Metal Shaping Tools for Beginners

Metal Shaping Tools for Beginners

Hi, it’s Wray from ProShaper sheet metal in Charlton Massachusetts. I’M back again, I’m going to do something a little different today, a lot of students that come to my class. They have zero experience, they see stuff on the internet, they read magazines watching T.V. shows, and they say boy I’d like to learn that too, and you know I’ve got my old car in the two-car garage or out in the barn, and it’s got some rust issues and I really don’t have the money to send it off to some restoration shop and I got to learn how to do it myself. So the first step with my students with you, if you don’t have the experience, is what do I buy? I’M going to try to help you out here where to start these are tools that I find that I use all the time Some of them I’ve had for many years.


Some of them are new, so this is the hammer collection in the

dolly collection. I have tons more, I have lots of hammers, I have what’s

called a hammer tree, It’s a tape. It looks like a tree and I get all these

slots and I get all my hammers in it, and people go crazy about collecting

hammers, but the truth be told I don’t use too many hammers, but the ones I do

use. I use a lot and I love them. This is my Snap-On.


I don’t know what number it is or whatever you see you probably

can still buy this one. It has a really nice feel I’ve changed the handle on,

they put a grip on and all my grips are kind of wore off now, and I only use

this end and if you buy a new hammer, you can’t use it the way they sell it.

Here. You have to dress it; how do you dress it? Well, you use a foam pad and I

use hook and hook and loop sandpaper and you slowly sand the front of it and

you relieve the edges and the problem with body.


Hammers are a lot of them come with hard edges, and this is true

of all the uh shaping and panel work tools, as they’ll come pretty much

unfinished because it’s a lot of labor to finish stuff up and they can’t

economically sell them. So they almost expect you to do the finishing touches,

so you have to relieve all the edges I on this one here. I’ve got a little bit

more of a crown on it, and this end here the chisel end. I probably used it

about 10 times. In my life and I’ve had this since I was like 14 or 15, or

something bought this a long time ago, 50 plus years ago, so that one I use the

most these other ones, probably the next one I use the most is this one?


This is a door skinning hammer and it comes completely

different. It comes kind of flat on both ends when you first buy it. These are

readily available and you can buy them used on eBay too, and I’ve dressed this

one. So it has a round nice radius going this way and a radius going this way,

and I use this for wiring edges. So when you, you turn a 90-degree lip on the

edge of a panel.


You put the eighth inch wire in there and you have a dolly

holding the wire and you can knock that edge right over this side. I ground to

flatten – and I don’t use this side at all too much – it’s mostly this side, so

that one is used. A bunch this one, I think, was flat when I first bought it,

but I decided to dome both of the ends again. You’re, using that hook and loop

in the foam pad I’ll show you that in a little bit – and I probably could even

do a little sample once we get to the air tools, but these are all relieved and

I’ve done them domed them. This has a strong dome.


This has got a weaker dome, so this would be more of a mild, a

low crown, and this would be more of a high crown now this hammer here. This is

actually a Pexto and I found this an antique store I paid. I think three

dollars for it about 35 years ago, and I it was just flat on the ends and I radiused

it in one direction on this face and I radiused in an opposite direction on the

other face and that that’s a good utility hammer. I use that a lot now, even

more important than my hammers is my slapper. I use the slapper a lot more than

the hammers and this happened to be a Duesenberg spring.


I got from my grandfather’s restoration shop years ago back in

the 60s and it just so happened. It was the perfect thickness and the perfect

width and it had a little arch to it, which is nice and a lot of people. Ask me

you know: what’s the width here? Well, it’s about two and eight wide or so and

uh. That’s about uh, five and a half six inches long here and then you got your

little offset and your offset can be about inch and three quarter or two



That gives you your knuckle clearance, and then you can cut a

little tang out with a cut off wheel or a torch, and this one’s got a real

crude handle on it and someday maybe I’ll make a nice handle. But it’s

comfortable, and this has a really good feel it’s a spring steel. I think it’s

about 40, something Rockwell it’ll mock up a little bit, so you got to dress it

every once in a while again with that foam pad – and this is my go-to tool to

take any dents out or fine, smoothing or whatever – and you use this with the

dollies now I have a whole big collection of dollies. I got a draw dollies and I

got my bead up draw dollies, but guess what I use hardly any of them. I use

this one and this one probably the most.


I have every configuration dolly you can imagine, and if I see

one I don’t have, I would probably buy it and I probably wouldn’t use it it’s

sort of an addiction, so this is uh. I think this is a store-bought one um. I

bought this. I think on eBay, but I used to have one like this when I bought I

bought. It was a kid, but it disappeared one day and we cloned it about three

or four times so we’ve got a bunch of them, but this one I bought on eBay,

probably in the last year or so, and this has a lot of utility.


It’s got nice edges on it here and nice little high crowns, and

you can take just about any dent imaginable out with this this one. I had to

make myself because nobody makes this it’s a little. You know triangular type

shape here with the top cut off, and I just tried to put a bunch of different

nice little facets on, as this has a rounded face to it. This has a flat face

to it. This is a straight edge.


This is an edge, and this is great for when you’re tipping a

flange, and you want to address that flange, bringing it up holding a wired uh,

the wire in when you’re wiring an edge. It has a lot of utilities. I had a

chunk of 4140 and I cut it up with the band saw ground it a little bit. It

takes two or three hours to make maybe four hours to make something like this.

Then you have to heat, treat it.


We have a little small electric heat. Treating oven and it’s not

that hard a deal to do so and even if you didn’t heat, treat it as long as you

keep dressing your dolly, even if it was mild, steel it’ll work, fine, so those

are my favorite dollies and then this is a lead Shot bag. These are really

nice. I’ve got a video showing how to take dents out and aluminum using this

lead shot bag. You got to go into my uh pro shaper YouTube channel and look for



Video and we’ve been working on a lotus body. Taking out these

little small dents using the lead, shot bag, the slapper, this hammer and a

torch and very handy tool to have is the little handheld lead shot bag. And

then, when you go to shaping you need mallets. These are I’m a dealer for the

trusty cook hammers and we sell a bunch of these. These are lower price

compared to Mayan they’re great for light work, but it’s uh difficult to really

do heavy shrinking in uh, 18-gauge steel or even o63 aluminum.


With these, but they just don’t – have enough um form oomph to

them, but these are great for doing little subtle stuff. So we use these in the

class and a lot of students like to purchase these when they leave the class.

But this is the main shaping hammer. I have a couple configurations. This is my

metal handle one.


I like the metal. My metal handle one the best because number

one it has a long handle, and you can really you don’t have to swing this with

your whole body and what a lot of people do and it really tires your route

pretty fast. You basically got to have to lift it, and then you, you just bring

your arm down and you’re snapping it down. You don’t have to expend too much

energy, and these have delrin heads and you get four heads with it. They screw

in you unscrew them and screw the new heads in, but usually I use.


This is the medium crown, and this is the low crown – probably

use that 70 80 percent of the time, and if you need to you, can change these

other heads out and that does a really good job of stretching and shrinking all

right. Now, let’s uh take a look at some of the grinders that you could use.

These are pretty much all low dollar grinders. I would love to have a whole

bunch of American-made grinders, and but it’s just impossible, because I need a

lot of them for the class and they are very expensive. They do last a long time

and a lot of the grinders are made in china today.


Um, even the Dewalt – I don’t know if that’s made in the U.S. or

whatever, but that’s the better uh home uh depot brand that they sell. Is these

dewalts? I think it was like 80 or so it’s a superb grinder. I also use the uh

just a little right angle, grinder.


This is the husky I don’t know where they’re made, but I suspect

that they’re made in shiner as well – and this is a harbor freight little right

angle, grinder. This is the top of their line. Air tool line, which is called

the chief line and that’s a nice little grinder and I think, they’ll last a

long time. So, let’s start with just these. These are my main workhorses here

for grinding, and I use these for grinding wells and edges of panels.


Little detail work and I prefer this Norton blaze. I buy these

all the time. I’ve been buying them for probably 10 years or more now. I

believe they’re ceramic abrasives. It’s a high quality one, you can use the

lower quality ones, but they just don’t cut like these.


Do so I’m addicted to these, and I just started getting this

brand here and I right now. I can’t remember what brand it is, but it’s an inch

and a half diameter, and these are, I think, an inch and a quarter, so you can

buy these different little rubber backing pads. These are row locks. They turn

right on really easy, quick change, and I have this one is a three inch. This

is a, I believe it was a two inch or an inch and three quarter and this one’s

about an inch and a quarter too.


So this will allow you to grind just about any sheet metal weld

or any imperfection that you want to do, and this is more of the coarser uh.

These are all 50 grit discs and it’s for coarser work and for fine work. I use

these assortment of grinders here and uh. This one would be to get into tight

spots, and these are little hook and loops that I make up. I make these by

taking these Norton’s sanding six inch discs and I made the little cutter.


It’s not hardened or anything just turned it up on the lathe

welded it and we can cut our own little discs really easy with that. No, I

didn’t hit it hard enough. There’s the little disc, so you can get about six of

them. I believe out of that and that I just once you try hook and loop if you

haven’t tried hook and loop, it’s the way to go. This is a really nice, superb

little grinder, it’s a Home Depot, sauced husky and the little foam pads I

actually get at uh harbor freight there’s other places to get them.


I, I believe also has a quarter inch chuck that you it has a

collet on it and it’ll tighten up on it, so I make all different grit disk pads

for that, and I have a good supply always on hand. Now, if I wanted a little

bit bigger, these are the standard five inch, but you can buy them different

sizes, but they get beat up on the edges. People try to grind too much and they

start grinding the foam pad and the foam pad does not grind. I found that out,

but my helpers and sometimes the students insist on grinding with the foam, so

these get worn down and if they get worn down then you can cut them down and

then you can utilize. The center of a disc say a pad.


Is here’s a hook and loop disc here that’s a 600 which we use to

clean up the English wheels and it only gets used on the outer edges. So now,

if you have a bunch of different sizes of the foam pad now you can use that and

be able to utilize that center section there. So I do the same thing with these

grinding discs. I cut them down and when you cut them down uh I probably should

go, get a clipper and cut one down and I’ll show you how I do that. So here’s a

three inch uh Norton blaze, that’s worn pretty bad on the edges.


There’s still a lot of life left in the center, so when I cut

those down I’ll get a couple uses out of them, you put it on the pad like that,

and then I have a dedicated old whisk cutter and you just cut these facets off

like This just a little bit at a time. I do about a quarter of an inch from the

edge like that, and now these tips actually are your best helpers. They grind

wells really superbly, and so I have that all in my arsenal of grinding tools.

This is the rough tools and you can do the same thing with the fine tools. So

these are all fine sanding tools, and this is the hook and loop pad.


I buy them from, I think they’re about 23 bucks

now and it has a 5 16 fine thread on it. 5. 16 24, and this grinder here is a

harbor freight source. Grinder.


I’ve had terrific luck with these. They have a fine 3 8 thread.

So, in order to put this hook and loop pad on there, you have to have this

adapter. We make these adapters and we sell them they’re on the website, and

that gives you this little distance here will give you a little uh clearance

for your knuckles and that hole. There allows you to put a screwdriver or

whatever in it, and you can take the foam pad off when you need to.


So this is for a fine finishing of wells along with this one. It’s

just a bigger surface or cleaning or sanding of some sort, and that pretty much

covers all my abrasives, except for this little I’ve spoken about this in a

bunch of videos. This is my little two-inch orbital sander, it’s a detail,

sander and you get an orbital motion out of. I use this in in the dent repair

and cleanup of rust and everything. It’s just a real work house.


I bought about four of them and I haven’t had one die in like a

couple years already: I’m really waiting for one to die, but one won’t die on

me and I don’t oil them all the time either, but they’re really rugged they’re Chinese

source. They come from harbor freight super well priced, can’t say enough good

about them. They’re just awesome little tools, so this takes the hook and loop

also, and if you watch that shrinking disc video I just did a week or so ago, a

couple weeks ago, you’ll see how I use this great tool. So now we go on to this

tool. This is another husky from Home Depot and I use this wire brush and this

is a knotted.


I think they call it wire brush. It comes around and there’s

twists, and this type is good for high rpm and is less likely to shed. So when

you use a wire brush, you should always use safety face shield because you

don’t want them sticking into you, like a porcupine, uh they’ll go into your

shirt too. So you use this wire brush to clean all your steel wells. It takes

all the fire scale off in there and it’s a well-used tool in the shop and then

this is the harbor freight deluxe chief air tool brand, and this is a four inch

cut off tool and it has a floating guard here.


So you can approach the cutting so that you can send the sparks

away from you or down below or wherever you want to be. So it’s got a nice safe

feature and the four-inch disc uh gives you a little longer life and it’s super

powerful. It’s a really well made tool, and I did a video on this too. If you

want to look in my video homepage channel so then the only other thing we’re

going to talk about in the air tools here is the abrasives that I use. I I’m a Norton



Norton is actually founded about 15 miles from my shop and I’ve

always used Norton’s. I’ve used other brands too, but I find Norton’s work

really nice and these are the grits we use. I use six-inch diameter 80 grit. That’s

the rough, then 120 that does very well for most sheet metal work. If you want

to go up further, there’s 240 and this is 400 and then I clean the wheels all

the time with 600.


So that covers my air tools and my abrasives. My cut off wheels.

I use these exclusively all the time, there’s a few other extra little ones I

use like die grinders and things like that, but this stuff I use all the time

all right. The next up is sheers when you’re working with she metal all the

time, you’re going to have to do a lot of cutting, and it was actually one of

my students that told me about these cordless shears before I’d always use the

a cheap, inexpensive, harbor freight Shear, which actually works really good

the corded one, but once you go cordless you never go back, so these are a

little pricey they’re about 325, or so they can be priced higher. For some

reason, Bosch doesn’t take a lot of effort marketing these things and it’s

sometimes even hard to find them.


This is a 12-volt version and now they’re up to an 18-volt

version they charge in like 20 minutes they come. If you buy it, you get the

charger and the two batteries and there’s a multitude of different companies

that sell them. But for some reason there seems to always be a lack of

inventory. They have a little battery, monitor, read out there and that battery

is down to one star. It only ha three one light: it has uh three lights and you

can use this for about when it’s brand new.


I think I was using it for almost two days before I had to charge

it now, it’s down to about a day or so and like I said it only takes about 20

minutes and I have the two batteries, so I always have one charged up and You

can cut right on the line with these. You don’t even have to use hand shears,

but if you do have to use hand shears the ones that are readily available

today. That I find are a good bargain and they work really good and I get them

at home. Depot which is convenient for everybody are the Milwaukee brands and

they’re very hefty, and they have serrated edges, I’m not too thrilled about

serrated edges. I prefer not having it serrated, but it’s okay and they have

the left.


Cuts left cuts right and this is the um offset size. So it

allows you room for your knuckles, so those two items there will do pretty much

most of your sharing work. That you’ll be encountering in doing sheet metal all

right when doing sheet metal, you’re going to be doing a lot of clamping too,

and these padded clamps are my favorite um and this size. I discovered – I

don’t know probably about five years ago, and it was a size that really wasn’t

common at all, and I found this at the welding supply Praxair, which is a I

think, a national brand and when I first picked them up, I was so amazed

Because it says real gear USA, I says wow somebody’s actually making a clamp in

the united states now, but it says real gear


They are made in china, but they’re very well made and they’re

inexpensive and you probably can get them on the real gear website also, but I

get there’s a Praxair down the street from me, so I get them there. I buy them

right from the store, excellent size.


It’s got a lot of utility, it’s an it doesn’t deflect when you

put a lot of pressure on them. They’re forged high quality steel and they hold

together pretty well they’ve got a nice safe release that doesn’t bite your

finger or anything got the rubber on the release and everything well thought

out well executed and low price available to everywhere, so the next favorite

size. I have been these little ones, and I saw these at Home Depot about three

or four years ago. They started coming out and I said boy I have a bunch of

these already, but I these are really handy this size, because they’re,

lightweight and they’ve got a real good bite too excellent steel. They don’t

they don’t deform or anything when you really load them up and they got this

nice little crank on the end here.


Sometimes the round ones are not as user friendly as this little

forged flat one here. So those are mine. I have a whole range of different

throat vice grips, but I use these probably the most, with the other exception,

of these two little vice grips. These are a Chinese sauce. They come from home,

deep from harbor freight and they’re very inexpensive, and these are excellent,

excellent that the quality is not as good.


The threads sometimes are a little boggy when you turn them in,

and you have to put a little oil on them. A little white grease, but they’re so

lightweight and they’ll hold together the sheet metal when you’re going to tack

without the clamp pulling the piece down – and this is great for when you’re

wiring edges you can. You can hold a little wide inside that spot before you

roll the sheet metal around it and everything these little needle nose mini

ones come in handy now, you’ve probably seen in my other videos when I’m

fitting a panel to a wire form. I use these little squeeze clamps, which I get

from Home Depot, and these are 99 cents apiece. That’s the cheapest price I’ve

seen anywhere, but I do add, the rubber bits.


This was from belting that we cut up. Somebody gave me a big

length of belting. I cut it up with a band saw, and this has got some neoprene,

but I think I mentioned in my last uh video on the English wheel. There. It was

doing the beginning on the English wheel, these inserts you go to tractor

supply and I they have a nice uh horse mat that is like half inch rubber and a

big giant piece is only like 26 dollars.


So if you buy 20 of these clamps, that’s 20 bucks and you buy

one of those mats. You can cut that mat up and make these nice protectors for

the jaws, which gives you more squeeze power, and I use these all the time I

literally have about 200 of these in the shop and they’re always being used on

different projects around the shop. Wonderful, wonderful tools, all right:

here’s, my grinders, the right angle, grinders, electric grinders, that I use

with the shrinking discs. Now this is the five inch. This is a Makita, and this

is a nine inch Makita.


I sourced them both from Home Depot. You can buy them online,

but hope Home Depot generally has a really good price and you can go, try it

out or you know, lift it up and feel what it looks like and stuff and anything

made by Makita is generally high quality. So I’ve never had any problems with Makita

quality at all, so this is the one you use for the five inch shrinking disc. Here’s

a new disc here and a lot of people buy the five inch shrinking discs and they

don’t put a backing pad on it. Here’s the backing pad you want I’d, make a

backing pad if I could make one, but I can’t make it for four dollars.


So this is. This is a source that uh harbor freight. It works

really good. I’ve used them for years with no problem there. It is behind here

you can do the four and a half or the five inch backing pad this one happens to

be the five inch and um.


This one has a five inch back in behind it, but a four and a

half will work too. If that’s all, they have in the store and the mounting on

it is pretty simple: it’s got the lock and that backing pad also comes with the

correct nut. That’s the flanged and necked nut. It has the neck here, which is

7 8-inch diameter. This is the 7 8 inch.


7 8-inch diameter hole that it integrates into, and this has the

7 8 receiver over here. This is a 5 8 11 spindle, which is the same size here,

and you have to put washes. Sometimes you space that, like that and when you’re

done, you tighten up the nut and you want that nut to be below surface, because

now you can run it flat like that without the spindle biting your sheet metal,

and this mounts the same way except this one. We make our own backing pads here

at pro shaper. We sell them on our website.


We make in the uh the shrinking disc, the nine inch shrinking

discs in the five inch, both here at pro shaper. We press them out and mount it

up there. It is there’s your backing pad, and this is the central hub support

here and again. You want that same type of nut. That’s called the winged and

flanged nut and we’re hoping to make these 5 8 11 nuts we’ll offer those for

sale in our website and someone from France and in Europe.


They don’t use that 5. 8 11 thread. They use a 14 2 14 millimeters

by two millimeter thread on the big grinders over in Europe, so I’ll be able to

make that nut too and have that for sale. So if someone from Europe buys one of

my shrinking discs, they can buy the correct nut too, and we’re hoping also to

do this backing the central hub support. They had this little three or four-inch

central hub support, which stabilizes the disc.


If everything is set right, it’ll run pretty true, but they

don’t have to run perfectly because once you put the shrinking disc on the

surface, it all settles right down. So now these Makita grinders I’ve had for

years they run and run and run, and I haven’t even changed the brushes on them.

In fact, now I have another one that I use for a general grinding in the shop

for heavy grinding. That’s a seven inch. I leave these dedicated for the

shrinking discs and I also have two more of these five inch Makita’s one with a

cut off wheel and one with a five-inch grinding disc in it.


So it’s really handy to have all the different sizes. So that’s

it for the grinders all right. Here’s some of our beater bags that we make this

is a 12-inch diameter beater bag. This we mentioned just a little while ago and

with the all the body tools, this is a lead, filled, shot, handheld, shot bag,

and this is a 14 inch, and this is a 20 inch. We also make a big rectangular

one, which called a super bag, and then we have even a bigger one.


The thing’s about this big, that’s called the mega bag, and I

use those a lot with the classes. You can put a whole fender on them and it

stabilizes the piece really well. This 20 inch has got a lot of utility, but

you can also use these typically, I use these smaller bags more for weight

bags, and people think that you can get away with just having one shot bag or

one sandbag in in the in the class. In your shop, but generally it’s good to

have several of them, because you use them more for weight bags than you use

for actually beating the sheet metal out now everybody says: well what do you

put in them? Well, this is shot.


This is manageable. This weighs, I think, about 14 pounds or 12

pounds or something like that, and if you fill these up, they get progressively

higher with shot. So, if you fill this up, you probably wouldn’t even be able

to lift it. So what I’ve been using for years? I’ve never filled my bags of

these size bags with shot.


I use double art sand which you can buy in a hundred-pound bag,

which generally runs about fifteen dollars for a hundred-pound bag. A hundred-pound

bag of lead, I think, is going to run your about 125 or something like that by

the time you’re done so sand makes the most sense. I’ve been using it for years

for 35 plus years or so and never have any problem. We use a really high

quality, leather, suede leather, it’s a five-ounce leather on all our bags and

we triple stitch them and you can fill the bag with the sand with a little

funnel. And then you just take five-minute epoxy and you can glue the opening

really easy and you can reopen them if you ever have to, but you’d have to just

use a little heat on them and release that epoxy and you could re-epoxy them



So the triple stitching ensures that they’ll last for years and

years and years if you’re careless and drive the sheet metal into the bag. It’s

very easy just to take a little piece of leather in the five-minute epoxy and

just stick a patch on it, and we’ve done that quite often, and that works very

well. It never comes undone, so these are for sale on our website

and this take care of your bag needs. If you want to do it, have a beater bag

all right, so here’s a few other things you can use is.


This is uh low, stick tape, and this is the fiberglass

reinforced shipping tape, and this is 1 8-inch vinyl tape. Now what do you use

those for? Well, the vinyl tape is, I use all the time and you use that to

develop lines both for shearing or for layout. This 1 8-inch vinyl will go

around a nice tight corner, it stretches and it allows you to pull a beautiful

corner and snap nice clean lines. If you try to do it with a pencil or something

your hand, will waver a little bit and you won’t get a clean line, but with the

tape you can lay out those lines beautiful.


So we use that and also in making flexible shape patterns, to

lay out all where the gauge positions are. I have a video on my YouTube channel

how to make a flexible shape hat and it will show you the process and what the

flexible shape pattern does. Here’s a flexible shape pattern for half of a

motorcycle gas tank that one of the students made here and what this allows you

to do is it allows you to work the panel out of arrangement so oftentimes his

here’s, a really good descript description of it. If you see this, was we what

the motorcycle tank would look like if it was all shaped up and everything was

laying on the on the side like you would see this high radius right here, but

the beauty of the flexible shape pattern is it’s flexible, as Is the metal that

you’re working so going from that high radius, which is not as efficient to

work as a low radius? A low radius is a lot easier to work in in an English

wheel or any other shaping tool.


So this allows you to work. The panel out of arrangement it’s a

buck, but it’s a mobile buck. It allows you to fit your piece and develop your

area value that you need once the area value is developed, then you bend the

metal into its proper arrangement and then lo and behold you have the half of a

motorcycle tank with those three types of tapes. It’ll it’ll really help you

make these flexible shape patterns and laying out any of your sheet metal

projects and here’s one something else I want to show you is that you want to

hold the flexible shape pattern on the panel or onto your wire form, and often

Other times the paper patterns want to hold them on to your sheet metal is you

need a good magnet and we buy these magnets in volume and we make the little

ends. It makes it really easy to take them off.


These are delrin ends, and these are neodymium or rare earth

magnets. They got a really strong pull to them. They come in really handy. There’s

a couple other things you’d find a lot of utility for, if you’re, just starting

out all right. So now we’re on to safety gear, and I prefer a face shield to

safety glasses.


Why? Because the face shield protects your whole face and uh

oftentimes stuff can come flying up at you if you’re using the cut off wheel

and you’re abusive with it. I’ve never had one happen to me, but there’s always

these pitches with people in with the cutoff wheels embedded into their cheek,

and I don’t find that something I want to do so. I prefer to use these face

shields and I’ve tried all different types. This is the harbor freight brand.


They come with these kind of rinky dink, little plastic lighteners

here that strip out. So I substitute and put a little wing nut on here to buy

these little metric wing nuts and put a leather and a washer in there. I

actually got a video in my YouTube channel showing how to upgrade these a

little bit, but once you do that upgrade these things are good for quite a

while and also from Harbor freight. I use these gloves. These are great if

you’re in the cold climates – and you want to drive your vehicle with gloves on

these would be they’re super supple, they’re great driving gloves, but I use

them for English wheeling mostly and they don’t shed the leather it’s a



I guess, and usually some of the leather ones will keep shedding

and a wonderful buy from uh harbor freight, and then hobby freight came out

with their deluxe welding accessory brand, and these are the Vulcan gloves. I

used to buy Tillman’s all the time and I swore by Tillman’s until I try to pair

these Vulcans, and these have a really long gauntlet on. It really protects

your wrist really well, and I probably bought about eight or nine pairs of

these. In the last couple years and everybody in the class has been using them

and my some of my employees and they get a lot of abuse and they really stand

up to the abuse really well, they don’t fall apart. The only time they get

broken is people.


Try to grind tungsten’s in the in the uh on the grind to the

bench grinder without taking the gloves off, which is a no-no, and they they’ll

snag the glove on the grinder and then a hole will start. But these I would

label them as the best welding gloves, tig welding gloves out there. They don’t

give you much thermal protection, but as far as suppleness of holding the torch

and holding the rod, you can’t beat them they’re and they’re. Almost

indestructible in the welding helmets. There’s a whole array of welding helmets

out here and I had just a baseline 25 welding helmet for years and years and

years I did have an automatic welding helmet when they first came out.


It was the esab that I bought and I paid like 400 bucks for at

that time, and I found that using that my eyes would uh be very uh, hurt from

the flashing that I would get and even though, no matter how much I adjusted

there was Something wrong with that helmet. I didn’t like it and I ended up

giving it to a friend. I don’t think he’s ever used it. So I kind of went on an

anti-automatic helmet for many years and I helped a friend out with some

welding advice over the phone and lo and behold. The ups truck showed up a

little while later and a couple days later, and he sent me this op trail, which

is a Swiss made helmet and I’ve tried a bunch of them and boy.


This thing I can’t say enough about it: it’s just a wonderful

helmet. It really allows you to see the puddle both in aluminum and steel, so

well, and I use I got them glued in with double stick tape. I use a magnifier,

it’s a two and a half power magnifier and that’s a glass lens. I buy those off eBay.

There’s probably a dozen places you can get them, but I find them on eBay and

those are for opti-visors.


There’s a visor that fits over your head and you can pull it

down over your regular glasses and they have a whole bunch of different lens

variations for it. So I buy just the I think: it’s the number five, which is

two and a half yep number. Five and that’s two and a half magnification, they

have in plastic and they have it in glass. The glass has better optics and I

still have pretty good uh eyesight right now, but I’ve been wearing those uh

magnifies for at least 25 years or so, and that really helps you see really

well and that’s so important when you’re welding. So, even if you don’t need a

magnifier, buy a magnifier and try it out, you’ll, really like it all right.


Next we’re going to go to measuring – and this is one of my

all-time favorite tools – is a pair of dividers. Have a nice super sharp point

and you’re measuring from point to point. It’s got a really fine thread here

that allows you to adjust the distance between the two points and dividers.

Just don’t lie sometimes, when you’re reading a scale your eyesight might not

pick up the number you get confused because it’s tight in a day your sugar

levels might be off or whatever this it doesn’t isn’t affected by it. And you

can you can get equal amount.


Graduations very easy, with the pair of dividers, it’s probably

a 5 000-year-old tool. Now a variant of the divider is the trammel rod here and

you got to buy these uh trammel points I bought these years ago and they

basically never wear out and you can buy different size rods. This is a

three-quarter by three-eighths rod. That’s what the size of the trammel point

is, and that allows you to do these long super accurate, it’s a divider

essentially, but it’s not confined by the size of the of the actual divider.

You can add a bigger rod on here.


You can put a rod on here 24 feet long and you get a precision

measurement. So if you’re doing framework or something like that, there’s

nothing better than a pair of trammel points, and this is the quick adjuster

you go to any way. You want this one does the same thing, but it also has a

little fine adjustment right here, so you get about a quarter of an inch of

play to be able to refine your point now. My other favorite measuring tool is a

24-inch scale. I get these from McMaster car they’re, stainless steel they’re

us made and if you buy some of the inexpensive Chinese scales – and you put

them next to an American scale, you’ll find out that sometimes they’re off a

few thousands here and there and it’s super important to Have a high quality

scale, so I have the 12-inch version of this.


I have the 24 and I have the 36. The 24 has the most utility. I

had a 36 and I had it laying on the bench the other day and one of my students

wanted to try out my cordless, sheer and now it’s a 32 so I’ll have to be

buying. Another 36-inch stainless steel scale pretty soon all right. Next

you’re going to need a good welder, now, a lot of people that are doing

restoration or trying to do some.


Their original coach work or copying an original design or

whatever they’re, going to need a decent welder and a lot of people think that

the MIG welder is the way to go. But it is if that’s all, you’ve been doing,

but don’t hold back. Try to get a tig welder and see the difference if you

haven’t tig welded, take the leap and tig weld because tig welding is so

superior to MIG welding and it used to be the tig. Welders are really expensive

and that’s not the case anymore. They’ve computerized them.


Basically, these are all circuit boards. They don’t have big

copper, uh windings in them and which made the uh the original uh tig weld is

very expensive and, of course, there’s a bigger market. When you have a bigger

market prices go down, I have a little Chinese source, tig welder, it’s a 300

welder, it only welds steel, but it’s a superb welder. It light gauge stain uh

sheet metal, it’ll weld very well, but no aluminum, it’s dc only. This is a

medium level of the inexpensive welders, that’s Everlast, and I think this was

about 900 or so, and I included shipping, and this does both ac dc, meaning

that it will do steel, stainless steel, copper aluminum requires ac, so it’ll

do aluminum.


Also, it doesn’t have pulse, it doesn’t have all the bells and

whistles, but you can do a beautiful job with this machine on just about any

type of sheet metal up to probably about quarter of an inch thick on steel,

aluminum, probably about an eighth of an Inch, it’s got a decent duty cycle and

its dual voltage and you need the little medium argon tank. It comes with the

regulator. Comes with a nice foot pedal and uh. They come with a warranty,

they’re a good little rugged little machine. It’s a good you’re, going to start

off with a 300 one, it won’t do aluminum or you can take the leap and this



You can get them as low as I think, about six hundred dollars to

a thousand dollars or so, and then I have a couple of the everlasting a little higher

range. They have the pulse in them and a little more bells, a few more bells

and whistles, and I believe, they’re like somewhere between, depending on what

brand you’re buying say, 1200 to like 1800 or so with the welding you’re going

to need that helmet. We showed you before, but this is a nice little stainless

steel wire brush, which you’re going to use with aluminum welding, and I get

these from Home Depot they’re great little brush a lot of times. You use the

little small ones. This just have a much bigger footprint and it’s more handy

to use now.


One other tool you’ll need to get started is probably an air

compressors. You can buy a really inexpensive one, but expect it to be burned

out in about a year or so you can spend anywhere from a low of 300 for an air

compressor to run a couple air tools or one air tool in your shop. At a time to

one that could be twenty-five hundred dollars for a really decent one or you

can go for the used route and buy a used one for five or six hundred that might

last for years and years, uh! That’s what I’ve done in the past. I’ve bought

used ones and made sure that the oil is good and the seal’s not leaking and the

motor might have a problem.


So you might have to change the motor or the belts or something.

So you got used options there and you got new options. There’s plenty of price

range, but you’re going to need a good compressor. So I hope this helps out all

the people just starting out. It’s a wonderful craft once you start doing it,

it’s very addictive and you’ll find that it reignites some spark in your soul

and you just won’t be able to get away from it.


It’s a lot of fun. I hope this all helps out. It’s Wray Schelin

from pro shaper workshop in Charlton Massachusetts. Thanks for watching. Please



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