Welding Projects: Let Your Hobby Take Flight
In following up with the idea that there are almost limitless possibilities when it comes to welding applications, the hobbyist will no doubt be putting on their own thinking cap in regards to their next welding project. For those of you interested in making models or for ways to add adornments to your home or garden, welding is great for just that.
Many lawn and gardens can be spruced up with a bit of metal in addition to the flowers and vegetable growing, and you can make metal creatures to stake into the ground or even bird baths to invite a few avian friends. Taking that same theory indoors, you can build model airplanes, trains, and even the same kind of animal inspired fixtures you may want in your lawn but are instead shelved around your house. The fun thing about these projects is that they give you the liberty to inject your own creativity and artistic impression.
If you're interested in model planes and building the smaller than life, an excellent welding project for you may come in the way of a replica of a Tommy World War I plane. This model is great at fine tuning your TIG abilities and blend an array of different welds including tacking, fusion, lap, butt, and fillet. As with any project, you'll want to make sure to get your plans and materials in hand and laid out first. So grab your safety equipment, TIG welding set, plasma cutter, center punch, channel lock, needle nose pliers, clamps, side cutting pliers, heat sinks both small and large, stainless-use-only wire brush, hammer, and tape measurer. You'll also need both a 1/8" and 3/16" drill bits, two carriage bolts that are 1/4" x 20 x 1", a 1/8" x 1" machine bolt and four nuts, 20" of 3/32" diameter stainless steel filler metal, 2" of 1/8" diameter stainless steel filler metal that is wire, and 12" x 16" sheet of stainless steel 12 gauge with 0.1" thickness.
Whew! Well the big thing with building a model is that you need to have everything cut to precisely the right size and that you follow your plans to a tee. You'll begin by looking to the prints to cut out the correct pieces from the stainless steel sheet for the wings, sides, and other parts. Since the plane's body will be made of four parts, you'll be tack welding the inside corner up front and the inside corner at the back, and also the middle inside corner of two of these pieces. Making sure they are square and perfect for the nose to be later attached, you'll proceed to affixing the rest of the body and continuing along.
Model building can be rewarding itself, but can be a great precursor to welding projects of a grander scale as in bikes and go karts. The trick with any welding project you undertake is to stick to what you are capable of and then progress onward from there. Welding can be dangerous if you aren't careful, but also taking on something too difficult is a sure way to zap a lot of the joy out of your hobby which isn't the aim. While you will be sticking to blue prints and plans, the end result can always be embellished to or added upon with your own personal detailing. Welding is easily blended into with art and many of the more intricate pieces are coined as such. Whether you are an artist or a hobbyist, exploring the different projects out there is all part of the fun. When you are experimenting make sure you're working with weldable materials and stick to general safety precautions; but outside of that the rest is left up to you!
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