How To Build Welding Lead Reels?

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In welding shops, there are usually many cables and hoses used and others laying around. These cables require arrangement and proper storage to avoid accidents due to the cluttering of the cables and hoses. They can also get twisted together and thereby too difficult and complex to fix. Welding lead reels keep the cables well organized.

Welding lead reels will help you keep the cables well-arranged and easily accessible whenever you need to use them. It is important to be careful when buying welding reels to ensure that your shop has high-quality reels that can have a long life span.

So, how to build welding lead reels? Take two identical steel plates and make holes in them using a drilling machine. Join the metal or wooden rod with the plates. Place each plate at the end sides of the rod and connect it using screws and bolts, or use a welding machine to fix them. Weld the rim with the lead reel post in the required position.

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What do you need to make your welding reel?  

You need drilling machines. Drilling machines in building welding lead reels are used to make holes on the wood or metal used to turn in nuts and bolts.

Nuts and bolts. Nuts and bolts always work together. They are used to fix different parts together. In building the welding lead reel, nuts and bolts are used to fix the metal or wooden rod with the plates.

A piece of strong wood or metal rod. This rod is used to fold the reel around.

Two similar shaped wooden or metal plates. They are used to connect with the rod for a quality reel that can hold the cables right.

How to make your welding lead reel?

How To Make Your Welding Lead Reel
  • Collect all the tools required: To make a welding lead reel, you need tools such as:
  • Metal rod- to be attached to the plates and hold the reel.
  • Wooden rod- in case you don’t want to use the metallic one.
  •  Two wooden or metal plates- the used plates must be of the same size and shape.
  • Drilling machine- it is used to make holes on the plates.
  • Screws and bolts- to fix together the rod with the plates.
  • Welding machine- It is used to weld the rod with the plates if you don't use the bolts and screws.
  • Sketch the reel.

Make a simple design of a reel before you start building it so that you can exactly make what you want without forgetting or making mistakes. A sketch makes the work easier.

  • Measurements.

Ensure that you make the required measurements on the tools that are used. Measure the rod to the required length and cut it. The plates are supposed to be cut into the required diameter. You should also make sure that the plates have similar sizes and shapes.

  • Drill holes.

The next step is drilling some holes around the plates. First, take a plate and make holes around it. The holes should be 0.9 to 1.1 inches apart and should be of the same diameter as the bolts you are using. Take the second plate and repeat the same process.

  • Connecting the rod with the plates.

After drilling the holes, join the plates to the rod. Ensure you position the plates to match both ends of the rods perfectly. Use the bolts and screws to hold them together tightly. Alternatively, you can also use a welding machine to weld the plates and the rods together. The two methods of joining the rod and the plates are good; therefore, choose the appropriate method that suits your preference.

  • Connect the rim and the post.

Place the rim in the required position in the post, and then you weld them together using a welding machine.

  • Stand your welding reel.

Put your final work into an upright position, and you are ready to use it.

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How do you insulate your welding lead reel?

Insulating a welding lead reel is important because it protects one from accidents such as shock when you touch them. Again, holding a big heavyweight machine can because an accident in case of short-circuiting. The welding lead reel and the machine can also burst and burn.

The main reason to do the insulation is to keep the safety of yourself while working with the welding lead reels.

Requirements Needed:

  • Teflon tape: A Teflon tape is usually used to protect the reels from the flow of electric current.
  • Insulator bolts: Insulator bolts are preferred because they enlarge and bevel the lead reels.
  • Insulators: Insulators are used to protect current flow.
  • Wire cutter:  It is used to cut the wires after the completion of insulation.
  • A pair of scissors: Scissors are used to cut the tapes that are used after you finish the insulation.

If you want to insulate your welding lead reels, follow the steps below. Moreover, ensure you handle all the materials required carefully, such as wires to avoid damages.

  • Insulate the base plate of the reels:

Using the insulator bolts, make sure that you enlarge the lead reel holes. When used at the base plates of the welding lead reels, the insulator bolts act as the grounding material.

  • Insulate the wires:

The second step is to insulate the wires of the welding lead reels. Ensure that you use the Teflon tape to cover the whole wire. Use the pair of scissors to cut the excess tape used. You also need to insulate the handles of the lead reel. If you don’t want to waste a lot of time doing this kind of wire insulation, ensure you buy a coated wire for use in your welding lead reel.

  • Insulate the handles:

After making sure that the wires are well coved, the next step is to cover the handles with an insulator to avoid shock every time you touch them with bare hands. A plastic layer cover or a plastic wrapper attached with the insulator bolts will do best in the insulation of the handles.

It is very important to insulate the handles because they are the part of the welding lead reel that is touched more often.

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What are the advantages of using welding cable reels?

What Are The Advantages Of Using Welding Cable Reels
  • They prevent tripping in the work environment:

 In the welding environment, you may find a lot of cables that lie on the floor. These cables can tangle your foot, making you trip or fall. The protective gears used in welding can also prevent the welder from seeing clearly, so a wire that is lying on the floor or hanging placed can be dangerous.

  • Welding cable reels help in increasing the life span of the cables:

 No one needs their equipment to have a short life span. Cables used in welding are so expensive, so it is necessary to take care of them to avoid buying others each time they go out of service. Taking care of cables involves storing them the right way and handling them correctly. Using the welding lead reels helps in better storage of the wires without twisting them. Again, the welding lead reel ensures that the wires are not lying on the floor, thereby protecting them against tearing when they are stepped.

  • It brings convenience to the workplace:

The welding lead reels make the makes it easy to store and transport the cables. Without the reels, it might be difficult to transport the cables, especially the thick copper cables because folding can damage them. Other types of cables can get twisted and, therefore, too complex to fix.

  • They save you money and time:

Welding lead reels help protect the cables, maximizing their life and saving money needed to buy other cables. The reels also save time that is used to fix the twisted cable stored without using the reels.

How to install welding lead reels?

  • Make sure that the welder reels are apart from each other. They should be insulated and disconnect from the electric current. If they are not insulated, make sure that they are non-conducting.
  • Unplug the pin from the spring of the welding lead reel wheeler.
  • Rotate the wheel as you make the thread lose from the reel. Now you can cut the right amount of wire you want to use using a wire cutter.
  • Connect the negative welder lead to the lead connector in the reel.
  • Attach the positive welder lead with the connecting machine.
  • Now you can begin the welding.
  • When you finally complete the welding process, remove the welder reel from the connector, then roll in the opposite direction to fold the wire in the reel.
  • Lock the pin in the wheeler reel and wrap it, then store it in a place away from moisture. Storing it in a moisturized place can make it rust.
  • Make sure that the electric connection is off because the reel is electrical.


To make your welding experience better, you must ensure that you get welding reels that have the best accessories that you need. The bad choice of welding lead reels makes you end up buying several of them before landing to the perfect and the desired reel that matches your storage requirements.

Finally, getting the best welding reel for your warehouse, it is important to consider the length and the material used to make it. Welding lead reels are either manual reels or power reels. The reels are chosen according to the purpose you are performing. If you carry your cables around, the best you can choose is manual reels because they are portable.


How much would it cost you to make a welding cable reel at home?

The cost of making the welding cable reel will differ depending on where you are. Again it can differ depending on the material used to make the reel. If the material used to make the welding cable reel is high quality and expensive, the cost will be a bit higher than the one made of low-quality material. If you compare the cost of the homemade reel and the industrial reel, the homemade one is cheaper than the industrial one.

What are the types of cable reels available in the market?

Four types of cable reels available in the market, such as: 01. Spring-driven reels 02. Motor-driven reels 03. EZ coil reel 04. Hand crank reels 01. Spring-driven reels: These types of reels are used to sway the cables on moving tools automatically. Some examples of materials that use the spring-driven reels are excavators and cranes. 02. Motor-driven reels: These are cable reels that are driven by electricity. One needs to connect them to a source of power supply for them to work. 03. EZ coil reel: This kind of reels draws back slowly after use. They have a safe rewind system. They move in one direction without increasing resistance when withdrawing the cable. It runs the spring motor's aggressive energy during the recoiling process, leading to steady and safe retraction. The slower recoiling process is an advantage to the operator because it ensures that they are safe. 04. Hand crank reels: These are the reels that need to be manually rotated to bring the cable back. The hand crank reels are made with the hand crank. Most of the homemade reels are of this type.

What is the preferable: manual or automatic reel retraction?

Manual reel retraction is tiresome and time-consuming. It is the most common method of real retraction that is found in homemade reels. If the cables that need to be retracted are too long, the welder will have to use a lot of time doing that, and also, they may end up getting too much tired. Automatic reel retraction is faster and hence saves time and energy. It may use a power source to do that. Sometimes the automatic reel retraction may be too fast, posing a danger to the reel operator.

How much does a ready-made cable reel cost?

The cost of a ready-made cable reel will depend on the material used to build it, the size, and the type. The approximate cost of a quality one is about $315.

Last Updated on August 4, 2021 by weldinghubs

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