Exhaust system welding - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 12:26 PM Thread Starter
 
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Hello all,

I have some questions about exhaust system welding...I now have a pair of the Summit 1&5/8" ceramic coated headers. I haven't installed them yet, so my question is about welding the standard 3" header reducers to the 2&1/2" exhaust pipes. I haven't welded in about 20 years, so I'm a little rusty to say the least.

Should the pipes be arc,mig or gas welded together? I have access to an arc welder and a Acetelyne/Oxygen torch welder, but not a mig welder. So I could practice up on some scrap exhaust pipe beforehand.

My car is currently in storage and is not street legal due to no insurance, so driving it to an exhaust shop is not an option. Taking the long exhaust pipes to an exhaust shop is a BIG hassle, but do-able. I want to avoid that hassle if possible. Just looking for a little advice....

Thanks,
-Mark P.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 12:38 PM
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Al
 
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Not being an expert, I'll offer my advice anyway. I would think unless you are very good, a buzz box arc welder would be a difficult method. I'm sure I'd burn holes through the pipes! Gas welding would be my second choice - again, I think it's and art form that takes a lot of practice. It used to be the method of choice for exhaust work. Most muffler shops, at least those I've been to, use a wire feed MIG welder these days. It's what I used on my system. It doesn't take a huge amount of skill to get a decent weld, but practice on the same thickness material would still be advised. I used a 75/25 mix of CO2/Argon.

If you can line up a MIG welder that's what I'd do. And trust me, if I can weld with one anyone can weld with one! Good luck!


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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 12:39 PM
 
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you'll want to mig weld them,but before you do check out the ball&socket unions.Flowmaster sells them,or your local muffler shop can make them up.They replace the old triangle 3-bolt flange that blows gaskets every 3 months with a ball & socket,Much more efficient.
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 01:02 PM
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Ceramic coated pipe is a boogar to weld. I'm not sure what would be the best method. You'll probably find you have difficulty establishing an arc. Might be a good candidate for tig.

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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 01:10 PM
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Gas welding would work if you cant get access to a MIG. Practice a bit on some scrap. Keep the weld pool moving and watch out for blowing holes through the material.

Bob
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 01:18 PM
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Al
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by dnult:
Ceramic coated pipe is a boogar to weld. I'm not sure what would be the best method. You'll probably find you have difficulty establishing an arc. Might be a good candidate for tig.
Dave,

The reducers - at least those I've seen - come uncoated. (The reducer being the part that gets welded to the exhaust pipes and bolts up to the collectors on the headers)


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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 01:29 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks guys,

Yes, the reducers are just plain uncoated mild steel.... I'll try to practice a bit with the Acetelyne torch on some scrap exhaust pipe and just see how that goes...If that doesn't work out, I'll cart the exhaust pipes & reducers down to the exhaust shop. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]

-Mark
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 01:38 PM
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It will be a pain but the best results will probably be taking them to an exhaust shop.

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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 03:24 PM
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Al
 
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You might be able to mock it up and tack the reducers exactly where you want them before hauling it all to the muffler shop.....I'd actually be very surprised if your headers wind up in exact alignment with your existing exhaust system.(I'm assuming you're hooking to an existing system)


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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
 
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You're right guys, in the time I spent "refreshing" my welding skills, I could just take the pipes to the muffler shop and be done with it...Even though it's a hassle to haul the exhaust system the 35 some odd miles round trip to the nearest muffler shop... it probably would be best to just mock up the exhaust to the new headers and let them do the welding.

-Mark

[ 01-23-2005, 07:28 PM: Message edited by: Granny's 69 ]
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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 23rd, 05, 06:22 PM
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Option 3 that wasnt listed, trailer the car to the exhaust shop.

Brandon J. licence 1NASTY67

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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 24th, 05, 03:28 AM
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MIG would be my first choice also, but stick will work too.

Just practice on scrap before hand and keep the heat on the low side. You're not making a structural weld, so good penetration isn't a big deal -- you're only sealing the pipes IMO. Less heat will help prevent burn throughs.

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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 24th, 05, 03:37 AM
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I had mine expanded at a muffler shop so it would slip over the exhaust pipe. Then used those 'band type' clamps.

[ 01-24-2005, 08:42 AM: Message edited by: RickD ]

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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 24th, 05, 04:58 AM
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Granny 69 don't know if this will help you or not, but you can but a rider on your insurance policy to cover a car under repair, this should allow you to get in back and forth to the insurance shop. I don't think liability on the car would cost you much more than $50 and you could cancel the policy after one month.
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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 25th, 05, 06:36 AM
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Any form of welding "can" work fine for what you are doing. Gas, MIG, TIG, or even arc. Arc would be my last choice on thin material. Gas welding it should be fairly simple. My first choice would be MIG, faster and perfect for the application.

Royce (NO XQSSS) Bradley

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