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Old 08-21-2013, 06:21 AM   #1
FlatheadTed
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Default Block welding

I was given this block so we are going to weld it up ,got nothing to lose .
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Old 08-21-2013, 06:36 AM   #2
Mart
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Default Re: Block welding

Luckily the two dowels and three of the four bolt holes are still in place, so hopefully it should be do-able. Looks like a piece has been cut out, I wonder if it was cut out to repair another block? You should be able to bolt a trans casing up to it to position the patch piece.

How do you intend to weld it, Ted?

I want to see how this comes out.

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Old 08-21-2013, 07:13 AM   #3
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Default Re: Block welding

A friend brought me a 39 Merc block broke in the bell housing similar to the one you have. Most all the pieces where there. I ground all the parts to a vee on the outer surface and used small tack welds to join them in place. Ground the tacks and with nichrome stick electrodes, welded 1" welds on the left side along with a 1: weld on the right side. Peened the welds. I was doing something on the lathe at the time. So after each 2"s of weld I would go back to the lathe. I never let it get hot enough that when I came back to make two more welds I couldn't lay my hand on the welded area. I also ground the stops and starts of each tack before doing the next tack with the edge of the grinder. The Ford castings welded real smooth with the nichrome. I first tried to tack the parts with TIG but even with small tacks as soon as I stopped I could here a ting and they would crack. I ground the welds smooth and took thick brush on engine paint and a plied a thick coat or two and let it set up some then took a stiff acid brush and stippled the paint which had the finish of the casting. He had taken the block to several welding shops before coming to me and they wouldn't touch it. I had welded a lot of cracked blocks over the years but never one this bad. There was nothing to loose so I did it and was surprised how good it came out. He asked me not to tell anyone, he didn't want people to know he had a repaired block in his car. I guess it's OK to tell now as he is no longer with us. G.M. I did bolt on an empty transmission case for alignment.
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Old 08-21-2013, 07:57 AM   #4
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Default Re: Block welding

I have welded up a lot of cracked blocks using a stick welder and machineable cast rods. Never tried one that was bursted on a support area. I have a 8 N block that sooner or later I am going to have to weld in that area that is not completely broken out.
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Old 08-21-2013, 08:17 AM   #5
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Default Re: Block welding

Ted, will you be fitting a gearbox housing to it, to do the job?
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Old 08-21-2013, 08:21 AM   #6
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Default Re: Block welding

I've brazed several motorcycle cylinders and heads when replacement parts were scarce. Mostly the Harley Davidson iron parts for flatheads and knuckle heads. They always worked at least so far as I know but the owners ran them lightly afterwards. The cast iron responds well to heating it for welding purposes and then cooling it slowly as possible afterwards.
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Old 08-21-2013, 06:29 PM   #7
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Default Re: Block welding

Yes I did a trial fit with a Trans/box attached
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Old 08-21-2013, 06:35 PM   #8
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Default Re: Block welding

My grandfather had good success welding ford cast blocks.
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Old 08-21-2013, 06:43 PM   #9
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Default Re: Block welding

The only real success we had with large cast iron parts was to preheat the whole thing with a couple rosebuds, arc weld with high-nickel rods, then pack and bury the part in lime and let it cool naturally (it would take a day or two).

I'm not a welder. I was a pre-heater and a lime-packing helper at the time. I can't give any detail on rod number, current or voltage. We were repairing slide valves approximately the same size as an engine block.
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Old 08-21-2013, 07:53 PM   #10
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Default Re: Block welding

With cast iron after cutting and grinding the part for fit up, I carefully rough up the cut edges with a sharp Cold Chisel to expose a rough surface. This is something I learned many years ago. We were given small cast iron slabs and asked to prepare them for welding with Cast Iron Electrodes and Brazing Rods. On two pairs we ground the edges into the usual vee shape, on the other pairs we made the vee with a chisel, which tore rather than cut the material, thus exposing the large grain.

After welding we were asked to break the welds apart. The ground surfaces simply broke at the joint, some of the weld stuck enough to tear out some of the material around the vee. On the chisel cut surfaces the welds held and the cast iron bar broke elsewhere.

As far as pre-heating goes with HI-Nickel electrodes, you need only enough heat to displace the water within the iron. Whenever you see the edge of the dry heated area move across the surface, thats hot enough. That's known as Hand Hot, where you can touch the surface quickly with the back of your fingers but not get burned.

GM has the right approach with welding in sequences. You either work on other things while you are waiting or you drink a lot of coffee or tea. Also you don't need to worry too much about the cooling down process. Just keep the block away from draughts and off the floor, a heat blanket helps.

If you weld continuously (which in some ways is better) you will transfer a lot of heat into the block and the weld pool. We had a large box of Hydrated Lime (which is inexpensive) or you could use dry sand. If you use sand from a hardware shop you will have to heat it to get the moisture out. With that amount of weld the block will need overnight to cool down and possibly most of the next day.
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Old 08-21-2013, 08:10 PM   #11
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Default Re: Block welding

Ted Ford cast iron welds extremly well the Weldwell products are readily available but the sticks are not cheap due to the nickel content.I have used cast iron rods with excellent results also Brazing works just fine the secret is preparation pre heat and post heat eveness in the heating procedure to prevent distortion. If you dont have the expertise yourself why not shop it out but very few welders these days have the knowledge to handle cast iron mostly us older blokes so check it out.
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Old 08-21-2013, 09:28 PM   #12
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Default Re: Block welding

Thanks ,I did the pre heat and after heat high qaulty Rods ,plus peen the welds ,
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Old 08-21-2013, 09:56 PM   #13
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Default Re: Block welding

Most all the old automotive cast is very high quality,and welds very well with cast rod. As most have said, the key is keep the heat down and peen. I use a needle scaler to peen the welds to relieve the stress. The other thing that is good about the needle scaler on cast is when you peen the weld after it is ground flush, the texture looks like the original cast. Very hard to tell piece was welded.

Bob
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Old 08-21-2013, 11:43 PM   #14
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Default Re: Block welding

This is the finished job ,I like the idea of the Needle descaler
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:33 AM   #15
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Default Re: Block welding

ted your a genius!!!!!!!!!!!!trev
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:35 AM   #16
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Default Re: Block welding

Nice job, Ted.

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Old 08-22-2013, 06:42 PM   #17
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Default Re: Block welding

Good Job! interesting post!
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Old 08-23-2013, 01:54 PM   #18
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Default Re: Block welding

Great job!!What happenened to the bell housing to damage such a large section?
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Old 08-23-2013, 02:07 PM   #19
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Default Re: Block welding

I am not sure Mr Train ! But thanks to all those who posted ,Hopefully others can try this to .
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Old 08-23-2013, 02:54 PM   #20
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Default Re: Block welding

Well done!

I don't know what Ford was thinking with those half-bells.
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Old 08-23-2013, 03:36 PM   #21
Bruce Lancaster
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Default Re: Block welding

Hot Rod Magazine once printed a repair like this, I think around 1960. Their block was a real disaster, a racing flathead that had obliterated its bellhousing with a flywheel explosion!
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Old 08-23-2013, 06:57 PM   #22
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Default Re: Block welding

Likely Ford figured you could change the clutch & throw out bearing by pulling the rear end.
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Old 08-23-2013, 09:14 PM   #23
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Default Re: Block welding

Thanks for posting I learned a lot.
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Old 08-23-2013, 10:15 PM   #24
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Default Re: Block welding

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob/Ohio View Post
Clip -- I use a needle scaler to peen the welds to relieve the stress. The other thing that is good about the needle scaler on cast is when you peen the weld after it is ground flush, the texture looks like the original cast. Very hard to tell piece was welded.

Bob
I learned the needle-scaler trick from a pal who has a business repairing industrial cast-iron castings. After spending the time to modify and port a customer's block, I've never been able to let them go out the door with all that nasty flash on the bellhousing.

This one's been given a rough trim with a small offset grinder . . .




. . . then finessed with a carbide burr in a die grinder and finished with a needle-scaler to give it an as-cast look. I soften and round off the ends of each of the needles on a belt sander to recreate the texture of the original surface.



More important on this thread, however, I've learned of some promising techniques for Ford block repair that we're likely to try in our shop. Thanks for that, folks.

Mike
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Old 08-23-2013, 10:43 PM   #25
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Default Re: Block welding

I have a block in my shop that has both sides of an 8BA broken off and re welded. I wanted to post a picture, but my new computer doesn't have the program to do it. My grand son made it sseveral years ago for me because I'm computer challenged.
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Old 08-23-2013, 11:40 PM   #26
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Default Re: Block welding

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Lancaster View Post
Hot Rod Magazine once printed a repair like this, I think around 1960. Their block was a real disaster, a racing flathead that had obliterated its bellhousing with a flywheel explosion!
Actually July 1961...





I have a block that was most likely repaired by Cook's machine, as was shown in the article.





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Old 08-26-2013, 10:59 AM   #27
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Default Re: Block welding

Museum of Modern Art grade welding!
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:12 PM   #28
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Default Re: Block welding

Here are some more shots before it was painted , I used A high nickel Ark rod to answer Marts question .We preheated with a LPG propane torch this was to take the chill of it ,we kept the heat going for some time after ,If you use a grinder you must be aware of grit intrusion .I intend this to be a budget build and I needed some pistons 60 over so got on the Internet ,I will use the Boring bar pictured to bore it , I intend to balance it my self so will post something on that later .
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Old 08-27-2013, 08:13 AM   #29
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Default Re: Block welding

You can't mention block welding without thinking of the 1937 60hp "tin" (stainless) side block. How'd they do that, it was a flawless machine weld. With my limited knowledge (closer to none than some) it had to be done in a heated environment and cooled slowly I would guess. Does anyone know exactly how it was done? I have never seen another example in industrial applications where that was done.
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Old 08-27-2013, 08:18 AM   #30
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Default Re: Block welding

I can only compare the way the pattern looks on the weld seam to the weld seam on the model A fuel tanks. I haven't seen the process for those either.
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Old 08-27-2013, 08:46 AM   #31
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Default Re: Block welding

good info here on cast iron welding, expansion & contraction video.

http://www.locknstitch.com/castironwelding.htm
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Old 08-27-2013, 04:57 PM   #32
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Default Re: Block welding

When I was engineering we used to do a lot of cast iron welding, with brazing and electric welding rod, and we always preheated the article before we welded it by leaving it out in the sun for a start off sometimes, then heating it other ways. One instance was, we had a tractor come in with the back hydraulic mount smashed off, it was a large casting so we veed it out warmed it up and built up the broken parts with a Utectic cast iron electrodes we then welded it with the Phillips 56 electrodes and then filled in the large cavity with Phillips 28 electrodes. The owner of the tractor then carried on using the three point hydraulic system and had no trouble with it again.
Ted you have done the right procedure and made a good job of welding that V8 casting.
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Old 08-28-2013, 10:16 AM   #33
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Default Re: Block welding

I read somewhere that the Model A tank weld (look at one...astounding, and they reached a production peak of nearly 2,000,000 in a year!) was done by "Mercury submerged arc" process...what that means I do not know!
The A was full of really neat automated welds...axle bells, banjo (the earliest banjos were fabricated from channel iron!), those gas tanks, etc.
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Old 08-28-2013, 02:09 PM   #34
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Default Re: Block welding

Ian you have obviously been there ! Bruce as you say ,Our Fords are examples of very high teck welding .What's fascinating is how they did the rear quarter welding on the sedans it was some sort of fusion process ,The hot rod article is interesting .Thanks to all who posted
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