my latest project - welding/work table on air bags

BLUE72CAMARO

Veteran Member
Lifetime Gold Member
Mar 15, 2004
5,009
Bunker Hill, IL
So here is what I have been up to in my spare time for about the last month. My buddy scored me this welding table for next to nothing. Its 4'4" x 3'2" x 3/4 plate top and main legs are 5x5x3/8 angle so it is pretty stout. The big issue was its height at only 29" tall it was fine for a sit down welding table except the rail at the bottom didnt exactly cooperate with that either and I really wanted a table that would double as a work table to use around my mill and lathe.
20201122_181228.jpg


So first order of business was extending the legs to get things at the height I wanted. Luckily the top was only held on by 8 bolts so I was able to remove it with the help of a hydraulic lift table I have and my friends help.

20210112_195719.jpg



So next thing I really wanted was the table to be moveable as I really dont want it setting smack in the middle of the shop all the time where it is most useful when machining but I also want to mount a large vise on it and dont want it on wheels all the time. Since it will weight around 1000lbs when I am done it should be plenty heavy to anchor a large vise in place.

So after a few different thoughts I took a coworkers idea and ordered a set of cheapish air bags.
20210113_160848.jpg


I then started designing the lift mechanism, luckily this is the kind of stuff I do for a living. So solids modeling it is.

20210114_073458.jpg
20210114_073512.jpg


After scrounging up some material that i needed and finding yet another use for an old roadsign post I have had for 15+ years i started machining the parts. A couple of evenings later I had everything all tacked in place
20210120_201451.jpg
20210120_203518.jpg


So I took it back apart and stripped all the paint I could before giving it some fresh rustoleum paint. Notice I was getting the cold shoulder from the shop supervisor for a disagreement regarding my priorities in the shop. Paint vs throwing his ball.

20210131_201238.jpg


Then finally got the top put back on it Saturday after stripping the top of all the mill scale. What a miserable job... It still has a few things to finish up but back to being functional as is. Right now 50psi in the bags puts it on its limit stops and one guy can roll it around without issue. The bags are both plumbed to a small manifold on the left hand side of the box that has a schrader valve for hooking my milwaukee m12 inflator to and a dump valve to let the air back out.
20210206_155504.jpg
 

budro6968

Veteran Member
Apr 2, 2016
4,183
Jax Florida
Cool idea but will welding slag and sparks cause an issue and possibly pop the air bag? Maybe shield the bags. It is amazing how the flying bits will find the tiniest little hole to get in and burn your foot.
 

BLUE72CAMARO

Veteran Member
Lifetime Gold Member
Mar 15, 2004
5,009
Bunker Hill, IL
Budro, I am on the fence on if I should guard them or not. I could certainly come up with something to protect them but there isnt a lot of room to get at them as is. I dont see welding being much of a risk at all, but plasma cutting could definitely send some stuff flying and bouncing around... I think I could make something up out of 8" hvac duct and couple caps really easy.
 

budro6968

Veteran Member
Apr 2, 2016
4,183
Jax Florida
Budro, I am on the fence on if I should guard them or not. I could certainly come up with something to protect them but there isnt a lot of room to get at them as is. I dont see welding being much of a risk at all, but plasma cutting could definitely send some stuff flying and bouncing around... I think I could make something up out of 8" hvac duct and couple caps really easy.
I did a lot of vertical and overhead stick welding on 1" thick steel in the early 80's. That hot stuff could find you even when you had your safety gear on. Funny that the light bulbs I used to help see got blown up B/C the slag stuck to the bulb and popped it. The shield that protected the bulb got beat up and you end up pulling it off to get light. That A/C duct sounds like a good idea. Already round less work to make.
 

BLUE72CAMARO

Veteran Member
Lifetime Gold Member
Mar 15, 2004
5,009
Bunker Hill, IL
I did a lot of vertical and overhead stick welding on 1" thick steel in the early 80's. That hot stuff could find you even when you had your safety gear on. Funny that the light bulbs I used to help see got blown up B/C the slag stuck to the bulb and popped it. The shield that protected the bulb got beat up and you end up pulling it off to get light. That A/C duct sounds like a good idea. Already round less work to make.

Yeah i dont have the equipment to get after anything of that thickness with out doing a lot of passes lol. Most everything I weld is mig but I am looking forward to learning tig with the hobart in the background of the one picture. I have only used it for stick welding to this point.
 

budro6968

Veteran Member
Apr 2, 2016
4,183
Jax Florida
Yeah i dont have the equipment to get after anything of that thickness with out doing a lot of passes lol. Most everything I weld is mig but I am looking forward to learning tig with the hobart in the background of the one picture. I have only used it for stick welding to this point.
I used the Lincoln Tombstone type welder. Lots of stringer beads, chipping and grinding to achieve 1" High frequency adapter attached to do Tig. Tig was always the light gauge stuff. Mostly stainless and occasional aluminum.
 

BLUE72CAMARO

Veteran Member
Lifetime Gold Member
Mar 15, 2004
5,009
Bunker Hill, IL
I used the Lincoln Tombstone type welder. Lots of stringer beads, chipping and grinding to achieve 1" High frequency adapter attached to do Tig. Tig was always the light gauge stuff. Mostly stainless and occasional aluminum.

I have an old lincoln tombstone that was my grandfathers as well. To be perfectly honest I dont think I have ever struck an arc with it though.
 




Latest posts

Top