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Tig welding on hard chrome

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Tig welding on hard chrome

Postby Antonio » Tue Oct 17, 2017 3:19 pm

Dear folks, I am totally new at this, so, please, tolerate my mistakes. My hobby is motorcycles and in all the past years I made many parts that still work. Now I am confronted by a new task. I am making a new fork for my bike and I am using two fork tubes that (I believe) are hard chromed. I have to weld parts on the tubes and the welds must have structural strength. Must I
remove the chrome (I would have it removed by reversing the chroming process) or can I weld directly on the chrome? I have no Idea whether under the chrome there is any copper but I can grind a little piece of chrome to find out. Your help would be very appreciated, Thank you very much, Antonio.
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Re: Tig welding on hard chrome

Postby cj737 » Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:31 am

To understand, you're planning to weld to the tube, not the lower? :shock: The upper travels into the lower and welding on it would not be ideal in my book.

From a structural point of view, I'd also be very careful as the tubes are often fairly thin tubing, and could distort from the heat and "addition" of what you're planning. If you have thought all that through... I'd suggest you either grind the chrome away (they'll be re chromed anyway, right) before welding.

My curiosity would love to see a picture of your plan and result!
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Re: Tig welding on hard chrome

Postby dgapilot » Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:15 am

Welding with chrome plate allows the chromium to mix in the weld puddle changing the properties. I tried it on an exhaust system years ago and ended up with very brittle welds that would fail from vibration in about a week of riding. Not recommended. Can you bring off the chrome in the weld area so you are welding parent metal?


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Re: Tig welding on hard chrome

Postby Antonio » Wed Oct 18, 2017 10:25 am

Thank to you all fer the answers and input. I am planning to use the tubes to build an Earles type fork since I am going to attach a sidecar to the bike. In my case the tubes are rather thick and should be able to support the welds. I am going to take
the tubes to my chrome plating place and have them remove the chrome and all the other metals, if any, by reversing the process. I have had that done before. I am going to keep the Chrome on the tubes only on the parts that are secured by the triple trees. I do not have a blue print yet but I can make and attach a sketch to explain a little better what I have in mind to do. Thank you very much again. Antonio
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