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Noob weld cart build.

Old 10-24-2013, 08:04 AM
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Arrow Noob weld cart build.

Hey Guys!

So, I know this isnít really an XJ-specific project but it still seemed to fit the guidelines for the Fab section. I wouldn't even be starting this project if it wasn't for my XJ in the first place, so here we go! I recently purchased my first MIG setup, and now Iím working on my very first projectóa multi-purpose welding cart!

A little background, the whole reason I purchased this welder is to fix the rust on my XJ. I also plan on doing 2x6 rocker sliders since my rockers are rusted out. I welded in shop class in high school about 8 years ago and figured this will be great practice for me to get up to speed before I actually start welding on the Jeep.

So Iíve had a lot of ideas about how to do this thing, and so far here is the current culmination of features:
  • Red and Rustoleum Hammered finish
  • Fire extinguisher mount
  • Dual duplex power outlet panel on the front + dedicated outlet on the rear for welder (Logistics of that to be figured out yet)
  • Diamond plate outlet covers w/ red outlets for visibility
  • Mounts for other tools such as angle grinder, drill, etc.
  • Possibly a drawer for misc. storage
  • Ball-bearing pushmower wheels and locking front swivel wheels

So, also keep in mind that I will be basically building this thing with only the welder, an angle grinder, and a drill. I don't even have a damn workbench! I also have very little as far as a plan goes and Iím basically winging it as I go. I started working on this yesterday, now for the goodies..

Hereís what Iím starting with after a trip to Tractor SupplyÖThis is enough to begin the base of the cart. 1x1 steel, some flat iron, and I forget the size of the smaller bar that Iím going to use as a cross-grate type deal for support.


After some measuring and comparing to the box the welder came in, and mocking up some stuff on the garage floor with the welder itself, I came up with 28Ēx14.5Ē for the base. Getting ready for the first cut! My workbench is merely a 2x4 and a C-clamp


First cut!


I started playing around with the various pieces I have to get a feel of how Iím going to attach the wheels while keeping it level as possible. I havenít decided yet if Iím going to run the rear wheels right through the 1x1, or weld a sleeve onto the bottom of it yet. Either seems like it would work OK at this point. The rear and front wheels both have 3Ē from the ďaxleĒ or part that connects to the cart, and the point of contact with the floor.
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The front wheels are 2x2Ē, so I will end up welding a 1Ē corner piece on the inside of the frame to support the wheels.


More mock-upÖ



Now that the cuts are done and mockup complete, time for the fun partóstart welding it together!


Overall, I donít think I did *too* bad for having a shaky hand. I have a few more to do yet but so far it is very sturdy with these welds. I used the chart on the inside of the welder and it seems to be quite accurate. Arc voltage set at ďFĒ, wire speed at 5.5. Critiques, tips, etc. welcome.




Thatís all for now, Iíll be back on this later today!
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:41 AM
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Cool. That one end with the wonky angle cut threw me off in the pics. Looks like fun! The cart seems very tight for just the welder and gas, where did you plan on putting a receptacle exactly?
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:01 AM
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Looks good.

I so need to get around to building one of these, get my welder off the workbench.
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:05 AM
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don't forget about a few hangers off the side for gloves, helmet, wire brush, cables and other crap. looks like a good start.
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by OverlandZJ View Post
Looks good.

I so need to get around to building one of these, get my welder off the workbench.
same here. im so tired of carrying it where ever I need it. or bringing what i need welded to it...
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:08 AM
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I'd play around with the settings a little more, I'd also try slowing down a little or don't start your bead until you get a good puddle started.

Otherwise they look just like mine when I first started. Keep up the good work!
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:33 AM
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Thanks for the compliments, everyone!

Originally Posted by salad View Post
Cool. That one end with the wonky angle cut threw me off in the pics. Looks like fun! The cart seems very tight for just the welder and gas, where did you plan on putting a receptacle exactly?
LOL, it's hard to get a straight cut with nothing but an angle grinder and a 2x4. I've given myself some breathing room for tidying up the edges..should've done that before welding it I guess! As for the outlets, I plan on putting them on the front of the cart, like this...

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Excuse the poor drawing. The white space above the outlet panel I put there as a placeholder for a handle.

Originally Posted by bheath View Post
don't forget about a few hangers off the side for gloves, helmet, wire brush, cables and other crap. looks like a good start.
Oh, definitely. I will cross that bridge when I get to it. I originally was going to work from the top down, but decided to start at the bottom and work my way upwards. I'll need to figure out the handle situation also.

Originally Posted by my89xj View Post
I'd play around with the settings a little more, I'd also try slowing down a little or don't start your bead until you get a good puddle started.

Otherwise they look just like mine when I first started. Keep up the good work!
Thanks! I'll take heed to these tips. I hadn't started a puddle first, kind of went right into a bead. Do they look too hot to you, or maybe slow the wire speed a little? They seem to have penetrated well but it's hard to tell for a noob like me.
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by PocketsEmpty View Post
Thanks! I'll take heed to these tips. I hadn't started a puddle first, kind of went right into a bead. Do they look too hot to you, or maybe slow the wire speed a little? They seem to have penetrated well but it's hard to tell for a noob like me.
I myself like a higher wire speed. But if you're following what the chart saw then I think you're fine.

Starting the puddle is key. I like to start the puddle then go side to side. Some people prefer making circles. Try both and see what you like.
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by my89xj View Post
I myself like a higher wire speed. But if you're following what the chart saw then I think you're fine.

Starting the puddle is key. I like to start the puddle then go side to side. Some people prefer making circles. Try both and see what you like.
I do the same. start a good puddle then move side to side and walk the puddle and try to keep the same size the whole time.
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:42 AM
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Great first project! Definitely keep us updated with pics. You gonna build a welding table/workbench as well?
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by roninofako View Post
Great first project! Definitely keep us updated with pics. You gonna build a welding table/workbench as well?
apparently he needs to. lol
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by my89xj View Post
I myself like a higher wire speed. But if you're following what the chart saw then I think you're fine.

Starting the puddle is key. I like to start the puddle then go side to side. Some people prefer making circles. Try both and see what you like.
Originally Posted by bheath View Post
I do the same. start a good puddle then move side to side and walk the puddle and try to keep the same size the whole time.
Little e-whips are good too, kinda depends on what position you're welding in, keep playing with it, you'll get it...run some practice beads on any scrap material you have, and weld in flat, horizontal, vertical and overhead positions, you can't always move pieces around when working on some projects, and gravity can be a *****, LOL...Perfect makes practice...
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by bheath View Post
apparently he needs to. lol
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by roninofako View Post
Great first project! Definitely keep us updated with pics. You gonna build a welding table/workbench as well?
Lol, I do definitely need to build a workbench. I'm actually doing this in my parent's garage because mine is small and my torn apart Jeep is taking up all the room. I've entertained the idea of building a small work area overhead of where the welder will sit on the cart, but I will decide on that later.

Thanks for the tips everyone, definitely helps me. I know I'll have gravity against me trying to weld 2x6 rockers in on a non-lifted Jeep, underneath!
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by roninofako View Post
Little e-whips are good too, kinda depends on what position you're welding in, keep playing with it, you'll get it...run some practice beads on any scrap material you have, and weld in flat, horizontal, vertical and overhead positions, you can't always move pieces around when working on some projects, and gravity can be a *****, LOL...Perfect makes practice...
Deff. Friend once told me, if you can weld the upperside of rusty exhaust under a vehicle using a mirror to look through then you can weld anything. Lol i've done it before and its hard...
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