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Building a new work table.

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  • Building a new work table.

    I have this piece of steel salvaged from an old machine. It is 32x32x2.5 and weighs a little over 700 lb.

    The intention was to set it on a base and use it as an outdoor welding table. Most of my work is done from a wheel chair these days and I wanted to try it for height before it gets finalized.

    I cut a 55gal bbl off to 22" to set it on for a temporary base. Is this safe enough for a short time trial run?

    The forklift does not want to start so I thought I would ask before trying it. I have both 24” and 30” by 3/8” pipe for the final base but I didn’t want to waste it if I had the height wrong.

    I would appreciate your input.
    Byron Boucher
    Burnet, TX

  • #2
    I did a similar thing with a T-slot table from a radial drill being scrapped out. My personal recommendation is to make it as low as comfortable for you to get your knees under it in the wheelchair. Workpieces and set-up can often add an unexpected amount of height even if you are welding flat stock. In the taller table scenario, the work surface may be the right height, but the welding ends up real high. That's my experience, any way.


    • #3
      Make a prototype from wood so you can get the height right without any danger? What are you going to put this on? Got a little concrete pad? Can you leave it on the forklift and the the height right what way?


      • #4
        Can a 55gal drum hold 700 lbs? Probably. But I wouldn't put my body anywhere near it for fear of local buckling causing a collapse.


        • #5
          Me being someone who does everything from a wheelchair I like your idea of the round base which means you can get right up to the table even on the corners.

          There is NO way I would ever use a whole or part of a 55 gal drum though under that table.

          For me...and I know everyone is different...I like a work table to be about 25" to 28" and I have several that are even shorter.

          It depends on how one deals with the wheelchair while working...sitting up and back sometimes works on the 25" to 28" work height and other times I sit forward on the seat and work with lower surfaces.

          Above and comfort (In that order) are what I consider when creating a work surface. And I put pretty much everything on casters.

          Just my ways of working.

          Good luck.


          • #6
            The cut-off 55 gallon drum is the form for CONCRETE. THEN set the plate on it-it wont buckle.
            Duffy, Gatineau, Quebec


            • #7
              I like Duffy's idea with filling the drum with concrete. For sure no one will be stealing it. Just be sure to place it where you want it the first time cause it won't very portable for sure

              I would rather have tools that I never use, than not have a tool I need.
              Oregon Coast


              • #8
                Thickness is spec'd at 18 gauge, which means it should have a nominal cross-sectional area of 3.38 square inches.

                700# shouldn't be any kinda problem especially only 22 inches high.


                • #9
                  Originally posted by strokersix
                  Can a 55gal drum hold 700 lbs? Probably. But I wouldn't put my body anywhere near it for fear of local buckling causing a collapse.
                  ditto that................ It may be that filling the half barrel with sand would prevent it from buckling and be easier to dispose of when the time came.
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                  Thank you to our families of soldiers, many of whom have given so much more then the rest of us for the Freedom we enjoy.

                  It is true, there is nothing free about freedom, don't be so quick to give it away.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Your Old Dog
                    ...and be easier to dispose of when the time came.
                    What exactly do you mean?

                    WI/IL border, USA