another reason to try for great fit up in the first place.

  21. #15
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Perfect fit up is nice but not always possible. Anybody who's done any amount of welding has had to deal with gaps. How you fill the gap is totally dependant on the requirements of the weld. If you had to repair something like burn through from sub-arc on a vessel, you'd have to repair the gap to pass x-ray. If it's something non critical then you can be creative. Mig is generally the easiest method for filling gaps that aren't too big. Bigger gaps stick rods or rebar or anything else in for filler.

  22. #16
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Quote Originally Posted by Welder Dave View Post
    A 1/4" gap on 10 gauge and you're using Mig. Unless it's the $59.99 special with live wire you can just pull the trigger on and off as needed.
    My advice as well.


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  23. #17
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Quote Originally Posted by Welder Dave View Post
    Perfect fit up is nice but not always possible. Anybody who's done any amount of welding has had to deal with gaps. How you fill the gap is totally dependant on the requirements of the weld. If you had to repair something like burn through from sub-arc on a vessel, you'd have to repair the gap to pass x-ray. If it's something non critical then you can be creative. Mig is generally the easiest method for filling gaps that aren't too big. Bigger gaps stick rods or rebar or anything else in for filler.
    IF you're any kind of old timer or have lots of experience coming across all types of situations........

    use GAP ROD, and get R done.
    Gramps

  24. #18
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    This old-timers saying, if I can walk across it, I can weld it. Yes I'm old !


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  25. #19
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    If the back side isn't critical, just use a strip of the same material as a backer. Easy Peasy.

  26. #20
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Quote Originally Posted by 12V71 View Post
    If the back side isn't critical, just use a strip of the same material as a backer. Easy Peasy.
    Us structural guys call that a moment connection weld. Full pen weld. I like to bevel one side.
    Jason
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  28. #21
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    All great advise guys. I will definitely practice my fit up and patience. Lucky for the rest of the world is my welds are all non critical and are only on things like wind chimes, fire pits and “yard art” but I like to take pride in what I do even if it is just junk. I know my current limitations and leave the “real” welding to the real professionals! Thanks again!


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  29. #22
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    Up here we call gap rod Western rod. You can a rod with the flux knocked off in the gap or even use it like a Tig rod with a stick electrodes for extra filler. Maybe should start a thread on interesting ways for filling gaps.

  30. #23
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4


    Welder Dave


    Quote Originally Posted by Welder Dave View Post
    . . . even use it like a Tig rod with a stick electrodes for extra filler . . .
    AKA - Okie TIG . . .


    Opus

  31. #24
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    Re: So, welding gaps. 1/8 to 1/4

    If it's just for yard art and the welds are non critical, can you just run a nice bead on both sides back over the bird turding without having to do a lot of grinding?
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