A friend had broken his tire iron on an overly difficult lug nut. In this Instructable, I'll show you how we fixed it using some TIG welding.
I made it at TechShop.
Step 1: Prepare Your Work
Start by making a clean cut where the break/crack occurred. To do this, we used the vertical bandsaw. Hold the material securely and cut it slowly.
Once you cut it into separate pieces, use an angle grinder to put a bevel on the steel. This is necessary because it will give our weld filler someplace to go. It also allows us to penetrate deep into the material very easily.
The tire iron is 5/8" thick so we put about a 1/4" bevel around both pieces.
Step 2: Prepare for Welding
With your material ready for welding, now we can setup our welder and clamp our material.
Secure the two pieces you are going to weld with a vice grip. We used a flat jaw vise grip that was able to hold the tire iron and socket head in a straight line with each other.
With our machine setup for DC negative TIG welding, we're all set to go.
Step 3: Weld
Start by placing a tack to weld the 2 pieces together. We got the material pretty hot and were fairly generous with the filler rod (3/32" mild steel).
With your first tack in place, you can now remove the vise grips. Turn your tire iron over and do the other side.
Now, go around the perimeter and complete the weld.
Step 4: All Done!
That's it! Now you can get back to changing tires. :)