Galvanizing options?

Discussion in 'General Fabrication' started by Keith Thomas, Jun 7, 2017.

  1. Keith Thomas

    Keith Thomas Member

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    Hi guys

    I'm constructing a steel frame garage at the moment. I am wanting to galvanize the steel to protect it from rusting. I will be using steel box section for the frame.

    I've looked at hot dip galvanizing and it is expensive it also has the potential to warp the steel due to the heat. As I am making a frame then galvanizing it before assembly onsite any potential warping could cause major issues.

    I had seen cold galvanizing paint but I can't find an effective method to get the paint inside a 4.2 metre length of box section. So the material could rust from the inside out.

    I have considered zinc electroplating. Might sound like a crazy idea but I am a scientist so in theory it is possible. I would need to construct a large container to coat the material in.

    What are people's thoughts on this?

    Any suggestions welcome.
     
  2. SegoMan Designs

    SegoMan Designs Member

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    YouTube is full of how too vids, PVC pipe comes in 20' sticks, Cut it to what ever length you want and set it in the ground with an over head hoist. Now who do you know with an auger truck?
     
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  3. Keith Thomas

    Keith Thomas Member

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    Hi SegoMan Designs,

    I had a quick google search and it appears some people use the idea of a sponge and then pour the cold galvanizing solution onto the sponge and push it through. That in theory sounds like it would work.

    Your other suggestion appears to be the idea of putting PVC pipe up the inside of the steel box section. That should work also; wouldn't need an auger though as I will be digging out the ground for foundations anyway so could put it in then.

    cheers Keith
     
  4. SegoMan Designs

    SegoMan Designs Member

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    Keith,

    How big of box you using and have you bought it yet? some metal suppliers sell galvanized products.

    Your going to need several tubes, acid - rinse - plating. I would recommend a conduit that a smaller tube could be lowered into for ease of clean-out. then a block and tackle up far enough to remove the plated products. Like you say this is not rocket science some chemicals and a voltage source is all you need..
     
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  5. Keith Thomas

    Keith Thomas Member

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    Ah got your thinking now. Use the pvc pipe as a plating bath.

    I'm planning on using 50mm box section and I haven't bought it yet so could look into buying galvanized material.

    I'm actually thinking if pvc guttering could be used as that should be deeper than 50mm. Some of the pieces will have a baseplate on it but I could come up with a way of attaching guttering to a pvc box.

    Yeah the actual plating process appears to be relatively straight forward. Just ensuring I've sufficient current and voltage to do the plating.

    Cheers Keith
     
  6. OcalaWill

    OcalaWill Well-Known Member

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    I have plated hydraulic tubing before bending for the tractors I restored. As other have suggested you can make your own tanks, and home brew plating bath recipes which are available online. You can use junk zinc, most emt electrical fittings are pure zinc for example. Just be aware you will not get plating inside the tubing much beyond the first couple inches of the end. I went this route as my plater is 2 hours drive away, otherwise at a $100 minimum charge I 'd still have done it.

    IMO... I think you should send out your tubing for plating since you are dealing with such large parts. By the time you invest in all the chemicals and tanks, not to mention your time, I think it will be well worth it. Also just wondering why you are not using galvanized tubing to begin with?
     
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  7. Keith Thomas

    Keith Thomas Member

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    Yeah to be honest I hadn't considered pre-galvanised steel box section. I must price this with my local supply shop.

    The main issue with hot dip galvanising is the cost. For my project the steel will cost roughly £500-550. The galvanising I have had prices ranging from £500-700. With the local place being the most expensive so hence why I'm looking at alternatives.

    I know the chemicals will have a cost but I can get them through my work relatively cheap. The main cost would be constructing a bath for them.

    I am tempted by cold galvanising. Has anyone any experience with this method?

    When I moved into my house 6 years ago there was a piece of angle iron which was laying outside in the elements. It's still there as I never got around to moving it. I looked at it the other day and it has surface rust on it but has not rotted through.

    I'm planning on cleaning this up and then cutting into 4 sections. One cold galvanised. One cold galvanised and painted. One painted and one left bare metal. Then place in a bucket of seawater and observe what protection the cold galvanising has on the metal.

    Cheers Keith
     

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