View Full Version : Spot Weld finder

01-02-2005, 09:45 AM
While taking my Indian front fender apart, I was having difficulty with the spot welds. They were clearly visible on the inside of the fender but all but invisible on the outside. The fender is 7 in wide and the spot welds were 9 in from the outside edge.

I was having to drill the first side from the outside as there was no room to do it from the inside. After missing the spot weld several times in the first few holes, I devised this to help me accurately mark the holes on the outside


Just an idea that may be useful if you are in a similar situation................john

Doug Hawkins
01-02-2005, 10:22 AM

Great idea and thanks for sharing!

01-02-2005, 02:04 PM
Thats a really good idea I had to drill out some spot welds on a lawnmower fender and found it not to be much fun. One question is that frame strudy enough to make a good mark it looks kinda weak

Brnadon M.

01-02-2005, 03:34 PM
I use a auto-center punch to make the mark, this just shows me where...........john

01-02-2005, 04:06 PM

Why are you taking the fenders apart? Is this a restoration?


01-02-2005, 10:13 PM
Hey Duck, I'm taking them apart to make patterns, gages, and possibly a buck.

My whole reason for learning to shape metal was to build all aluminum body work for this bike. Aside from a couple of accessories, this bike is stone original. I will metalfinish this fender, reassemble it, and hang on to it after I do an aluminum one.

I restored this bike 21 years ago for an old man I worked with. His son sold it to me when he passed. He had only put about 300 miles on it. I am building a new engine for it, and am hoping to buy an OD trans. The wheels and brakes will also be updated.

I'm hoping to have it as stock looking as possible but still tour some on it.........oh and..........I can't ride a stock bike to save my life!

Here is the old gal before I dug it out last weekhttp://www.metalmeet.com/photopost/data/3505/28Dcp_0099-med.jpg I had junk piled on it, and it was time to get started..........john

01-03-2005, 12:43 PM

Sounds like a really neat project, and a real good game plan. I usually start a project, then begin changing my mind and it takes me forever to get anything done.
Keep us posted on your progress and learning experiences and of course, send pictures.
I may be coming thru your part of the state this coming July on the way to Las Vegas on a bike trip. Maybe we can hook up then.

Best of luck,


01-03-2005, 02:13 PM
Sounds like a deal Duck, let me know of your plans ahead of time. You are sure welcome....john

01-03-2005, 04:10 PM

Thanks, I apprieciate the invite.I'll keep you posted.


tom cray
01-03-2005, 06:12 PM

Great bike. I last worked on an Indian in the early 70s. Will keep you locater in mind for working on my race car.

Off the subject.

Did the welding and metal work for a friend. It was a 41 military frame ( took lots of bondo ), 39 Indian bonniville motor. 56 Harley dual glide front forks ( had to cut and weld both the Indian and Harley forks up to make them fit the Indian frame ).

BSA front fenders reworked to fit front and rear of the Indian.

BSA tail light molded into the rear fender. Built a custom intake manifold to fit two Harley carbs. Built the linkage to mate the carbs to the throttle rotation on the Indian bars. ( owner did not want to twist the same as a Harley )

Harley floorboards. Custom exhaust with a Porsch muffler. ( it sounded super )

He put about 1000 miles on it and it spent the next 8 years in the garage till he passed on.

Tom Cray

01-03-2005, 09:54 PM
Tom, people are dragging great old bikes like that out now and putting them back on the road.... you ought to look it up.

I rebuilt a `47 Chief for an older fellow here in town about 4 years ago, used thermal barrier coatings, and teflons in the engine, as well as up-to-date replacement parts and machining practices. I set the pistons at about 1/2 the recommended clearance and the old gal runs like a top........of course its a bit of a stroker with custom ground cams. It will start with two primer and one stout "ignition on" kick about any time....

I broke it in for the guy and really miss riding it............john

tom cray
01-03-2005, 10:12 PM

Gave up scooters when I got to the point I could make it do anything I wanted it to do.

Honda's big bike was a 350 at the time. Felt I would not ride anything on the street under 125 cc. Would not own over 90 cc.
Works for me !!

I do like the spot weld tool. Even with the cars I work on - it will be a good addition to the tool box. How's your Helve doing? My is still in the tack weld stage. Too many things going on. Working on a friends small block dragster body and some jr dragster stuff. Then My Honda bracket car.

Does that count for working metal ??

tom cray

01-03-2005, 10:41 PM
Lets have some pictures of the cars Tom. I wish I could have had more done on my tools. I think I was in my shop 4 days in December.

Oh and about that tool, if you don't have three hands, I found out that you could put some play-dough on the outside and then mark the spot weld.

I think the Indian project is spawning tools. I need a special set of rolls made for the skirts ( I may make a few of these) so I am building a radius cutter for my lathe......I wonder if this Tool-eye-tus is terminal?...............john

01-20-2005, 02:10 PM
Hey John, just curious as to why aluminum tins for the Chief?

01-20-2005, 04:36 PM
Andy, I have always ridden all my bikes. The tinwork on the chief is all original and pretty nice. I may fuel inject the engine I'm building, and rather than counting on 56 year old tanks to stay clean and modifying them, I want to go with aluminum. I figure to go with the aluminum fenders and guards because if some idiot knocks it over with those, I can just kick his butt rather than killing him for doing in my original stuff................john

04-12-2005, 09:24 PM
That is a very nice idea, it should come in handy on many different applications.You know, if you make another set and push one of the points into a flat surface, you will have a nice ding fixer. Anyway nice job and thanks