Our front bi-fold metal gate broke due to hinge stress caused by moving pavement. I could not get anyone interested in repairing or replacing it except for a metal frabricator in Botany who quoted me $7000 for the job. The cost of materials at Bunnings was less than $500. I have never welded before but I through racing rally cars I have been around people who do lots of welding so I got the basic concepts. I bought a Bossweld 100 MIG welder for $250 and did a bit of practice. I had to buy a cheap small welding table and one of the challenges without a commercial welding table (which can cost several thousand for a big accurate one) is that it is difficult to set up your right angles for a panel that is about 1.8 m x 0.66 m of which there are 4 which must must all be flush once hung on the hinges. I got diagonals spot on but you get a banana effect from heat and I had to correct that in the final steps but cutting some cross bracing and then using a screw jack to bend the sides into place, clamp and re weld. The original gate weighed about 100kg and I reduced the weight to about 40 kg.
Here is a video of the gate in operation: https://www.thebeastofbondi.com/gate.mp4
Well done sir.
I tips'me hat to anyone who succeeds at welding at an amateur level. 👍
Thanks. It was good to build something that actually works!!
Thanks for sharing - It gives me confidence. How did you decide what welding machine to purchase?
My limiting factor was a 10 amp power connection so I looked for a low end welder that I could put in to a 10 amp circuit. This of course limits the gauge of what you can weld but I was only welding square tube and 3 mm flat bar so it was all within the specs of the machine. The hard bit was always going to be getting the hinges square. My wooden side gate broke so as proof of concept of my technique for aligning the hinges I knocked up a little gate and it worked perfectly. I then replicated what I did on the big gate.
Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community. That's an awe-inspiring welding project for an amateur @Welding_Virgin.
I'm sure it will inspire many of our members that wish to learn the skill and attempt such repairs themselves.
Many thanks for sharing. We look forward to seeing what the next project you tackle will be.
It's great to have you join the Bunnings Workshop community @BevanC.
For home D.I.Y. use, you'll find the big decision is between an ARC stick welder and a gasless MIG welder. Personally, I went with a gasless MIG and have the Ozito 90A Gasless MIG Welder. The auto-feed wire appealed to me, and MIG can be used on much thinner materials than ARC. I'd like to provide more feedback on the unit, but my father has permanently borrowed it. He's used an ARC welder his entire life and has let me know that he much prefers my MIG.
I look forward to hearing more about your welding projects and would encourage you to let us know if you need any help or have questions.
Why not surprise your dad and buy him a new welder? Then you can get your old set back. Hope the vacation was good. Welcome back.
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Hi Mitchell - welcome back as well!
"He's used an ARC welder his entire life and has let me know that he much prefers my MIG"
Interesting - my neighbour said the same thing recently. Have you personally used stick - any comparisons to share?
Like ya dad, I've only ever used stick welders.