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Technical Anyone Weld A Steering Shaft?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by thegearhead, Mar 6, 2020.

  1. If you feel that $ 60.00 is a lot of money, perhaps you are in the wrong sport. What is the rest of the quality of your build ?
    primed34, X38, OLDSMAN and 1 other person like this.
  2. 2OLD2FAST
    Joined: Feb 3, 2010
    Posts: 3,640

    from illinois

    Does financially shaming others make you feel superior ? And FWIW , when you're on a fixed income ,$6 can be a lot of money ..
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2020
    Budget36, JNKYARDDOG_1, egads and 4 others like this.
  3. TA DAD
    Joined: Mar 2, 2014
    Posts: 534

    TA DAD
    from NC

    What a comment ! that is the way to encourage a fellow car guy, oh wait you must not be a car guy. You just own one There is a difference.
  4. Been welding steering shafts, home made tube control arms, all of the front & rear end mounts to the frame in race cars for years.
    Pretty sure that stock cars endure way more stress than cruse night travel

    I'd weld it
    egads and firstinsteele like this.
  5. Joe H
    Joined: Feb 10, 2008
    Posts: 1,112

    Joe H

  6. So many posts condemning the act, but if those opposed to welding were really concerned, they'd be offering to buy the part you need. Government is full of people willing to spend other people's money.

    There is a lot of common sense in the posts in favor of welding. Manufacturers welded rim centers to hoops for years. Aren't wheels a major safety component of a car? How many original hot rodders back in the day reversed their own rims then went racing on them?
    thintin, egads and firstinsteele like this.
  7. jvo
    Joined: Nov 11, 2008
    Posts: 228


    Its been done a million times, and I'm sure it would be fine as long as you know what you are doing. As stated above, almost everything in the steering system has welds somewhere.
    BUT, here in Alberta, somewhere in our past, there must have been a problem, cause every hot rodder here knows it is illegal. I got into a very heated discussion with our shop foreman a couple decades ago, in a heavy haul oilfield drilling rig shop. We had a big bed truck that kept bending the tie rod in the mud. I told him to have it built up a little stronger, and he threw the statement at me that its illegal in Alberta to weld on a steering component.
    I went to the library, and looked up our provincial statues, and there it was. It was pretty much a one liner, and stated pretty much word for word, as I remember it. "It is illegal to weld on a steering component so as to weaken it."

    I figure that statement is open to interpretation, cause nobody in their right mind would purposely weaken the component. That law was written, god knows when, for some reason or other. Must have been a problem somewhere. I am pretty sure if an inspector here saw that, there's no way it would pass.
    olscrounger and Budget36 like this.
  8. Ryan needs to change the name of this place from h.a.m.b. to p.u.s.s.i.e.s.! Weld the f'***ing thing or get it welded if you don't feel that you're qualified and be on your way! For Christ sakes, hot rodders have been doing it since the beginning of hot rods! I would much rather have a welded steering shaft than those cheapo, China made, steering columns that some of you are running! That's my 2 cent's, now leave me alone!!
    theHIGHLANDER, jaw22w, RMR&C and 6 others like this.
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 2,422


    Amen to that statement
  10. gary terhaar
    Joined: Jul 23, 2007
    Posts: 656

    gary terhaar
    from oakdale ny

    crazy the replies on here, I take welding very seriously. Been a tig welder for 30 plus years and my daughter who I taught at 12 is a welding instructor and a aerospace welder. When you finish her coarse she prepares you for the certification you will need for your type of process.
    She has plenty of papers to say she can weld what ever you need, l have none.
    Doesn't mean I can't weld circles around her in my preferred process and she knows it.
    3/4 rule comes to play here, your weld need to be at least 3/4 of the parent metal,depending on filler rod it will be stronger than the shaft.
    Forged steering components ,pitman arms ,steering links and spindles all weld beautifully if done correctly.
    If you feel at all uneasy about it,tack it and bring it a competent welder.
    It's the Harry the homeowner 110 mig guys who feel they can glue anything they desire and it will go out on the road with it.
    If you are serious about this hobby,take a coarse at a local vocational school or help out at a shop for lessons in trade by a knowledgable welder, there are plenty of ways to learn it,shit I still am.
    Simply put,welding is a few hours of lessons and a lifetime of practice.
    thintin, alanp561, Budget36 and 10 others like this.
  11. thegearhead
    Joined: Nov 23, 2015
    Posts: 50


    I appreciate and understand everyone's concern for safety. A nice gentleman on Facebook sold me a shaft size i need. But i'm still going to have my neighbor weld the other one for a spare. I'm a self taught welder in by no means experienced that is why anything major i need i have it done by someone experienced. On another note attached a few pics of my project car from when i first got it till now. 89297104_847144889136062_1800162171192082432_n.jpg
    32SEDAN and TA DAD like this.
  12. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 5,360


    I heard that all over forums! Don’t weld on steering components! Then I go to Indy, and guess what I saw at the museum!

    If it’s good enough for an Indy car..... it ought to work on a hot rod!

    Bones E88FCB3C-3CF8-4A0F-BE68-F0F783FE4E80.jpeg EB369A3A-3FA3-48AF-A875-55278451D2D1.jpeg
  13. -Brent-
    Joined: Nov 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,503


    With the gear reduction in a steering system, I doubt it sees a 10th of the force a drive shaft or axle housing ends would ever see (I'm coming up short on another areas we weld often without any fear... you get the point though) and those are welded and most never think twice about them.
  14. I didn't intend to financially shame anyone. I am retired, 79 years old, living on social security. I know, and understand what it means to economize. I have a roadster, and if I can't afford to spend the money on it, when and where it should be spent, ( safety) I wait until I can afford to do so.
    47ragtop, Boneyard51 and clem like this.
  15. Bingo! Best advice in this thread. Education is the key to everything we do in this hobby, whether it be a classroom or school of hard knocks. I took a couple semesters of welding class @ JC in the late 60s on the way to my mechanical engineering degree and that has served me magnificently for the past 50 or so years. And of course it is safe to weld (and chrome plate) forged parts. The fear of hydrogen embrittlement is misplaced on these types of parts. That defect only occurs on very hard metals (Rockwell C30 and harder) for reference stronger and harder than a grade 8 bolt. Over time the legend has drifted to apply incorrectly to any steel part.
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2020
    gary terhaar likes this.
  16. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 8,061

    from Nicasio Ca

    This all has got me wondering about my rag joint and aluminum splined metalflake steering wheel adapter...
  17. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 5,816

    from Ks

    Your fine. Metalflake is ok. :D
    egads likes this.
  18. But chrome is better!! Ain't no sech thang az 2 much chrome!!!!!!!
  19. Joliet Jake
    Joined: Dec 6, 2007
    Posts: 513

    Joliet Jake
    from Jax, FL

    A qualified welder would weld prep it by grinding the two ends to a point. Then possibly tig weld it using 3/32" 80s B2 rod with 100 percent weld through. You can use regular 70s or 80s but the "B2" has a higher chromium content, at least that's what I like to use in this type of application. I will be doing mine this way. Properly welded, the joint will become one solid section of the shaft, no less strong as another section, unless someone does something silly and cools it in water post weld making it brittle. A repair/modification is only as good as the tech that does it.
  20. 2OLD2FAST
    Joined: Feb 3, 2010
    Posts: 3,640

    from illinois

    Your being sarcastic , right??
  21. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 5,816

    from Ks

    (NHRA) No hot rods allowed says NO CHROME! Hydrogen embrittlement!! LOL.
  22. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 8,061

    from Nicasio Ca

    Right. I do have an old adapter with worn splines but somebody must have bodged it on or run it loose.
  23. 2OLD2FAST
    Joined: Feb 3, 2010
    Posts: 3,640

    from illinois

    NHRA ; worried about lawsuits ...
    willys36 likes this.
  24. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,295

    jimmy six

    This was done in 1962-3 by Blair’s for Noel Melovich’s 1940 Chevrolet as a gasser. Been use on the Salt and El Mirage since 1975. I don’t see a problem. EE46AA58-DED8-421A-BB8F-202FB7D67154.jpeg 0ED8D29D-5C75-447F-BB44-CED830C14861.jpeg
    olscrounger, egads and willys36 like this.
  25. saltflats
    Joined: Aug 14, 2007
    Posts: 11,073

    from Missouri

    What brand is that U joint, it has a good track record. ;)
  26. choptop40
    Joined: Dec 23, 2009
    Posts: 4,092


    Harry the homeowner can give a professional weld a bad name....I’m glad that in the trades there is a high standard...Kudos to all of you that have acquired those levels of achievement..Effort... I agree.. we’re always learning...
  27. 6sally6
    Joined: Feb 16, 2014
    Posts: 1,798


    Looks a little under cut to me..........Really needs another pass around to bring it up flush with the shoulder of the socket........But still plenty strong for the last 60+ years and 60 more prolly!!
    Good indication of just how strong a welded shaft can be.
  28. sunbeam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2010
    Posts: 5,394


    This is not a pitman shaft How much torque can you generate with a steering wheel? A worm style gear box does not transmit much back force that why the use them.
  29. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,295

    jimmy six

    unknown..feeds a Corvair box and the car weighs 2900.
    saltflats likes this.
  30. Desmodromic
    Joined: Sep 25, 2010
    Posts: 571


    A proper weld is as strong as the shaft it's on.

    Probably the most torque the steering column will ever see is 75 lbs-ft. What diameter bolt typically sees that much torque when tightening?

    Lots of cars have extended pitman shafts for center or cowl steering, which see maybe 20 times the torque of the input shaft, plus "pot-hole shock". (Granted, they're a little bigger in diameter.) What per cent of these would you guess have no welding?

    Most race cars have quick-release steering wheels, using special splined adapters that are typically, guess what........., welded to the column.

    If you're opposed to welding steering shafts, but wouldn't think twice about using split wishbones or hairpins anchored to the frame rails, raise your hands.

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