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mklotz70

Valve cover make over(pic overload)

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I guess if you're going to link to it, I'd better finish it :)

 

No...it will leak less. The 1/4 turn cap leaks more and that was the original cap on the ribber cover. If I warp it enough with the tig, it may leak more :) I guess I can mill if flat again!

 

There's still a ton of work left on it!!

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Dude...you have access to better equipment then me and you can tig aluminum better too.......................so if you want it f'd up...send it on down :)

 

I don't know how much better the equipment is, and I sure as hell suck at using it. As for the tig welding.... You practice beads are really nice, welding 35+ year old cast aluminum is a bitch!! Even if its cleaned really well. Maybe some day I will have a chance to try it, I do have a bad ass infinity SR valve cover I've been saving, it needs some mods to fit the rear wheel drive engine.... So what's your address :D

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No...it will leak less. The 1/4 turn cap leaks more and that was the original cap on the ribber cover. If I warp it enough with the tig, it may leak more :) I guess I can mill if flat again!

 

Okay, my bad. I get it now. I got confused at first, but I'm old so it's okay. :D

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Hey, Mike we have some stuff at the base specifically designed for welding old cast aluminum, especially if its been around hot oil. Basically you brush it on and it draws out all the oils, then you just wipe it off and weld away. I will get the name of it when I am out there this weekend. peace.

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Hey, Mike, someone on the Bluebirds list says:

 

Did you know the later screw-in cap will fit the earlier valve cover without the extra work?

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...didn't know that. Simply threading the cap in the existing hole wouldn't be any fun :) I guess that would give the appearance, but I can't see it fitting and sealing all that great. I guess I'll try that on the other ribbed cover I have.

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...didn't know that. Simply threading the cap in the existing hole wouldn't be any fun :) I guess that would give the appearance, but I can't see it fitting and sealing all that great. I guess I'll try that on the other ribbed cover I have.

Yeah, I wouldn't think so either, but several folks said yeah, it does.

 

Your's is way cooler though. :D

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hey mike that cover will be sorta a bitch to weld if ya dont do it right. I hope ya did'nt already blast it?? if so, ya just shot your self in the foot kinda. that media almost imbeds itself in aluminum and will fuck ya up every time. also if your tig has cleaning control crank it as far as it will go, also for cast aluminum or any aluminum do not use any grinding wheels or anything with aluminum oxide in it. i like to use those paint stripper wheels on a grinder they work great and dont contaminate the material. also another big tip that alot of dudes dont do is preheat. I would preheat that cover with a propane torch dont use oxy acet it has way to much carbon in it and will screw ya. once its preheated acetone the crap outta it, then preheat again then weld it up. between the stripper wheel, a good prehat and a good cleaning you draw most the oil and crap outta the pores of the aluminum then it should weld pretty good having it pretty hot before ya start your weld makes a huge difference on a t joint like that id prolly be up in the 140 amp range on something like that the hotter it is the better it cleans as you go along making your weld.

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Thanks!!! That's great info!! I did glass bead it...didn't even think about it imbedding, but that makes sense. I've been cleaning it with brake cleaner, but I've got plenty of acetone...I'll use that. I think I still have the stripper wheel like you mentioned....I'll see if I can get that in there...otherwise, I may just pick up a new SS wire brush tomorrow. I was going to pick up some Arcair Protex Alclean tomorrow on nismopu's recommendation. At $25/qt, I would sure hope it's a lot better than acetone :) I've got a propane torch on the bench...I'll see about heating it with that. My unit does have the ep/en control from 30-70%. It's a 200amp welder with a 100hz upper freq limit. All of which should mean that it can weld AL quite nicely......expect for the crap I'm trying to make it weld :) I've been really tempted to simply pull out the high temp Lab Metal and mount it with that. It's not structural, but it does need to handle the 400deg for the PC it will get. If I'm going to put that much EP to it, I guess I'd better make sure I have at least an 1/8" electrode in it?

 

I've been slow with the welding on it....been spending most of the time studying up on how to better attack it. Haven't found much that is as specific as your input......so THANK YOU!!!! I have the second bung turned and waiting and the cover cleaned up and ready to go. I'll try all that on one of the donor valve covers first :)

Edited by mklotz70

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Arcair Protex Alclean?? never even heard of it :confused: id like to try that out where ya get it at??? let me know. I'm pretty old school and that's alot of fancy talk LOL!! but yea man, i fought cast aluminum alot and i hated it! used to weld up motorcycle covers, and cases that had been busted up, and that was always what worked best for me. SS brushes i found really did'nt do any good unless your welding on new aluminum and just need to take of the thin layer of oxidation. preheating is key to getting that cast to flow. those little heat sticks come in handy so you know how much heat you got into the part i reccomend getting one. you should be fine with a 3/32 tugnstein just ball it up before ya start. here is another little tip for you or anyone else. if ya ever have to weld thin aluminum sheetmetal use a 2% sharpened 3/32 tugstein it concentrates the arc right were ya want it with just a tiny ball on the end makes corner to corner welding aluminum sheetmetal flow like butter with hardly any filler rod. makes the most beautifull welds beads ya ever seen.

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What temp of heat stick? I've wanted to buy them before, but didn't know what temp to get. MAP gas is hotter....is that better than propane, or is it "dirtier" that propane?

 

This site has had a lot of info. He swears by using 2% thoriated for AL welding.

http://www.weldingtipsandtricks.com/

 

I also came up with this page that seems to dispute that, but the last paragraph above the pic at the bottom of the page confirms using 2% on AL with the inverter machines.

http://www.thefabricator.com/AluminumWelding/AluminumWelding_Article.cfm?ID=527

 

Quick search came up with this listing. Haven't found much as far as writeups on using the stuff, but it seems to be available everywhere. Airgas lists it on their website too. I'll probably stop at Jone's Welding on Sandy on the way home today...it's about 5 min from my work......and nismopu said that's where they buy it.

http://www.amazon.com/5702-1200-PROTEX-ALCLEAN-ALUMINUM-CLEANERS/dp/B0016L3GO4

 

So...maybe I'll get motivated enough to play in the shop tonight and give some of this stuff a try. I'll check to see if I have any of the stripping discs and pick some up if not.

 

I've welding some AL before and everything went smooth....I was really disheartened when the valve cover started messing up.....I'm glad to see that it's the cast that's causing me the grief! Gives me a bit of hope again that it might turn out okay :)

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ohh prolly 175 200 degree one would be fine mike i know this sounds funny but alot of times, if my spit will instantly boil off the part a couple inches away from where im hetating its plenty warm enough. and what water boils at 200 something degrees correct?

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thanks. i'll see about getting the temp stick too. Any thoughts on the map gas?

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thanks. i'll see about getting the temp stick too. Any thoughts on the map gas?

 

Mike, mapp burns much cleaner but cooler than propane, and it's twice as expensive. We use mapp on our burn table, it makes nice cuts (better than acetylene) but I'm not sure why we don't use propane like a lot of shops use.

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zirconiated tungsten is my favorite for sheetmetal but its hella expensive. any of you guys ever used the stuff?

Edited by nismopu

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is that the brown tugstein?? ive used the brown one before cause i was told it had a more stable arc the the 2% but i really did'nt notice any difference not with my old dinasour tig anyways. mike i don't think their would be any difference between the 2 gases as long as you can get the part your working on up to a good temp to weld mapp gas is pretty spendy though. hell normally i use those cheapo coleman camping propane bottles my little torch deal that screws onto the top of it and even then it takes a while to get it up to temp. aluminum displaces heat so fast its not even funny. I once seen a old timer gas welding a old triumph crank case back together that was cool to see. id like to try that out someday.

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Mike, mapp burns much cleaner but cooler than propane, and it's twice as expensive. We use mapp on our burn table, it makes nice cuts (better than acetylene) but I'm not sure why we don't use propane like a lot of shops use.

 

Interesting...I was sure MAPP burned hotter....but that would explain why I had more trouble heating things up before. I've got a buddy that swears by the propane and thinks I'm a complete fool for keeping the acetylene around. I mainly got it for heating stuff up.....so I don't really need the acet', but the bottle is still nearly full and I don't feel like buying a new torch.

 

 

zirconiated tungsten is my favorite for sheetmetal but its hella expensive. any of you guys ever used the stuff?

 

I just bought a lathunated tung...read good things about it....but I hadn't planned on using it for this project. I picked up the ALclean..only $16.50! Sweet!

 

is that the brown tugstein?? ive used the brown one before cause i was told it had a more stable arc the the 2% but i really did'nt notice any difference not with my old dinasour tig anyways. mike i don't think their would be any difference between the 2 gases as long as you can get the part your working on up to a good temp to weld mapp gas is pretty spendy though. hell normally i use those cheapo coleman camping propane bottles my little torch deal that screws onto the top of it and even then it takes a while to get it up to temp. aluminum displaces heat so fast its not even funny. I once seen a old timer gas welding a old triumph crank case back together that was cool to see. id like to try that out someday.

 

I have both gasses....but I'll probably use the propane...the torch is already on it :) Talked with Charlie(not on here just yet) and he welds AL heads. He recommended preheating it to 350 in an oven, then final heat with the propane. Since I have the oven in the shop for powdercoating....I think I'll give that a try. I'm figuring I'll see about cleaning it, cooking it, final heat with propane...then tig it. I swear I'm gonna use Lab Metal next time!!! :)

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Is there anything special about the elephant caps? Iv got both and have an elephant on my Z's L26 just because I thought it looked cooler :D

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Like mentioned earlier here.....they're just a bit more rare....so a bit more desireable, but they function the same.

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you also should use a 100% stainless brush before welding as well and clean your filler rod with acetone. get everything as clean as possible, it really helps especially with aluminum. the stainless almost polishes the surface and takes the oxidization off the top layer, but by the sounds of it you really need to soak it in acetone as well.

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you also should use a 100% stainless brush before welding as well and clean your filler rod with acetone. get everything as clean as possible, it really helps especially with aluminum. the stainless almost polishes the surface and takes the oxidization off the top layer, but by the sounds of it you really need to soak it in acetone as well.

This should always be done with stainless or aluminum, especially if your filler rod isn't covered and tucked away. I hate dirty rod, especially when you have a real nice bead going; then BLAM contamination. SUCKS!

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I needed a crack in my RL411 valve cover repaired. Replacement not obtainable, Roadster valve covers don't fit, the rear needs a taper to fit under the intake air scoop for the heater on the 411. Looked in the yellow pages for welders and called until I found a welder certified for FAA repair. Turns out he was also certified by Mercedes to repair their aluminum heads, but thats another story. Bottom line, $25 later my valve cover looked like a factory new part. He knew how to clean, preheat and weld. He also ground the weld, almost invisible. Soimetime you need a professional, and they dont cost that much.

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I bought a couple of new SS brushes along with the Arcair cleaner. I've got the day off tomorrow...we'll see if I can get some time to mess with it.

 

As for having a pro do the welding. It's an option, but since this isn't anything that important, it's the perfect opportunity for me to learn this stuff. When I shortened the 521 steering column...I had a pro weld it. When I made the custom upper control arms....I had a pro (ADrummond) weld it. The first disc kit for a 521 that I sold...I had a pro weld that too. The steering and disc bracket were more because I didn't have the equipment at the time....not so much because I didn't think I could do it.........but I'm absolutely positive they got a better weld job than I was capable of. :)

 

A valve cover doesn't have anyone's life hanging on it.......I think I'll keep fighting with it :)

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Mike, mapp burns much cleaner but cooler than propane...

 

Interesting...I was sure MAPP burned hotter....

 

So did I. From the Internet:

 

MAPP gas is liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) mixed with methylacetylene-propadiene. MAPP is the tradename for a product of the Dow Chemical Company. In Australia it is known as RazorGas and is a trademark of ELGAS.

 

The gas is used in combination with oxygen for heating, soldering, and brazing due to its high combustion temperature of 2927

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