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BLACK BELT
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7,356 Posts
Discussion Starter · #182 ·
Been pretty quiet because I had some scary shit happen. As if the terminal cancer isn't enough.

About 3 weeks ago I was waiting outside for class to start. The sky was overcast. No visible clouds, just solid gray sky around 5pm. I look up at the sky and my entire visual field, both eyes, is completely covered with floaters. Hundreds of floaters. Not like dots. Like transparent gray worms and blobs.

Never seen or heard of this before. And I've been welding for about 8 months. I researched welding eye problems and didn't find this. So, lately in class, I've been just fabricating my little sculpture parts and a bit of TIG brazing.

I sent an email to a good eye surgeon that I know, but didn't hear back. About a week ago, I got another eye problem. Like a minor foriegn body or scratch. So, I went into urgent care. Was EXTREMELY lucky that the Chief of Ophthalmology was on call. I've done anesthesia for his cases hundreds of times in the past, so he took great care of me.

I knew the recent injury was not a big deal, but probably needed some antibiotic drops. Got those, all good. Now, the big issue. Are my eyes fucked from welding? Am I headed for cataract surgery or vitrectomy? I've spent thousands on all this welding stuff. Do I have to bail out now?

My medical knowledge is vast, but I don't know everything. Never heard of this. Chief said- "No way did welding for 8 months cause this." Evidently, it takes decades. Not uncommon for someone of my age that's near-sided. Probably never been in the correct light background to see it. Normally, I just notice a few floaters that are always visible.

Man, this scared the shit out of me, but I'm calming down. Can hardly wait to start bending & burning again!
 

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BLACK BELT
Joined
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7,356 Posts
Discussion Starter · #185 ·
PM me an address where you can receive packages. I've got a couple of engine side covers I can send your way. You'll have to fucking clean them though!
Little off-topic, but Larry sent me a cool leather bag full of stickers, with the engine covers.

Wanted to put the bag to good use. Took a little time to figure it out, but I think Larry will appreciate this.

Great storage and protection for my TASCAM CD-VT-2.

In the pic, the bag is flat, but the guitar effects box is about 1.5 inches thick. Perfect fit. Thanks again, Larry!

 

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BLACK BELT
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7,356 Posts
Discussion Starter · #186 ·
These ER70 rods measure 0.059". Tried to add enough silicone bronze filler to flow completely around the rods. Without melting or burning the rods, of course. Already posted a pic of the setup.



First try was lumpy. Second try cracked in the middle. Must have got it too hot.

Still pleased with the results.
 

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BLACK BELT
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7,356 Posts
Discussion Starter · #187 ·
So with those rods I TIG brazed, I applied the bronze on top and let it flow all around and onto the bottom. I was curious if I could control the flow, so I did a little experiment.

I placed a 1/16 inch rod onto an unwelded corner joint. Then applied silicone bronze to one side without letting it flow to the other side. Pics aren't very good, but the experiment worked great.

Bronze applied to one side.


No flow onto the other side.


I did more, but the pics aren't much to see.
 

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BLACK BELT
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7,356 Posts
Discussion Starter · #189 ·
Time to start working on penetration.

Ran a bunch of beads on 1/16 inch steel with the home torch. Cranked up the amps. Did these non-stop, so the metal got very hot. Got penetration, but have a way to go, before making good dime stacks on the back of the weld. Usually, if I get good penetration, the bead isn't convex enough on the top. Will keep practicing.



 

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BLACK BELT
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Discussion Starter · #190 ·
If you look at the last pic of aluminum practice, there's no cleaning/brushing off the oxide layer. Takes longer than welding, so I was skipping it. Didn't realize how important it is.

On tonight's aluminum, I scrubbed everything. Wasn't going for good looking beads. Just wanted to work on penetration. Went from 65 amps to 100 amps on 1/16" aluminum.

Feels like I'm on the right track.



 

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BLACK BELT
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Discussion Starter · #191 ·
Burner frame for the hot air balloon, and a third hand which I simply hold with a vise-grip. I rest the magnetic cricket on the vise grip so the small piece being held is grounded.



Made a jig to hold up the burner frame while I TIG braze the struts to the basket. Then, I'll remove the jig and braze to the frame.

 

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BLACK BELT
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Discussion Starter · #194 ·
Been around 100F degrees every day. By the time I get to school, I'm too hot to weld. Takes me over an hour to cool down.

Messed around with a sculpture for a while. Ended up grinding the harness struts too short, and started on new ones.

Only laid down 3 beads last night. Here are 2. Starting to get some decent penetration.





Looking for a small rechargeable fan.
 
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