Things I have learned about welding

Much of yesterday was spent trying to follow the conversation between the welders and the surveyor about different techniques, approaches and potential solutions. In no particular order – and also probably also lacking some intelligibility – here is what I learned….


* You can cover a hole through either an INSERT or a DOUBLER

* An INSERT involves cutting the weak bits away and welding to the nearest thick bit of metal to lie flush with the existing surface

* A DOUBLER is essentially a patch which will be raised.

* INSERTS look NEATER, DOUBLERS can be QUICKER to execute but create a join that can be more prone to deterioration.

* lots of Dutch barges have a DOUBLER that covers the ENTIRE BOTTOM of the boat. (In my head I have equated a doubler with a big metal nappy….)

* doubling up the bottom can cause it to SAG as the new bottom structure isn’t attached integrally to the RIBS of the boat. You do not want a SAGGY BOTTOM. (Either in life or in the world of steel boats.)

* welding to a section that is RIVETED is not the ideal solution as rivets have a certain amount of give while welding is more RIGID. This can cause STRESS (as can metal boats).

All the errors in the above interpretation are my own and no reflection on Arc Fab Sussex.


I did try and clarify my interpretation by reference to “The Complete Guide to Metal Boats” (see previous review) but all it said was “why bother with the welding, its gonna sink anyway”.*


While sounding like the boat equivalent to “having a good rack”, this is very much a compliment. You gotta have good ribs.

I also learned an interesting bit of social history from Alex the riveter. That chick in the boiler suit and headscarf from WWII… Rosie the Riveter.


With her own incredibly catchy song.

* Disclaimer: for legal reasons, that was a JOKE


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s