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Help fixing this stress crack


Yankeeman

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I’m having trouble figuring out what to do to fix this large stress crack between the FS on this helmet, its one of three M1s i bought pretty cheap from a guy who restores M1s and this one is causing me the most trouble as i have no idea how i’m gonna be able to get it fixed and looking proper. Heres two pics of it and i’m hoping someone here can help me or at least has a suggestion on what i can do.559788DC-424F-4417-BA6C-038EDC1772ED.jpeg.5e60d880bc709c2cc5b2b0d25921ea60.jpegCF17FB41-3350-4A4B-8F32-6352C9A84C15.jpeg.6a7175804eebb9c1405889a8097ba094.jpeg

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What is the end goal here? Restoration for display? Reenacting? I think the only real option for repairing a crack that large would be to try and weld it back together and then grind the weld smooth or trying to fill it with something. I feel like that would take a pretty decent amount of effort to get it looking right though. The easiest solution would be to just slap a cover on it. Unless the crack has caused the front to become seriously misshaped you would never know the crack is there under a cover.

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I personally don't mind naturally occurring cracks, they are just part of the helmet's character. That's just my take though :)

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Burning Hazard

You will likely sink more money into professionally repairing that crack than what the helmet is worth. It’s your helmet so you can do with it as you please but if you manage to fix it then please post pics!

 

Pat

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I got this shell cheap along with two others and they’re nothing special or valuable, there beat to hell and were stripped by the previous owner so i’ve got nothing to lose and something to gain by fixing and restoring the shell, also i feel covering it up with a net or cover is lazy and i’d like to make an effort to fix it. Also, i’m going to try welding suggestion and i’ll post an update on the results in the following days. 

23D6D629-D067-4849-828F-8CF5E722A4D1.jpeg.acf095b69b0be238f16bb83619cc26e7.jpeg

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I have Oxyacetylene, MIG, and TIG welders but I'm not a professional welder. I would guess that is fairly thin for anything other than TIG. I've welded plenty of sheet metal with MIG but this is also not "mild steel" or 4130. Not sure how it would react with any appreciable input of heat. Might need to be annealed afterward so it doesn't crack. It won't see high loads but obviously has enough internal tension to cause the crack to begin with. OA and TIG are pretty soft to dress after but MIG is hot and the remaining bead is hard. Distortion would do nothing but add more stress to the rest of the pressed shell IMO. I would make sure the edges are really clean and bright then approximate the edges using whatever it takes. Then preheat it a bit and spot TIG it like David D suggested from the top down being careful to not let heat build up too much.

Stress matters: I welded an XXX XXXXX XXXXX(object removed to prevent trolling) once using OA without annealing afterward and it literally broke when we set it down on the ground. My buddy did it the exact same way, same place, same equipment, same day, but annealed just the welded area afterwards and it's been fine for several years of use. They were rushing me but, funny, the second time they had plenty of time to watch my buddy reweld, reheat, and slowly cool.

It would be interesting to see your results and the technique used. 

Dave

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RememberThe5thESB

I'd figure you could make a jig that the helmet could be set and compressed it, think those big long wood C clamps (don't know their actual name), a rosebud tip on an OA torch and heat it up good, and compress it in the jig. If you do it right (and honestly just a vise, ball peen, and the right shaped heavy object would probably be fine instead of a whole jig) it'll be close to where it should be, and a quick run with TIG and filler would do it in good. I would figure it doesn't really need to be welded on both sides of the crack, or for complete penetration. Just don't cool it off quick after you OA it and weld it, because unless it's an air hardening steel you don't want to be putting it under stress again.

If anything, just anneal it, and run 3/32nd 6013 rod, preferably 6010 I'd imagine, on a real low amperage. Just support it well enough, and don't do one long fat bead at once, and it shouldn't warp, or warp too bad.

Sent from my SM-J327V using Tapatalk

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Throw it out back and shoot a few 8mm Mauser holes through it. Battle damaged....that will be much funner than trying to weld/ braze it with uncertain results. No guarantee another stress crack will not appear after heating and muscling it back into shape.

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Agreed, unless cabin fever has driven you to the brink, and you are just looking for something to do, I’d leave it - versus spending days making a $15 helmet a $10 helmet.  

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