Sort of OT, but can stainless steel be braised???

We have some expensive stainless steel pieces that wear at work. Replacement cost is in the thousands. Can I braise these stainless steel parts? If so, what rod shall I use? The braising only needs to stop a heavy sugar drink from leaking out. It would not have to be horribly strong.

Tking the pieces into a professional is not an option and they ate difficult to move. Thanks for any help you coudl offer me in this area. I am an excellent oxygen/acet welder, but have limited experience on anything else.

We have some expensive stainless steel pieces that wear at work. Replacement cost is in the thousands. Can I braise these stainless steel parts? If so, what rod shall I use? The braising only needs to stop a heavy sugar drink from leaking out. It would not have to be horribly strong.

Tking the pieces into a professional is not an option and they ate difficult to move. Thanks for any help you coudl offer me in this area. I am an excellent oxygen/acet welder, but have limited experience on anything else.

Your in luck! I'm a salesman for a welding supply company. Although it is possible to braze stainless it is very hard to do and not the option you want to take. Can you get your hands on a small stick machine? That would be your best bet. If its nothing too important you can stick it easily yourself! Since stainless is such a hard metal, you would probably destroy your material trying to heat it up hot enough to braze it. Hope that helps.:lol:

I've brazed stainless with no problems- piece of cake.

You can braze it, but would risk contaminating your inside with the flux required. Your best bet would be to clean it out, either locally purge the backside where you're welding with argon or purge the whole thing, and use TIG or GTAW as it's sometimes called. This is what's used the most in the food handling business. Even with stick welding you would probably get some slag penetrating through. If you try to braze it take your time to get the stainless to braze temperature to prevent oxydizing the area to be brazed. Once it's oxydized the braze will not wet to the surface and will need to be grounded or sanded with high speed equipment to remove the blackened area. The higher temperature black fluxes work better for stainlesses and nickel alloys. Hollar back if you need any more info as I'm a vast book of worthless knowledge. nyerk

Craigus

Can do any of the suggested, best choice probably depends on how thick the parts are and if you can get them on your bench or at least get good comfortable access. If you're just looking to seal a joint to prevent leaks and it's a light section a hard solder is a good choice (special SS rod req'd, flux coated rod is good), it flows well and isn't likely to give you pinholes. Can also MIG weld it, good choice if it's a heavy section because you don't need to heat the whole assembly (although it pays to warm it all up some). Post a pic huh?

Luck.

If it's in direct contact with food products, brazing isn't an option from a sanitation standpoint.

You guys rule..thank you very much!

Looks like we keep junking them! It is far too close to the food surface to be comfortable with.

If you repair it like I mentioned with TIG it should suffice. If you purge the weld backside with an inert gas (Argon) it will look on the inside just like the weld does on the outside. If done properly it will just fuse the crack area. A lot depends on the location of the defect, but 300 series stainless is very easy to weld or repair and not succeptable to hot cracking. This is all that is done in the areas of Dairy and processed foods industries.All of the welds are full penetration TIG in manual and automatic that are X-rayed as you don't want a lack of fusion to trap food particles as that's where bacteria will start. I hate to sound like a broken record, but I seldon run into something like this that can't be fixed. Some pictures would be helpful.

Craigus

By the time I removed the machine from a store it would be just as easy to replace the part. I was dreaming of a simple field-fix......

I asked about pictues, but the manufacturer warned me not to take any. If I ever did, or posted anything, I believe I woudl be flipping burgers instead of working on machines!

I guess on the bright side there's a welder somewhere who is getting the job of building the replacement units and he's feeding his family and buying cool stuff. Nyerk

Craigus

Sounds like Craigus and I are in a similar line of work. I also share the view that there are VERY few metal things in the world that truly cannot be repaired.

Would it not be cost effective to at least repair (and beef up) the broken parts, to be installed on the next one that goes down?

The title of this post made me laugh:

braise : to cook (meat or vegetables) slowly in fat and little moisture in a tightly closed pot

braze : to solder with an alloy (as hard solder or brass) that is relatively infusible as compared with common solder

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