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Old 08-17-2010, 02:33 PM
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Welding trim holes in aluminum hood

I've got a nice wide, flat aluminum hood. I'd like to remove the chrome spear that runs down the middle, which unfortunately means welding closed the mounting holes. I have not welded aluminum before, nor to I own an AC TIG. Other than writing a check to someone, what's the best way to close these holes without turning the hood into a topo map? Might this be the one time to use those aluminum "solder" rods that are always sold at swap meets? I don't think non-metallic filler is right, since the aluminum will expand even more than steel in the sun and probably crack the filler. Thanks for any suggestions.

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Old 08-17-2010, 03:30 PM
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I will send you over to metalmeet.com as they have an entire section devoted to working with aluminum there..lot of good info and yes you can weld aluminum with either a gas torch or with mig if you use a spool gun..by the time that you practice and get the stuff it may be easier to just pay the guy if this is all the aluminum work that you have...

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Old 08-18-2010, 07:58 AM
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I would glue a small strip to it on the backside....just grind both surfaces... anyone can do a good job.... just as good as welding...no chance of warping.
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Old 08-18-2010, 09:37 AM
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Can you find a welder in your area? Would be an easy job and it would be done right.
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Old 08-18-2010, 09:57 AM
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and while you there ask him if he'll garuntee he wont warp it????? LOL...
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:04 AM
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Well I built my aluminum hood from scratch. The entire perimeter was welded as well as the perimeter of the inside hole and 30+ rivet holes. If it's properly TIG welded heat can be controlled and warpage is not a problem.

If some one can TIG this sort of thing and does it on a regular basis, it shouldn't be a problem. If he uses a gas torch you will have to re-hammer and dolly the hood:








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Old 08-18-2010, 12:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gow589
Can you find a welder in your area? Would be an easy job and it would be done right.
I cringe when I see a "welder" anywhere near a car body. "Welders" are not bodymen! I have seen "welders" DESTROY car bodies! Don't bring it to a "welder", bring it to a BODYMAN who welds aluminum.

Brian
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:28 PM
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May even check out the local airport for people who weld on aircraft parts. Getting the right guy is key.
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR
I cringe when I see a "welder" anywhere near a car body. "Welders" are not bodymen! I have seen "welders" DESTROY car bodies! Don't bring it to a "welder", bring it to a BODYMAN who welds aluminum.

Brian
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Most truthful thing ever spoken on this site! Listen to Brian.

Years ago I had a car when I tore into it the quarters, they had be hit and repaired years before, I could only buy 1/2 quarters, now I'm not bad with a MIG but thought these are so long, I need a professional welder.

I had more filler in those quarters when I Was done and the two original fix spots were 12-16 inches is all.
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Old 08-18-2010, 02:28 PM
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I'm a big fan of welding and would have no problem welding a hood but if I was unsure if I could do it myself I would never bring it to somebody and pray...They would have to be the very best around and promise they wouldnt screw it up...It can be done,certanly,but those kind of artists are hard to find and very expensive..I hate excusses... especially when someone screws something up ....Tig is the only way ...I've seen guys that could weld beer cans together,they were THAT good....
I would use the panel weld adheasive. in some cases its better than welding and others its every bit as good.its the only sure way to go....the cost is less than 50.00 a tube..once its cured you'll never be able to get the metal apart without tearing it.....and you can do it yourself ,its easy....
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Old 08-19-2010, 07:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gow589
May even check out the local airport for people who weld on aircraft parts. Getting the right guy is key.
589,you do some awsome work.I'd like to point out something though ,when we do something for a long time and get good at it ,its easy for us,most of the time I'm off in another world and not even paying attention to what I'm doing ,It like an automatic pilot or something.
welding the middle of a hood is about THE most difficult task there is ...I'm sure ,with your talent, you wouldnt think twice about it but how many guys would you trust with YOUR hood after all that time you have invested..I'll bet its only one at best ,the guy that taught you...hammer and dollying is another task that requires a lot of talent. same with doing bodywork on a hood...theres no doubt tigging it is best and what we would do (in most cases) but the glue will eliminate all of the years of talent required to a long lasting proper repair for an amiture...
What kind of car is that anyway ?? it looks cool ...and fast...
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Old 08-19-2010, 08:51 AM
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I agree with that deadbody but I do think you find the right guy and you can get the right repair. If it is only one or two holes you have it welded before it gets heat saturated.

The hard part about things like the hood is when the heat gets in the hood, and you start to make progress, the weld really begins to flow. You have to stop at that point to avoid warpage and it is hard to stop because the welding really starts to flow good.

The car is a Ford Pantera. I have been working on it a couple years. I have replaced every bad section of metal, built roll bar, power steering mounts (which is more to it then it seems to do it right), chassis stiffeners, have a 400 stroked 434 we dynoed at 500hp with 534lbs tq (450lbs tq at 2000rpm) aluminum heads lighter then original cleveland, aluminum belly pan, different engine mounts, more changes then I could post here:





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Old 08-19-2010, 08:57 AM
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Awesome! but it looks like your right rear "jack stand" is about ready to give!

Brian
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Old 08-19-2010, 09:25 AM
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LOL, tires in photo are just sitting on paint cans. I wanted to see what the old racing wheels looked like. Trying to get an old feel to the car:

http://www.qv500.com/detomasopanteragt4p1.php
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