New welding trolley.

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New welding trolley.

Post by Retired » Mon Oct 03, 2016 3:58 pm

Hi,

I was taught welding as an apprentice in the pit over 50 years ago on Oxford oil filled arc welders. Since then I've owned my own welders at home the last 20 years or even longer my trusty SIP 180A Weldmate which has seen plenty of action. I've always intended to make a proper welding trolley; the SIP is removed from it's original box and replaced every time after use then stored in the bench; this has always been a chore in lifting the welder in and out of the box and having to coil up the three leads.

Very recently I've bought a top of the range immaculate Pickhill Bantam (Oxford) oil cooled 180A welder this being industrial at either 240V or 415V. This welder feels like it's welded to the ground because it's so heavy so at last the time arrived to make a welding trolley. Having just about finished my decking project I have some steel left over plus I had some angle iron in stock; I just looked around to see what I could use to make the trolley of; a pair of big bearings would do nicely for the wheels and a short leg would allow the trolley to sit without rocking; I pulled out a piece of 1/8" steel plate which was perfect for the trolley top.

Welding in the garage has always been done with some discomfort in me crouching to weld on the garage concrete floor so why not do something about this whilst I'm designing the trolley; the trolley now doubles up as a small welding bench but I made it the same height as the wooden benches which will allow both the welding trolley and the wooden benches to support large items being welded allowing the welding to be done whilst standing. Storing the electrodes meant digging in a bench for them and whilst at it how about accommodating my small B&D angle grinder so the design quickly took shape.

The metal was cut to length using my home made stand with the 9" angle grinder installed making easy if noisy work of the cutting. Accuracy wasn't critical but I wanted it to be near. Making the trolley wasn't difficult and hasn't taken long; mostly clamped then welded joints but the top is secured to the frame using countersunk 5mm dia machine screws and nuts; the top has a generous overhang to allow clamping of any work; the trolley is unpainted and the earth lead can be hooked up anywhere on the trolley so any metal placed on the top will be ready to be welded. A shallow tray type shelf was added to accept the electrodes and angle grinder this being off cuts of MDF and a lump of 18mm ply the sides being biscuit jointed. The cable tidies are 1/4" dia mild steel round bar roughly bent to shape in the vice then securely welded into position. The bearings needed bushing for the 5/8" dia axle which I did on the lathe using an offcut of aluminium bar stock. A length of old steel tubing was welded to a pair of brackets and this is the handle.

With the welder in position in the trolley the trolley is no longer top heavy; the wheels were mounted well off centre; the handle would be better higher up but at least the welder can now be moved around with relative ease and I've got the table to weld on plus the new storage so I thought I'd add this as a success story. I've posted pictures in another thread started by Argyll but now the trolley is finished I thought all the details worth adding in one place. I hope it's of interest and making a trolley similar to this one would be an ideal first project for anyone new to arc welding; I've waited 50 years to get round to making mine but I got there in the end. The Pickhill welder is a joy to use.

Kind regards, Col.
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Dave54 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 4:22 pm

Nice job Col. Nice bit of welding as well! :thumbright:
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by ayjay » Mon Oct 03, 2016 4:45 pm

Where's the cup holder!! :roll: :wink:
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Retired » Mon Oct 03, 2016 5:51 pm

Hi,

Thanks Dave54; my welding quality varies quite a bit depending on how comfortable I am; for years I've done welding on the garage floor crouched down balancing which I always disliked; hopefully I can now be more consistent with quality welds; I never have anything fall apart though; I've occasionally welded things in the wrong place and it usually takes a lot of angle grinder work to separate them. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Thanks for asking ayjay and very relevant because a brew is about the most important bit of kit plus of course a biscuit or bun; no cup holder on the trolley though as desirable as it would be; the reason is that I don't mind eating sawdust from biscuits or buns placed on the bench but I think welding slag in the tea might prove a bit too crunchy? :huray:

I wonder if I would become famous if I displayed this welding trolley in The Tate after all it looks much better to me than a pile of bricks which attracted much acclaim years ago. :scratch:

Kind regards, Col.
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Dave54 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 6:06 pm

Agreed. It's easiest to weld when it's "bench height" and not upside down, or something equally "positional". We used to do quite a bit of welding in the steel works for brackets and so on, I usually ended up holding it to allow it to be tacked. That was guaranteed to have those lovely sparks that bounce down inside your overalls, and end up in your boots! :shock:

No chance of that trolley being in the Tate mate. It's useful! :lol:
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Retired » Mon Oct 03, 2016 8:05 pm

Hi,
Dave54 wrote:Agreed. It's easiest to weld when it's "bench height" and not upside down, or something equally "positional". We used to do quite a bit of welding in the steel works for brackets and so on, I usually ended up holding it to allow it to be tacked. That was guaranteed to have those lovely sparks that bounce down inside your overalls, and end up in your boots! :shock:

No chance of that trolley being in the Tate mate. It's useful! :lol:
Thanks Dave54; you brought back old memories to when aged 16 and allowed to use oxy/acetylene gear in the pit I first tried using the BOC Sapphire burner to cut some thick metal at waist height; I'll never forget as you rightly say the molten metal landing inside my pit boots; boy it sure smarted but was only done once. Holding brackets and lumps of steel in position whilst being tack welded was just an everyday part of the job; we also used to heat big rivets up to cherry red with the burner then throw them up into the screens to be installed; I wonder what the H&S lot would think of such practices these days; the way things are going you might need to be aged 24 before being allowed to take a new burner out of its box then only whilst wearing full armour? Looking back I was exposed to so much big machinery which could have killed me but because of the skilled engineers teaching me I felt at home and have never been afraid or scared of machinery under power because I was taught what to look out for and what to expect if anything suddenly let go; the training remains with me keeping me safe even in our garage. These days machines are covered in guards but these won't stop accidents like proper training does. We never used drills whilst erecting corrugated steel sheets of which we used many; we used to make our own punches in the forge from cold chisels to the diameter needed then after marking the sheet would be placed on a wooden support and the punch rapped smartly with a 2lb hammer leaving a perfect hole. Fond memories but also sad because of my age now most of the old engineers who taught me so much will be long gone taking their impressive skills with them.

Kind regards, Col.
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Gadget » Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:25 pm

Nice one Col :thumbright:
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by DmitriKara » Wed Oct 05, 2016 8:52 am

Looks really cosily from where I am! Congrats! Goodbye to crouching for sure :thumbright: :thumbright:
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Retired » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:35 pm

Hi,

Thanks Gadget and DmitriKara. :salute:

It didn't take me long to make use of the new welding bench; I've just installed a new decking above the garage with steel railings; the railing post tops have mounting lugs welded to them to accept the heavy steel (scaffold) handrail the handrail being "L" shaped and very unwieldy at over 10' long. The handrail is from the original wooden decking and this now needed replacement mounting lugs welding on but obviously these had to be in the correct positions a little bit out was sure to bring tears to my eyes. The posts already being installed and fixed meant taking measurements but the hand rail isn't a perfect 90 degrees so would need the short end to be adjusted as to lug position and this proved very tricky; a tape measure just wasn't accurate enough so I came up with the idea of using a wooden adjustable angle finder each leg just long enough to catch the corner lug and the lug each side; a long strip of timber was also used as a story stick with the lug positions marked for the long length. I designed the angle finder such that adjusting it didn't interfere with the lugs allowing it to abut three lugs each then could be accurately marked.

The long section has four lugs and once the two end ones were accurately welded into position I could then sight down to weld the two inner lugs ensuring all four were in line; using the angle finder it was then easy to accurately position the fifth lug but this not being on centre I needed a method of holding until it was tack welded so cut a wooden support on the bandsaw and double clamped as seen in the picture; looks easy once the answers are known. A while ago I made a portable wooden bench which is extremely useful; I used this bench also I used the new welding bench to support the handrail at a comfortable height; the handrail was clamped to the edge of the welding bence ensuring the earth lead had a good connection then I could easily do the bits of welding followed by fettling with my small angle grinder; It all worked a treat and the handrail is now in position where I've painted it today.

I'll never forget how difficult it was when I welded this handrail the first time; all I needed to do this time was to cut the original mounting lugs off with the angle grinder and weld on the five new lugs; it was fun this morning installing the handrail working on my own but it looks good now its in place and it finishes off months of hard graft. Both the wooden mobile and welding benches made such a difference. Hope this is of interest but shows what can be done in a home workshop with an arc welder.

Kind regards, Col.
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Hitch » Sat Oct 08, 2016 7:26 pm

Nice little trolley, not much chance of it tipping over with that welder on the bottom :lol:
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Retired » Sun Oct 09, 2016 11:06 am

Hi,

Thanks Hitch; yes the weight of the welder makes a lot of difference to the trolley stability in fact it would make a good boat anchor. :lol: :lol: :lol:

I've got a problem with both the Pickhill welder and my huge 3 phase transformer in that both are prone to tripping the two 32A type "B" breakers at power up due to surge; the Wylex incoming consumer unit is obsolete and type "C" breakers on eBay are being advertised at silly money so to get around this I intend to try adding a readily available type "C" breaker both at the welder and the transformer; I don't know if it will work but the idea is to cushion the surge from the type "B" breakers; it won't cost much to try out; I'm aware lots of novices read these threads so please do not experiment with mains electricity it can prove lethal and a simple mistake could prove the last mistake you'll ever make. If it does work then only the welder and transformer will be run through the type "C" breakers the rest of the garage circuit still protected by the type "B" breakers for safety. When I now switch on the surge trips the breakers but then if I immediately reset both breakers all is fine; I just do not like tripping breakers which are there for safety reasons.

Kind regards, Col.
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by smujytradeservices » Thu Jan 05, 2017 1:31 pm

Interesting. I've not seen anything like this before. Looks good.
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Jonno34 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 8:00 am

Probably a little late on this thread.

How thick is the plate on top?

Have you thought about a electrical panel so you can plug in grinder and welder and a grinder holder?
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by Nos » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:27 am

Jonno34 wrote:Probably a little late on this thread.

How thick is the plate on top?

Have you thought about a electrical panel so you can plug in grinder and welder and a grinder holder?
You wont get a reply from Colin, he got fed up with some forum members and the upset they were causing him with their comments about his posts. Nos
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Re: New welding trolley.

Post by fb22 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:35 am

That's sad, I loved his posts.
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