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Squaring up a frame the easy way.

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  • Squaring up a frame the easy way.

    Building another truck bed, put the frame rails 1/8" x 3" x 6" steel tubes 24' long on jack stands 28 1/4" apart and weld in 4 spacer bars 3" from each end and then evenly spaced. Tacked in the end spacer bars then squared up the 3 x 6 tubes, then tacked in the other spacers. Rechecked square all good.
    Directions given were to weld the tops and bottoms of each spacer first and to do all welds in the same direction of travel, then weld the verticals and to do both verticals on each piece before going to the next one. The thought being that this order of welding will keep the assembly square. Well, the weld sequence ended up being top and vertical with no attention paid to direction of travel. The results were 3/4" out of square. After a moment of quiet contemplation..... I took the MIG gun away from my fellow employee and put about a 1/2" weld in opposing corners of each spacer and like magic the frame is dead square. This is a very easy method to move metal around it just takes a lot of trial and error ( mostly error ) to learn how much to lay down. Hope this helps anyone with an out of square frame, to straighten it out, without cutting or starting over.

  • #2
    1/2" vertical welds done in any particular order?<br />
    <br />
    This is stuff you can only learn from doing. Nice work.

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    • #3
      Without a doubt one of the coolest things about welding. Always a challenge to think through how the metal will move and simple ways to keep it straight and square. Great post! Thanks.

      Brings back memories of my dad teaching me that "anyone can learn to lay a bead, but welding is about how metal works and moves." I was probably about 11 or 12 when he made that the focus of what I was learning. I've forgotten far too much 50+ years later since I wasn't consistently doing it over the years but the principles are still in there I think.

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      • #4
        I find a fork lift to be extremely useful in this as well.
        if there's a welder, there's a way

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        • #5
          Yes Ryan welds were done in a specific order. In reference to the drawing did the left most spacer first. top then bottom moved over to the next spacer and did the same, top then bottom. and on down the line. Let the whole thing get back to room temp. check square then continue. In this case the part was good after the first try. Don't always get lucky like that. The reason I did the welds in that order was so that as the welds cool they help each other pull the part the direction it needed to move
          Last edited by Oldgrandad; 01-04-2017, 01:11 PM.

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          • #6
            Why didn't you just weld a diagonal brace on each corner , before you welded it up ?

            Norm
            www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

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            • #7
              This is just the first step in building the truck bed. We want to keep the weight down and the additional bracing is not needed. If the proper welding procedure was followed, the out of squareness would not have happen. Although you are correct diagonal bracing would hold it square if this was a stand alone frame.

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              • #8
                No, No, - Temporary Bracing, till it's completely welded .
                Let it cool off - Then remove them.

                Problem Solved !

                Norm
                www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

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                • #9
                  Just , Do it correctly the first time.

                  Then there is No going back to fix your problem ! ( You Created )

                  Norm
                  www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

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                  • #10
                    Absolutely, do it right the first time! That's where proper welding pattern is really important. At the first welding job I ever we were brazing motorcycle and sports car racks. One of the sport car racks was for a Fiat don't remember the model but it had about 26 braze joints. There was a pattern you followed. It started with about half the joints on the top , flip the part do the entire bottom, flip it back and finish. Take it out of the jig and it was flat. If you did not use the correct pattern the darn thing turned into a pretzel. You can save a lot of time when you learn and can use shrinkage from your welds to your advantage.

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                    • #11
                      Not all things need to be done right the first time, and this is a great example. Junior guys need to work on projects and be given enough rope to hang themselves and learn from their mistakes. This was a project that was relatively easy to fix, and the procedure to do so made for a great thread. Thank you for including the picture as well.
                      Last edited by MAC702; 01-06-2017, 11:07 AM. Reason: grammar

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                      • #12
                        I agree with Mac,

                        I learned 90% of what I know from doing it the wrong way. Then you figure out these cool ways to fix them. If someone told me, weld here, weld here, here, here, backside of here, then here, then upside down from here, left to right here, and everything just worked out perfectly. What would I be?

                        definetley not a metal worker, sounds more like a desk job than being a welder, beating the square back into something is part of it.

                        THEN when you get past that and have done it wrong enough times to be able to weld it in sequence so everything is square, well then, then your the cat's meow. But us newer guys have to learn the hard way sometimes, otherwise we can't ever work by our selves.
                        if there's a welder, there's a way

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                        • #13
                          I've been doing this stuff since the early 70's and have made more than my fair share of mistakes. You absolutely learn more from doing it wrong and having to fix it. I have learned a lot from those mistakes but I have also learned a tremendous amount from others I've worked with, fixing out of squareness with a little more weld is one of those things. This web site is a fantastic resource to find these little tricks of the trade. I will continue to post little things like this and also come here to answer my questions to problems I run into, after all I"m still learning to.

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                          • #14
                            I think welding is one of those trades where you can't know it all.
                            if there's a welder, there's a way

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                            • #15
                              I would have to agree!

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