Steel Square Pocket Fix - Help!

Discussion in 'DIY / Self Sufficiency' started by Stacykins, Mar 10, 2013.

  1. Stacykins

    Stacykins Crowing

    Jan 19, 2011
    Escanaba, MI
    So when you shell out $400 for a brand new steel milking stand with all the works, you should expect to receive a flawless piece of work, right? Right?!

    Apparently, this is not the case in my case. Yep, I hemorrhaged all that money expecting a nice, function stand. But one critical defect has rendered it useless. I'm a little steamed, to say the least.Working with metal is NOT my strong point. But considering that it would cost me at least $100 to send this very heavy stand back, I guess a DIY fix is required.

    Here are the pictures. That is a square pocket that is severely deformed out of shape.






    Because it is the slot where the headgate for the milking stand fits into it, I can't use the headgate without that square pocket! Without the headgate to secure my fidgety first freshener, the stand is, at most, a nice platform with a ramp. I wouldn't be so mad if it was a square pocket for one of the side rails, but yea, no, it had to be the headgate.

    The UPS driver delivered the package very carefully. The man listened to the directions to lay the package flat with the marked side up (I was there to receive it personally). I transported it by sled, flat with that marked side up, to the tractor shed. I only unboxed it today (got it this past Thursday, but I was busy until now). Now I am kicking myself. I already cut apart the box, too, which was a derp move.

    How can I fix this? How can I make it functional? What should I tell the seller? I am trying not to compose a "thanks for the crap" email. I will have to cool off a bit. I bought this stand because it was made in the U.S.A., and had good reviews backing it up. The seller did take much longer than originally estimated to ship to to me, but if orders are busy, they I can understand.
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2013
  2. muckmuck

    muckmuck Chirping

    Aug 9, 2011
    Las Vegas
    That sure looks like shipping damage to me. I would start with a large, very large, screwdriver or a pry bar and try working it back open. If you have a large pair of channellocks you could grip the corner u and the top tip and gently squeeze it back. Remember to take it slow and steady rather than trying to force it back into shape in one grand move.

    Good Luck, Max
  3. wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Crowing

    Nov 10, 2010
    Man, I get so frustrated when that kind of stuff happens!
    With the way the paint is torn where the metal is bent, I would second the shipping damage.
    And Muckmuck is right, try to work it back into shape.
    If that doesn't work, maybe have a local metal work company make a repair. I am fairly sure they could repair it for less than shipping costs to return it. That is a fairly simple metal bend and weld, then a can of black spray paint and you're in business.
  4. bachbach1

    bachbach1 Chirping

    Jun 27, 2013
    I have a machine shop that I build prototypes in, and I have worked with steel quite a bit. If you don't work with metal much metal seems to be this solid, almost unmovable substance, and to a degree it is. That is what makes it strong, and usable. But in fact steel like this is as form-able as modeling clay, the difference is the amount of force it will take to shape it. As far as options a welding shop would probably fix it for $30 to $50 so keep that in mind. If you want to do it yourself you can start working it open, with screwdrivers, tire tools of other similar strong tools, then once it is open I would get a piece of scrap hardwood, like oak, or a scrap off of a pallet (normally hardwood) Make tapered square spikes that get progressively larger, and while supporting the outside edge so it wont bend down, drive the wood spikes down through it. Just carve progressively larger spikes, and lube them up. Grease, like for wheel bearings, or even Crisco will help, it just needs to be slippery. It will reduce friction. Don't get medieval with it, and break the weld, support the outside of the smashed part well, so the weld doesnt get over stressed when you apply force. If you have a small hand held propane torch, and can heat the metal up until it is cherry red, it will become very pliable, but it adds the dynamic of it being hot and hard to deal with. Don't use grease with the torch, FIRE. Go over all of this and I would be happy tom help if you have any questions, I work with steel a lot.

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