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TIG wedling on my car

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  • TIG wedling on my car

    I have a neww miller 180sd tig and i am worried about welding on my car. I Have a brand new BMW that i am making aluminum and steel chassis braces for, i want to tack up the pieces on the car but i am worried about the high frequency frying my electronics. Can i do this? should i disconnect the battery? My car has a lot of expensive electronics that i dont want to mess up, i will also be making parts for other peoples cars so im a little worried, please help.

  • #2
    It is always a good idea to disconnect the battery of a car before welding on it or performing repairs. Be careful of making chassis and/or structural modifications to a new vehicle. You may void the warranty.

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    • #3
      ground

      i would definetly put my ground as close to where im welding as possible.get a magnetic ground if you can use it use it.battery out for shoure .
      thanks for the help
      ......or..........
      hope i helped
      sigpic
      feel free to shoot me an e-mail direct i have time to chat. [email protected]
      summer is here, plant a tree. if you don't have space or time to plant one sponsor some one else to plant one for you. a tree is an investment in our planet, help it out.
      JAMES

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      • #4
        i WOULD NOT WELD ANYTHING TO THAT CAR ......... #1 electronics #2 fire hazard #3 resale value....

        if you arnt a automotive engenner or have the resourses to one .... spend the cash and buy them online....

        and if its aluminum you wont be able to weld it to steel

        brian

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        • #5
          sorry

          . i didnt read it well enough its bran new i have to agree with arcdawg. buy it or have a pro do it .
          thanks for the help
          ......or..........
          hope i helped
          sigpic
          feel free to shoot me an e-mail direct i have time to chat. [email protected]
          summer is here, plant a tree. if you don't have space or time to plant one sponsor some one else to plant one for you. a tree is an investment in our planet, help it out.
          JAMES

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          • #6
            Alot of the parts he may be making are just bolt on, so they can easily be removed later on.

            I know one guy who lost the engine computer in his lincoln when the roll bar was being TIGed.

            I took out my engine control computer when I tigged my roll bar in the car but left in the electronic guage cluster and radio, both where fine. However in your bimmer there are going to be alot more electronic modules.
            Justin Starkey
            Syncrowave 250 TIGRunner
            Miller 210 MIG
            Spectrum 375 Plasma
            Ford and GM Dyno-tuning on the Moblie Dynojet trailer I built.
            VMP Tuning.com

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            • #7
              One thing to remember, Miller machines have 1/2 the open circuit voltage running through the work lead. Their Saftey guy in Appleton told me this. That means you may be putting up to 40 volts through the car's ground, enough to probably burn out any 12 volt component...Paul
              More Spark Today Pleasesigpic

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              • #8
                Thanks for the feed back guys

                I think i'll keep the tig away from my car. What about mig welding would that be safer?

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                • #9
                  bolt it in dude ..... NO WELDING !!!! it might even VOID YOUR WARRENTY ?

                  dawg

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                  • #10
                    If my syncrowave tig is still "hot" when I don't have the foot trigger engaged then it must be an extremely low amperage, touching the torch to ground doesn't result in any sparks or heat.

                    Alot of muffler shops MIG, I've heard one story of a guy loosing some electronics but thats all. I've migged on my own car and about 75% of the time pull out the engine computer since its easy to do.
                    Justin Starkey
                    Syncrowave 250 TIGRunner
                    Miller 210 MIG
                    Spectrum 375 Plasma
                    Ford and GM Dyno-tuning on the Moblie Dynojet trailer I built.
                    VMP Tuning.com

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                    • #11
                      The problem is with voltage leaking past the direct path back to the welder for completed circuit, if it leakes past the ground it will search for a path to ground through the electrical system and chassis and coolant and worst case scenario even the fuel. I've welded on race cars and we remove the battery and isolate the the MSD to prevent current from wiping it out. Safety says don't if it can be done another way.

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                      • #12
                        I don't understand. My car was going to be the main recipient of my welding efforts.

                        Electricity is going to flow back to its source, the only path back is through the return clamp. If you put the work clamp on the piece(s) close to where you are welding how could there be any problem. How would it create a path through your Engine computer?

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                        • #13
                          I have Mig and stick welded on my cars/trucks. I have rarely disconnected a battery. Dumb luck??? maybe. If it was me, I would disconnect the battery, tack up your stuff, remove it, weld it up, then bolt it on. If you fry the computer, remove your bracket, tow it to the dealer for a warranty issue!!!

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                          • #14
                            Rick, electricity will also want to flow to ground, such as a jack stand...remember, the Work lead is not a ground to earth. I once saw a large trailer 'aluminum' up against a steel column in the building it sat in, the saftey grounds 'green input wire to welder' were of course connected to the framework of the building. When an arc was struck, current flowed through the weld leads ,through the trailer, to the column,to the saftey ground, to the welding machine to the case of machine, and the guy that had his hand on the trailer and welder, was knocked out, he was very lucky not to have been killed, Other guys working on the trailer, every time they would be drilling a hole, and welding was going on, would get an arc coming off their drill bits!!! The weld current had traveled though the saftey ground line to the drills!!!! They were lucky not to in good contact with the frame of the trailer. When this happens, the saftey ground can get an unknown amount of amperage and possibly catch fire, somewhere along it's path...So Beware of connecting 'Work' leads to anything that could be a saftey ground connection. This information on Saftey Grounds came from Miller Electric's Saftey Man. I cannot remember his name, but I am sure someone at Miller can verify what I am speaking about.
                            The reason I researched this, was the welding school I went to, a community college, had the same situation where all the booth's were 'electrically hot',there was at least 42 volts running through them. You could strick an arc oft the cabinet of machine from any other, so the machines were also 'hot'. I complained, they had a guy from weld supply co. come out and check machines, he said they were wired correct, which they were, but they did not consider that the booths were the connection for the saftey grounds. I spoke with the Weld Supply guy, he said, "the customer is always right" refering to the Dept head,who refused to believe me, as I was only a student, albeit a 48 year old one, "so it didn't matter any way as it won't be changed."I ended up going to OSHA, they have no jurisdiction in schools, osha said go to the Fire Dept.
                            I ended up refusing to come to class until this was remedied, needless to say, I did not finish the Pipe and Tig classes I started. This was in 2000. and the condition has not been remedied yet, Hope they don't injure someone, but I did see some strange things happen with electrical tools and welders. Sorry about the long note, but I am very pasionate about this subject. Hope it keeps someone out of trouble. Paul
                            More Spark Today Pleasesigpic

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                            • #15
                              PaulBrown:
                              Very accurate description I've seen this but couldn't describe that well. On our race car if extensive mods are being undertaken we remove all the electronics and fuel cell, safety first. If I were undertaking a large job I'd remove all the electronics from any modern car, just my preferance.
                              peace,

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