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Thread: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating mod b/w inner and outer square tubing

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    HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tubing

    This video shows a mod to make the HF welding table height adjustable:

    The height of the table out of the box is very low - you either sit or bend over a lot, hence the mod.

    I performed this mod and it's great in that I can get the table top up to ~47". Only issue is the inner square tubing I'm using (and probably any square tubing that would fit with enough room to slide inside the factory square tubing) has too much slop to the outer square tubing.

    Pic of one of the two lower legs:


    Pic of one of the two upper legs:


    With 2 legs, each of which has a lower and upper joint of inner and outer tubing, there is a lot of wobble in the table. For the upper joint, which is fixed (once the pieces are fastened, there is no need to separate them in normal use), I was thinking I could just wrap the upper end of the inner tubing w/ duct tape to eliminate the play. For the lower joint, this wouldn't work, as the inner tube has to slide inside the outer tube to effect the height adjustment. I was thinking I could cut up some shims out of sheet metal and insert them whenever I set up table to a desired height. I suppose I could also weld those shims to the outer tubing, but as a very green newbie welder, there's a decent probability that I'd burn holes in the factory outer tubing.

    Any other ideas on eliminating the play between inner and outer tubing?
    Last edited by goggins; 4 Weeks Ago at 09:04 PM.

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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    Take a couple pics from farther away. Some in the lower positions and maybe one in a higher position. That way we can see in total what you did.
    I would rather look at a couple pics then skip through videos watching a couple seconds here and there.

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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    If that is a bolt that I see holding the outer tube to the inside tube,,
    simply split the outer tube, and let the bolt pressure close the gap between the two tubes,,

    The bolt clamped outer tube will then result in zero clearance,, which is better than any shim.

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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    Quote Originally Posted by psacustomcreations View Post
    Take a couple pics from farther away. Some in the lower positions and maybe one in a higher position. That way we can see in total what you did.
    I would rather look at a couple pics then skip through videos watching a couple seconds here and there.

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    Here's what the table looks like from the factory:
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    This pic indicates where the black tube was cut, at the red arrows:


    Here's an overall pic of what modified table looks like. The white tube is non-factory. The black tube above and below the white tube used to be one piece, but was cut and white tube was placed inside, allowing for height adjustment of table. The upper half of black tube (above which is the table top) is fixed to the top of the white tube via bolts. The lower half of black tube is connected to white tube by a cotterless hitch pin; the white tubes have a series of holes, so they can be raised/lowered and held in place by those pins.

    Last edited by goggins; 4 Weeks Ago at 08:18 AM.

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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    Just tack some shims to the inside of the lower tube to take up the slack. Drill a 5/16 hole through the black tube about an inch below the top - place the shim in place & do a quick plug weld to hold it in place. Maybe one side, maybe two sides depending on what it needs.

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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    What is the inside and outside measurement on the Harbor Freight square tube ? I always wondered if their stuff was metric or fractional(Imperial?) . No duct tape allowed, even a bad weld is better than tape. The top ones can be tacked for stability easily with out burning through, and if just tacked you can easily grind apart to dis-assemble. For the bottom connection split it 4 ways with hacksaw or bandsaw, and then compress the cut outer tube to size on the inner tube. The you can tack that together to check for fit with bolt. or you could shim the inside, and tack in place. No duct tape allowed,.

    That table, and the pick up truck hoist, are 2 items that HF makes that I'm interested in.

    How much does that table weigh ? Does it fold up easily ?

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    good luck
    Last edited by albrightree; 4 Weeks Ago at 09:58 AM.
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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    If you are afraid of welding the shims in, you could always glue them with something like JB Weld. But if you are afraid of welding, why buy the table? Get out there and make some mistakes... that's how you learn...
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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    Quote Originally Posted by albrightree View Post
    What is the inside and outside measurement on the Harbor Freight square tube ? I always wondered if their stuff was metric or fractional(Imperial?) . No duct tape allowed, even a bad weld is better than tape. The top ones can be tacked for stability easily with out burning through, and if just tacked you can easily grind apart to dis-assemble. For the bottom connection split it 4 ways with hacksaw or bandsaw, and then compress the cut outer tube to size on the inner tube. The you can tack that together to check for fit with bolt. or you could shim the inside, and tack in place. No duct tape allowed,.

    That table, and the pick up truck hoist, are 2 items that HF makes that I'm interested in.

    How much does that table weigh ? Does it fold up easily ?

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    good luck
    I'll measure the HF tubing later today. The table does fold up very easily. Not sure of weight, but easy to carry in and out of garage when I want to use it. Wouldn't want to walk around the block with it though. For a limited room situation, the ability to fold up and store makes it great. And now that I can adjust the height, it's even better (once wobble is eliminated). There are mods where people replace the top with thicker plate steel.

    If I understand your suggestion re: cutting the lower tube, the problem would be I want to be able to adjust the height of the table. That means sliding the white tube up/down the lower black tube. So any permanent modification of that lower joint that takes out all the slack would defeat the adjustability.

    OK, no duct tape challenge accepted!
    Last edited by goggins; 4 Weeks Ago at 10:44 AM.

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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    Thanks for the reply, sounds like what I want. Sometimes I use my pipe vise(tripod) as a mobile welding table, but I have to keep a piece of 12" channel with it to get some flat surface on it to weld. That table sounds like what I'm looking for.

    No , nothing would be welded to the silver square tube. It would be just tacking some sheet metal shims in place to take up the slack, or collapsing the black tube just enough to make a snug, but slip fit for the silver square tube. I'm saying use several good tacks instead of trying to weld everything possible. It might even help to back the weld area up with a piece of aluminum to keep from burning through the steel, if your still getting used to your machine .

    Hope this helps
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    Re: HF welding table height adj mod - eliminating play b/w inner and outer square tub

    The HF table weighs 36lbs

    I have one too- they're handy for what they are. Little workbench and some light welding on a patio chair.

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