Creating useful and decorative art from horseshoes can be a fun hobby and profitable. Learning to work with metal is not difficult but you may need to invest in some welding equipment.

Below is a list of metal working tools and equipment you will need.  Shop these items and accessories here and follow the links below for more information and welding instructions.


EQUIPMENT AND TOOLS

  • Depending on your budget and familiarity with welding you will need a welding machine and a steel table to layout and weld your artwork.
  • There are several types of welders to choose from.  Welding requires protection of the material to be welded from oxygen, which may be in the form of a shielding gas or flux core wire for MIG & TIG or, in the case of welding rods with flux coating for ARC.
  • Click here to learn the differences between the three types of welding machines: MIG , TIG and ARC
    1. 110 volt MIG – $400 to $900 price range
      • MIG requires less preparation of the horseshoes to get a good weld.
      • MIG welder with Argon gas is the easiest to learn with least amount of weld spatter.
      • MIG welder with 75% Argon and 25% CO2 gas is less expensive with little weld spatter.
      • MIG welder with CO2 gas is the least expensive, but has considerable weld spatter.
      • MIG welder with flux core wire. Least expensive to operate but has maximum weld spatter.
    2. 220 volt TIG – $700 to $1500 price range
      • TIG welding requires very clean steel or the weld will be weak.
      • There is more preparation time but less clean up.
      • Excellent for welding stainless steel and thin sheet metal.
      • Requires Argon gas.
    3. 220 volt ARC (stick) welder – $200 to $400 price range
      • ARC welding may be done with minimal cleaning of the steel.
      • Rust and paint can be cut through by this type of welding.
      • The welding rods come in various diameters and with a variety of flux coating on the rod.
  • Where Can I Buy Welders and Supplies?
    1. A local welding supply store in your area such as Air Gas, Cee Kay, Praxair, etc.
    2. Online welding supply sites:
  • Where Can I Learn to Weld?
    1. Community colleges and some high schools offer adult education welding classes.
    2. Online classes:

MORE TOOLS

  • Grinder (bench grinder and a hand-held angle grinder are important and useful to have)
  • Metal cutting tool (hacksaw, bandsaw or cut off wheel)
  • Grinder (bench grinder and a hand-held angle grinder are important and useful tools)
  • Metal cutting tool (hacksaw, bandsaw or cut off wheel)
  • Clamps (a variety of vise grips and clamps are important to hold the materials for welding)
  • Steel angle iron (a 2” x 2” piece of angle iron about 32” long will be very useful)
  • Bernzomatic torch (helpful for bending horseshoes and when creating a “tortoise shell” finish to your projects)
  • Wire brush or wire wheel on the bench grinder
  • Safety glasses
  • Face shield
  • Leather work gloves and welder gloves
  • Ear plugs or other ear protection
  • Magnets (various angle magnets can be useful but may cause interference with welding)
  • Small magnetic level
  • Carpenter squares
  • Soap stone or marking pencil
  • Hammers of various sizes
  • Files of various sizes and shapes
  • Anvil or large block of steel
  • Rust preventing paint and clear coat