Aluminum transmission case repair - build up "ears"

I'd like some opinions and reality checks on fixing an aluminum tranny case (Dodge a604) that has one of the mounting "ears" completely broken off and one partially. This is toward the back of the tranny on the far end from the bellhousing. They both have a threaded hole. Preheating the entire case to ~500F is not a problem and an AC TIG is available. Sounds like 4047 filler is what most have used in the past.

I am curious about how these would work out vs "classic" TIG repair:

  1. Facing both ears and then brazing on chunks of aluminum and then drilling/tapping?

  1. Would getting a copper/bronze/brass bols of the correct size made up and then placing it into the partially busted ear and building up new aluminum be a good labor/time saving idea? Maybe some nickel-based anti-seize on the bolt first?

  2. How about the new hts2000 filler/ repair rods at They claim some great stuff and google seems to have some real and positive actual usage reports. The stuff is kind of expensive though. ~ for a 1lb starter pack. I'm figuring this should be more than enough with a bit left over? This sounds tempting as a "new thing" to try.

What did I leave out?

Classic TIG repair

  1. Detergent wash the bejeezuse out of it.
  2. Brake clean spray the areas being repaired.
  3. Preheat to ~500F - maybe hit again with brake cleaner if stuff bubbles up (away from open flame and not inhaling fumes)
  4. Hit with clean brush and start laying down beads.
  5. Slowly cool down, then grind to shape, drill and tap.
  6. Maybe let it sit for a couple of weeks to reharden/temper.

Thanks! Jay

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What I have done, in addition to the steps in "classic Tig repair, is lay down the first beads and then grind them back if the base material is still a little dirty. It seems that this helps by alloying in the rod material somehow. I wouldn't bother with the other tricks you mention.


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Looks good. Don't ever use Copper or Brass against an aluminum weld. The aluminum will fuse to it forming aluminum bronze, which is extremely hard and brittle.

Castings don't precipitation harden so aging the repair won't gain you anything. You can either cut some new pieces of aluminum to replace the broken bits or just use the filler rod to build it up. Make sure the aluminum you use for the tabs is either 5000 or 6000 series aluminum.

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Ernie Leimkuhler

I saw a case last week that had a ~6" chunk broken out that was fixed using TIG. This was from a late model truck 4wd that received severe abuse! :) I suggest following what Brian has said.


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