Brittle Fracture of Welds in Aircraft Components
Two examples involved brittle fracture promoted by small fatigue cracks owing to welding deficiencies. Other parts involving inadequate welding were a ski-wheel axle flange, ski fitting (brackets), and undercarriage shock strut stub assembly. In an attach fitting for an engine mount, weld cracks (severe stress concentrations) formed during repair welding. Cracks were severely oxidized. The main cause was incorrect repair and inadequate inspection of the fitting. In a cast CrNi alloy ski wheel axle, brittle fatigue failure emanated from welding cracks (notches). These welding cracks formed during the fabrication of the axle mounting plate. So-called all-purpose electrodes were used. Thus, the main cause for failure was a manufacturing deficiency-fatigue failure developed because of improper welding during fabrication of the axle. The proper electrode should have been used.