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Overview -- ZENA tm Welder Installation

A typical low cost generic bracket set

The ZENA mobile welding system can be installed into virtually any vehicle (tractors, 4x4's, trucks, emergency vehicles, forklifts, construction equipment, water craft, lawn tractors, etc.) capable of producing sufficient power for the generator selected (CLICK HERE for more on this) -- transforming the vehicle into a self-contained mobile welding station with performance and operating features that equal, or exceed heavy, bulky, and very expensive transportable engine-driven industrial welders. The welding system can also be attached to almost any existing freestanding engine.

ZENA welding systems are designed to be installed by a competent mechanic (or a skilled do-it-yourselfer) who is familiar with the type of engine to which the welder will be attached and/or the vehicle in which the system is being installed.

Depending on the installation that is planned, the time to accomplish, and the cost of installation will vary. For example, attaching a ZENA welder to a small engine is quire simple, in most cases, often taking only an hour, or two, to complete -- with all bracketing fabricated, inexpensively, on site by the installer.
Photo of bracket kit for Ford tractor

An owner fabricated bracket
kit for a Ford tractor
(using some generic bracket components)

Attaching a welder to a mid or large size tractor is often just as simple.

Vehicle installation can range from simply bolting in a custom bracket kit, attaching the ZENA welding power generator to the bracket set and attaching two wires to the vehicles starting battery to a more time consuming but less expensive installation in which site fabricated brackets are used to attach the generator to the engine. It's even possible to replace the vehicle's existing alternator with the ZENA welding power generator -- which then supplies electrical power to the vehicle when welding is not being done.

When planning a vehicle installation, the first thing to be determined is if the power generator will be installed in addition to the existing alternator -- or if the generator will replace the existing alternator.

Replacing the existing alternator is often quite easy from a mechanical standpoint, and can often be accomplished in a short period of time. In many cases, particularly for very small vehicles, this may be the only way to install the welder. However, we favor, and strongly recommend, installing the generator IN ADDITION TO the existing alternator, if at all possible (and if space permits). Even though such an installation will typically involve a bit more work, some additional time, and possibly some additional expense. We feel that it's well worth the effort -- particularly for commercial welding applications. CLICK HERE to read our FAQ pages on this subject.

UB2 bolt-together
universal bracket kit

Assuming that you have the underhood room to install your welder's power generator secondary to the existing alternator, and that you also decide to build your own brackets, the time and difficulty will vary for different vehicles. For example:

  • Installation in trucks and vehicles with larger engine compartments is also not particularly difficult. Typically, an installation in such a vehicle, performed by a first time installer, will take a day (including time for planning, parts procurement, etc.).
  • Installations in small vehicles can vary both in difficulty, and in time to accomplish -- depending on the underhood accessories in place, and the type of vehicle -- i.e., a truck, 4x4, or SUV will be easier, in most cases, than a compact car with a lot of front end streamlining.
       
     
     

    Typical Bolt-in Custom Bracket Kit
    Ford Diesel
    Click image for more info

       
  • Installation in vehicles (large or small) which are missing a "typical" engine accessory, such as an air conditioning compressor, is usually VERY easy -- with the generator taking the place of the missing compressor.

However, if your vehicle is one for which we have developed a custom bracket kit, or if a bolt together bracket kit will work on your vehicle, then installation can be much simpler: For example, a bolt in installation consists of simply relocating engine compartment components (which may be in the way), removing existing bracketing components, and replacing these items with new parts that also accept the ZENA welding power generator. While custom brackets are more expensive than site fabricated components, they may offer a lower cost alternative to a complete installation by a professional mechanic/fabricator.


Mechanical installation is simple and straightforward.

After insuring that the power generator is fitted with the proper drove pulley for the planned application, brackets (typically user fabricated) are fitted to the engine for mounting the belt driven power generator -- positioning the unit so that a clear path is available for the attachment of the drive belt to the engine flywheel, or other suitable engine power take off point. Thanks to our popular Add-A-Pulley accessory, drive for the generator can also be provided by a pulley attached to the vehicles existing alternator -- a method chosen by more than 80% of installers -- an installation method we call a "piggyback installation".

(CLICK HERE to see a piggyback installation diagram)

Piggyback Installation

As noted before, occasionally an installation can be accomplished using existing (unused) brackets on a vehicle. However, more typically, simple site fabricated brackets are used. To make this do-it-yourself bracket fabrication easier, universal mounting bracket accessories are available through our parts department and our Online Store.

A bolt-together universal bracket kit is also available This unit (our model UB2) features bolt together components that can be combined to form any number of unique bracket sets to facilitate both piggyback installations and, in many cases, serve as a bracket for an installation where a ZENA generator is driven directly from an existing engine pulley.

High quality, custom bolt-in alternator bracket kits that can be used for mounting our SR200 and SR150 series power generators in addition to the vehicle's existing alternator are also available for a number of popular trucks and vans.


Electrical installation is even easier!

NO modification to the vehicle's electrical system is typically required.

Simply connect a single wire to the vehicle's electrical ground, then connect a second wire from the power control module to a switched 12V (or 24V) low-current power source. That's all there is to it!

When you want to weld, you just attach the ZENA mobile welding system's cables to the rear of the power generator (selecting reverse or standard welding polarity) and plug in the control cable connector. That's it -- you're ready to weld.

Automatic Engine Speed Control


Enhancements

Farm welding and quick repair welding jobs usually require only a few minutes. However, when you are doing commercial welding, much of your time is spent preparing your work pieces for actual welding. It is wasteful, in these circumstances, for your engine to be operate continuously at a fast idle. With this in mind, we have developed a number of automatic speed control accessories that completely eliminate the need for an operator to worry about setting engine speed while using a ZENA welder.

That's not all. If you want to use an existing MIG spool feeder or a MIG spool gun with your ZENA power generator, adapters are available which make it possible to do so. If you don't already have mobile MIG equipment we have an ultra compact MIG spool gun designed to work with your ZENA welder.

Adapters are also available for DC TIG welding -- with a number of foot and/or hand control options. We also have general purpose Power Control Interface Systems that can be used to facilitate the use of 300A and 400A ZENA power generator systems with air arc gouging/cutting equipment.

Alternate control systems that are specifically designed for equipment in rental service and/or rough duty construction equipment (including aerial personnel lifts) are also available for your welding system. In fact complete welding systems specifically designed for installation in personnel lifts, man lifts, boom lifts, and scissor lifts are also available

Our modular control components can also be combined to create totally custom welding control options. If you can describe how you would like your welder to work -- we likely already have a solution for you. Just call us to discuss your application/ need!


For more information,

The ZENA mobile welding system is manufactured in the USA and is sold with a
36 month limited warranty.

You have no risk if you buy on-line or order by phone. ALL welders sold direct to end users come with a 60-day money back guarantee of satisfaction.


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ZENA is a trademark owned by ZENA, Inc. for its welding systems and related products.

US & Foreign Patents Pending

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