Friday, October 23, 2009

Rackufacture: Torch Stand

Last night was supposed to be about brazing up a coupla more tubes and then doing some destructive testing. But what the first joints taught me really quick was that I need a place to set my torch without turning it off if I'm ever gonna get anything done. So I was gonna throw something super quick and dirty together, but then it ended up taking on a life of its own. My first project, I guess.

My friend Tracy at work, who's done tons of frame brazing, took a look at the work I had done the other night and helped me out with some suggestions. The one with far and away the biggest impact was that I was using a tip that was way too big - a #3. So I was able swing past Sears on my way home and find a #1. Not much different to look at, but huge difference in the amount of heat it puts out - much less, making it easier to control.



Another problem that's pretty evident is that my vice is tearing up parts. I have some wooden clamp shoes around somewhere that I made a long time ago, but they're clumsy and don't work very well, so I made these out of sheet aluminum. Totally and shamelessly stole this idea from Alistair. I'm a big league idea thief these days.





First chance to use the new benders . . .



Cutting out the u-tubes. Lite beer, yeah, I know. Cut me some slack here, will ya? I'm getting nickled and dimed to death with things like torch tips and all kinds of other krap. I need to balance the budget.



Fab sequence . . .







First shot at removing flux . . .



First shot at some finish work . . .



Finished product . . .



Works like a champ . . .



Getting a little closer to an actual rack. Baby steps, man, baby steps.

5 comments:

FBC Spokane said...

I'm really glad you are taking the time to document the early stuff. I'm also impressed with the results so far. Great work.

Hank said...

I'm enjoying the progress. I would've burned the garage down by now. Something about plaing with flame 'n' stuff.

Pat S said...

Well thanks, Jeff. I've been a little on the fence about whether to post this stuff 'cause it's so awful-boring to most. I'll keep at it til someone slaps me.

Hank, as long as you keep the flames manageable, it's cool.

Alex Wetmore said...

I like the bench mount torch stand. My free standing one is nice because I can move it around, but sometimes it just gets in the way.

I agree that using a smaller tip will help out your brazing. At my house we were using a Victor #1 tip. I actually want to pick up a #0 at some point. I occasionally use my #3, but not on racks.

Pat S said...

Alex, the #1 tip has been a great help, but I think I need to go to a #0. Tried to find one in town yesterday, but no luck - I'll have to go online. I use the Harris-style tips and when I looked on their website, I was surprised to see that they recommend 1 psi gas pressure for both gasses. I've been playing with pressure a bit, but nothing that low. Hmmm.

http://www.harrisproductsgroup.com/equipment/cuttingtips.asp?ID=5090