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Old 02-06-2013, 07:44 PM   #28
Beastly Adventurer
Joined: Sep 2005
Location: East Bay
Oddometer: 1,612
I've known Nemo for a while, but haven't been to his new shop more than once or twice. I think I'll stop by this weekend. Cool to see his work on a bike.

I took Evan Wilcox's class at the Crucible last November, and loved it.

Evan uses 1100 H-14 at 0.080" thickness. He welds with oxy-hydrogen, and a Victor #2 (I think) tip on a small (J-28) mixing handle. He says that 3003 works just as well, but you can't find 3003 filler rod - only 1100. So, if you're polishing your tank, use 1100 because the welded seams will look slightly different. If you are painting the seamed parts, 3003 works just as well.

Unfortunately, you get a blank stare from the metal yards if you are trying to buy 1100 H14. He buys it from Los Angeles, even though he lives in Ukiah. It is not available in the Bay Area. The only source I found was McMaster. 3003 is much easier to find.

You can weld aluminum with oxy-hydrogen or oxy-acetelyne, but hydrogen is a bit easier. To weld aluminum, you need to visit and buy Kent's flux. It's the best flux available, and works quite well. Evan claims it's a recipe Kent found in an old Navy repair manual. Unfortunately, the flux puts off an orange flare, and you also need to buy Kent's TM2000 blue lens to weld with - and it costs $200. With a regular 3 or 5 shade lens, all you see is a white ball.

Airgas wouldn't even talk to me about a bottle of hydrogen unless I set up a commercial account.

It's not cheap to gas weld aluminum, but it's pretty damn cool. And you get to hear from lots of people that you can't gas weld aluminum, even though all the old sportscars and every WWII airplane was made that way.

Hijack off. See you Saturday.
OaklandStrom is offline   Reply With Quote