Generator used as a welder
Surplus Aircraft Generators have long been used to
make simple arc welders since WWII. The "how to" has been lost as commercial
welders became more economical. This is the "how to" fundamentals for those
wishing to get back to the basics.
How you construct the mechanical parts is up to you, but you will need a 10 hp to 20 hp
motor to drive the generator at 3000 rpms. (200 amp to 400 amp respectively). Light duty
welding may not require a cooling fan but continuous work will require some form of
cooling. This is a good time to tell you that there is plenty of electricity to kill you.
The drawing pretty much tells you how to connect
the wires. Your generator will probably have two additional terminals: a big
"C+" and a little "D". These are use to even the load when it is being
used as a generator on a multi-engine airplane.
The inductor evens the current flow, making it easier to maintain an arc and reduce the
sparking at the brushes. The Inductor is made up of 15 turns of insulated 8-gauge wire
tightly wrapped around a 1-1/2" steel pipe. It is not critical but even 8-gauge wire
will drop voltage and get hot, a larger diameter wont hurt.
We cant endorse anyplace to get parts but you might start at www.surpluscenter.com
tells us we must tell you that: this is for information only; we dont recommend
building a welder over buying one; electricity kills; Were not responsible for any
damage you may do to anything or yourself; Use eye protection; dont stand on the top
rung of a ladder; fast food is fattening; smoking causes lung cancer; breathing is
dangerous; everybody is going to die sometime. In other words, be careful and if you do
anything stupid, we are NOT to blame.