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-   -   Welding stainless or alluminum?? (http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/forum2/showthread.php?t=20488)

RockRunner 11-12-2013 11:36 AM

Welding stainless or alluminum??
I have a hot dog cart, the kind you see on the corners downtown. I want to add some items to it, a canopy, shelving, storage and some other small things. The cart is made of SS all around which is standard to prevent rust, cleaning and strength.

So the items I want to add on can be from either SS or Aluminum, I prefer aluminum for several reasons. It is lighter of course, cheaper than SS easier to work with (drill etc.) and I can color it vs. SS.

So her is the question, I have a MIG welder and am OK with normal steel just need more practice/repetition. So if I want to well SS if I understand right all I need to do is change my bottle and get SS wire. To weld aluminum I would need to buy a spool gun, bottle and wire, obviously more expensive.

Now several questions, how hard is it to weld either product? And I think that by the time I buy my material I will spend more SS material than aluminum thereby getting a new too for sort of free :rolleyes:

What would you do and those who have welded one or the other, what are the differences from normal steel? The other thing is that I plan on buying a P30 or some big delivery truck to build my own food truck. Some bodies are aluminum so ..................

Please any help is greatly appreciated :thumb:

arthog 11-12-2013 07:53 PM

Stay with the stainless, and tig weld it. it will look better and you may need the stainless for health codes. If you can't do it, I can, but Im in Rollinsville.


RockRunner 11-13-2013 11:15 PM

Thanks, I am checking with Denver health codes what I need to use. I too think it is stainless, oh well. Understand I can do it with a tIG but I don't have one and the are pricy. Can I convert my Mig to burn SS? Thanks for the offer I should be able to handle it I hope.

kurtnkegger 11-14-2013 04:06 PM

Looks like it can be done...I've never tried it, just did a quick search.



Beater 11-14-2013 05:17 PM

any mig can run stainless. there are even flux core stainless consumables for you to use if you need.

RockRunner 11-15-2013 08:30 PM

Is it easier to weld SS or Aluminum to SS? Like I said I would like to use aluminum but if that is not the best way of doing it I will use SS.

Beater 11-16-2013 09:19 AM

aluminum is one giant pain if you ask me. It takes a lot of amps, and cleanliness borders on fanatical - all that for tig -

For mig, you would need a spool gun, which makes life easy, but is costly for the home user unless you have a lot to do, plus only the pro-sumer boxes will accept them. Cleanliness is still important, but not as much so.

I would mig stainless all day if I could. virtually no difference in technique and such from mild steel. PS - the heat bluing comes off chemically, no need to sand it.

RockRunner 11-18-2013 11:26 PM

Well SS it is I guess. No cost for equipment but more cost for material. I am sure it will equal out in the end.

RedCreeper 11-19-2013 05:51 PM

The last shop i worked in they did MIG stainless. Not sure what the settings were they had one welder set up for it. Would love to hear what you come up with. Good luck. Need any help TIGin the stainless shops a little packed but the TIG welder is easy to get to.

RockRunner 11-23-2013 06:43 PM

Thanks for the offer, this is going to be a slow process and then all of a sudden it will be "hurry up we are running out of time!!"

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