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Cast iron filler rod


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  #1  
Old 04-17-2014, 10:10:53 PM
Dave Richards Dave Richards is offline
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Default Cast iron filler rod

I was looking through the posts and couldn't find anything about fusion welding cast iron with oxy-acetalene and filler rod of cast iron. I have had best results with brazing, and heavier work with nickel arc welding rod, but I'd like to try repairing something the way the old timers did it. Has anyone much experience with this? What brand rod have you used, where did you get it, what flux works best? I'm thinking of repairing cracks and filling in missing pieces, etc. in medium size castings that I can pre-heat easily. I have seen several brands of cast rods with stainless or nickel (actually marketed for TIG use I think).
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Dave Richards
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:39:25 PM
gene w gene w is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

Old piston rings work.20 mule team borax will work for flux
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:47:51 PM
Paul Richardson Paul Richardson is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

Quote:
Originally Posted by gene w View Post
Old piston rings work.20 mule team borax will work for flux
This might be pretty useless because of the distance apart,but I have used some of this local product and have been getting really satisfyling results.
I wanted a good colour match that will rust.It works fine on castings of the size you mention because the expansion/contraction cracking thing is not such a problem.I notice the CIG Commweld flux has a high borax content.When the weld area is good and hot and flux applied the filler runs beautifully.
I'm a novice welder,but fairly patient.
Picked this stuff up at a junk shop for $10 but I think the rods are about $4 each.Not sure if they are still made.
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:51:00 PM
Van Norman Van Norman is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

Dave,
I have done some fusion welding of cast iron. A local blacksmith in his nineties helped me get started years ago. Vee out the area to be welded the same as you would in arc welding cast. Set your torch flame to slightly carburizing to avoid porosity. I use 1/4" diameter cast filler rod from mold vents left over from my casting work. You could take any clean cast iron machine scrap and cut 1/4" square stock for filler. Do not use cast pipe or any porcelain coated material. 1/4" thickness or diameter lends it self well to melt when you are ready for it. For parts 1/2" or less thickness I bed into dry sand to help provide support due to the amount of heat input the part will see. For large parts I preheat entire piece to 1200 degrees. To weld start on one side and work across, heat an area the size of a quarter. Heat vee-ed base material up to a yellow color then move the filler rod in to begin bringing it up to temp. You will observe a few oxidizing sparks coming off the work piece as it becomes almost white hot. This is when you bring the filler rod in direct flame contact and with a small circular flame movement melt it into the vee. To me this part is similar to brazing. Another indicator your base metal is hot enough is when you push your filler rod down in the vee you will see the metal is soft and will act like soft clay. As you move across the vee grove wait for the base material to reach weld temp and add filler. This is where it is not like brazing as you are not moving at a steady rate across the part but heat, fill, heat. I use no flux but I have clean filler rod, abrasive blast the base material and have it oil free.

Pros of torch welding cast:
After cleaning and blasting you can't tell it's been welded as the filler is the same as base material.
Repaired part is machinable.
Avoid the high cost of Nickel welding rods!

Cons:
Part can be distorted from the high temps.
Not suited for large parts.
Large flat parts will stress crack if not post weld stress relieved.

Give it a try on a scrap part and good luck.

Van
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:27:03 AM
Paul Richardson Paul Richardson is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

That's the voice of experience Van,thanks.
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:50:48 AM
Alastair Geddes. Alastair Geddes. is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

last time i checked you could still buy the rods through CIG ( commonwealth industrial gases ) tried welding with it once.

http://www.cigweld.com.au/

here is the link to the cast iron rods

http://www.cigweld.com.au/product-ca.../gas-tig-rods/

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Old 04-18-2014, 09:25:07 AM
LCJudge LCJudge is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

I bought some cast iron "sticks" from the local welding supply store a couple of years ago. I assume they still have them. They're about 1/4" in size and about 10 - 12 inches long. They weren't real expensive and I used them a couple of times with pretty good results. I didn't use flux but seems to me the guy said I could use borax if I needed to use flux.
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Old 04-18-2014, 04:01:13 PM
Langes Machine Shop Langes Machine Shop is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

You aren't going to find good cast rod anymore, the company that made it quit. There is some made in china that does work, not as good as the old but it does work. Borax is a good flux but it will not work real well for welding that cast rod. We use that cast rod for welding manifolds and anything where heat is going to be around the cast. Everything else we weld with bronze, it is stronger than the cast rod and is easier to get. The new cast rod is about $30.00 a pound so it is not real cheap!!!!
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Old 04-18-2014, 08:42:13 PM
Dave Richards Dave Richards is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

Thanks everyone for the quick replies. I'll see what I can find locally and give it a shot. I agree that bronze works nice for most things. The only problem I have with it is in getting it to "wet out" completely when first applying the filler rod. I understand the importance of getting the base metal the right temp. I've tried several brands and types of flux: the paste turns solid in the jar, and the powder won't stick to the hot rod. Would it be better to apply flux before heating up the base metal, or add fluz with the rod when hot? The flux coated rods seem to work the best for me. Someone suggested one time that veeing out the joint with a grind stone will leave a silicone residue from the "rock" in the abrasive which makes it harder for the bronze to "tin" out. I think there is some truth to this, using a carbide rotary file seems to work better.

Dave Richards
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Old 04-18-2014, 08:59:20 PM
Trevor A Cole Trevor A Cole is offline
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Default Re: Cast iron filler rod

Dave with respect to your problems with bronze (or iron for that matter) here is a tip that may help.
If you have a V type gap to ultimately fill then "butter" one side face then the other and then finish join the area. Throwing in a lump of bronze then trying to get it to flow or fuse nicely does not work very well. If you butter both sides then you can inspect carefully to ensure you have done that job well and then finish join which is much easier by comparism. Treat each and every job differently as you can easily cause other problems with uneven or localised heating and cooling. Brazing is good fun. Just adhere to the rules and it will work well in most cases.
The Trev
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