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Old 13-04-2012, 08:32   #1
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Welder on Board?

Well this is a far departure from my last thread, but as I get deeper in to the welding craft it seems more and more useful to me. I know you would have to take in depth safety precautions, but does anyone have a welder (invertec or similar) that they take with them cruising? I am looking at the new TIG/Stick welders, some of them are coming out with plasma torches too! Of course most stuff would have to be done on a deck or land someplace, but what an opportunity to fix things that break on board!
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Old 13-04-2012, 08:44   #2
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Re: Welder on Board?

Good idea!!
I had a welder on my fishing boat. I got tired of hauling my portable rig so I bought one of those small inverter units that works on 110. Good machine for light work & repairs. I welded S.S. and alum with it. You just gotta watch the sparks! I used old army blankets to cover up with - wool wont burn - especially if its damp.
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Old 13-04-2012, 08:50   #3
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Re: Welder on Board?

We pause, here, to note the passing of Newt's brief flirtation with Thoreauvian simplicity. May it rest in peace.
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Old 13-04-2012, 08:55   #4
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Re: Welder on Board?

we've been opperating a portable , not on our boat but on the water, doing stainless for some time.. use the tig more than anything else..
dont know if it makes any difference but we always disconect all batteries and electronics when working on a boat..
As I said, dont know if we have to but I'd rather do than say to a customer that "OOPS" didnt know that would happen.
thought often about taking a suitcase unit with us but not sure if I want to start doing that while we're out.. it'd be kinda like wrecking a vacation to me..
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Old 13-04-2012, 08:59   #5
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Re: Welder on Board?

I have a little lincolin electric wire feed that will fit nicely in the storage locker.
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Old 13-04-2012, 09:05   #6
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Re: Welder on Board?

Yes I have, sufficient for small work.
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Old 13-04-2012, 09:23   #7
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Re: Welder on Board?

I'm a welder and mechanic with welder, torches, ect. back at home. In 2003 when I discovered cruising as travel a option it didn't take long to realize I wanted a welder,drill press, torches on board. I feel with these items and the large selection of snap-on tools allready aboard I could fix most things. As well as being a asset to other cruisers. My current 32' boat limits have these aboard yet. Also in the 2 yrs I'v been out the projects I'v got involved with turned out the skippers didn't have any funds or budget. I removed one diesel and stripped it for going to machine shop, skipper claimed to have $5k, two days later nothing. 6 months later he talks of getting new engine because old one is in peices. When I'm cruisin I love to help people for free, but people needing free help usually dont have a clue whats involved in a repower or any quality repair. In the auto business I can spot this a mile away.
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Old 13-04-2012, 09:27   #8
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Re: Welder on Board?

Yep
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Old 13-04-2012, 10:05   #9
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Re: Welder on Board?

Bash, I haven't given up on simplicity, but it has evolved into the idea of being able to fix whatever I have. Currently, I can do GRP, learning stainless and Aluminum, I can sew canvas and sails, and I am pretty good at basic electrical. I fid my own lines. I am a former car mechanic and know my way around internal combustion. I understand solar and wind generation, can build my own bikes, and can practice as a general MD even though I am specialized. I can talk philosophy while your drinking, and get you home safely because I am the designated driver. Oh yeah, and my wife is a busy message therapist, nurse and she can grow anything in a pot. (or bucket) She also runs a clean and tight ship (and therefore I drive her a little crazy)
I am a firm believer that the more educated you are, the less you should be able to get by on. How am I doing so far?
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Old 13-04-2012, 10:25   #10
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Re: Welder on Board?

I have and use a portable TIG stick welder. It is handy to have, but I have an auxiliary gen-set so it doesn't put a drain on the battery bank.
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Old 13-04-2012, 10:41   #11
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Re: Welder on Board?

I have been looking at the welder kit that runs off of the alternator(big) and it seems to do a good job and it stores away in a small space when not in use...read where one guy is building his steel boat using one of these units...one fellow made his unit from off the shelve parts at Home Depot....DVC
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Old 13-04-2012, 10:48   #12
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Re: Welder on Board?

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Beth View Post
Bash, I haven't given up on simplicity, but it has evolved into the idea of being able to fix whatever I have. Currently, I can do GRP, learning stainless and Aluminum, I can sew canvas and sails, and I am pretty good at basic electrical. I fid my own lines. I am a former car mechanic and know my way around internal combustion. I understand solar and wind generation, can build my own bikes, and can practice as a general MD even though I am specialized. I can talk philosophy while your drinking, and get you home safely because I am the designated driver. Oh yeah, and my wife is a busy message therapist, nurse and she can grow anything in a pot. (or bucket) She also runs a clean and tight ship (and therefore I drive her a little crazy)
I am a firm believer that the more educated you are, the less you should be able to get by on. How am I doing so far?
Love it, so far. The simplicity tease was beyond what I could resist.

Actually, Thoreau, when he wasn't manufacturing pencils or working as a surveyor, would take on any number of odd jobs as a handyman. In the the Old Manse in Concord I've had the opportunity to inspect the writing desk Thoreau built for Nathanial Hawthorn. Hawthorn was unable to write at the existing desk in that room, the very desk from which Emerson had composed "Nature." It distracted him too much to be able to look out the window, so he had Thoreau build a small disk into the wall that forced the writer to stare at the wall.

Interesting theory that the more educated one is, the less one should be able to get by on. I'll have to think about that one; eight years of grad school didn't teach me a thing about welding. Interesting that Thoreau passed up the opportunity when Harvard offered to transmute his bachelors degree into a masters because he didn't see the point in investing an extra $5.00 in the diploma.

A year ago my brother, who was just tenured at a college down in Southern Cal, gave me a new edition of Thoreau's journals for Christmas. As my gift to you, here's what Thoreau wrote on July 29, 1851:
"This sailing on salt water was something new to me. The boat is such a living creature, even this clumsy one sailing within five points of the wind. The sailboat is an admirable invention, by which you compel the wind to transport you even against itself. It is easier to guide than a horse; the slightest pressure on the tiller suffices. I think the inventor must have been greatly surprised, as wall as delighted, at the success of his experiment. It is so contrary to expectation, as if the elements were disposed to favor you. This deep, unfordable sea! but this wind ever blowing over it to transport you!"
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Old 13-04-2012, 10:50   #13
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Re: Welder on Board?

It seems like Astrid you would have more use for a MIG. Isn't your boat cold steel? Though I guess you would just use the stick if you had too.- duh! I am still learning about this stuff- anyone here use a plasma torch also on the water?
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Old 13-04-2012, 10:58   #14
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Re: Welder on Board?

Thank you Bash. These details of one of the people I really look up to- it touched my heart. I never knew he sailed or his thoughts of such. Just goes to show you how much fun CF can be. And the story about Harvard- that's funny. I wonder what their stuffy old professors did then?
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Old 13-04-2012, 11:14   #15
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Re: Welder on Board?

Best setup I saw was on a boat named "Iweld" He used a TIG torch, scratch start, from his massive house bank with a home made resistance out of a carbon rod. Very slick and nice work out of it, but he was a professional.

He had so many solar panels that he did not even have an alternator.
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