35 Welding Projects to Make Money and Enhance Your Skills

25 Profitable Welding Projects

Welding is a skill that can be both a fun hobby and a good way to make money. Many welders search for ways to get better at their craft and earn some extra cash simultaneously. If this sounds like you, then this article that has 35 welding projects to make money and enhance your skills is perfect for you.

In it, we’ve put together a roster of tasks for different experience levels. Whether you want to turn a hobby into a business or learn new techniques, these projects will help guide you in the right direction.

New and beginner welders can watch this video by Miller Welders. It teaches you more about the three most common welding processes — MIG, stick and TIG.

Profitable Welding Projects

Welding is a skill you need to perfect over time with lots of practice. There’s no reason why you can’t combine it with creativity to make some money with these 35 profitable welding projects.

1. TV Trays

This is a real blast from the past and something that harkens back to frozen TV dinners. That’s why even though the project is called TV tray dinner, you can use it for a side table. One of the best things about this project is it’s easy for beginners because the frame is simple.

These are an easy sell to folks looking for something different.

2. Unique Tractor Forks

Big construction companies are always looking toward cutting costs. A good way to do that is by buying custom tractor forks that can be used for other purposes too. It’s a welding job, but you need some bigger toys like a MIG welder and plasma cutter to get going.

In these volatile economic times, this is profitable because it allows managers to make on site modifications.

3. A Cool Fire Pit

architectural brackets - fire pit

One half sheet of steel is all it takes to get this project underway. Keep in mind you’ll need to make score marks on the sheet of steel for this project. Preparing the edges at the corners for welding is best done with a grinding disc.

These are great because of the safety factor– all the embers stay inside the edges.

4. A Metal Trellis

Lots of people are fond of growing vegetables in their gardens so this is a great way to make a little side cash with your welding chops. Keep in mind this one has lots of parts so you’ll need to do lots of clamping before you start welding. Some estimates say clamping takes almost 3 times longer than the actual welding!

5. Sign Holders

Small businesses are always looking for ways to differentiate themselves. Welding together some wrought iron to make up one of these holders is profitable. It allows entrepreneurs to make that all-important first impression.

Smaller versions can bring in up to $150. The bigger more ornate types can fetch as much a $600.

6. Residential Customization

Real estate is still on shaky ground although it’s improving slowly. People are looking to renovate rather than move and that means things like iron fences and railings as well as handrails are the kind of welded home renovation projects people are looking for today.

7. Brackets for Architecture

welding projects to make money - architectural brackets

Using 3/8-inch steel is the way to go here. If you custom weld a series of architectural brackets, builders and designers who are looking for something solid will help you to bump up your bottom line by buying them. You can make money by welding these in volume – try about 35 to 50 at a time.

8. Older Auto Fixes

Bodywork is expensive for any car owner. Offering to do some welding fixes can save people that high cost of using that service in the garage. If you know some folks with older vehicles, there will come a time when they need something welded back together.

This can be a nice side hustle.

9. Fireplace Log Grates

These are great for people who can quickly put a grate together and sell it on Craigslist or your own website. Quick search phrases these at about $80 a pop.

10. Attachment For a Snowplow

welding projects to make money- snow plow attachment

These make it easier for small businesses that clean parking lots and such. Research tells us they take less than a week to complete and cost under $500 to make.

11. Utility Trailer

Getting creative with your welding projects can be profitable at the same time. If you try scouring junkyards for anything that’s old but still on wheels like an old trailer, you can use your welding skills to make it into a utility cart.

Repurposing what was considered to be old junk gives it an added selling attraction.

12. Mudroom Bench

All you need to get started here is 1-inch square tubing. You’ll need to know a little about metal cutting as well, but the finished product is always unique and a wonderful touch to any entranceway.

13. Arbor For The Patio

There’s lots of room for custom looks. Creativity is central here, and at least one project we looked at repurposed fence railings and the legs from an old trampoline.

14. A Metal Heart

Simple is always best. Use an old bike chain here—get one from the local thrift store if you don’t have one. All you need to do is weld this into the right shape and you’ve got a nice garden decoration that sells because its unique.

15. A Wood Stove

All you need to get started is a cast iron door and a steel drum. If you keep your costs lower than $300 and sell these around that price, you’ll be undercutting what a brand new wood stove costs.

16. Wheelchair Ramp

A 4 ft. x 8 ft. ramp takes from 7:00 am to 4 pm the same day from start to completion. The welded steel frame stands up in all weather conditions.

17. Fireguards

Keeping curious fingers away from a fireplace or wood stove can cost hundreds of dollars if you buy a screen or guard from a home improvement store. Making these can cost you less than $30 when you use your skills as a welder .

18. Metal Gates

Ornamental gates are big sellers for folks who spend a lot of time outside. Wrought Iron is the most popular choice for a material.

These are perfect for the yard or the garden.

19. Car Ramps

There are times when mechanics need to lift up the front or backs of cars. Making specific ramps for each occasion fills a niche and can make you some money when you find the right customers. The selling proposition needs to be the fact that you’ll make a unique set for each garage.

20. Targets

Sport shooters are always looking for falling targets that they can use again and again. Here’s another excellent project you can use your welding chops on.  Everything but the hinges to flip the targets can be welded.

21. BBQs

These require a little bit more technical knowhow. But at least there’s still a profit after you invest a few hundred bucks and sell them. You can go as big as you want if you start with something like an old oil tank.

22. A Menorah

welding projects to make money - menorah

These can be welded together with different pieces of iron. One quick tip—make sure they hold the candles in little dishes so there’s no dripping wax.

23. Yard Art

Profitable for beginners looking to make a few bucks, these are generally leftovers and scraps fashioned into metal animals like fish.

24. A Shop Stool

If you’re a beginner looking to make something profitable, why not a shop stool? You may not sell it, but you’ll be getting better as a welder and that will lead to more money down the road.

25. Pet Gate

This is where fun meets profit. Metal tubing and metal hinges are all you’ll really need. You can sell these at your local flea market.

26. Decorative Wine Racks

Welding together sleek, stylish wine racks is a great project for showcasing your skill and creativity. These can range from simple designs to more intricate patterns, catering to wine enthusiasts looking for a unique storage solution. Selling these at local craft shows or online can turn a nice profit, especially if they’re marketed as bespoke, artisanal pieces.

27. Customized Tool Racks

For those who love organization, a well-made, durable tool rack is invaluable. Tailor them for specific tools or general garage use. Offering customization options for size and design can appeal to a wide range of customers, from DIY enthusiasts to professional mechanics.

28. Garden Planters

Sturdy, attractive metal planters are always in demand among gardening enthusiasts. These can be simple box designs or more elaborate, sculptural pieces that serve as garden focal points. They’re not only functional but also add aesthetic appeal to any outdoor space.

29. Industrial Lamp Stands

Creating lamp stands with an industrial design can tap into the current trend for this style of home décor. These can be simple and minimalist or more complex with adjustable parts. They’re popular in modern homes and can be sold online or at local home decor stores.

30. Metal Bookends

For an artistic touch, metal bookends can be crafted in a variety of shapes and designs, from minimalist to elaborate. They make great gifts and are appealing for use in home offices or libraries. The appeal lies in creating something both functional and aesthetically pleasing.

31. Personalized Metal Signs

Customized metal signs for businesses or personal use are always in demand. These can range from simple house numbers to more intricate business logos or family name signs. They offer a personal touch and are great for gifts or commercial use.

32. Bicycle Racks

With the growing popularity of cycling, crafting bicycle racks can be both a useful and profitable project. These can be simple designs for home use or more robust racks for public spaces or businesses.

33. Modern Sculptures

For those with an artistic flair, creating modern sculptures can be both fulfilling and profitable. These can be abstract or representational and sold at art shows, galleries, or online as unique home decor pieces.

34. Industrial Shelving Units

There’s a steady demand for robust, industrial-style shelving units, especially in urban apartments and modern office spaces. These can range from simple shelf designs to more elaborate, multi-purpose units.

35. Custom Grill Grates

For the barbecue enthusiasts, custom grill grates with personalized designs or specific dimensions can be a hit. These are especially popular during the summer season and can be a great addition to your portfolio of welding projects.

What are the Most Profitable Welding Projects?

welding projects to make money - metal art

The 35 welding projects to make money and enhance your skills listed above cater to various interests and skill levels. They provide a multitude of opportunities for welders to both express creativity and earn income. Here’s a breakdown of some of the most profitable welding avenues:

  • Custom Work:
    • Tractor forks for construction companies.
    • Architectural brackets in volume.
    • Residential customization like iron fences and railings.
    • Customized metal gates and car ramps.
  • Metal Art Projects (You may need special equipment):
    • Welded metal sculptures.
    • Welded art portraits.
  • Functional Items:
    • Utility trailers repurposed from old junk.
    • Fireplace log grates or fireguards for home safety.
    • BBQs from repurposed materials like old oil tanks.

Is it Possible to Learn Welding on Your Own?

Yes, learning to weld on your own is entirely possible, according to Kelly Welding. Each year, countless individuals accomplish this by acquiring used welding equipment or leasing what’s necessary. After that, all it takes is watching introductory welding videos, paying close attention to the instructions, and practicing the techniques demonstrated.

How to Get Started Welding

In this section, we’ll explore the essential steps and tools needed to start welding, making it as simple as possible for beginners:

Choose your method

  • Considerations: Type and thickness of metal, job size, indoor/outdoor welding, appearance of welds, and budget.
  • Electric Arc Welding: The most common form, using an electric arc to melt an electrode and base metal to fuse parts together.
    • MIG (Metal Inert Gas):
      • Easiest to learn for self-teaching.
      • Continuously feeds wire from a spool.
      • Simultaneously supplies a shielding gas.
      • Yields clean and attractive welds.
    • Flux-cored arc welding (FCAW):
      • Similar to MIG, but uses flux in its core for shielding.
      • Good for outdoor welding.

Buy your equipment

  • Welder:
    • Essential tool, with the Lincoln Electric Power MIG 210 and Millermatic 141 recommended.
    • Tip: Ensure proper contact with the base metal for quality welds.
  • Welding Wire: Choose the correct diameter for the material’s thickness.
  • Gas: Select the right shielding gas; 100% CO2 or 75% CO2 with 25% argon for cleaner welds.
  • Welding Cart: Enhances portability.
  • Tools: Awl, right-angle grinder, miter clamp, chipping hammer, wire brush, welding pliers.
  • Helmet: Consider an auto-darkening helmet like the Antra AH6-660-0000.

Prepping your weld

  • Ready the Metals: Clean with a wire brush and acetone; cut as needed.
  • Grind the Edges: Chamfer the adjoining edges.
  • Position the Metals: Secure joints with a miter clamp or magnet square.
  • Safety Precautions: Use protective clothing, work boots, safety glasses, and keep a fire extinguisher nearby.

Layering your weld

  • Body and Hand Position: Keep hands steady; think of a golf swing.
  • Tack Welding: Connect the base metals along the joint.
  • The Final Bead: Maintain a 75-degree angle, move slowly, and focus on the edge of the weld puddle.

Grinding your weld

  • Flush-grinding Welds: Use a 36-grit grinding wheel for a smooth finish.
  • Finish: Use a zirconia flap disc for precision shaping.

This table provides a quick overview of the key aspects of getting started with welding, including method selection, equipment, preparation, welding techniques, and finishing touches. YOu can use it to check off as you learn.

AspectDetailsRecommendations or Tips
MethodMIG (Metal Inert Gas), Flux-cored arc welding (FCAW)MIG is easier for beginners; FCAW is suitable for outdoor work
EquipmentWelder, Welding Wire, Gas, Welding Cart, Tools, HelmetChoose quality welder; select proper gas and wire diameter
Prepping Your WeldCleaning, Cutting, Grinding, PositioningClean with acetone; chamfer edges; use safety precautions
Layering Your WeldBody Position, Tack Welding, Final BeadKeep hands steady; focus on the edge of the weld puddle
Grinding Your WeldFlush-Grinding, FinishingUse a 36-grit grinding wheel; zirconia flap disc for finishing

Remember, innovation, quality, and knowing your audience are key to success in these welding projects. Start with something that aligns with your skills and interests, and don’t hesitate to experiment with new ideas.

The welding world is full of opportunities, and the path to financial success could be a spark away. Happy welding!

Image: Depositphotos.com

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Rob Starr Rob Starr is a staff writer for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 7 years. He is a graduate of Ryerson University in Toronto with a Bachelor of Journalism degree. His print credentials include employment with various Toronto area newspapers and three works of fiction: The Apple Lady (2004), Creekwater (2006) and Sophistry By Degrees (2008) published by Stonegarden Press In California.