My name is Don Smith, and I am the inventor(and Patent Holder) of the Pro Welder's Gauge. Let me tell you a little about myself, and how this gauge came to be. And, most importantly, how it can help you and any welder or welding student.....
I graduated High School in 1974, and went to work at a local sheet metal and plate job shop in Little Falls, NJ, as a helper. After six months of being a helper, I signed up to take welding classes at night, as I could see that the welders got more respect, and more money than just about anyone else in that facility. After a year of welding school, I started my career as a welder. After nearly 30 varied years in the trade(that's one of the coolest things about welding, you can be working on computer parts one day, and aircraft carriers the next, with the same basic skills and principles), I became a teacher, a teacher of welding at a NJ Vocational High School. Two years at one school, 15 ½ years at the next....
Some times, I didn't really know if I was there to teach, or to learn. It was that interesting. Something I noticed early on was that many of the students couldn't read tape measures, know their times tables, how to do fractions, decimals and equivalents, etc....even though I was not a math teacher, I frequently had to be. And, I had varying degrees of success with it, some students picked right up on it, when shown how this connects to the trade, while others had a harder time grasping the concepts.
A common problem with the students was material thicknesses, and electrode diameters. I frequently found them trying to measure electrodes, and sheet stock thicknesses with a tape measure! Often I would tell students to cut a particular size and thickness of material, and they would confuse ½ with ¼, 3/16ths with 3/8ths, etc...I decided, about ten years ago, that they needed gauges for these things. We had digital and dial calipers, but with so many students, they had a tendency to “walk”, get lost, broken, etc....wire gauges, and material thickness gauges suffered the same fates....fillet gauges were too expensive. Sometimes I would have classes make their own, but it was tedious, and they always lost them. So I came up with the Pro Welders Gauge.
The Pro Welders Gauge is a precision gauge that is three gauges in one: First, it is a material thickness gauge, from 1/2” to 16 Ga(the common sizes used in a welding school). Secondly, it is an Electrode, rod, and wire gauge, from 1/16th inch through 1/2” . And thirdly, it is a fillet weld gauge, with the four most common sizes of fillet weld performed in a school setting: 3/16, ¼, 5/16, and 3/8”. It had to be convenient to have on hand, so I made it credit card size. It had to be sturdy, and it is, .035 Stainless Steel.(besides fitting in your wallet, it has a hole for a lanyard) It is laser etched with all the relevant information, and ink filled to make it easy to read.
Students, and Professionals love them. They are very cost effective, and should last a life time. At a cost of $20.00, compare to any number of drill gauges, that average $20 some odd dollars, with more holes than anyone would ever use, and that is limited to just that, drill/rod sizes. Or, to a Starret material thickness and wire gauge, at $87.99 (https://www.travers.com/product/starrett-283-wire-sheet-metal-gage-57-065-794) Again, overkill, and very costly! Fillet gauge sets can cost upwards of one hundred dollars, so, you see how you get just what you need, at a price that anyone can afford. A whole class can be outfitted for very little money, and a lot of problems are solved!
Don Smith spent his entire adult life in the metal fabricating and welding industry; Commercial grade, Precision grade, and Aircraft/Aerospace Certified Welding. He taught High School for 17 ½ years, and taught adult school and college level classes for twelve years in the evenings. A NJ Section AWS Board Member for 15 years. In 15 NJ State SKILLS USA Competitions, his students placed either FIRST, or SECOND eight different times. His students have been actively recruited by the Steamfitters, Iron Workers, Sheet Metal Workers, and many private Non-Union companies throughout NJ.
Easily find fractions and their decimal equivalents, a real time saver!
This Gauge (actually a spin chart) is very handy for locating the thicknesses and weights of the various gauges of steel and aluminum.
Call or email to set up an appointment to have us visit you at your school or office. 201-274-3022
09:00 am – 05:00 pm
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