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Newly Addicted In Texas

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  • Newly Addicted In Texas

    Hi There...

    My name is Ed, and I'm newly addicted to welding. I've always wanted to learn how to weld; and when I retired after 30 years, the first thing I bought was a small Clarke 95E for about $100.00. Well... I found that I can't do much with it, mostly because I don't know crap about welding; so I moved up to a Lincoln 225/125 AC/DC welder. Now, I can burn the beans out of anything; but still don't know much about welding except what I learn in my "School of Hard Knocks".

    I've welded a Lawn Tractor Beer/Tool Carrier out of rebar because it's free here. (lots of that stuff lying around on this 1 acre of land I bought)

    I've welded a really nice, long-duration BBQ grill out of several pieces of 3/8" and 1/2" rebar; and a BBQ/Fire Pit out of some old truck wheels. Several people now want me to make them one.

    I put together a small weld table/Work Bench out of Railroad Baseplates and an old Mesquite Stump. The combined weight of the Baseplate and Stump are sturday enough to hold 6 foot pieces of T-Posts for welding, and they're held reliably. I've drilled and tapped the baseplate in several place for holding Step Blocks for holding down various projects; and bending wire and rebar.

    I have several pix of some stuff on the "" photo site under "edv7028" if your interested. I might find out how to post pix here later.

    Anyway... that's me, and now I'm trying to find out where I can find some Carbon Rods in 3/16" size to try and Braze-Weld an old Cast Iron Stove I was given. I also have to find some Lincoln Aerisweld rods for this same project; so if you can advise me, or help, please let me know.

    Thanks !

    Ed VA
    "I'm not wrong... I've just found something else that doesn't work."

  • #2

    Welcome to this forum, Ed. Where in Texas are you located? I graduated from medical school in San Antonio decades ago - at the Univ. of Texas Health Sciences Center (I think I got it right - as it used to be plain jane "Univ. of Texas Med. School at San Antonio" when I was there).

    If you can, provide us with a direct link to your pages. That will make it easier for all of us members to find and enjoy the photos of your projects.



    • #3
      Requested Picture Link

      Hi Larry...

      Here is the link you requested.

      I was beginning to wonder if anyone really read these posts. I'm from Seguin, Texas, which is about 45 miles East of San Antonio, on IH-10. It's a very small county seat of Guadalupe County. Not much going on here except for the sheriff's people arresting everyone they can.

      Welding supplies are hard to find here too unless you want/can buy around $100.00 worth of rods at the only welding supply in town. That makes it difficult when I need some variety. Home Depot and Tractor Supply are the next best thing if you only need small quantities at high prices.

      Anyway... Thanks for writing. I hope to hear from you again !

      Ed VA
      "I'm not wrong... I've just found something else that doesn't work."


      • #4
        Ed, you in VA?

        I know what you mean about a little crap welder. I got a 90 Amp Speedway AC welder on a lark just to give to the kid a few years back. It was loads of entertainment watching him stick the rod and learn to cuss. We even learned how to replace a 120V plug with a proper 240V plug (yep, a 240 welder was equipped with a 120V plug).

        A couple of years and a couple of weld certifications later, now I'm the frustrated one - need some big, professional equipment just to be able to hold our heads high. Tool addiction is a nasty thing, eh?
        --- RJL ----------------------------------------------

        Ordinarily I'm insane, but I have lucid moments when I'm merely stupid.


        • #5


          I still have my little flux core cheap unit.

          Works ok for the flux stuff out in the wind or rusty yard art.

          Doesn't compare to the name brand stuff.
          Miller 140 A/S
          HF Flux Core
          Dewalt Chop Saw
          Smith O/A Torch
          Ryobi Grinder, Craftsman & HF Grinders

          Harley Electra Glide Classicsigpic


          • #6
            Oh, sorry Ed. I saw your signature that said Ed VA. VA is Virginia, so I ignored the Texas thaing.
            --- RJL ----------------------------------------------

            Ordinarily I'm insane, but I have lucid moments when I'm merely stupid.


            • #7
              Ed VA: Hi from Canyon Lake...and it seems like there are quite a few Texans on this form!
              "Good Enough Never Is"


              • #8
                Thanks to All !

                Hi and Thanks to All for writing. It seemed like things were a bit slow when I introduced myself a few days ago; so I kind of just let it slip my mind.

                USMCPOP... I like to use my little Clarke 95E with 3/32" rods. It'll still butt-weld rebar reliably enough so that I can bang the weld joint on my anvil without it breaking. I can also keep it right next to me for adjusting any settings; but my bigger Lincoln is my favorite. I mounted it 6.0 feet off the ground under my shed on a T-Post frame I built so it'll be harder to steel. If someone can lift it off the frame, I don't think I want to mess with him. 500 pound Gorilla etc.

                Thanks Again to All !

                Ed VA
                "I'm not wrong... I've just found something else that doesn't work."


                • #9
                  David here.

                  Ed, I thought about opening a thread to introduce myself, but since I've read yours, I figure I'd do it here, as I'm a fellow Texan .

                  I'm in good ole San Antonio, pretty noob in the welding world, but can't wait to learn more every day, and bzzzz some more metal .

                  Just bought a HH210, already found a lotta useful info in this forum, so figure I join, and keep asking / learing. Goal is to learn as much as I can over the next few weeks so I can start working on my baby, and fab up some stuff to get'ir ready for the spring . Sorry for the thread hijack.

                  Last edited by TX-WJ; 11-12-2008, 11:41 PM.

                  4.5" Grinder .


                  • #10
                    Ed, in the photos you linked to are pictures of a burnt-out truck or suv and a gasoline can. Did some vandals set fire to a vehicle of yours?



                    • #11
                      Here's The Truck Story Larry...

                      Hello to All...

                      After I retired, I found a small job working at a truck stop. After my 4th day, I was told to take the next 2 days off; so I filled my truck with gas, then started home. About 10 miles down the road, the truck died on me, so I guided it to the side of the road. It was February and VERY windy. This was a country road, and I was stopped at the edge of a huge field with a steep dropoff. The wind was coming across that field, and up the incline to the underside of the truck. Well...

                      I opened the hood, removed the air cleaner, and adjusted the carburator's butterfly valve which stuck closed. I got back inside, hit the ignition, and a fire started instantaneously near the carburator. With the wind fanning the flames into "Blast Furnace" like heat, the hoses in the immediate area caught fire, and that quickly came uncontrollable. It took 15 minutes for the entire truck to burn to cinders. The windows all popped out, the door handles, hood latch, and even the rear tailgate latch welded shut. The fire department tried their "Jaws of Life" to open the hood; but it couldn't break the weld until another fireman took something like a rock-buster to it. No one knows exactly the reason for it all; but I'm certain that the wind was the truck's undoing.

                      Incidentally... I had a FULL 11 pound Propane tank, and a FULL 5 gallon gas container inside the truck by a couple of spare tires. NEITHER of them blew up although the spares burned to nothing !

                      I had to keep running back & forth on both ends of the truck to keep school buses and other traffic from trying to pass because of the possibility of explosion. Lots of tension that day !

                      All I could do was look up to the sky and ask... "Alright Lord... what else have you got in mind for me today ?". Some sense of humor !!!

                      Besides the truck, I lost a brand new pair of trifocals, a brand new leather vest, my briefcase, brand new battery cables, 2 spares, and lots of other personal items totalling about $1500.00. Lesson learned... DON'T try to live out of your truck unless you have a BIG Fire Extinguisher.

                      On Rebar... An old Mechanical Engineer once told me that hardened steel bolts could not be drilled. The thing is, he told me this AFTER I had already drilled and tapped several of them.

                      Just because I didn't know, I had TRIED to do it. Same thing goes for the Rebar, and T-Posts. Being completely new to welding, I had to experiment with what I had available for welding practice. I've made several projects out of Rebar, T-Posts, and Railroad Baseplates. Oh yeah... and old mattress spring steel wire too. All this stuff is practically FREE; and FREE is Good.. especially when it's beer !

                      Just because it's written doesn't mean it's really true. At least not all the time !


                      Ed VA
                      "I'm not wrong... I've just found something else that doesn't work."


                      • #12
                        Wow, Ed, that's a very sad story! It sounds to me that your carburetor flooded and then caught fire. I get upset on the infrequent occasion when I just run out of gas along a highway. I can't imagine how upset I'd get if my vehicle went up in flames after I stopped along a highway. It seems like you kept your composure fairly well, though. Did you mean to say that you were living out of your truck at that time? If you were, that was like having your home burn down.

                        I used to carry a small fire extinguisher in my previous truck but stopped doing it because I became complacent about vehicle fires. After hearing your story, though, I may resume the practice of carrying a fire extinguisher in my present truck.



                        • #13
                          Thanks Larry & Welcome David

                          Larry... No, I wasn't actually living out of my truck when it burned. I simply liked to carry everything that I could possibly need with me whereever I happened to be because my truck would be there with me. Really miss that beast though. She was "One of the Good Ones !".

                          David... Seems as if you have an expensive hobby where you'll need lots of inexpensive material, and lots of good welding experience. Good Luck ! A skid plate looks to be one of your first orders of business; and easy/cheap enough to do. We put one on an old '50's era Willys Jeep made out of 1/2" steel plate from a junk yard, and old leaf springs from an old truck. I think my Dad paid under $20.00 for the plate; and the springs were free.

                          I now have a 1978 Chevy 4 Wheel drive pick-up which is big, heavy, and slow to start on cold days; but it'll move anything I want to move with it; and she runs like a bat out of **** once she gets rolling. I'm proud to still have her by my side ! Now if I can only cut her appetite for gas !!! He-he

                          Thanks to All !

                          Ed VA
                          "The job is only as difficult as you make it seem."