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Starduster Too: Required Builder Skills

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TFF

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What I will say is for a beginner, TIG or OA will look just about the same. Only someone that is getting good will be able to use the advantage of TIG. Not that using one for the beginner will yield bad results, but a beginners bead is a beginners bead. OA is a little more forgiving in tight spaces. OA is a little easier to control heat on a cluster for a beginner. TIG is only better if you are good, otherwise it’s equal with different equipment.
 

don january

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I agree TFF and Pops. I found using the Tig you have to learn to run a third coordination of your body and that is the thumb or foot control for heat. also foot control makes being comfy harder unless you can sit during the weld and on a fuselage weld that is next to impossible. Many things to think about when buying or schooling for welding
 

akwrencher

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Sometimes it's nice to do something that's NOT work.......
I used to work on cars 5-6 days a week. Took the fun out of working on my own on Sunday.....
 

120mm

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Welding is not that hard of a skill to learn. Show winning welding is on a whole different level that takes literally miles of welding bead practice, like professional welding every day for ten years. A safe, usable, respectable looking weld takes a month or two of serious practice.

What helps is practice, screw up a bunch, try different things while practicing. After that, you have a language to talk to someone who can direct you. It’s not hard.

The hardest thing is you have to use both hands at once, and you have limited resting space because stuff is hot.

Clean the area often. Oxidation does not weld easy.
Best advice.

Get a quality rig and start burning metal
 

scramjetter

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Good link, I think I see my future :D weld and grind...

If you are going OA check out TM Technologies: Tools, Sheet Metal Shaping Machines, & Gas Welding Supplies for Better Metalworking
After visiting tinmantech and watching the vids I thought for sure I wanted to gas weld a fuse. Virtually all the welders I know said to go TIG. I’m still torn. I can tell you one thing I’m darned tired of regrinding tungsten after dipping it in the puddle!
I think going with the OA to start is the most reasonable route for me, given what everyone is saying, and then a move over to TIG at some point would be a worthwhile skill to have. It spreads out the learning curve and I am going to need the OA rig anyway.

OA is a little easier to control heat on a cluster for a beginner. TIG is only better if you are good, otherwise it’s equal with different equipment.
Thanks everyone for all the great information, I've read every comment and I appreciate the input!

Paul
 

120mm

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Good link, I think I see my future :D weld and grind...



I think going with the OA to start is the most reasonable route for me, given what everyone is saying, and then a move over to TIG at some point would be a worthwhile skill to have. It spreads out the learning curve and I am going to need the OA rig anyway.



Thanks everyone for all the great information, I've read every comment and I appreciate the input!

Paul
Be sure to get one of those tiny torches sold by TinMan. You will surely appreciate how good they are for light 4130 tube
 

Riggerrob

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Also visit your local "maker space." Chances are they have welding equipment and offer beginner classes in welding and another dozen skills. Many "makers" and "hackers" are gregarious and will coach beginners for little more than a beer at the end of the day.
 

120mm

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Do they support a tip that produces enough heat for bending fittings?


BJC
Good question. I doubt it, but I also have a standard rosebud tip on a standard sized torch.

TM tech has some clever disconnect fittings, as well as an eternal flame device that are also must haves if one wants to be serious about welding airplane tubing
 

OnionAbroad

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.... If you do decide to learn and weld it yourself, a oxyacetylene is probably the best choice as you'll need a torch anyway to stress relieve TIG welds.
Would this still be relevant if the builder is just using tack tig welds and sending the part off for professional welding?
 

Dana

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Would this still be relevant if the builder is just using tack tig welds and sending the part off for professional welding?
In that case it wouldn't matter, as long as you're using compatible filler wire. But an OA torch is so useful for other things, too, that I'd still consider it the primary tool.
 

Little Scrapper

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Do all the welding yourself. Never farm out the fun. You can come visit me and sleep in my shop for a couple days and I’ll teach you to weld.

I’m gonna stray a bit if that’s ok?

I have a sign I made in my shop with a quote from the Shakespeare play Julius Caesar by Brutus. I’m not a quote type of guy by this quote is quite frankly the only quote that ever did a dam thing for me and it applies to everyone because Shakespeare just nailed it. He understood human emotion like nobody else. Here’s the quote and I read it daily because it’s in my shop right when I walk in as a reminder of my life. My entire life story and my business was built around this quote.

“Between the acting of a dreadful thing and the first motion all the interim is like a phantasma or a hideous dream” - Brutus


Let’s break that down and apply it to that biplane so we can get you to build.

Thoughts cause feelings/emotions. Period. No exception.

Shakespeare understood human emotion and he knew what we all suffer from. The unknown. “Between the acting of a dreadful thing” is about the initial moment of wanting to do something or knowing you should do something, it’s the first thought. This immediately causes a feeling which causes another thought of “doing”. Well, there’s a massive gap between the initial thought and the doing and that’s the war, that gap is the battle. (All the interim) can be painful if you lack experience right? Modern day words call this gap “anxiety”. That gap is the hesitation, that gap is the procrastination but it’s also the only real battle that exists. This gap is your mission.

Education or knowledge is never really a battle, especially with the internet where learning facts is so easy.

Is “doing it” the battle? No. You’re definitely capable.

The battle is the moment in between just like Shakespeare said. So you want to build a airplane. And you know you can do it. Yup, that gap in between the thought of building and the actual doing is like a hideous dream. Brutus was on point.

So work on that gap. That’s your war.

Have amateurs who have never built anything out of metal done this and had fun?
Yes

Can you cut a tube?
Yes

Can you shape a single tube with cheap tools? Yes

Can you learn how to tack weld a tube? Yes

Can you learn to weld a bead 1/2” long?
Yes

Can you learn to weld a bead 1” long?
Yes

Don’t look at the entire project. Most welds are done 1” at time or less before you need to reposition yourself.

I’m not exaggerating with that Shakespeare quote by Brutus. Everyone since the beginning of time has fought the gap between a thought and the actual doing of it. It has put people in therapy it can be so daunting. Right? Think of all your life struggles so far and prove it. Maybe you thought of landscaping your lawn? Big ideas and dreams. People can spend weeks or months avoiding the actual work, but when they do the work it turns out it wasn’t hard at all. So what was hard? The gap, the interim, the waiting and over thinking of it is like a sorta hell. We suffer more in imagination than we do in reality. Some Stoic said that I think. It’s true.

So get plans. Find the smallest most simple flat fitting you can find on it and order some steel. Make that part and don’t think, just do it. You’ll learn as you go. The process is the fun. Learning is the fun. That’s why everyone who does this is a sort of addict.

Peace
 
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OnionAbroad

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Jan 6, 2021
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Ha thanks all.. yeah I'm definitely psyched about it all. Branching off of the OPs thoughts, I'm sure the skills will come but I think my main limitation is not having a dedicated workshop. I've heard O/A isn't something that's realistic to keep at home and as the OP noted, not many people train it.

It's it something a proper industrial workshop is needed for, or is that just something that the overly-safe people post online and to thereality is "just treat it with respect"?
 

Pilot-34

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Apr 7, 2020
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And oxygen acetylene torch? I thought every home had one. I live out in farm country but I swore you see one or two of every place you go
 
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