You are here:

Welding/Quality of Metal


Hi Ernie! I'm somewhat new to welding and have taken on a light project to begin with. Hopefully, I can give you all the info you need to help me out. I received a free trailer in disrepair. Wheels rotting, deck rotting, ETC. All the metal is still intact and structural. The frame is X shaped (as in no square frame, a piece of plywood was on it to begin with. It is made of a U channel steel.) In order to add a square edge to said frame, I would like to know if I could Flux Core weld some older 1/8 Angle Iron from some bedframe to form a square and bolt onto the X frame to give me a edge around the frame. Just to contain the edge of the plywood that will be sitting on it. In no way would it be weight bearing. I have heard that bed frame steel is unsuitable for welding. I was hoping I could get an expert answer on whether is it weldable, and if it safe to use the frame on my trailer!Thank you!

The rumours are true. Bed frame steel is not suitable for welding.
The angle iron used in bed frame rails is made from a higher carbon (spring) steel.
This allows the frame rails to be lighter, yet still strong enough to do their job.

This higher carbon content makes them difficult to weld.
The likely outcome is cracks at all the welds.

You can make other things from bed frame rails such as carving chisels.  


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Ernie Leimkuhler


Questions about Oxy-Acetylene welding/cutting, MIG, TIG, Flux-core, Stick welding, brazing and soldering, bike frames, air frames, motorcycle frames, structural welding. Also questions about Welding Certifications and Inspections. All questions about fabrication of metals (stainless steel, steel , aluminum, brass, bronze, copper). Basic questions about underwater welding. TIG is my strongest subject.


Extensive background in most welding fields. 18 years fabrication of metal theatre scenery, 16 years structural steel, 2 years pipe welding, 9 years as a Welding Instructor at South Seattle Community College, and 5.5 years as a Welding Instructor at the Divers Institute of Technology. 16 years Industrial Welding Consultant for fabrication shops in the greater Seattle Area. 11 years Architectural Metal Fabrication. 8 years in Film/TV; SPFX/construction/set-deco/props/. 33 years Blacksmithing and Knifemaking. Currently a Field Welding Inspector for Otto Rosenau and Associates.

American Welding Society - Certified Welding Inspector Washington Assoc of Building Officials (WABO) - Special Inspector - Structural and Reinforcing Steel.

Do a search on google groups for "Ernie Leimkuhler" in the rec.crafts.metalworking and sci.engr.joining.welding groups. Blacksmith's Gazzette - Anvil Making

BA Theatre Technology - Purdue University.

©2016 All rights reserved.