Pit Cart Project

randy1123

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Some may remember me as the newbie tig welder. So I practiced and practiced and figured what better way to test my skills is to build something.
After our tool boxes were falling apart at the last race, I wanted to modify the existing chests, or buy a real Pit Cart.
The new cost of the Pit Cart was too much, and I needed two of them. So the idea started, CAD time spent and pricing to build worked out.
I have built many things out of MDF wood and laminated them, but never anything more than a bracket out of metal. I decided to make this out of aluminum to make it lightweight, and attempt to build two of them. Jump into the deep end!
After warping the first frame, I decided to try a different approach.
Thanks to Nathan at CadTech and Greg at Competitive Metals, I think the build is going well.
I used screws to hold it together until welding is complete. If any metal is not fully secure, the warping starts. I will drill more holes in the face, weld and smooth out the faces before painting.
Problem, I have gotten to this point and only feel comfortable welding certain parts and worried about warping what I have built.
Should I call in for help and pay a pro to finish the details so I don't ruin my creation?
Very worried about the amount of heat needed.
Comment, criticize, suggestions welcome.
 

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Mike_Cohen

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Randy,

Awesome project and great job! I think you should finish it, you took on the beast and almost have it in the boat, now its time to gaff it and put it away! Give your instructor Tommy B a call or Mike at Alumi Craft. They could give you competent suggestions and steer you in the right direction.

By the way, we'll take one too!

Great job!

Mike
 

randy1123

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Randy,

Awesome project and great job! I think you should finish it, you took on the beast and almost have it in the boat, now its time to gaff it and put it away! Give your instructor Tommy B a call or Mike at Alumi Craft. They could give you competent suggestions and steer you in the right direction.

By the way, we'll take one too!

Great job!

Mike

Thanks Mike,
I have one more surprise to show you. Of you look close you can see it.
Hint....it involves air.
 

diirk

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That's an amazing build. You've done great work!!
Any chance you'll share or sell the plans?
 

07FJRog

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Nice work so far, the finished unit, will be cool. :)
 

atomicjoe23

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Nice work on this!!! Looks to be very clean so far and the airbags are a great idea as well!

Two thumbs up to the 8 yr. old who wanted beadlocks :) !!!

I second the opinion that you should finish this yourself. . .the key to avoiding/minimizing warpage of the material is to have it tacked together (or screwed in your case) in multiple spots and then to jump around all over the thing when welding. . .weld a small section then move to a section completely catty-corner from where you were just welding and weld a small section there. . .jump to a section in another quarter and weld there, then the quarter opposite that one. . .work your way around the cart in small sections just like you would when torqueing lug nuts, etc. and don't be afraid to give the material time to cool if it needs it. . .if you are patient you can finish this whole thing yourself and that makes it all that much cooler!!!

Post up progress pic's as you get them. . .and are you making the drawers as well???
 

randy1123

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. .and are you making the drawers as well???

no, I am gutting my old chest tool boxes. (you can see the two black boxes in the background on one of the shots)
After being dragged in and out of the trailer, on dirt for our pits, the frames of the shop boxes are too messed up. The drawers and slides are fine.
I am making the second unit this weekend to get to this stage. I made some minor changes to have it make "more sense".

I went and bought 10lbs of rod today. I plan to finish it all myself except the 1/4" frame rails. I will get some quick help on these.
I want them painted and done by our race in two weeks.........this includes powder coat.
We will see, but I plan to spend most of my free time on this.
 

randy1123

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Ok,
This project had to be set aside for a while, but I spent the break working on them.
Learning from warping and my lack of TIG abilities, I had to take some steps back but back on track to complete these. A couple things had to change, but I am posting progress and want to complete before our race season starts.
I have kept the 'lug nut' idea of welding in my mind, but also made some heat sinks (in one of the pics you can see the angle piece with slots cut every inch)
I am welding most of it with only minor issues. It is all made of 1/8 material except the main frame rails that are 1/4. I have called in someone to help me weld those up.
Enjoy, I am excited and will post pics after each weekends progress for the next few weeks.
 

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