Saturday, February 6, 2016

More welding excitement

Reading about welding last night, I found the difference between 6011 and 6013 rods is that 6011 is a penetrating steel that will flow into crevices and 6013 is a rod that will just lie on the surface. As it happens, I'm out of 6013 rods so I went to work on welding two of the pieces of roller shutter assembley together. While doing so, I noted that the 1/16 rod was much easer to work with than the 3/32. I think 3/32 might be a bit much for my welder. It took quite a while to weld the two pieces of steel together which was fine. I must say though that the bitter cold outside was more challenging than the welding.

The biggest problems when welding today were that the two pieces of steel moved slightly in relation to each other. That meant that it was slightly skewed. No matter - it should work just fine as it is. In fact, if there's anything I've built that's geometrically perfect, I'd probably faint! The other problem was that one of the pieces of steel warped while I was welding it.
The warping wasn't expected. The movement of the parts was something I hoped wouldn't happen. I'd wondered whether I should drill and rivet the two pieces together first but decided to wedge it with a brick. Clearly I rocked the whole lot at some point and movement occured.

The next stage was to trim the excess steel off and straighten the bent steel. The angle grinder made quick work of trimming off most of the excess.  Straightening the warped steel was straightforward too - I just pulled out Mohammed's screwdriver and whacked it back into shape.
Having done that, I'd had enough of the bone-chilling wind howling around me and the daylight - such as it was - which wasn't that good due to low hanging and ominous clouds began to fade. Apparently sleet is forecast. I hurriedly sanded where the paint had come off the steel due to welding, brushed the slag off the welds and slapped rust-killing primer on the metalwork. Interestingly, I'd sprayed some clean steel with Rustoleum zinc paint a week ago and it's now rusty. Typical bloody Rustoleum. I really wish I could find paint locally that's not utter garbage. I did idly try some paint with a rather suspicious name of "Miracle" a few days ago. The only miracle was that it was cheaper than Rustoleum. Let's just say it achieved a surface peel in 5 days as opposed to several months for Rustoleum.

Inside the bus I put up the two blackout blinds in the bedroom. One went on crookedly but it works. The other went on quite well and looks pretty good. It's more a privacy thing than anything else.
Following that I put the final white blind up and then on a window that it wasn't possible to put a blind on, I cut a shower curtain and stuck that up with self-adhesive velcro. I'll have to see how all this self-adhesive stuff lasts. I suspect not very long but only time will tell.
Tomorrow I want to try to complete my breaker box compartment and to replace the old cable compartment totally. Before that though, I need to experiment welding thin steel. I really hate that thehillbillies put in that dreadful cable compartment. In fact, I don't think anything they did with the bus was worthwhile. I'm wondering if they simply gave up and sold it when they discovered how half-assed their workmanship had been. 

The big thing is that after I have put the shower curtains up, everything else I do will simply be upgrades. I'll have to order some more 8-24 rivnuts and some 8-24 screw eyes. I did think about self-adhesive stuff but I'm pretty sure all this self-adhesive stuff will fail in the summer heat. I will probably replace the blinds with roller blinds and the shower curtain over the one window with a section cut from a roller blind that's screwed to the framework. I"ll have to wait and see though. 

Even the cable compartment will be an upgrade. The existing compartment is rotted. The new compartment will not rot. Underneath the new compartment I can install the holder for the new power inlet. I bought that the other day. Despite the fact the bottom inch will be visible, it shouldn't be that noticeable. I really didn't want anything hanging below the skirt but I don't think anybody will really notice one or two small things.

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