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Stainless Steel Sink Cut and Welded together for Marijuana Grower

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  • Stainless Steel Sink Cut and Welded together for Marijuana Grower

    Here in Michigan we legalized Marijuana recently. My customer previously was growing Marijuana for medical use and now he is expanding his operation for recreational use. There is currently a lot of profit in growing Marijuana. Somehow they wound up with a ten foot restaurant quality 304 stainless sink that was too long to get down the stairs to the nursery, so I cut it in half and welded it back together once it was moved back to basement.

    1. Ten foot sink
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    The first step was to fabricate an Aluminum back up bar to trap the Argon and to minimize oxidation (sugaring) on back side of the weld joint. The next three pictures show clamping pieces of Aluminum angle to the bottom surface at the rear of the sink and tack welding it together.

    2. Back up on rear of sink 1
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    3. Back up on rear of sink 2
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    4. Back up on rear of sink 3
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    The next pictures show clamping pieces of Aluminum angle to the bottom surface at the front of the sink and tack welding it together. I turned a bar of aluminum to fit into the round edge of the sink.

    5. Back up on front of sink
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    Miller Thunderbolt
    Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
    Miller Dynasty 200DX
    Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
    Lincoln LE 31 MP
    Lincoln 210 MP
    Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
    16" DuAll Saw
    15" Drill Press
    7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
    20 Ton Arbor Press
    Bridgeport

  • #2
    Here is what the entire back up bar looks like.

    6. Entire back up bar
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    Here are two close up pictures of the welds, because this is after all a welding forum.

    7. Weld on back up on rear of sink
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    8. Welds on back up bar on front of sink
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    I used my Matabo 6" angle grinder with a super slicer plus abrasive cut off wheel to cut the sink in half.

    9. Sink Cut in half
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    Next we stuffed Aluminum foil in the cracks in an attempt to keep the Argon from leaking out.

    10. Stuffing Aluminum foil in cracks
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    Miller Thunderbolt
    Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
    Miller Dynasty 200DX
    Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
    Lincoln LE 31 MP
    Lincoln 210 MP
    Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
    16" DuAll Saw
    15" Drill Press
    7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
    20 Ton Arbor Press
    Bridgeport

    Comment


    • #3
      We supported both ends of the sink on their legs and we supported both sides of the middle of the sink with two service jacks. Here is a picture of the sink tack welded back together

      11. Sink tack welded together
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      Here is a close up picture of two of the tack welds.

      12. Close up of two tacks
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      My customer asked me to continuously weld the halves together, but asked me to leave the weld as it was without dressing.

      13. Close up of continuous weld
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      Here is a picture of the sink back together.

      14. Sink welded back together
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      -Don
      Miller Thunderbolt
      Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
      Miller Dynasty 200DX
      Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
      Lincoln LE 31 MP
      Lincoln 210 MP
      Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
      16" DuAll Saw
      15" Drill Press
      7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
      20 Ton Arbor Press
      Bridgeport

      Comment


      • #4
        Interesting project, so how did the backup perform?
        Last edited by Ltbadd; 01-12-2020, 06:22 AM.
        Richard
        West coast of Florida

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Ltbadd View Post
          Interesting project, so how did the backup preform?
          The back up Aluminum frame had three purposes:

          1. Minimize oxidation of the back of the weld.
          2. Act as a heat sink to pull some heat from the weld to prevent the weld from getting too hot.
          3. Prevent the stainless steel from dropping out of the joint.

          1. Oxidation
          The front side of the weld was fine it was silver or straw colored.
          The back side had a more oxidation then I would like, because I wasn't able to properly seal the edges of the Aluminum angle.
          To seal the edges of the Aluminum angle it is necessary to reach up in a 1-1/2" space about 20 inches, which is very difficult.

          2. Heat Sink
          The Aluminum frame would have been a better heat sink if I could clamp the frame to the sink all the way across.
          Unfortunately this was difficult because of the reach necessary to clamp the frame in the middle of the weld joint.
          I think that it helped, but I was a little disappointed in its performance.

          3. Weld Dropping
          The frame was totally effective in preventing the weld from dropping through.

          One comment from the Welding Web Forum suggested taping a 2" wide piece of cardboard to the back of the weld. The cardboard should be folded to create a peak that would allow some space between the cardboard and the stainless steel sink. You could feed Argon from one end of the cardboard pipe and punch a hole in the other end to allow the air to be displaced by the Argon. The first problem with this approach is that there is only 1-1/2" space for the cardboard between the sinks and it would be difficult to tape any width cardboard in that small space that is 20" deep. I believe that the geometry that we had to live with made it difficult to protect the back side of the weld.
          Miller Thunderbolt
          Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
          Miller Dynasty 200DX
          Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
          Lincoln LE 31 MP
          Lincoln 210 MP
          Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
          16" DuAll Saw
          15" Drill Press
          7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
          20 Ton Arbor Press
          Bridgeport

          Comment


          • #6
            The back-up was a good idea in theory. Not enough material to adequately consume enough heat, however it did its job.
            The panels at the joint had plenty of rigidity to them created by all the geometry. The support wasn't that necessary to minimize distortion. Of course this was just a one time gig so no need in any regrets.
            My approach would have been to back purge (a trailing cup from the backside held over the weld puddle by a second set of hands. No filler, all autogenous. After the panel was cool I would come back and add filler at each end of the seam.
            Keep in mind, you did the job and it turned out great, thanks for sharing!

            Comment

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