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Thread: Welding Scaffolding

  1. #1
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    Welding Scaffolding

    Need to do some work to the house and barn here and have a hodgepodge heap of used scaffolding I've picked up over the years. Unfortunately, not all the braces match all the bucks and I'm getting down to the dregs of the pile and need to go up some more.

    So I'm planning to get the bucks plumb and level and then tack weld the cross braces to the bucks in a few places where the pins on the bucks don't line up with the holes in the braces. Then when I'm done and want to disassemble the scaffolding, I'll just cut the tacks with a zip wheel and go.

    Anybody done anything similar? At first I was hinky about it, but heck, the Chinese build scaffolding waaaaaay high up in the air with nothing more than bamboo. Plus I'll be on a rope when I'm more than say 10' or 15' high on it, so even if it starts coming down, I should be fine (as long as it doesn't fall on me).

    For those who have done similar, what rod? I'm thinking 7018 due to its toughness/ductility/fatigue resistance. Any other tips?

    Thanks.
    Last edited by Kelvin; 06-23-2021 at 07:11 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    I used angle iron and drilled holes.


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  4. #3
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    Either move the pins, or modify the braces. Tacking the braces is just silly.

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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    Thanks, guys.

    The problem with modifying the bucks and braces is that I will probably never need them in the same configuration ever again. Right now, for example, I am erecting an additional set of bucks right next to some existing scaffolding -- doubling the width of the scaffolding, effectively -- and the height of each story of bucks is more important than anything else. I have like 4 or 5 sizes of bucks and about 6 sizes of braces and 3 sizes of ferrules that join one buck to the next buck above it (and some of those ferrules put a spacer between the bucks and some of those ferrules do not, and some of those ferrules are permanently attached to the bucks by prior owners, and some are not) such that the number of combinations and permutations of this mess is close to infinity cubed, and if I spend the time to move pins and drill new holes in braces now, chances are that when I take the stuff down and re-erect it elsewhere, I will need to move pins and drill new holes all over again no matter what, anyway. As much as I love drilling 5/8" holes in steel...



    I'd rather use as many pins and holes in the braces as I can, and if need be, use a tack where they won't line up. On this next stage of scaffolding I'm putting up today, for example, I'll need to tack one out of four places on one "X" brace, and one out of four on the other. I expect something similar with the next story I put on top of that, and the story I put on top of that, for something like six tacks total.

    If I made new braces, or drilled new holes, or moved the pins every time things didn't line up 100%, I'd spend the rest of my life just dikking around with scaffolding. That's not happenin'. I have actual work to do.
    Last edited by Kelvin; 06-24-2021 at 08:18 AM.

  7. #5
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    Well, when you are lying on your back waiting for an ambulance don’t say you weren’t warned that you were doing something stupid. I have changed all my mismatched scaffolding so they all meet the same standard, all use the same X brace, all use the same hook on plank. It makes life easier.

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  9. #6
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    IMHO, spending all the time it would take to make new braces and/or move the pins and/or drill new holes (that are 1/4" away from the old holes and thus overlapping) for temporary bracing is about like spending three days to make dovetail joints on the braces you use to rack and plumb the walls in a house during new construction, when you can accomplish the same thing in 5 minutes by toe nailing a 2x4 plate in place to hold the walls plumb, but ... YMMV.




  10. #7
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    I find it impossible to believe that drilling a few new holes would take longer than setting up a welder and tacking them in place. Not to mention the dicking around to cut them off.

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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    Quote Originally Posted by M J D View Post
    I find it impossible to believe that drilling a few new holes would take longer than setting up a welder and tacking them in place. Not to mention the dicking around to cut them off.
    In the 2 storeys I put up this morning, the new holes would have overlapped with the existing holes, which wouldn't work (the holes would have been too big to stay on the pins), so I would've had to weld the holes shut first...lather rinse repeat when I put up the scaffolding elsewhere. The tacks are working fine, thanks for the feedback.

  12. #9
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    Ultimately it's your call, me, I agree with the others. I'd drill the hole and weld a gr8 washer over the correct hole. There's a lot to be said for interchangeability and standardization LOL. Whichever way you go, be safe.............Mike

  13. #10
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    Bamboo scaffolding has held up to hurricanes that have destroyed metal scaffolding. Not really relevant to what you're doing. If you're going to tack the scaffolding anyway I'd probably use 6010/6011 since most scaffolding is either galvanized or painted. I think you knew what you were going to do from the get go and hoping you would get positive feedback on your plans. If you had to move the scaffolding a bunch it might have been easier to just buy some angle iron or pipe and make some new braces. Then you'd have them for future projects.

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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    Quote Originally Posted by Welder Dave View Post
    I think you knew what you were going to do from the get go and hoping you would get positive feedback on your plans.
    Guilty as charged. I guess I just wanted to make sure no one had experienced a disaster doing what I've done, like cutting up a fuel tank.

    Quote Originally Posted by Welder Dave View Post
    If you had to move the scaffolding a bunch it might have been easier to just buy some angle iron or pipe and make some new braces. Then you'd have them for future projects.
    Fortunately, I won't have to move it much ... twice, by my count. But I'll never have do dip down as far to the bottom of the barrel as this, so I may not ever need to tack again, since I probably won't need to use these oddball mismatched pieces again.

    Thanks Dave.

  15. #12
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    If the new holes would overlap the old holes (what are we talking her 7/16” holes?) then you weren’t trying hard enough to line them up,ORrrr, you are trying to make things more difficult than they really are. Most of my x braces have two sets of holes for multi fit of different sizes. Simply put another hole before or after the existing holes to fit a new pattern. My olde scaffold also has two sets of pins, as well as a quick release and a bolt type pin.

  16. #13
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    It was done yesterday, but thanks nonetheless.

    5/8" dia holes. I suppose I could have racked the bucks all out of plumb and twisted everything up into a pretzel to align pins and holes, but that wouldn't make much sense. It should be plumb, level and not all stressed 16 ways to Sunday...

    But like I said, it's moot at this point.
    Last edited by Kelvin; 06-25-2021 at 07:43 PM.

  17. #14
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    other countries use bamboo with great success but they lack those f.....g ambulance chasers that constantly pollute the airwaves around every corners too!

  18. #15
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    welding scaffold? in the US? foolishness and illegal in the public arena...privately, guess you can do what you want. not advisable, embrittlement will promote a failure with your hineyhole on the line

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  19. #16
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    Re: Welding Scaffolding

    I don't know how long your work will take you. We frequently erect and use scaffolding in my work. However it is always much easier and faster to use a manlift, if that is an option.
    "Where's Stick man????????" - 7A749
    "SHHHHHH!! I sent him over to snag that MIC-4 while tbone wasn't looking!" - duaneb55
    "I have bought a few of Tbone's things unlike Stick-Man who helps himself" - TozziWelding
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