And now, finally, one of the biggest things that always tweaked my machine-OCD on this bandsaw. At some point in this beasts' storied history, some knucklehead somehow managed to snap off one of the blade guide arms, breaking the casting at the top bend behind the clamping screw.
They then tried to weld it, with what appears to be a combination of MIG and stick.
Either that or the repair weld broke, and they rewelded it with a different process, whatever. Whichever the order of blasphemy, the upshot is that, while it held, and worked, to a degree, it was a terrible welding job and godawful ugly.
Well, I've kept an ear out for a replacement for many years now, and have never run across one, so I guess I gotta fix this one.
Now, while the arm held, and appeared to clamp fairly firmly, after sandblasting the layers of old paint off, several cracks were revealed.
So I got the grinder out to see how deep this particular rabbit hole goes, little realizing that "hole" in this case was not metaphorical.
Yep, clearly some of the original metal was lost in the breakage, and subsequent attempts to reweld likely didn't even bother to grind off the old welds, leaving gaping holes inside. And digging in with the die grinder just spalled even more off- metal that had clearly been long-since cracked, and only held in place by plastered layers of weld on top.
I dug out as much of the rift as I dared with the die grinder, and never did find the bottom. But in this case, as I'll soon be digging in from the opposite side, as long as I could get it filled with clean weld, I could attack the rest of the crack later.
Piling in about a stick and a half of the rather expensive Muggy rod, managed to seal the rift nicely. There was the occasional porosity, which I ground back out and rewelded, but I was able to get what I thought was a fairly decent weld in there.
On the opposite side, the piled weld was so thick I was able to use a thin wheel and cut much of it off in a single lump.
After which, it was the same game. Grind down the excess...
Gouge the crack out with the die grinder...
And butter it back over with the Muggy.
After that, it was back to the grinding station to smooth it all back down to something resembling the original contours.
Looks good so far, right? Well, we're not quite
done just yet...!