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JB Weld on aluminum...?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Roger, Feb 15, 2005.

  1. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    I have done a search for "JB Weld" and found it referenced through many threads. Most uses were to fix plastic parts, e.g. fuel tanks. A couple references were made to use on iron. But, what about aluminum? I have no experience with JB Weld.

    My old LawnBoy (21" commercial handover, pre-Duraforce engine) with cast aluminum deck has the blind holes for the height adjusters badly worn. The rib between the 3.5 and 3.0 inch, and rib between 3.0 and 2.5 inch settings is practically gone. This mower is seven years old, mowed over 3.500 lawns - but the engine still runs great. We use it as a second mower, a backup.

    My neighbor suggested putting dowels in the holes (covered with petroleum jelly), flush with the outside surface. Then he suggested using JB Weld to layer up the ribs so that the shape is restored to the original. After setup, the dowels can be pulled out (or drilled out), and the pin on the adjuster lever would have new holes to engage.

    He as "sure" it would work for aluminum, even though he has never used it on aluminum. He just suggested to be certain the surfaces were very clean.

    Anybody with any experience in using JB Weld like this?
  2. locutus

    locutus LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NC
    Messages: 1,266

    If you never change mowing height, have someone tack weld the wheels in place and call it good. Sounds like the mower has seen it's better day anyway.
  3. 1MajorTom

    1MajorTom Former Moderator
    Messages: 6,073

    Matt has used jb weld on aluminum, and it has worked, but he is not sure how it will hold up for this application.
  4. jim dailey

    jim dailey LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 614

    Go and see a welder or a fabricator. They may be able to weld the holes back to shape. Not certain...but I think it is TIG welding. Anyone who can weld aluminum should be able to help you. Sign companies, also.
  5. locutus

    locutus LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NC
    Messages: 1,266

    Jim, I thought about this option also, but from the post, it seems that may cost more than the mower is worth. I think he is looking for a cheap quick fix. To tack them in place seems to be the most permanent/cheapest solution.
  6. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    Thanks the replies. Obviously, there are more entertaining threads here ...

    You are right -- I don't want to invest much money into an old machine. I only use it for about 200 cuts per season, but the mower helps where we run two handmowers at the same time.

    However, having said that, the engine still perks along like new. I had it out yesterday for PM (... why the topic of the hole repair was fresh on mind), and after sitting idle since December 1, or thereabouts ... fired up perfectly on first pull! It always has run so well -- much better than my LB DuraForce of more recent purchase. Some of these "design features" should not be found on commercial machines (e.g. Toro ProLine, with replaceable plate instead of cast holes).

    I may try the JB Weld on another aluminum part first. I doubt that I can find a welder.
  7. Smalltimer1

    Smalltimer1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,223

    I've used JB Weld on a 5hp Briggs aluminum block before to repair a crack. It held fine and I ran the engine for a couple years before I sold the equipment it was in.
  8. Eddie B

    Eddie B LawnSite Senior Member
    from gone
    Messages: 859

    I used JB Weld on a toro aluminum deck a couple years back, I ran over a steel bolt and it shot right through the deck. Held up fine, but it seems like getting a welder would be a better option for what you need. Do you have any local muffler shops? I needed a steering bracket fixed that had split in two, stopped at mineke and they fixed me up for $10.
  9. vipermanz

    vipermanz LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,773

    scruff up the surface with rough sandpaper for best adhesion, there's a product right next to the jbweld that might work better in this application, Epoxy putty

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