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Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 69
Shannon Offline OP
Trainee
Hello everyone,

My mower's handle bar is broken into 2 pieces and just wandering if anyone has tried fixing this using Bernzomatic profane torch to reconnect them. See attached photo.

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IMG_1524.JPG (144.51 KB, 131 downloads)
Last edited by Shannon; 10/05/22 03:24 PM.
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Joined: Jul 2018
Posts: 2,086
Likes: 80
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Should be easy enough. Just remove the red face plate to avoid heat damage.

I would sleeve it internally with a piece of erw pipe and then use a brazing rod with the propane torch to weld it.


Just make sure you have the right propane and propane accessories (not sure if anyone will get that tv reference)

Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 7,466
Likes: 143
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Problem is I doubt you will find anything to fit inside, I always have to turn a piece of bar or pipe to fit inside any handles I need to repair

Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 69
Shannon Offline OP
Trainee
ok thanks. I'll give it a try. I actually inserted a piece of pipe before trying to use a rivet but the handle still move when i used it and after a while the rivet comes off whilst in the middle of use. I was just thinking that it may not weld properly when i used the propane torch. To be safe, I will perhaps remove the top frame from the body as the heat could travel into the fuel tank. Glad that you mentioned the rod to use as i wasn't sure which one.

Not sure what are the profane accessories. I only have the torch itself but i need to get an eye protection glasses and a gloves too i suppose.

Joined: Jan 2016
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
What sort of propane torch are we talking about? And unless the tube inside is a tight hammer in fit it is not going to give it much strength

Last edited by NormK; 10/05/22 08:05 PM.
Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 69
Shannon Offline OP
Trainee
See attached Propane Torch. Beside the torch is the tube i inserted onto the fram. It's about 2cm in diameter and appears to have a thicker gauge than the handle bar.

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Joined: Jan 2016
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi Shannon,
I don't know how effective those propane torches are for welding, I have never tried welding with one, I have always just used them as a heating torch. I don't think they would weld but I'm always open to seeing what they can do. I don't think they even get hot enough to melt silver solder effectively

Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 69
Shannon Offline OP
Trainee
Oh i see. I have some doubt too on whether this will do the job and so the reason why i made this post to see if anyone out there has done it with this propane torch. If you happen to know someone whom you can recommend to do this welding job, please let me know.

Joined: Jan 2016
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Hi Shannon,
the job is not difficult if you have the right equipment. Where in Aus are you?

Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 69
Shannon Offline OP
Trainee
Hi NormK,

The only equipment i have is the propane torch. Perhaps i should give it a try and see how it goes using the brazing rod that Tyler suggested.
I'm based in Sydney.

Joined: Sep 2015
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Likes: 145
SENIOR TECHNICIAN & HISTORIAN
G'day Shannon ,Tyler and Norm

If this propane torch will get the metal hot enough it should braze another way is to get 2 car batteries (12 volt) and wire them up for 24 volt
and use an arc welding rod but you would need a welding helmet.

I've never heard of welding with Propaine but have heard of cutting 1 inch plate with Propane and Oxy.

Propane will solder and a high intensity torch will Braze.







Cheers
Max.

Joined: Jan 2016
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Hi Tyler,
what brazing rods were you talking about, I'm always looking for other ways of welding things. I have oxy but the bottles I have are "borrowed" so not easy to get refilled, so I keep the use of them to an absolute minimum

Joined: Jul 2018
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi Norm, don't think the propane would get hot enough for a proper thick bronze brazing rod.

I have seen it done with a coat hanger in the past but I can't see it lasting for long in this application.

It was a while ago but I was told something with a higher silver content and thin as possible from memory.

https://www.bunnings.com.au/bossweld-1-6mm-45-silver-brazing-rod-2-pack_p0252919

I distinctly remember welding with something like this, thin like wire and I started off with an oxidising flame on the oxy and was just blowing it away. Even a neutral was cooking it.
I have no idea what I was using though - it was left over rods in a big pack

But again, I think try for lowest silver level you can reliably melt with the propane

Max, you got it haha

Joined: Sep 2015
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN & HISTORIAN
Norm ,you don't have to pay for rental on bottles these days ,quite a few places will refill or exchange the bottles.

If you have to buy new bottles it's expensive but I always see cheap second hand bottles for sale.

https://www.bunnings.com.au/coregas-trade-n-go-gas-size-d-oxygen-gas_p5910224

https://www.rentfreegas.com.au/

https://weldingstore.tokentools.com.au/welding-gas-refill-total-tool-cylinder/

Originally Posted by Tyler
Max, you got it haha

Yep that goes back around 25 years now.


Cheers
Max.

Joined: Apr 2014
Posts: 219
Likes: 10
Apprentice level 3
G’day folks, this could be done using a propane torch but you’d need a fair bit of luck on your side, probably not going to be successful as a first go. The main reason is that these propane torches just don’t have the oomph.

I’d suggest either taking it to a job shop and carrying some cash in your pocket, looking at your local tip shop for a wrecked mower of the same type with an intact handle or looking at gumtree etc for a similar thing, this is much more likely to be successful.

I’ve joined lots of metal together and had heaps of failures along the way so, if you do want to try, here are my suggestions.

Firstly this won’t be welding, if you get things exactly right it will be brazing. Welding is when the base material is melted and joined to another component by fusing it at the margin. A hand held propane torch won’t get things hot enough to melt steel.

To braze effectively you’re going to need a few vital things to be spot on. If any of these are not right it’ll just create a mess and can cause serious injuries. You’ll be dealing with molten metal, poisonous gasses and intense heat.

For brazing to work well everything in and immediately surrounding the join needs to be back to bare metal and smoothed out. Rust, paint, dents etc cause failures. Cleaning the inside of a tube can be problematic, I’ve done it with emery paper on a dowel in the past.

After surface prep it needs to be completely dust free and wiped down with a solvent to give you the best chance of success.

A brazed joint works through capillary action drawing the molten filler material into the very small space between the parts to be joined. The two parts must be close fitting but they also need to be able to be moved over one another without galling. The very small space is what allows the joint to form. Too tight and it won’t allow the filler to be drawn in, too loose and the joint won’t form with any strength.

The filler material forms an extremely thin alloy on the surface layer with the base material, filling the very slight void in the process.

You’ll need flux suitable for the base metal and filler selected. The flux does several jobs that there’s no time for me to explain right now.

So, with everything scrupulously clean, close fitting and the flux applied you then heat the entire area of the joint to a uniform orange heat. This is aided by putting fire bricks around it to retain the heat. An orange heat is what happens after the red heat phase. You’d then apply your filler rod and, if all the prep work is right, it will be drawn into the join by capillary action.

Brazing will not result in a strong joint if you try more than once to heat it and apply the brazing filler. The filler will just be evacuated from the joint and leave voids. So it’s a one shot chance, if you don’t get it spot on the first attempt you will need to strip back the joint, clean everything and try again.

Best of luck!

Ironbark

Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 7,466
Likes: 143
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi Max,
the bottles I have are BOC ones and I doubt they would just refill them. I'm just not game enough or got enough front to go there and try. I don't need oxy that much but boy when you need it you really need it because nothing else can give you that concentrated heat point.

Joined: Apr 2014
Posts: 219
Likes: 10
Apprentice level 3
G’day Norm, Max Ty et al

Absolutely, when you need concentrated heat there’s nothing like oxy/acetylene

I have “supagas” cylinders for oxygen, acetylene and a couple of Mig mixes that I use regularly. I did a bit of a tally up before making the switch. I might go 6 months without using them and then go through a couple of cylinders in a month. It was cheaper for me to buy mid size cylinders from supagas and use their swap service than pay the rental plus the refill cost for these gasses. The cylinder size is small enough that I can easily put them in the back of a ute myself without lifting equipment.

I also have an account which allows me to either go in and pick up a cylinder of a specific mix I might need or have it dropped off to me the next day after a Phone call. I pay cylinder rental for LPG as that’s the least expensive way to get the volume I need for my workshop and they drop off and pick up the empty large cylinders that I find very awkward to move, even with a trolley.

I found that BOC wasn’t really set up for more irregular use. Their model catered for the business that used the gas more or less continuously. The different suppliers have quite different pricing models each one catering for different use patterns. It’s worth shopping around, I deal with three different mobs because each does one thing in a way that works for me.

Cheers

Ironbark

Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 2,045
Likes: 145
SENIOR TECHNICIAN & HISTORIAN
Hi all,

I might have to try supagas for a refill / exchange.

I'm not sure Norm if they would refill the BOC bottles ,I know with Propane they take any old bottle and exchange it for a
full one ,I usually just buy second hand oxy acetylene bottles that are usable and then when they are empty throw them out.

There is a seller saying his bottles are not stamped so no problem refilling them but it does make you wonder if someone
ground off the BOC on the bottle would they exchange them ,I think they would take an unmarked bottle.

Cheers
Max.

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Joined: Jan 2016
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi Max,
Where do you throw the old bottles out. I have an 8inch post hole auger, I dig a 4 foot hole and just dump them in there. Somebody might get a shock one day if they start digging around here

Joined: Jul 2018
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
In that case Norm, glue a timer on one and bury it side ways. That would be interesting to find haha

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