HTS2000 braizing rods

Discussion in 'Boat Repair Help' started by ka_c4_boom, Mar 14, 2007.

  1. ka_c4_boom

    ka_c4_boom New Member

    Messages:
    2,252
    State:
    Bedford,Ky
    i just ordered these braizing rods to use to fix my leaky jon boat they should arrive in about a week hopefully they will do the trick , my ribs are broke in the middle from flexing it was my fault i being new to boating removed the wood sub floor to lighten the load which it did but it put undo stress on the ribs which inturn caused them to crack now the bottom flexes up and down as i travel across the river this movement has worked the rivets loose on each side of the breaks , my plan is to fix the cracks then tighten or replace the rivets install styrofoam insulation in the floor between the ribs then an alluminum sub floor which i plan to buy at a later date , all though the wife doesnt know it yet :lol: as im getting older and wiser im realizing speed isnt everything , durability is , that and dry feet :lol:

    PM me for a link to their website.
     
  2. dankitch

    dankitch New Member

    Messages:
    468
    State:
    Henderson,
    Hey if those things work let me know. I need to get some for my alum. boat.
     

  3. Whistler

    Whistler Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,084
    State:
    TN
    I ordered and received some dura-fix rods about 2 weeks ago. Used them to fix a couple of holes in my pontoons. Work great. But you'll need to buy a Mapp torch to do it. Regular old blue bottle propane just wouldn't get it hot enough. And be careful not to hold it in one place too long. I almost messed up and nearly made the hole bigger than it already was. Practice on some scrap aluminum first. Soda cans will work to play with, but find some thick sheet or plate aluminum to really get used to it. You'll go through about 3 rods, just learning how to use it. So far, I'm happy with it. By the way, they actually sell the same thing in TSC, not sure of price, but it's there.
     
  4. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    I bought 2-1/2 pounds of the HTS2000.
    I fixed broken welds in both aluminum pontoons BUT you have to consider the following.
    What is causing the cracks. Flexing in my case. These pontoons had cracks rewelded before and they cracked below the new welds. I could have had them welded again and they would again crack below that weld.
    The flexing has to stop.
    I've filled the existing cracks and am taking steps with adding bracing and heliarc welding that bracing to stop the flex. It will cure my problem.

    HTS will repair the crack but its not an answer for flexing. The HTS may not crack next time but the aluminum will crack beside the repair or somewhere else.

    The stuff works but there is a learning curve. Its not as easy as it appears on the DVD. Those people mess with it every day. I dont and I'm not new to brazing.
    I highly recomend starting out with propane and then going to Mapp gas if the propane wont get it hot enough.
    Patience is the key. Let the metal melt the rod not the flame. Clean metal good. I found a stainless brush works best even though its not required for the HTS rods. Tinning is a must. If I fix a crack I tin around the area first then go for the crack. Being that the rod is stronger then the aluminum you want the area around the crack to help support the repair.
    the best scenario I've found if its possible is too heat from one side of the metal and braze on the other side. The heat will draw the molten rod through the crack towards the heat source. Just like silver soldering refrigerant lines or sweating copper pipe. You heat the fitting and the solder is drawn into the fitting by the heat.

    Now for the ugly. I put a nice dent in a pontoon from heat. I had a hole the size of a pinky nail I had to fill. Aluminum dissipates heat rapidly so it takes awhile even with Mapp to get it hot enough on pontoon aluminum. Even with keeping the flame moving the aluminum will draw or "oil can" leaving a nice dent. The good . I got the hole filled.

    I say start with propane because on thin aluminum like a jonboat Mapp gas will easily burn a hole , especially being that there is already a crack or hole there. Heat the surrounding area instead of directly on the repair area.

    To give you an idea what Mapp will do to Inch aluminum tubing.
    The rialing on the pontoon boat has had things screwed to it or holes drilled in it to mount various things no longer in existence. I decided what the heck I have plenty of rods I'll fill them and grind them flush. It works and when grinded you cant tell where the hole was without really close scrutiny and knowing there used to be a hole there. To get the tubing hot enough I had to use Mapp. the heat also deflected the railing. Nothing major or noticeable unless you are looking for it. What I learned from that episode is patience. I had 3 holes close together. I fixed one and should have stopped allowing the aluminum to cool then proceeded with another hole but I didnt. I was impatient and didnt want to have to bring the metal back up to temperature. I was rolling along and in the process keeping the heat in the aluminum too long causing it to draw a little.

    The biggest key with this stuff by far is patience. Let the heat in the metal flow the rod. Repair the problem and get the heat off it and let it cool down naturally.

    I still have some aluminum stock scraps I brought home I want to test with some structural brazing. Tinning and laying a fillet around the joint. I've figured out how to make it fillet now I just need to get down and really test
    it.

    A little more ugly. I found out that grinding the repair area with a sanding pad will perfectly blend it in with the surrounding aluminum. Where it gets ugly is to acid wash the area with aluminum cleaner later. The repair turns black.
    It can be blended again though.
    I havent tested it with a normal soap washing yet to see if that effects it the same way.
    The rods are made mainly from Zinc. As we all know Zinc is an anode and a very gracious metal in that it will sacrifice itself for the metal it is bonded to.
    This means that the patch isnt forever. It may last years in some enviroments and a short time in not so pleasant conditions that attack an anode. My recomendation is a top coating over the repair if its below the waterline. Maybe a good etching primer And a spot of enamel paint.

    I still rate this stuff high. It has its place and it can get you fixed without costing alot of money in equipment , labor, and shop fees.
    I'll be keeping a supply of rods, a small stainless brush, a few small scrap pieces of aluminum, and a Mapp torch on the pontoon boat for emergencies. Hopefully I'll never need them but hopefully if I do, they'll be enough to get the job done. Maybe I can help someone else out of a jam.
     
  5. ka_c4_boom

    ka_c4_boom New Member

    Messages:
    2,252
    State:
    Bedford,Ky
    i ordered the 93 rod pack $125 shipping included should be plenty to practice with going to practice on my sub floor material first , not really braizing the bottom of the boat mostly the cross ribs in the center only 4 ribs , i figure the sub floor will help alot with the flexing issue i also plan on puttin on a new front deck with inclosed storage and repairing cracks in the transom
     
  6. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    Good thing you got 2-1/2 pounds. They disappear quick.
    Once they start flowing they flow.

    Using these things in a vertical application or upside down is darn near impossible because it runs. You have to work straight down on top of it unless you want some puddling action where you dont want it.
    I did some nasty looking repair in the beging but have progressed to actually mimicking aluminum welds. When brazing 2 pieces of aluminum of different thickness heat the thicker and lay a bead in the seam. I've actually gone down some of these deck supports adding welds from the standard 2 welds to 4 or 5.


    Fun stuff to mess around with at any rate. I'm just curious as to what it can really do compared to as adverstised.
     
  7. crome

    crome New Member

    Messages:
    328
    State:
    ilm,nc
    sounds like you about got the hang of it mark,with a little more heat control,you'll be doing vertical and upside down repairs too.when the shop first started using the rods,they had a guy come in and do a 2 day class with the stuff,it was unreal to watch that man work.
     
  8. Whistler

    Whistler Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,084
    State:
    TN
    My pontoons were cracking from the water trapped inside freezing and expanding. It was getting into the seams and popping them. I will put a bit of anti-freeze in there next year. When I first thought of this, I was a bit worried about anti-freeze and aluminum, but then I got to thinking that there are tons of engines made from aluminum these days. And a test on some foam didn't hurt it at all. So maybe this will solve the problem for me. I hope so.
     
  9. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    Brian use the RV antifreeze and it has no corrosion in it.
     
  10. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    Bryan, your boat just lives in too cold a climate.:lol:
    Its trying to tell you something.
     
  11. ka_c4_boom

    ka_c4_boom New Member

    Messages:
    2,252
    State:
    Bedford,Ky
    heres some pics of what i need repaired iv got two cracks in the transom that have been fixed before not sure when but im planning to add more braces and also got 6 ribs out of 8 cracked , is it best to tighten up the rivets iv got or replace them ? and how would i go about tightening them if i choose to not replace ?
     

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  12. last chance

    last chance New Member

    Messages:
    56
    State:
    Louisiana
    Thanks, ka c4 boom and Mark J for this thread. Because of this I decided to try HTS 2000 and no dought they will do what I need for alum. repair and possibly even some fab. work as well.
     
  13. copycat

    copycat New Member

    Messages:
    1,841
    State:
    New Jersey
    I ordered those rods about 2 years ago, but ended up never needing to do the repair, I still got them. The video was very impressive but I would imagine a reg. propane torch will not produce enough heat. Some of the repairs you have look to be obious stress points and it will be interesting to see how it holds up. Keep us posted.
     
  14. Dreadnaught

    Dreadnaught New Member

    Messages:
    5,444
    State:
    Henderson,Ky
    Being a welder for a long time has taught me many things and heat stress on aluminum is one of them.
    Best thing to remember is not to get the surrounding area too hot. It will weakin the molecular structure of the metal , allowing it to flex at that point and crack. You have to move fast to keep it from over heating. Weld a little and let it cool, then do it again. That is the beauty of heliarc welding, it puts out very little heat to the surrounding area.

    Just My 2 cents on the subject.
     
  15. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC

    The not so beautiful part of heliarc is the cost of the equipment.
    Most of us can buy a stick welder cheap brand new and a mig reasonable.
    But to get a tig capable of heliarcing something thicker then thin sheet you'll spend several thousand.

    I'm going to buy one at some point. I've always got my ear to ground for a good used one reasonably priced. You can make some good money with one around here just messing with it on the weekends repairing jon boats and such. There just aint that many folks that heliarc around here and the one's that do have real high prices. They have to to pay for all the expensive shop equipment.

    Something like HTS2000 I'm not convinced that it will work structurally. Maybe in light load applications on small parts, but it has its place in repair. You got a hole in a toon or jon boat you can have it fixed quick and cheap with the rods.
    It will go where most professional welders will never strike a tungsten too like old seasoned pitted pontoons and jon boats.
     
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