Welding steel that has aluminum cast around it?

This one is stumping me. I really don't want to ruin anything. The
machine is an engraving machine. The part is an aluminum casting with
steel strips cast into it. These strips are about 2 inches long and
3/16" wide. I don't know how far they go into the casting. These steel
strips are ground and a single ball bearing rolls on each one. There
is damage in the form of dents on these steel strips. A call to the
maker of the machines had never seen this type of damage and they are
at a loss on how to repair it. JB Weld and TIG welding were both
suggested. I know JB Weld would be too soft. But I'm afraid that
welding on the steel might cause the steel to shrink away from the
aluminum. Any suggestions?
Eric R Snow
Reply to
Eric R Snow
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This might be completely unrealistic, but could you perhaps grind down the whole surface, aluminum and all, to restore it to flatness?
Without seeing it I imagine there is a 99% chance that it isn't possible :)
Reply to
Yup. Mill away the dents and inlay a piece of tool steel, secured with superglue. Unless you have heat around, should hold indefinitely. Or just put a thin piece of tool steel over the whole steel part, as you advised me to do recently to my abrasive cutoff saw body.
Reply to
Grant Erwin
TIG brazing might be a good bet. It should be the least amount of heat for the best bearing ability. TIGing with steel filler might shrink the steel inserts and loosen them. I would also worry about creating hard spots with steel TIG due to the quick quench.
You might also look at Lab Metal and see if it can be used in a thin section to meet your needs.
Reply to
Kelley Mascher
I am thinking either steel epoxy putty or making up new rail surfaces from thin steel sheet and epoxying them over the old rails.
Reply to
Ernie Leimkuhler
WHAT!!?? You want me to take my own advice? Thanks, Eric
Reply to
Eric R Snow

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