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Innovations: Using Welding Wire to Hang Parts

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Innovations_0617

SHOP STATS: Robinson Restoration and Service  Location: DENTON, TEXAS   Innovator: EDDIE GRUBE AND A FORMER BOSS  Size: 16,000 SQUARE FEET  Staff: 7  Average monthly car count: 35   Annual revenue: $1 MILLION

What It Is

Using welding wire to hang parts in a shop’s paint booth.

 

The Inspiration

Eddie Grube, currently a paint and body specialist at Robinson Restoration and Service in suburban Dallas, has used welding wire in the paint booth for nearly three decades. Back in 1987, Grube saw an old boss utilize that tactic and in subsequent years, Grube has refined the process. 

It didn’t take long for the method to catch on with Grube’s coworkers, due to the added efficiency that hanging parts with welding wire provides everyone. 

“The welding wire, you use it one time, you [take] it down, and you move on,” Grube explains. 

 

What It Does

Welding wire can be used to hang parts such as doors, fenders, hoods, and bumper covers. Grube has found that the method allows him to position parts in a manner in which he can get an ideal flow pattern to his spray, which aids the color matching process.  

“You can manipulate [wires] any way you want,” Grube notes. “It helps to be able to have the panels hanging the way they would be on the car.” 

 

How It's Made

Grube cuts roughly 3-foot pieces of welding wire off a roll that’s typically lying around his shop. Then, after taking a step stool into the booth, he wraps the wire around bars that run across the top of his booth at Robinson Restoration (that process occasionally requires the help of a co-worker). The entire setup process takes 15–20 minutes; cutting the wires down later takes roughly two minutes, Grube says.

 

The Cost

Grube’s paint booth tactic mainly just requires the cost of a roll of welding wire, which typically runs shops a maximum of $35 and lasts roughly a year. Other elements used in hanging welding wire will likely be lying around most shops, like wire cutters.

 

The ROI

Above all else, Grube says that hanging parts with welding wire saves him around 45 minutes per job. The process also increased shop efficiency in the respect that it allows a painter to get many parts in the booth at one time. Finally, the method also saves shops from having to purchase special hooks, Grube says. 

“It’s pretty quick and easy,” he says. “It just makes it a little more efficient.” 

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