Radkins...those trucks prolly came from an hour down the road from me.
I've worked on a lot of BIG coal mining equipment from there.
Those mines have been owned by various companies over the years so who knows.
Big big stuff anyway...you gotta chuckle when you think of taking 3 days just to gouge out a crack in something that huge (that one was a boom stick)
then take 4 days to fill it back up.
As for the cast welding...I guess we are both on the same page.
I hear lots of "good" advice on these boards...lotta times from people who have no real world experience. Glad to see you are not one of these.
All this reminds me of a small logging town where I used to race my blown alcohol mud rail.
There is a guy there who has been the only weldor around for years.
He welds cast all the time...with 7018.
I got into a big argument with him once....a mud rail had wollaped a water filled 45 gallon barrel full of water used as a safety barrier.
The front axle tube got broken right out of the diff. Tore a big chunk of the cast iron diff out.
The guy wanted me to weld it up for him but i never brought any equipment.
So they got hold of the local weldor.
He pulls out his 7018 and I had to question that.
These "cars" make close to 3000 hp and are very violent.
The crowd is always way too close so there where serious safety issues.
Anyway.. I got outvoted..
I watched the guy....he put a PILE of 7018 on there. Spread the weld out over a large area.
The weld held up...in fact the guy ran the car for the rest of the summer thru some very rough mud pits.
Was it right? Nope...
Would I do that? Not very likely....
But it worked...the guy had developed his own method over the years and it worked for him and all his welding customers.
I've done the "proper" repairs before...in a facility that had all the bells. The monster controlled preheat...the gas welded cast iron rod etc. Beautiful way to repair cast IF you have the facilities.
I've also studied metallurgy...taken extra classes in it and am aware of all the songs and dances about welding cast.
All that stuff has little to do with small shop..."try to get it fixed" real world repairs.
I've developed my own methods for Ni-rod repairs. They work for me.
I do not like brazing cast...yes it works...but IF it doesn't,,,you are in a serious pickle.
I bet half of my cast work comes from failed braze repairs. And we all know what a mess that is to clean up. Some is impossible so I end up brazing it again and hoping for the best.
Anyway..I'm glad you have been on the mountain... you know what it's like..
I have tools I don't even know I own...