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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am about to start welding on some bodywork on my miata, a buddy called and said it may cause the airbag to blow. I have never welded on newer cars and am would like to know is ths true? I plan on removing it for good but havent yet and want to get to work on the body. Are there any other things i should look out for?
Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yup, got that one. I am going to disconnect the ECU as well as a caution. my buddy has a MS in physics so i thought there might be some merit in finding out if the airbag is suseptable. It didnt make much since to me but i am not positive, i might be able to sell the bag so i didnt want to blow it. I might be damn funny though.
 

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If you pull the battery, the airbag shouldn't be able to go off. But just in case, set up a video camera :D
 

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You probably know all this, but.... Make sure you do it in a well-ventilated area away from any stored gasoline, paint, or other solvents. Use proper eye protection at ALL times. Wear gloves, and do not handle recently welded components.

With regard to welding sheet metal. I assume you are using a gas-shield welder, such as MIG? Make sure you use pure gas, not the cheap crap which will cause sputtering and a weld that looks like pigeon sh1t. Also, use small tack welds spaced evenly around the perimeter before you go ahead and seam weld it. If you seam it straight away it will warp and you'll spend much longer in the body filler (bondo) stage.

I have witnessed some nasty welding accidents, such as:
- My stepfather being blinded for 2 days and being in absolute agony after getting 'welder's flash' from not using eye protection.
- Me setting a motorcycle on fire when a spark from the arc ignited the gasoline in the tank.
- Me getting an electric shock when fitting a new welding rod, then looking down and seeing that I was standing in the water which had just been thrown on the fire above. The earthing strap was attached to the kickstand which, yes you guessed it was also standing in the water.

Been there done that. Be safe; I was pretty careless when I was a kid.

-Pace
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks Pace,
i am using a MIG, the gas has gotten me before, i was welding a bumber mount to my buddies Jeep and forgot to turn on the gas, that was the crudiest nasty weld in history.
Just as yours my stepfather has also been blinded. He had to have patches for almost a week.
It is just some stuff under the front fender and facia, i riped it off with a pole and it chewed up the metal pretty good, so i dont plan of filling the whole seam.
Later i do plan to strip the car and weld all of the seams up some day, i just want to drive around in her while the weather is good.

Aint wedling fun though?

Looks like i will start tonight.
 

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This may be hypercautious - but if I do any electrical welding (ARC, MIG, etc.) I disconnect the airbags of the vehicle I'm working on.

If I'm doing some quick tacks, or maybe throwing in some subframe connectors I don't go through the trouble (I think I should, but I am too lazy).

However if I'm doing some panel replacement or welding in a rollbar/cage - I definitely remove the airbag from the vehicle!

When working on a vehicle with an undeployed airbag remember to read the guidelines and directions before starting. Follow all vehicle manufacture guidelines on deactivating any (SRS); wait appropriate time for every reserve model to break down. When working and welding on a vehicle, remember to disconnect all power sources and car alarms. Disconnecting the battery does not deactivate an airbag. Static electricity carries enough charge to cause some bags to explode. Some airbags are mechanical, such as the side bags in the front seat of some late model Volvos. Disconnecting the battery has absolutely no affect on mechanical bags.

Becker made it clear, it is imperative that airbag systems be deactivated on cars that come into body shops for repair!
source: http://www.asashop.org/newsletters/collision/march01collision.htm#4

Just a thought. I've seen bags blow. :eek:

Noted: I'm not a bodyshop professional, just an ex-dealership mechanic that is sometimes careless and sometimes remember what they taught me in school. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks is2scooby,
Luckily i am lazy and decided to take my dog to the creek instead, i think i will be disconnecting the airbag first.
 
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