DIY Fixture table stored outside

I’m a home hobby shop, not a pro, not doing high precision work or any work for pay. I have a welding table that is just a 4’x4’x3/4" plate. I have more tools than shop space, so the welding table needs to live outside. As just a table rust hasn’t been an issue, but I’d like to drill it to be a fixture table. Corrosion in the fixture holes may be an issue. I plan to hit it with a cosmoline type spray. Any thoughts on an outside fixture table? Also I’ve been wrestling with 5/8" vs 3/4" holes. I have a saw with a fixture base of 5/8" so I was planning on doing 5/8", but it seems Fireball is recommending 3/4". I’m not committed to 5/8" what are the pros and cons of the 5/8" vs 3/4" holes?


Can you keep it covered with another piece of material? That could also help. If you can keep the rust out of the hole bore I think you’ll be fine.

3/4 is better for clamp strength. The tack bolts are also stronger and provide higher clamping forces. I would always choose 3/4 if I had a choice.

OOA: How about hitting the table with a coating of BLO after drilling and deburring the holes and then some wooden stickers to keep a tarp off of direct contact with the steel? A couple of bungee cords to keep a little tension on the tarp and it shouldn’t rust near as fast as leaving it just covered with the cover in direct contact to the top.

What is BLO?

Boiled Linseed Oil… If you use it, be sure and read up on the hazards of flammables that have any on them. Rags, paper ect. coated in BLO can spontaneously combust under the right conditions.

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