Why you shouldn’t do the welds on your custom motorcycle
Happy times! You are working on a custom bike project, and the bike is dismantled to pieces. Right now you are preparing to weld up a frame loop, to get that cool cafe racer look. You’ve got limited knowledge regarding the welding types, amperages, filling materials, and the best welding machine you can get your hands on is an old school arc welder, while a pair of sunglasses acts as protection.
Before carrying on with your project, though, you should take some time to read this article. We encourage DIY projects, but it’s always wise to know our limits. We give you five reasons why you should let qualified personnel do the job. It's better for everyone, trust us!
Reason #1: Fine welding requires expensive welding equipment
If you haven't been welding for the last few years on a daily basis, you probably don't have a professional welding machine laying in your garage. In this case, it is mandatory to buy or rent a professional tool, and this can be VERY expensive. It would be better to spend the money on protective motorcycle clothing, better tires, brake upgrades, and so on.
Reason #2: Welding requires special protective equipment
You might think that you only need to weld up a few centimeters, not a big deal if you weld without using a mask. Well, it is a big deal if you weld without using proper protection equipment, because you could end up with severe injuries — anything from eye burns to sparks that can fly around the shop and set it on fire.
Reason #3: It takes years of practice and experience
When you're looking at someone who is welding for a living, you may think that it is not that complicated. FALSE! Welders that have 10 to 20 years of experience do make welding look easy. Think about it, if this was a simple skill set to master, there wouldn't be any welding schools. It takes years of practice and mistakes to be able to weld well. You cannot afford to make any mistakes when welding the motorcycle frame.
Reason #4: A wrong welding technique is dangerous
Besides aesthetics, a weld must also offer strength to the joined parts. If the weld is not strong enough, the frame can crack, leading to possible disastrous accidents — regardless of speed. This may be dangerous both for you and other road users. By allowing a professional to take care of the welds, you can enjoy the ride without asking yourself whether the frame will crack or not.
Reason #5: Support your local shops
By letting a professional taking care of your welds, you support and respect his years of practice and experience. Since you don't use a cordless drill to take care of cavities in your teeth instead of going to the dentist, you shouldn’t weld by yourself if that’s not your specialty. As stated before, it is better for everyone. You get a tedious job done and support the local shops at the same time.
P.S. You can apply the points exposed above to every job that needs qualified personnel.