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Old 11-25-2021, 06:16 PM   #1
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TIG welder onboard - pulled the trigger

Have several s/s jobs I want to get done but trying to get them quoted on let alone actually done is problematic and, clearly trades don't want the job judging by prices so after a years worth of umming and ahhing have placed an order for a 200amp TIG so as to do them myself.

Reckon it, regulator and gas will be payed for in the first hour of usage.

New or at least a patch job to engine exhaust pipe and a set of flopper stoppers arms will be first on the list
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Old 11-25-2021, 06:37 PM   #2
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That should be interesting, make sure to take some photos for us.
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Old 11-26-2021, 01:33 AM   #3
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That should be interesting, make sure to take some photos for us.
Of what, the Tig machine?
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Old 11-26-2021, 02:40 AM   #4
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No, the work you do.
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Old 11-26-2021, 03:22 AM   #5
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No, the work you do.
It's been a while but I'm pretty confident I'll produce good value for expenditure given previous work history

Getting tube, elbows and plate delivered to a nearby pontoon will be the bigger issue me thinks.
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Old 11-26-2021, 06:23 AM   #6
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Hey Simi,

Did you get a full-size bottle? Trying to decide if I want to go TIG on the boat, but the gas bottle is a big negative...curious how you are dealing with that
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Old 11-26-2021, 07:22 AM   #7
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Hey Simi,

Did you get a full-size bottle? Trying to decide if I want to go TIG on the boat, but the gas bottle is a big negative...curious how you are dealing with that
I'll start with a D and work windless days with job inside cabin
Should be able to get a few days of actual welding at less than 5lpm

Big hardwares here do swap and go, $200 deposit and $99 for argon
$300 and $150 for an E
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Old 11-26-2021, 10:01 AM   #8
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In the States, you dont buy bottles, you swap them. If you buy a bottle you assume all the unpaid debt on the bottles (serial #). Of course this may have changed since the early 70s.
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Old 11-26-2021, 10:18 AM   #9
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In the States, you dont buy bottles, you swap them. If you buy a bottle you assume all the unpaid debt on the bottles (serial #). Of course this may have changed since the early 70s.
i buy my bottles. there's no liability on them that i know of. you just exchange them, you never get the one you actually purchased unless you go through some hoops. i had a large bank of nitrogen bottles that we arranged to get the originals back, but it wasn't exactly easy. my small bottle is 80 cf i think.
curious what machine the OP is going to use onboard. i have a couple of smaller tig machines, the little dc only one will actually run on 120 volt and is big enough to weld stainless railings with ease. the next size up (185 amp) does dc or ac. lots of wave form adjustments, 240 volt only. i have a 5kva transformer setup that i can plug into 120 volt shore plugs when 240 isn't available. i can't run too hard on the transformer, but most things that actually need to be done on the boat are fairly small. big stuff goes to my shop.
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Old 11-26-2021, 11:03 AM   #10
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Are you guys welding on an FRP boat? How do you protect boat surfaces? Iíd love to have a welder on board, but when I think of the mess from welding, and more so from cutting metal, I think all Iíd do is trash the boat. But it sure would be nice to do my own stainless where the finish doesnít need to be perfect. Stainless work is so hideously expensive.
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Old 11-26-2021, 11:19 AM   #11
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In Russia you buy bottles and have them filled. That's part of why I don't want to deal with it.
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Old 11-26-2021, 11:36 AM   #12
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In doing any substantial SS fabrication, the TIG welder is the smallest piece of equipment you need. A band saw, small plate break, drill press, several portable grinders and polishers would be needed. Lathe and small mill would also be useful. Dedicate a cabin on that 68'er and you might have the space! Protecting the fiberglass from welding isn't an issue - just need a small metal topped bench. TIG is a very well controlled process.
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Old 11-26-2021, 12:21 PM   #13
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Are you guys welding on an FRP boat? How do you protect boat surfaces? Iíd love to have a welder on board, but when I think of the mess from welding, and more so from cutting metal, I think all Iíd do is trash the boat. But it sure would be nice to do my own stainless where the finish doesnít need to be perfect. Stainless work is so hideously expensive.
there's no spatter when tig welding. it's the prep that makes the mess. i have welding blankets for when i need to get serious though. but it's always better to do things "off the boat" whenever possible.
welding blankets will protect the area, but they leave glass fibers behind that need cleaned up as well. if you bag everything off, then lay a blanket, you can trap most everything.
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Old 11-26-2021, 12:37 PM   #14
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Hey Simi,

Did you get a full-size bottle? Trying to decide if I want to go TIG on the boat, but the gas bottle is a big negative...curious how you are dealing with that
For my TIG setup I use two 50 cu.ft. tanks. If one runs out during a job I can just
switch to the other and keep going. That way I always have a full one standing by.
A 50 is easy to lug around to get refilled.
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Old 11-26-2021, 12:52 PM   #15
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In doing any substantial SS fabrication, the TIG welder is the smallest piece of equipment you need. A band saw, small plate break, drill press, several portable grinders and polishers would be needed. Lathe and small mill would also be useful. Dedicate a cabin on that 68'er and you might have the space! Protecting the fiberglass from welding isn't an issue - just need a small metal topped bench. TIG is a very well controlled process.

I think "all the other stuff" is what keeps it from being practical for me.
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Old 11-26-2021, 12:53 PM   #16
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Stainless work is so hideously expensive.




It certainly can be!


Just yesterday my guy - he does work for Williams F1 and the local hi-tech science industry round here - welded a stainless plate to a stainless tube for me. A support for my home made outboard holder.


It cost me a packet of Tunnock's Caramel Wafer biscuits...........................
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Old 11-26-2021, 01:17 PM   #17
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It certainly can be!


Just yesterday my guy - he does work for Williams F1 and the local hi-tech science industry round here - welded a stainless plate to a stainless tube for me. A support for my home made outboard holder.


It cost me a packet of Tunnock's Caramel Wafer biscuits...........................
if the stainless fabrication falls outside the scope of my work i don't charge for it. it's just too hard to charge what it's worth. but i limit what i'll do for people to just what i can put on the bench and take care of easily. (usually) there's always exceptions.
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Old 11-26-2021, 01:53 PM   #18
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I have a small wire feed i take with me for long trips. Small bottles i own for stainless and aluminum. But im a cheap ass, dont wanna pay the rates for hired work, especially when something just broke
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Old 11-26-2021, 02:26 PM   #19
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In doing any substantial SS fabrication, the TIG welder is the smallest piece of equipment you need. A band saw, small plate break, drill press, several portable grinders and polishers would be needed. Lathe and small mill would also be useful. Dedicate a cabin on that 68'er and you might have the space! Protecting the fiberglass from welding isn't an issue - just need a small metal topped bench. TIG is a very well controlled process.
Did many years doing s/s in the superyacht and brewery game
Never once saw a bandsaw, never used a plate break, lathe or small mill

A drill press would be usefully
Drop saw with cut off wheel and grinders can do most everything
And I can do without polishing, pickling paste on the weld will do fine.
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Old 11-26-2021, 03:18 PM   #20
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Did many years doing s/s in the superyacht and brewery game
Never once saw a bandsaw, never used a plate break, lathe or small mill

A drill press would be usefully
Drop saw with cut off wheel and grinders can do most everything
And I can do without polishing, pickling paste on the weld will do fine.
one can do most anything with an angle grinder. i have quite a few set up for different tasks.
but i also have a full compliment of other tools. i use them all. i'll polish my own stuff sometimes, depends on where it goes.
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