Welding broken fender

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Matthew Jeschke

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I'm a terrible welder, but have that itty bitty $100 harbor freight 110V welder. I've done a few things with limited success. Most recently my passenger fender broke where were the core support attaches. It ripped off right around the bolt.

I welded it back up and my welds didn't hold. I had stripped the paint and cleaned the metal but it didn't work. I'm going to pull the fender and see if I cannot put a backing plate of some sort on there to reinforce it.

Long story short, I don't know jack. Do I have to use a special kind of welding wire for the fenders. I assume they're steel? The metal is paper thing almost.

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iamdub

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I'm a terrible welder, but have that itty bitty $100 harbor freight 110V welder. I've done a few things with limited success. Most recently my passenger fender broke where were the core support attaches. It ripped off right around the bolt.

I welded it back up and my welds didn't hold. I had stripped the paint and cleaned the metal but it didn't work. I'm going to pull the fender and see if I cannot put a backing plate of some sort on there to reinforce it.

Long story short, I don't know jack. Do I have to use a special kind of welding wire for the fenders. I assume they're steel? The metal is paper thing almost.

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The pic of the welds is too blurry to really tell. But, it kinda looks and sounds like lack of penetratíon. Aren't the $100 HF welders flux core only? That doesn't look like flux core wire to me. It also looks big, like .035". Also, with flux core, the electrode should be negative. Positive if using shielding gas. Incorrect polarity will prevent penetratíon. If you do need to get flux core, I think the smallest I've ever seen is .030". For body sheet metal, you want small gauge. Flux core isn't the best for body sheet metal. But it's structurally fine when done properly and aesthetically fine in unseen areas such as where you're working.
 
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Alex_M

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Agreed, unless you're running welding gas somehow then you need to replace that solid core wire with flux core. The flux core only welder will already be set to electrode negative from the factory since they are flux core only.

If you end up adding a thicker piece to reinforce the tab, add it on top. If you put it underneath as a backer then it will throw your fender out of alignment.
 
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Matthew Jeschke

Matthew Jeschke

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Thanks for the help. Anybody know of some good tutorials on YouTube? Hate to ask like that, but I watched a bunch and don't really know how to pick the good from the bad.

I ended up cutting up a door hinge and welding it in there. Was cheapest way to get a small chunk of metal to put it together. Was a royal PITA cause I totally suck. Hopefully it holds up. Looks like with all my off-roading some of the spot welds failed on the inner fender. As I didn't catch it right away the fender started to tear there.

 

strutaeng

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You have the little black Chicago something welder right? That thing sucks, throw it away and get a real welder.

Flux core welding is a DC process and the consensus is that welder is AC! There's a reason why it's so cheap. It's basically just a transformer.

I've been using a 240V Hobart Ironman for years, both FCAW and GMAW (flux core and mig) and it welds very nicely. Lately I bought a little 120V Century inverter flux core welder for small jobs that require portability. It's decent, passable. Arc is not as smooth as the older transformer Hobart, but does okay. There's a lot of older transformer welders in the used market that can be had for a bargain if you are patient. Otherwise the newer inverters are pretty good.

Edit: Jody from Welding Tips and Tricks on YT is an excellent source for learning how to weld. He covers just about everything and different welding processes.There's other channels out there. Practice, practice, practice.
 

iamdub

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Thanks for the help. Anybody know of some good tutorials on YouTube? Hate to ask like that, but I watched a bunch and don't really know how to pick the good from the bad.

I ended up cutting up a door hinge and welding it in there. Was cheapest way to get a small chunk of metal to put it together. Was a royal PITA cause I totally suck. Hopefully it holds up. Looks like with all my off-roading some of the spot welds failed on the inner fender. As I didn't catch it right away the fender started to tear there.


Like @strutaeng said: Practice, practice, practice. But, you gotta practice with the right tools and materials. I didn't know that flux core welder was AC lol. If that's the case, you're doubly screwed cuz you're welding with no shielding as that wire isn't flux core. You might actually be a better welder than you realize but will never lay a decent bead with incorrect equipment.
 

strutaeng

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Yeah, I now see the photo: it sure does look like Mig wire, on a flux core welder...that operates on AC only!

No offense, but that's a recipe for what they call in the industry "pigeon poop" welds, with porosity and probably lack fusion.

You need a Grinch to steal your welding rig for Christmas!
 

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