Tidewater Road – Venice, LA
½ x 6 1/8 Headed Concrete Anchors. This is one of the most interesting jobs we’ve ever completed. Venice, LA is referred to as “The End of the World”. It is located 1.5 hours South of New Orleans. Tidewater Road was a dirt and gravel road surrounded by swamp and lake, and the road is a main thoroughfare for workers in the oil and gas industry in and around the Gulf of Mexico. The road would get washed out on a regular basis, so they decided to build a retaining wall on both sides of the 2 mile stretch of road. After sheet pile was installed, Elrod Stud Welding was hired to shoot 11,500 studs on both sides of the sheet pile and on both sides of the road. So, 4 sides of sheet pile, each side being 2 miles long, equals 8 miles of studs at 42” intervals.
Work conditions were crazy. Wading in knee-high water while shooting the studs, the water consisted of stingrays, rotting fish and nearby alligators. We moved our generator and stud welder rig in 600’ intervals because that’s how much lead cable we had. We also had a crew of two grinding the rust scale (and fish scale) off of the stud locations. After shooting a few studs, we discovered two problems. The first is that each section of the sheet pile was not making a good connection with the other. Electricity follows the path of least resistance, right? Well, on this job we would shoot a stud and the ground would be to the right of the stud location, for example. When we pulled the trigger to weld the stud, sparks would shoot up through the sheet pile connections to our left. This was mind boggling to us. So, my customer had to bring a welder in to weld the top of each sheet pile together so we would have continuity between the sheet piles.
Secondly, once we got going again, we noticed many of the studs were missing the flux ball. We did not supply the studs for this job, and they let them get terribly rusty. To try to clean them up, they sent them to a sandblaster. This process knocked off many of the flux balls, and the studs just won’t work well without the flux. So, we ordered more studs for the job and finished the job out.
Venice, LA has some of the most amazing wildlife we’ve ever seen, so we hated to leave in a way. If you like to fish, go throw a line in off Tidewater Rd., and in minutes you’ll have a fish on the line. It was common for people to just pull over, throw a line in, 2 minutes later catch their dinnerand take off. They didn’t bring a chair or a big tackle box like they had planned on staying long. It was like the fish section of the grocery store, just grab and go.
Equipment used: a TWE SC-3402 with TWE17000 HD Stud Guns and a Rental Generator.
Please see our Arc Stud Welding Equipment Page for detailed specs and information on the equipment used.