Ok, better document some of the progress or I’ll miss the chance. One of my biggest dilemmas with the homestead firefighting cart project was how to mount the extinguishers to the cart. I have woodworking skills so I thought about using wood but it’s metal so there are the issues of joining the wood to the metal, that can be solved easy enough but I don’t have a wood shop or the tools I’m used to working with.
I’ve worked in a couple of shops that had any woodworking tool you would want, a woodworkers dream. I couldn’t believe I was lucky enough to work in them. So no shop/tools and if I can’t make it a particular way then I don’t want to do it. I don’t want it to look like crap. So that rules out the wood. My other option, metal.
Yeah, I’ll just get some tube stock, cut it, bent it, weld it, powder coat it, then call it done. Only a couple of problems with that idea as well. It’s pure fantasy and now I’m coming back to reality. First I’m back to the no shop thing. Then only metal working tools I have are a hack saw and an angle-grinder I use with a cut-off wheel. The only knowledge I have of welding is watching a friend of mine do it. So picking up a cheapo welder from harbor freight and faking it isn’t my idea of fun. Or a way to make something that’s high quality, looks good and not totally cobbled together. Now what?
Find a no shop, no wood, no weld required, minimal tool solution. I really wanted to fabricate something but there is reality. I would love to learn welding but there is the time it takes to learn what I need too and the equipment investment isn’t in the budget at this time. If I’m going to buy a welder then I’m going to invest in a really good one. The only welders worth my money are expensive and for good reason. I love how when I’m in a predicament like this and necessity forces me to see a different solution.
After all the maze chasing of ideas in my head I end up on ebay. Search for “tank bracket” So simple. And there it is. SCUBA tank brackets! That fit the 80 tanks. Which happen to be nearly the same diameter as the extinguishers but just a little bigger. Ok looking good so far because the best part is the brackets slide into a track that can be screwed or bolted in anywhere along the track. This is really good news.
It solves all of the issues I was going to have. Using the track/bracket system eliminates the welding and the wood. Plus I need a minimum of tools, cordless drill, a wrench and sockets and a way to cut the rail. This will work out very good.
The other problem to solve was how to create the top level for setting the 10lb. Co2 extinguishers on. I was able to find some 3/4″ aluminum square stock at Home Depot. They don’t carry end caps for those so I ordered some from ebay. That will solve that now I have to order the rail for the brackets. -13