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Old 07-14-2011, 09:36 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Steel rail prep question

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to find myself in a local fab shop and they gave me the steel to make a rail for free and also welded it up for me. Its 2x4" steel box tube 9' long on 24" legs that I will semi-permanently mount in the ground for a little jib area at my house.

That being said what is the best way to ensure it lasts. I am going to paint all of the non sliding surfaces but what about the sliding surface? Should I wax it; oil it? How do you keep that area from rusting. I am assuming I shouldn't paint it because paint isn't a very slippery surface.
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Old 07-14-2011, 02:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What grade steel is it? Most low carbon steels (ASTM A36) are pretty durable even if placed in an environment where they will rust. What you will need to take care of are the welds - welding creates heat affected areas in metal which are very susceptible to repeate loadings and temperature extremes. This can be especially true if they are shop, non qualified welds.

There isn't much you can do for them, except hope the guy ran a correct depth bead and welded it with correct filler electrode material.
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Old 07-14-2011, 03:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the heads up but I am very familiar with welding and they are good. Also it is just A36 tube steel. I want to paint it just so it looks a little more appealing since it will be in my front yard. What I want to know is should I do anything to the sliding surface to make it more slippery maybe not destroy my board so much??
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Old 07-14-2011, 11:14 PM   #4 (permalink)
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As long as you maintain it and keep it free from burrs and stuff it shouldn't be too bad. Jon's got that 15' and a 12' not sure what grade steel but they are butter smooth for the most part and i know he's had the 15er for 3 seasons now.

I say we set up that lamp and do a 'friday night lights' session this winter a couple times a month.

Last edited by david_z; 07-14-2011 at 11:15 PM. Reason: edit
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Old 07-15-2011, 09:43 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I'm not sure if most terrain park crews do anything to really maintain the top surface. As David_z says, just take a single bastard cut file to it and keep it free of burrs. Maybe some light grade machine oil might help. I noticed if I eat it on the rails and bars @ Carinthia I usually end up with dark oilish stains on my clothes.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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We will definitely do a Friday night lights session OFTEN! I am going to get one of the those dual halogens and put it up in the tree right over the run. I have some lumber left over from a couple projects so I will get a box built as well.

Sounds good all, I will just give the top a good smoothing and then paint the rest so it looks acceptable gives it a little corrosion resistance.
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