Author: Chris Tobin Photos: Courtesy of Manufacturers
We are constantly working to get more out of our vehicles. It doesn’t matter if it is on the rocks, running trails or flying through the desert, as there is almost always fabrication involved to help you get there better, faster and safer. Face it, very few vehicles are capable of standing up to the abuse the Dirt Sports Nation delivers from the showroom, so some kind of fabrication is involved to get us out there and back, even if we are just playing around for the weekend. Our vehicles can also be works of art with metal bent and welded into place by the hands of skilled craftsmen from all across the country. Obviously little would be possible without the use of dedicated welding and fabrication tools. With that thought in mind we bring you the Dirt Sports’ Guide to Welding and Fabrication Tools to show you the latest and greatest offerings from major vendors to help builders and hobbyists. This is just a small sampling, and if you want to tune up your welding and fabrication game these manufacturers have the products you need no matter what your current skill level or off-road discipline.
BAILEIGH INDUSTRIAL BS-250M
The BS-250M saw from Baileigh Industrial is the perfect choice for any fabrication shop. It has a 9-inch capacity and 60-degree mitering head design to make short work of any job. Additional features include a variable-speed, 2 horsepower DC-driven motor, 1-inch blade, quick release vise, dual controls and 110V operation. It also includes an industrial grade coolant pump that washes away chips before and after cutting.
Baileigh Industrial (920) 684-4990 www.bii1.com
BURR KING MODEL 760 GRINDER
The “Velvet Touch” Model 760 from Burr King is available in fixed-speed 4,000 or 8,000 SFPM as well as variable-speed 800-8,000 SFPM configurations. Contact wheel, plate, workrest support and loose belt grinding are precision controlled with positive belt tracking, quick belt change, and linear belt tension to make your hard work look its best. Using 1-1/2x60 or 2x60 size belts with motor sizes from 1.5 to 3 hp, the Model 760 is constructed of rugged cast aluminum and precision machined components to deliver unparalleled grinding performance and reliability.
Burr King (800) 621-2748 www.burrking.com
GRIT by FEIN GIC
The GIC can be adapted to 3- or 6-inch GRIT by FEIN belt grinders and is suitable for wet or dry grinding. It features a rapid connection system that allows the user to change quickly and efficiently from the centerless module to a radius notching module. Easy add-on components designed to provide the fabricator an effective means to lower machinery procurement costs, increase shop productivity and improve product quality are also available. The GRIT by FEIN modular grinding system will handle rough grinding, radius notching, cylindrical finishing or achieving the perfect finish on stainless steel.
FEIN (800) 441-9878 www.feinus.com
HOBART HANDLER 210 MVP
The Handler 210 MVP (multi-voltage plug) was designed to deliver 210 amps of professional welding performance in a portable, compact Handler case. It weighs only 78 lbs. and is easily configured to weld aluminum with the SpoolRunner spool gun (sold separately). The special choke design on the Handler 210 MVP offers unbelievable arc characteristics on all metal types. Arc starts are crisp and direct, while keeping weld clean-up to a minimum. It features a seven-position voltage switch that helps fine-tune this machine to match the metal thickness and wire diameter being used.
Hobart Welders (800) 626-9420 www.hobartwelders.com
INDUSTRIAL METAL SUPPLY
Industrial Metal Supply is the Southwest’s largest metal distributor, but they also have thousands of metal working tools and accessories available in their retail stores. From welders to welding supplies including tables, clamps, magnets, hoods and other safety gear making them a comprehensive supplier for your welding and fabrication needs. In addition to welding equipment, tools and supplies, IMS also offers other fabrication aids such as cutting tools, abrasives and a full line of Milwaukee power tools.
Industrial Metal Supply (818) 729-3333 www.industrialmetalsupply.com
LINCOLN ELECTRIC POWER MIG 180 DUAL
The Power MIG 180 Dual from Lincoln Electric allows users to select between 120-volt input power for home or generator-driven environments (such as on the side of the race course) or 208/230-volt input power for shop applications working with thicker metals. It handles MIG and flux-cored gas-shielded or self-shielded processes. The optional Magnum 100SG spool gun can easily be installed for enhanced aluminum wire feeding performance. It also features Diamond Core Technology to deliver a forgiving arc, excellent out-of-position arc action and low splatter.
Lincoln Electric (888) 355-3213 www.lincolnelectric.com
MILLER ELECTRIC Multimatic 200
Miller Electric’s Multimatic 200 is an all-in-one portable multiprocess welding power source capable of performing MIG, Stick and TIG welding processes in one compact design. It is contained in a lightweight, durable and impact-resistant polycarbonate case for protection and easy portability. The Multimatic 200 features Auto-Set Elite that allows operators to set weld parameters quickly and easily based on material type and thickness as well as fine-tune those parameters to match each specific application.
Miller Electric Manufacturing (920) 734-9821 www.millerwelds.com
Joining tubes together can be a difficult task, but one that is necessary for off-road fabricators. PipeMaster tools are available in several metric and SAE sizes from 1/2-inch up to 12-3/4-inch as well as several kits with popular fabrication sizes. The tools are constructed with a rugged ABS-plastic housing and spring-tempered stainless steel pins to ensure a long tool life. It is a small, convenient and helpful tool that is equally at home in a professional fab shop or hobbyist garage.
PipeMaster (360) 668-3291 www.pipemastertools.com
PREMIER POWER WELDER STREAMLINED CONTROL BOX
The new streamlined control box from Premier Power Welder is revised with fewer switches, making it simpler to operate. It now has a four-stud stiffener mounting system that makes it easier to mount in cramped spaces. The design of the Premier Power Welder has offered battery charging, welding and 115-volt DC power source capabilities for over 30 years. With a Premier welder you can ARC, MIG and TIG weld just above engine idle. The unit is also capable of running power equipment such as grinders, drills, saws and incandescent lights, making it perfect for chase trucks.
Premier Power Welder (970) 963-4507 www.premierpowerwelder.com
READY WELDER PORTABLE WELDER
The portable Ready Welder II welds steel, stainless steel, aluminum or any weldable metal or alloy. It can deliver from 45 amperes to 350 amperes of output current and can be powered by either batteries or DC current when connected to a welder as a spool gun. For thinner metals it can be powered by a 12-volt battery or connected to batteries in series to weld thick metals. It welds with or without shielding gas.
Ready Welder (310) 834-3321 www.readywelder.com
SWAG Off Road Portable Band Saw Vertical Mounting Plate
SWAG Off Road designed their Vertical Band Saw Mounting Plate for fabricators with limited space and/or looking to maximize the potential of their Milwaukee or DeWalt deep throat portable band saws. It is constructed of heavy 1/4-inch plate steel with bolt-on side legs for cheaper shipping and quick setup/removal. The bench top-mounted stand is available in an optional powder coated or zinc-plated finish for durability, and it is made in the USA.
SWAG Off Road (541) 915-2775 www.swagoffroad.com
TORCHMATE Growth Series 4X4
Torchmate CNC Cutting Systems has been bringing affordable CNC plasma cutting tables and automation solutions to manufacturers worldwide for over 30 years. The Growth System 4X4 machine incorporates a plasma cutter, router, engraver, oxy fuel or any other tool to deliver high precision and repeatable cuts. It can be used to design and cut anything from intricate and professional-quality metal parts to chassis or suspension components. The 4X4 was designed with small metal shops, sheet metal companies, career and technical schools, hobbyists and the off-road and racing industry in mind.
Torchmate (866) 571-1066 www.torchmate.com
WILLIAMS LOWBUCK TOOLS TUBING NOTCHER
The mechanical Lowbuck Notchers do not involve hole saws, drill presses, flying cutting oil or electricity. The cutting edges are case-hardened to 62 Rockwell and are practically indestructible. It will notch .134-wall mild steel, .095-wall 4130 chromoly and schedule 40 pipe. The unit comes cad-plated, fully assembled and is designed to bolt to the side of your workbench or be clamped into a vice. Notchers are available with four sizes of cutters, by swapping interchangeable cutters, one Notcher will handle tubing from 1-inch to 2-1/2-inches.
Williams Lowbuck Tools (951) 735-7848 www.lowbucktools.com
The TubeShark hybraulic bender produces quality bends in a wide variety of materials without distortion, performance equal to machines costing thousands more. The portable bender is the perfect machine for home or shop use. It produces precision 180-degree bends in round tube and square, accurate to a 1/4-degree. It will bend 1/2- to 2-inch diameter tube with radiusing options ranging from 3 to 8 inches, and also square tubing from 1/2- to 1-1/2-inch. The TubeShark is a very user-friendly machine that’s made in the USA.
TubeShark (541) 382-1573 www.tubeshark.com
SWAG Off Road
Tube Bender Air/Hydraulic Ram Mount
To make bending tubes easier, SWAG Off Road designed the Ram Mount Kit. It comes either welded or unwelded using laser cut 1/4-inch steel brackets that are custom-formed on a CNC press brake for a perfect fit. After installing the 8-ton air/hydraulic ram (sold separately) and the SWAG kit on your manual bender, you will be easily able to bend 2-inch diameter 1/4-inch wall DOM tubing.
SWAG Off Road (541) 915-2775 www.swagoffroad.com
ULTIMATE FIT WELDING GLOVES
The Hobart Ultimate Fit welding gloves are available in a range of sizes and include a Hobart carabiner as an added bonus. These exclusive pre-curved form-fitting leather welding gloves are made from high-quality split pigskin and cowhide. The heavy-duty Kevlar stitching, super durable design and reinforced thumb saddle are some of the great features that make these gloves a must have for any serious fabricator.
Hobart Welders (800) 626-9420 www.hobartwelders.com