Steel thickness of the average car?

  1. Dcal

    Dcal Forum Supporter

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    1,992
    Location:
    Antrim Northern Ireland
    Stick with the same (or similar) steel thicknesses.
    Thick to thin will make it more awkward.
    You need to get to grips with welding thin steel if you are working on cars so better to practice on similar stuff.

    I tried welding with some 0.9mm gas-less wire (E71T-GS) late last night and the results were so shockingly bad that there must be something wrong. I did run the torch negative but it was terrible.

    I'll give it another go later on and post the results.

    Not sure of the make of the wire but it might have been Jefferson
     
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  2. tom2207 Member

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    1,551
    Location:
    uk northern ireland
    new stuff can be .06 in the middle of panels and .07 or .08 at the edges , peugot were the first to use higher strength steel in production cars in the mid 80s , the 309 from memory , if you didnt hold the bonnet about ten inches above the slam panel and drop it to close the bonnet as recommended ,but tried to close it with two hands there was a fair chance you would leave two dents, on the other hand volvo cabs are 1.2mm , restored a fair few of those too.
     
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  3. cammy9r Member

    Messages:
    30
    Hi, use like for like when patching also very few parts or any if i recall on cars are 3mm thick ( maybe the odd part of a leg). I've done some repair work to a sill and rear arch to a MX5 mark 1 and 2 and the sill steel is only ~1.2mm - 1.8mm thick. The rear arch is just 0.9mm. The thinnest steel i have worked with was on a suzuki grand vitara front wing. It was so thin that the pulling keys i tried to tack on just blew holes on the lowest setting. On the other hand I have a rover p5 to repair, the body panels are thick and heavy on that.
    Try out gassless and get practice in but you will find it night and day compared gas. At home I have hobbyweld 9kg bottles and get maybe 2.5 hours of trigger pulled at 9lt/min. There are a few other rent free options though. Regardless, welding to a good standard does not come cheap.
     
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  4. Dcal

    Dcal Forum Supporter

    Messages:
    1,992
    Location:
    Antrim Northern Ireland
    I thought I posted this last Tuesday but it disappeared (or I posted it in some random thread) but see below the results I got from using the gas-less wire I have.
    It says E71T-GS and I think it was Jefferson brand, but i don't have the packaging anymore.

    It is truly awful.

    IMG_2019.JPG
    I used electro galv steel but ground most of the galv off.
    It's supposed to be suitable for galv and most cars have some now, so there is a reasonable chance you will be doing something similar.

    I tried setting I got off the web for E71T-GS and it was worse.
    Tried more voltage, more wire speed, less of both and all sorts of combinations in between and it was useless.
    Even cleaned up it's pants.

    IMG_2021.JPG

    I changed the welder back to negative earth and ran a couple of beads with 0.8 solid wire and 5% argon and it's far easier to get a decent weld.

    IMG_2026.JPG

    I ground the welds back to see if it was just the appearance of the weld that was bad but the gas-less is full of porosity.
    It did get into the metal so it's doing something but in my opinion cheap wire isn't worth the bother and will put you off welding if you have any expectations of laying down a nice bead.

    IMG_2037.JPG
    I might speculate £20 on 2kg of EWM wire before I give up on gas-less completely.

    @Tangledfeet did you give it a go yet?
     
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  5. Tangledfeet

    Tangledfeet Once more into the breach...

    Messages:
    1,326
    Location:
    St Andrews, Fife, Scotland
    Nope, sorry! :ashamed:

    On my 'to do' list. I actually did some woodturning earlier in the week; the first time in ages... there was a considerable amount of sanding needed! :whistle:
     
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  6. MyHouseIsOnFire Member

    Messages:
    97
    Location:
    Uk

    It seems that gassless is poor.
    No blow through at least. How thick was the steel you welded on here? Thanks
     
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