Tag Archives: TIG Welding

  • Street Rodder Road Tour 1940 Ford Nearing Completion- reassembling a 1940 Ford

    The last time we checked in with Street Rodder and Hollywood Hot Rods the paint on the body was still wet. Since then they've been busy getting the car ready for the first leg of the Street Rodder Road Tour and it's unveiling this weekend. We got these sneak peeks from the crew over at Street Rodder Magazine just the other day.

    After rolling the car back to Hollywood Hot Rods from the paint shop, Troy and crew were ready to start buckling down and assemble the Ford. This is the fun part most times, but it is a tedious process installing all of those freshly painted, chromed, and powder coated parts!

    With the exterior starting to look pretty complete, they moved on to the interior. The team decided to go for a classy, but custom retrim in the 40 Ford. They had some help from a local interior shop to help them meet the deadlines, but it is coming together great. We are loving the color-matched piping details, it really pulls it all together!

    With the Ford looking more like a complete car Troy and his crew moved on to mounting up the drivetrain and making the new Ford Racing Coyote V-8 crate engine live. They opted to go with electronic fuel injection to get the most power out of the engine AND the best fuel mileage possible (for a flowed 5L 302 Mustang Boss Engine that is!). Instead of screwdrivers, carb synchs, and their ears, these guys are using a computer to tune the engine so this car will run as well as the latest pony car from the Ford stable.

    With things really coming down to the line for the Road Tour and the debut this weekend the team at Hollywood Hotrods is really buckling down. Stay tuned for the finished pictures of this beautiful 40 Ford and make sure you come out to the kickoff of the east coast leg of the tour on July 14th at the Eastwood Summer Classic! Thanks for watching and we'll see you in July!

    -Matt/EW

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  • Welding Project With Eastwood TIG 200- Building Custom Strut Mounts

    Anyone that follows our posts here will notice that I am a fan of lowered vehicles. Could it be my fear of heights? Honestly, I'm not sure, but everyone can agree a car or truck that's "in the weeds" sure looks heavenly!

    As I get older I want my custom vehicles to ride better, even when they are extremely low. It's not fun riding on the rubber bump stops and dreading every imperfection in the road! With vintage watercooled VW's this is a big problem enthusiasts face. I recently found a set of early-spec"rebuildable" strut mounts and I decided to gut and raise them to gain some shock travel and improve ride quality.

    Since I needed an oddball sized piece of tubing to build the extension, I had a piece of 11 gauge steel rolled to match the diameter of the strut mount shell. I then used the vice and a pair of Eastwood Locking Pliers to clamp the rolled metal together. I then chamfered the edges and used the Eastwood TIG 200 on 220v to weld the two ends together. The result was a nearly flush joint that just needed a small amount of finish grinding.

    With my "tubing" now formed I chamfered the edges of every piece to help me make a flush weld joint. I started by clamping the bottom halves in the vice and tack welding them together. This allowed me to flip the mount over and weld it in a more comfortable position. I set the TIG 200 to a max amperage of 140 amps and used 1/16 Steel TIG Filler Rod to join it all together and fill the chamfer I made. I repeated the process with the top cap and I soon had a mount that looked OE, but is 1.5 inches taller.

    I am still working on making my weld puddles all look uniform, but I have come a long way since I first began learning to TIG weld on the TIG 200 about a year ago! With a little patience and a lot of practice, it really opens up what you can fabricate!

    -Matt/EW

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  • TIG Welding Custom Air Ride Struts With TIG 200

    I've gotten into the mindset where I like to try and custom build or DIY as much as possible when building a car. While more and more small niche companies are making specialized parts to "bolt-on" your project, it's easier than ever to build a "custom" vehicle. Nothing beats being able to show off your ride at a show and have people notice all of the one-off modifications and parts. In the end I spend less money, and I don't need to wait for "custom" parts to show up in the mail. It's one of my secrets to completing project cars so quickly.

    This weekend I started tackling a project that is a perfect example of this topic. Currently I'm fitting one of my project vehicles with air ride suspension. A few sites offer high-priced, "bolt-on" kits, but they still aren't a true bolt-on affair. These kits also are way out of budget for this particular build. The first big piece of the puzzle are the rear air shocks. Since this is a small vehicle, I'm tight on space and opted to go with Air Lift Chapman style air struts. These are close to the same dimensions of the original rear suspension, but they need a mount solution where they meet the rear axle beam. Niche companies do sell accessories that allow you to bolt the struts on with out breaking out the welder. But the cost to buy them, and wait for them to be made, and arrive to me; I could've saved time and $150-$200.

    I decided to take a pair of worn out, original rear shocks and cut the bottoms off with the end links and use my Eastwood TIG 200 to mate them together. Luckily the Air Lift rear air struts came beveled at the bottoms to make a nice valley to lay the filler rod in. I also ground a small bevel on the original shock bottoms.

    I then set my TIG 200 up on a 110V outlet and set the output at the pedal to be a max of 120 Amps. I decided to use an .030 filler rod to produce a small, tight puddle that wouldn't protrude from the joint too much. I found myself hovering the pedal around 75% which was about 100-110 Amps. The results were pretty good given that I am definitely still a beginner to TIG welding.

    In the end I spent about an hour total modifying these air struts, and saved myself a significant amount of money and wait time. If you do this a few times even on one project, you can see how you've quickly paid for your welder, and have the satisfaction of having parts you made yourself!

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  • TIG Welding Project of the weekend- Shortening Steel Oil Pickup tube

    A big part of building modified cars is swapping around parts from other years, models, and even makes. When you get pretty far into heavily modifying a vehicle, you will definitely come to a point where you will need to learn how to weld, especially TIG weld. This past weekend I tackled a mini-project I've been putting off for sometime.

    In stock guise this engine used an oil cooler that ran hot coolant through it to "cool" the oil. Sure your coolant may stay a few degrees cooler than your oil..but not enough to significantly cool things down. In the end it leaves more failure points for coolant hose leaks, and doesn't help cool things down much.

    I decided to use a "sandwich" oil cooler with external oil radiator. I used the "sandwich" cooler portion from an 80's turbo Volvo. These came stock on just about every turbo Volvo in the 80's-90's and are plentiful in the junkyard. You can then mix and match an external oil radiator of your choice to gain oil capacity and cooling capabilities. I chose an OE oil radiator and hoses from a European Mk1 Golf GTI. It required little modification to fit in the grill of my 76 VW Rabbit project. As an added bonus, the fittings on the hoses that came with this oil radiator were a direct fit to the Volvo sandwich piece.

    Because the sandwich cooler is much thinner than the factory cooler, I needed to chop and shorten the VW cooler cap shaft by about 1.5" (are you confused yet?!). I started by marking and chopping the section out I didn't need.

    Once the pieces were cut, I made sure they were flat by grinding the cut ends with my Eastwood Eastwood Bench Grinder and beveled the edges to be joined. By beveling the edges I can make a weld joint that is flush with the surface of the joint without having to grind any of the weld away. I chose to use some thin .030 steel filler rod to make tight, small weld puddles; again to reduce the need to grind.

    I set my Eastwood TIG 200 up on 110v current and used a 1/16" Red TIG Tungsten. The result was pretty good and my weld bead was flush with the cooler cap tube.

    After hitting the cooler parts with Aluma Blast Paint, I reinstalled it all on the engine and now have a factory looking external oil cooler conversion!

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  • TIG Welding Cast Aluminum Elbows- A Beginners Journey.

    TIG Welding Training

    As I've mentioned in other posts, I am a beginner in the world of TIG welding. I really began tackling TIG welding about a year ago after we offered a crash-course internally here at Eastwood. With the launch of our Eastwood TIG 200 it made it easier than ever for me to finally start learning.

    Learning how to TIG Weld on Steel

    I soon caught the TIG welding bug, and I found myself spending lunch breaks and free time trying to pick up the basics of TIG welding. I started with steel since it was less intimidating than learning to TIG weld aluminum. Above is a picture of my progress, and although my pace and steady hand hasn't fully developed yet, I was starting to get the hang of it. Ultimately I wanted to be able to weld thin gauge aluminum tubing for a custom intake project I had in the works. As soon as I started to feel comfortable welding steel I jumped right into learning to TIG weld aluminum (albeit too quickly). It was frustrating at first, but as they say "practice makes perfect"... or at least practice makes "better" in this case. Below you can see me practicing on some plate aluminum by welding bead after bead.

    Learning to TIG weld aluminum

    Practing TIG Welding Aluminum

    Fast forward to January, and I am ready to begin my custom intake project. I ordered up some 6061 .065 tubing and a pair of cast tight radius 90's. The first job in this process is to cut and weld the 90's together to create as tight of a 180 degree radius as possible. This was a bit daunting since 3" cast 90's aren't very cheap if I messed it up!

    After I cut the pieces down and beveled the edges, I cleaned the weld area with a stainless brush, and Pre. I dropped the helmet down, took a deep breath, and began welding. Above you can see the results. I am satisfied with how it came out, I just need to keep practicing to get that consistent "stack of dimes" look. As I was welding, I did notice that the bevel I made was a bit wide at some points and made it difficult to keep the puddle consistent. I was also getting a lot of contaminants coming to the surface as I was welding, and I couldn't figure out why. After some thought today, it hit me that I prepped the immediate area around the joint, but I probably didn't clean a large enough area. That probably caused all of the contaminants I saw popping up in the leading edge of the puddle. Since I have to weld aother piece to this elbow, I decided to media blast the entire elbow and follow it up with our After Weld to get the surface etched clean. Now that I've taken those extra steps, I really can see how much cleaner the metal is. I'm pretty confident that's where the contaminants were coming from. Next time I can hit the joint with the stainless brush to remove any minuscule corrosion and enjoy a clean weld puddle!

    With anything like this, I'll always be perfecting my skills. I have a long way to go, but I can assure you, that I am hooked on the art of TIG welding!

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