anybody here ever done any thermite welding? I have a HUGE ol' US made
vice, and when I bought (many decades ago) it had the lower front 'tang'
triangle broken off. very thick part of the casting. like a dumbash,
back then, I held the pieces together, and nickel-rod welded it just
around the outer crack-seam, probably without preheat or postheat, too.
I'd like to start using that vice every day, so I'd like cut the old
welds, sererate the busted-off piece again, then re-do it the RIGHT way
"somehow or another"
related questions: if using thermite proves impractical for whatever
reason, how hot can I make a charcoal fire BE, in degrees, assuming I
stack some firebricks in a circular beehive sort of shape, and have it
'blower fed' air, from like a vacuum cleaner or somethin'?
what's involved with thermite, anyway, other than the danger? would I
need to make 'side and bottom' molds for it somehow, to contain the
molten stuff? out of what? there -are- videos on youtube, of guys
thermite-welding railroad tracks (and other bizarre thermite stuff, like
melting through car hoods then their engine blocks "in one pass")...is
thermite even procurable, or do I need to make my own? (thermite recipes
please, no replies from 'insurance adjuster, safety warning' or 'just go
buy a new $900 vice' type guys...
toolie the DIY guy :-)
Well, some guys in a blacksmith club in NJ used to run an anvil repair
workshop once a year. You'd pay your $150, bring your anvil and they'd
rebuild the face, etc.
They were using a large coal or charcoal fire to heat up a whole
anvil, upside down, hot enough the remove the old tool steel face plate
and then they planned to forge weld a new face plate on in it's place.
They failed to check the anvil at a critical point and pretty much
melted most of it away. Hot enough? I suspect that anvil was in the
150 pound range.
If any members of that club see this, feel free to correct or add to
this post as necessary.
P.S. Our club's retired railroad guru absolutely refuses to give us a
I would just try it and see if it holds together. You can always fix it if
I have a very old bench vise, Bulldog brand IIRC. I broke the front jaw
right off the slider a few years ago, and being low on cash, and needing a
vise, I used my MIG welder and ran 5-6 beads around the break. That was
probably 10 years ago and the vise is still holding together quite well. In
fact before the break the jaws were not parallel, but I was able to clamp it
together so true that when I welded it back together is is better than
I vote for using it until it breaks.
Forced air into the bottom of hole in the ground filled with charcoal will
likely get you enough heat to preheat it for a reweld.
"Additionally as a security officer, I carry a gun to protect
government officials but my life isn't worth protecting at home
in their eyes." Dick Anthony Heller