Register    Login    Forum    Search    FAQ


Board index » TECHNICAL » Advanced Technical




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 48 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next
Author Message
 Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 10:40 pm 
Offline
Pro Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 9:04 pm
Posts: 15138
Location: Charlotte, NC
DISCLAIMER: The following is entirely my opinion, and my opinion alone, as to how one should approach TIG welding. You may disagree with these opinions, you may do things differently, and you may find some statements too broad. This is done INTENTIONALLY, as this is a beginners guide, and nothing more. I have no problem with introducing any new material to this guide at any point, so if you have any suggestions, feel free to contact me, and I'll see what I can do. If you come across any errors, by all means let me know, and I'll be happy to correct it.





INTRODUCTION:

TIG (Tungsten Inert Gas), or as it is more appropriately known today GTAW (Gas Tungsten Arc Welding), is perhaps the single most versatile welding process available today. With a single machine, TIG welding gives you the ability to weld mild and stainless steels, chrome moly, aluminum, nickel alloys, magnesium, and even softer metals such as bronze, copper and brass. Unlike the wire fed processes such as MIG and Flux Core, TIG is a very clean process producing no smoke, slag, or sparks. Unlike some of its counterparts, it can be performed in all positions: flat, horizontal, vertical, and overhead. Equipment setup is also very simple. Armed with a single gas cylinder, a few assorted tungstens, and even the most basic TIG unit, you can accomplish most tasks needed by both amateur and professional auto enthusiasts and fabricators.

The following is a guideline to help introduce those new to TIG welding to the fundamentals behind the practice. Even some of the more seasoned weldors may pick up a tidbit or two, so I hope it’s worth the read. This guideline will entail an equipment checklist, the basic terminology, advice on how to physically perform the process, some examples of properly welded joints, as well as some troubleshooting issues you may encounter.






EQUIPMENT:
From my time in the shop, the following is a list I have compiled of what I believe every weldor should have on hand when TIG welding. You can pick and choose amongst these if you are limited in either budget, or if you are welding on a single material.

Safety glasses – Don’t be in the shop without them, period.

Bench grinder – Size and speed isn’t particularly important, but a wheel DESIGNATED FOR TUNGSTENS ONLY is necessary. When you grind a tungsten on a wheel that any other material has been used for, you are impregnating your electrode with contaminants which will inevitably find its way into the weldment.

Angle grinder – For most materials and cleaning prep, the sanding disks work fine for removing mill scale and oxides, but you may want an actual grinding disc for heavy grinding, and to bevel materials.

Adjustable wrench – Invaluable for tightening fittings on both the machine, and your cylinder.

Clamps – C Clamps, vice grip clamps, you name it. The more you have, the easier your life will be.

Wire brushes – You need three of these. One carbon steel, and two stainless steel brushes: one for stainless steel, and one for cleaning aluminum.

Gloves – Tillman, generic brand, or even Mechanix style gloves will all suffice. I try to avoid synthetics and open mesh if possible, as it melts easily, and will allow UV rays through. I prefer thin gauntlet gloves. They give you good torch and filler control, while protecting your wrists from UV.

Skin protection – This is VERY important. TIG welding gives of the HIGHEST amount of UV rays out of all the welding processes. Your arms, neck, legs, and hands should all be covered. Do NOT skip this part. Weld for 15 minutes with any decent amperage and no skin protection, and you’ll look like a lobster the next day.

Wire cutters – The heavier the better. 1/8” and larger filler wires can be a bear to cut through with a dull set of cutters.

Hood – or, “helmet.” I’ll take a standard fixed shade over a cheapie autodarkening helmet any day. Avoid the Harbor Freight junk. Yes, they work fine once the arc is established. However, a better helmet will have a faster delay time, and in the long run, is going to save your eyes. Some like Miller Hoods, some Speedglas. The choice is yours. I personally run a Jackson Nex-Gen hood, and I will NEVER buy another hood. The visibility and protection is 2nd to none.

Flashlight – LED flashlights work best. They are ideal for sniffing out areas of undercut, as well as looking inside pipe or tubing to verify penetration.

Flat files – Great for putting small lands on materials, prepping edges, light deburring, and verifying straightness. They can also dress the edges of your welds for inspection, or to prepare for further passes.

Acetone or good industrial cleaner – Be sure to choose one that does not leave a residue. I cannot stress the important of this. Cleanliness is the single most important aspect to achieving a sound TIG weld. Put junk in, get junk out. This cleaner can be used to clean not only your plate, but your filler wire as well.

3M cloth or stainless steel wool – Again, used for cleaning. Those shiny coatings on your aluminum wire are oxides. That copper coating on your mild steel filler rod is just that – a coating, it does not match your base material. Before ANY welding, use either of these two (NOT sandpaper or emory cloth) to strip down the outsides of your wires of any coatings or oxides, and clean them with the cleaner. When you have a nice fluid puddle, you’ll be glad you did.








POWER SUPPLY AND RELATED MATERIALS:

Tungstens:
This will depend on your unit. Typically, you want to use the smallest tungsten you can get away with. It will concentrate the heat source and make for a more precise pool, and small heat affected zone. For very light materials, 1/16th is fine. For most everything else, 3/32 is what you want until you get up into the higher amperage ranges.

For mild and stainless steels, you want to use a 2% thoriated tungsten. For transformer machines with AC current, you want to use a pure tungsten. For INVERTER machines, you may have a difficult time getting the pure tungsten to work well for AC/Aluminum. It just doesn’t cooperate with the electronics. In this case, you want to use either a Ceriated tungsten, or a lanthiated tungsten. These will work well, and a huge advantage to using them, is that you can keep a sharp point on the end, making it easier to control the puddle, a more concentrated heat input (increased penetration), and a smaller HAZ.

Nozzles:
Nozzle sizes go by 1/16ths of an inch, so size 6 = 3/8”, 8=1/2” and so forth. For tight spaces, that size 6 or 4 may be necessary, but elsewhere, a size 8 or larger may work fine. Depending on your joint, you may need to increase your CFM to accommodate the smaller orifice.

Gas:
For all intensive purposes, you want to run pure Argon. Yes, there are helium mixes out there, but that is for very, very heavy material and very high heat processes. 99.9% of you will never need it. If you are welding aluminum or VERY heavy material where your machine just barely does the job, talk to your Airgas or local welding supply about if a He mix is right for you. You will need the appropriate flowmeter to go with your argon. You will typically run 10-20 CFM as your flow rate, with minor variances in position and torch design. Don’t just jack the CFM up! You’ll actually start to funnel in outside atmosphere, and have one heck of a time grinding the porosity out.

Torches:
There are a LOT of different style torches out there. Flex heads aren’t necessary, but are nice for awkward joints, a lot of pipe/tubing, and hard to reach areas. I’ve run both water cooled and air cooled torches. Water cooled will handle anything, air cooled torches are typically rated for 150 amps, but can be run slightly hotter with a cooldown period. Most people do not need water cooled torches. They add additional bulk, additional expense, additional maintenance, and extra weight to lift around. Don’t tell me you CAN’T use an air cooled torch. I weld 5/8” pipe and plate all day long with an air cooled torch. Yes, they get warm, but you can always stop for a minute, let it cool, and resume.

The power supply:
Commonly referred to as the welder itself. I will break this down into a few areas:

Current type:
Direct and alternating. Again, for all intensive purposes, you will run ALL of your mild and stainless steel with DCEN, or Direct Current, Electrode Negative. If you plan on doing any aluminum welding, you will need a machine that is capable of welding AC, or alternating current.

Amperages:
I see a LOT of misguided advice given here when someone buys their first welder. Most people drop THOUSANDS of extra dollars buying the “next step up” in a line of welders, just to have the extra amps “in case they need it.” 99% of you reading this will never have any use for a machine over 200 amps. I’ve welded a lot of stuff, from 1/16th aluminum to ¼” stainless to 5/8” pipe and plate. I have rarely TIG welded anything with over 160 amps except for 1/4” stainless and aluminum, and most of you will never have a need to weld either of these. Realistically, especially for automotive purposes, you’re not going to weld anything heavier than 1/8-3/16ths stainless or aluminum, and ¼” mild.

Roll bars/cages
Aluminum tabs/brackets
Valve covers
Exhaust
Stainless tubing
Sheet metal
Frame work
Etc etc

I can almost guarantee none of you will ever see close to 200 amps with anything of this nature. Unless you’re repairing cylinder heads or HEAVY aluminum, save your money on the 450 amp power supply. Because even then, you’re going to need your trusty torch to preheat the part anyways. Now don’t get me wrong, if you’re trying to get serious about welding and plan on doing much more than the aforementioned types of jobs, then by all means step up a little. Same goes for used equipment (don’t bother buying used equipment that is off-brand). However, you must also take other things into your power needs, such as the service to your house! For many, the existing wiring may not be able to handle the loads of higher amperage machines, and some of the big boys even require 3-phase installed. Be sure and look into this beforehand. All manufacturers list the power requirements for a given machine, just check the catalog.


High frequency:
High frequency start is what is used to start your arc in TIG welding. It is HF that enables your arc to jump the gap between your tungsten and the material. There are a few ways to initiate this. If you have the capability of sitting comfortably at a table, by all means, go with a foot pedal. You don’t NEED one, but it does help a lot in controlling your heat input, especially when welding near the edge of a plate. In my opinion, I wouldn’t buy a unit that doesn’t enable you to use a lift arc or scratch start. This allows you to touch your tungsten to the plate, then back it away slowly, starting your arc. If you’re lying upside down underneath a jungle gym of a cage, what would you rather do? Strike an arc and weld, or be reaching around with your toes or elbows for a clunky foot pedal?

Cooling:
Water or air cooled. If you’re welding all day, every day, on high amperages, or are just a sissy boy and can’t take the heat, get a water cooled unit. Otherwise, air cooled will suffice. You will need to run slightly increased gas CFM to cool the torch, but only 5-10 cfm tops. With air cooled, there is less to maintain, less bulk, and less chance of electric shock when a pinhole appears up in the torch handle. Ask me how I know.

Brand name:
As far as big brand names go, the choice is yours. I will tell you my preferences, but they are just that, preferences. When it comes to TIG, I find that Lincoln transformer type welders outperform their Lincoln counterparts when it comes to higher amperages. On the low end of things (where you will perform most of your work), the Miller inverters outperform the rest, with the Lincoln inverters a close second. Thermadyne-owned companies also make nice welders, but their price range has quickly shot up to what the Lincolns and Millers have. Do some of the Chinese welders work? Yes, and some such as the Ryland brand work well on the cheap, but lack features such as high frequency starts. However, customer support is virtually non-existent and good luck finding a shop that can service it. Shop around for used, you can save yourself a LOT of money, especially in accessories and consumables.








PREPPING YOUR MATERIAL:
Clean, clean, clean, clean, clean. That is the name of the game. Did I mention that your materials, work area, gloves, and everything need to be clean? The cleaner your material is, both base and filler, the easier your puddle will flow, and the sounder your weld will be.

Mild steel:
Most mild steel you order (cold roll being an exception) is going to have a greyish appearance to it. This is called mill scale, and is formed at the steel mill to protect the base metal. It will wreak havoc on your welds. If you try to weld over it without cleaning, you’ll get a foamy puddle with very little wetting action, sparking, and an ugly weld with a nasty flaky scale over it. On plate, this must be ground off completely. If welding tubing, this scale is often much lighter or not present, but it must still be cleaned. Grinding is often not permitted, so 3m paper or an air grinder and flapper wheel can be used to dress the ends. Wipe with acetone before welding.

Stainless steel:
Rarely does stainless need to be ground down, but it is not free of oil, grease, and other contaminants. At the least, clean your surface with your wire brush or 3m paper, then wipe down with acetone.

Aluminum:
Here’s the biggest mistake I ever see made. Most people love having that shiny look on their aluminum parts. Unfortunately, that shine is from a heavy oxide layer. It NEEDS to be wire brushed off. Sure, if you’re good, you can make it look pretty, but your weld is going to be full of crap not visible to the naked eye (although sometimes it is, as the grit floats to the surface of the weld pool). If your AC unit isn’t performing its cleaning action properly, be prepared to burn through your aluminum. Although the Al itself melts from 900-1200 degrees, that oxide doesn’t begin to melt until you’re well over 3700* Farenheit. Just clean the area you’re welding on, and do the same to your filler wire, and you’ll be a happy camper with a sound weld. Again, wipe all parts with acetone/cleaner before welding.

Edge prep:
When welding a tee or lap joint, just your standard cleaning will suffice. I will rarely ever bevel these joints, as it will prove to be more trouble than its worth.

No matter what I’m welding in a butt joint configuration, regardless of how thin it is, I like to bevel the edges of my material at least very slightly, even if that means just whacking the edge with a file. Not only does this help with material penetration, but also helps control the puddle. The filler wire (especially with stainless steel), may have a tendency to “wash out” when welding closed butt joints. That bevel on each piece creates a nice groove for that filler wire to fill. Don’t believe me? Try it, and see how much better those stainless headers you just welded up look, especially if you’re running a transformer type machine.

A WORD OF CAUTION. Especially when learning to TIG weld, you should leave a land, or flat spot, along the edge of your bevel, i.e, do not “knife edge” it. Without some experience, you are likely to blow through this area because you have made it too thin. You are now left with a large “keyhole” type gap, which will be difficult to fill.







EQUIPMENT SETUP:

GAS:
When setting your flowmeter, 15-20 CFM is the norm I typically use. I will run 15 with water cooled torches, and 20 with air cooled, or when welding in an odd joint configuration to verify gas coverage.

GROUND:
Your ground is just as important as any other aspect of your welding. A poor ground will result in an unstable or no arc, poor arc stability, and loss of amperage/heat input. Make sure you have a solid ground, and use a designated welding table/cart if necessary.

TUNGSTEN:
The rule of thumb to use when sharpening your tungsten, is to taper the edge back approximately 2.5 times the diameter of the tungsten. When grinding on the wheel, you want to grind with the tip of the tungsten AGAINST the rotation of the wheel, so the grinding marks will run with the length of the tungsten, not across it. If you grind it sideways, you will have poor arc control. Often, you will have a very sharp point at the tip of the tungsten, or a noticeable burr right at the edge. Take that 3m cloth or just kiss the grinding wheel and knock that right off. Failure to do so will cause it to dislodge when you strike the arc, and it will contaminate the weld pool.
AC CURRENT:
I like to keep a clean piece of aluminum on hand for this. You need to put a slight ball on the end of the tungsten prior to welding aluminum. Lay the scrap aluminum flat, and slowly strike an arc, moving the tungsten in a circular motion, perpendicular to the plate. This will allow a nice even ball to form. I like to have a bit of a taper left to the tungsten, with the ball roughly ¾” the diameter of the tungsten. If you are running a lanthiated or ceriated tungsten, SKIP THIS STEP and prepare the tungsten as you would when running DC.

AMPS:
The following are ROUGH guidelines to follow. When in doubt, a general rule of thumb can get you in the ballpark: - .001 thickness = 1 amp. Just remember, a lot of amperages you see are assuming you need 100% penetration, which is often not the case. Running multiple passes with less heat and beveling your work piece may often produce a better weld anyways, so don’t be afraid to do so.


Aluminum Welding Amperages
1/16 – 60-100
1/8 – 115-150
¼ - 200 – 260


Mild steel:
This chart was found online, and I feel it’s pretty close to what I run:

Base Metal Tungsten Filler Rod Amperage
0.010" - 0.045" 0.040" 0.024" - 0.030" 5 - 20
0.030" - 1/8" 1/16" 0.030" - 0.045" 15 - 90
3/32" - 1/4" 3/32" 1/16" - 3/32" 50 - 200

Stainless:
Stainless steel typically uses about 10% less heat than mild steel. The reason for this is that the stainless retains more of the heat input in the heat affected zone, requiring fewer amps.

Note: Machines can vary WIDELY. Everything, including your incoming electrical power, the length of your leads, the temperature of your plate, your arc length, filler material, etc, all play a role in the correct amperage to run. Also, inverter machines tend to run a little hotter than transformer machines do when equally dialed, so keep this in mind as well.







HOW TO WELD:
There are 4 basic steps to the TIG welding process:
1. Establish an arc
2. Create a molten puddle
3. Add your filler metal
4. End the arc

As simple as it sounds, it takes a lot of patience and practice to do precisely and correctly.

Establishing the arc:
If welding a closed butt joint with no bevel, start your arc along the seam. If beveled, start your arc on the sidewall of the bevel, and then move it to center. If running a t-joint, favor the arc on the flat plate. The edge of a plate will heat more rapidly than the center will, so you will have to direct the arc towards the flat plate slightly to achieve equal heat input.

Create a molten puddle:
Sound simple, but can still be tricky. With mild and stainless steel, the molten condition is easy to identify, but make sure your heat is where you want it! If you’re welding a butt joint, as you’re forming your puddle, if you see the edge of only one plate melting, move your torch slightly until the other plate responds. If you just add filler, especially at the start of your weld without both areas being “ready” and in the molten state, you’re going to get a lack of fusion/penetration, and over time, a stress crack will likely form.

Aluminum can be a tad trickier. If your machine is set up properly, and you strike an arc for a second or so and you don’t see the surface oxides break and turn shiny and fluid, back off the pedal! Trying to add filler will just leave a big plop of pigeon turd right on the joint, which will have to be removed. In addition, because the base metal melts at a lesser temperature than those surface oxides, you may experience “hot short”, where the aluminum will literally melt/blob out through the backside from overheating.

There are three things to check in this situation:
1 – Your machine settings. You may think you have it right, but if you’re set on DC or have your wave balance turned down (not a feature on all machines), you may not be able to sufficiently break through the surface oxides.
2 – Shielding gas. If you’re low on argon, you’re going to see dark spots and a “skin” that just won’t seem to break. Check your flow rates, too.
3 – Cleanliness! If you haven’t removed that oxide layer or there was some other contaminate on the surface, trying to weld over it is like looking for a reflection in a chalkboard – it’s just not going to happen.

Adding your filler metal:
I’m only going to discuss running stringers here, not walking the cup. You should not start out walking the cup, because a) most people do it wrong from the get-go, and b) it shouldn’t be used for most fabrication unless you’re running structural work or an open root.

Most of TIG welding in this regard is all about timing: when to dab, when to move, and when to reduce your heat input. The easiest method to learn is the “step method.” Here, you create your molten pool, dab the filler metal, step over with the torch, dab, move, dab move, and so forth. There is nothing wrong with this method, and most welders will still use it. I personally feel it is the best method for welding aluminum as well. With a little practice, you won’t need to “step”. You will be able to slide your torch along without stopping, but still be able to add filler as necessary.

Many people feel that seeing big “coins” is the proper look for aluminum, when for the most part, this isn’t true. If you move too far over when adding your filler, you will leave a concave area or scallop in every dab. Every one of these scallops is a place for a crack to form. Ideally, you want each dab to overlap the previous by 2/3-3/4. How far over you need to move to properly place this will depend on your heat input, the size of your filler material, and the configuration of your joint, so this is where it really helps to practice. Here is a “wonderful” artistic interpretation of correct vs. improper bead spacing:

Image


Ending the arc:
There’s a little more to ending the arc than just letting off the pedal. First and foremost, remember to fill those craters! Back off the heat slightly at the end of the joint, and add more filler metal until it is no longer concave. This will prevent cracking. When extinguishing the arc where you have no bevel, SLOWLY back off the pedal, and then hold the torch there! Slowly backing off the pedal will prevent the formation of, what is a highly regarded technical term in the welding industry, an @sshole. This is a little blister or hole formed by rapid cooling and the presence of silicon and other materials that work their way up to the surface, and it’s a nasty little stress riser, and one of the most common causes of cracking. Holding the torch there allows the shielding gas to continue shielding the weld pool until it has completely solidified.

If you are welding a bevel, it’s basically the same process, only you want to end your arc on the bevel itself, not in the root. This will also help prevent cracking and cold laps.






FINAL NOTES: WHAT TO LOOK FOR

I have dug up a few examples for mild, stainless, and aluminum so that some of you may reference what to look for.

With the aluminum, pay attention to the bead spacing. The bead in the middle is how the aluminum should look, with the “coin” overlapping the previous one by 2/3-3/4 of the way. Top center, you see a bead spaced too far apart. There are scalloped out areas which will make this very weak. Unfortunately, I see way too many “professionals” selling intakes among other things that are welded this way, because it’s faster and cosmetically appealing. If the bead looks like the top right, you’re adding filler too quickly! The bead gets high and narrow, and that is the result of the filler wire drawing the heat out of the joint. Avoid this. Also, I left a crater on the center bead so you can see what I am referring to (far right). This concave area should be filled, or else you’ve got a very good chance of developing a crack.

Image




With this stainless T-joint, pay attention to the coloration. When properly welded (not too hot, not too cold), the weld will typically turn a nice salmon color. If you encounter this, you’re probably right on the money temperature wise. Also, pay attention to the backside. If you see dull gray “chunks” or blocky looking material along the backside, you’re using too much. You’d be AMAZED at just how little heat you need to use when welding thin stainless with small diameter fillers.

Image



With mild steel there are two things to really watch for. The first is the size of the puddle. If your bead starts to wash out and you feel you can’t keep up with adding filler anymore, the piece has too much heat in it already. Wait for it to cool before continuing, and reduce your heat input next time around. This will become more prevalent as you near the end of a plate, as there is less area for the heat to disperse. If need be, do intermittent welds, i.e: weld 2 inches, leave 2 inches, weld 2 inches, and so forth. Doing this can also help minimize warpage.

The second thing to watch for is your heat banding. This refers to the discoloration (usually blue with mild steel) that you see when welding. Please note, that this will only appear on clean metal, so if you didn’t clean your metal or clean a large enough area, forget it, this isn’t going to help. Ideally, you want that blue banding to be nice and straight, not fluctuating closer and farther from the joint you’ve welded. This means your speed and heat input are nice and constant, and when TIG welding, consistency is key.

When laying your bead, you only what the weld to be roughly one to one-and-a-half times the wall thickness of the tubing or plate you’re welding (note the size of the bead on the first two pictures. Your bead should be smooth, but you should still be able to distinguish where you’ve added your filler. If the bead appears smoothed over or washed out (compare the right side of the 3rd pic to the left), you’re probably adding too much heat. This may give you a lot of problems when trying to weld chrome moly or similar materials, as it makes the HAZ way too wide, and will cause embrittlement. (On a side note, please forgive the ugly bead on the last pic, I had to rush fitup to finish in time, and it was notched by hand with a 4 ½” grinder)


Image

Image

Image

Image



ADDED: For those of you completely new to TIG welding, Miller has released an online TIG basic tips article for additional reference. http://millerwelds.com/education/tech_tips/TIG_tips/

_________________
Don't leave home without your Umbrella


Last edited by Supe on Wed Jun 13, 2007 7:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 11:19 pm 
Offline
Dragway Regular
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2004 8:27 am
Posts: 975
Location: Hillsborough, NJ
Holy crap. Thank you Supe, this information will help me out tremendously.

By the way, those are some really nice welds! :D

_________________
Image
Greg
LY6 6.0L with 4L80 trans
8.5 w/3:73s
http://www.fquick.com/87SS


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 11:20 pm 
Offline
Pro Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 9:04 pm
Posts: 15138
Location: Charlotte, NC
87SS wrote:
Holy crap. Thank you Supe, this information will help me out tremendously.

By the way, those are some really nice welds! :D


Thanks, hope you find it at least somewhat useful.

_________________
Don't leave home without your Umbrella


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 11:52 pm 
Offline
Dragway Regular

Joined: Thu May 22, 2003 8:34 am
Posts: 978
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Good Job Supe, :nana_wrench:

one quick note: high frequency is desired to start the arc, but not absolutely necessary. I have scratch tigged for years.

also, for sheet metal I use a 90 amp DC inverter and a 20 dollar tig torch from harborfreight.


BUD


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 11:59 pm 
Offline
Pro Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 9:04 pm
Posts: 15138
Location: Charlotte, NC
budss396 wrote:
Good Job Supe, :nana_wrench:

one quick note: high frequency is desired to start the arc, but not absolutely necessary. I have scratch tigged for years.

also, for sheet metal I use a 90 amp DC inverter and a 20 dollar tig torch from harborfreight.


BUD


Absolutely, not necessary, but definitely desirable. A better alternative for tight spaces is a Lift Arc, as you don't need the foot pedal to strike the arc, but you don't contaminate the tungsten or the base material like you would a scratch start.

_________________
Don't leave home without your Umbrella


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 12:04 am 
Offline
Pro Stocker

Joined: Thu May 22, 2003 9:29 pm
Posts: 1433
Location: Shrews., MA
Supe wrote:
budss396 wrote:
Good Job Supe, :nana_wrench:

one quick note: high frequency is desired to start the arc, but not absolutely necessary. I have scratch tigged for years.

also, for sheet metal I use a 90 amp DC inverter and a 20 dollar tig torch from harborfreight.


BUD


Absolutely, not necessary, but definitely desirable. A better alternative for tight spaces is a Lift Arc, as you don't need the foot pedal to strike the arc, but you don't contaminate the tungsten or the base material like you would a scratch start.


can you do a writeup on how to get a tig welder for free? i dont want to mig aluminum any more

_________________
ImageImage
Spence
89 S10 540ci BBC
FAST XFI
8:1 compression
11.1@120


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 12:07 am 
 
definite add'd plus to the website Supe..!!! thanks for your time writing this up,, found it VERY very interesting stuff to read .. :thumbsup:


Top 
  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 12:14 am 
Offline
Pro Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 9:04 pm
Posts: 15138
Location: Charlotte, NC
540Malibu wrote:
Supe wrote:
budss396 wrote:
Good Job Supe, :nana_wrench:

one quick note: high frequency is desired to start the arc, but not absolutely necessary. I have scratch tigged for years.

also, for sheet metal I use a 90 amp DC inverter and a 20 dollar tig torch from harborfreight.


BUD


Absolutely, not necessary, but definitely desirable. A better alternative for tight spaces is a Lift Arc, as you don't need the foot pedal to strike the arc, but you don't contaminate the tungsten or the base material like you would a scratch start.


can you do a writeup on how to get a tig welder for free? i dont want to mig aluminum any more


If I knew how to do that, you think I'd still be working towards a degree? Aluminum MIG is fun, you just need a Lincoln with the pulser on it :D


Razor: Glad you liked it

_________________
Don't leave home without your Umbrella


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 1:31 pm 
Offline
MalibuRacing Junkie

Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2003 11:02 am
Posts: 5598
Location: KANSAS CITY, MO
great job supe!

_________________
Jakes Performance Fabrication


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 1:46 pm 
 
Thanks Supe

Supe is cool :thumbsup:


Top 
  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 8:37 pm 
 
Thank's Supe I'm gonna copy and past this to a file save it for future reference. I've done some TIG with a friends machine and hope to buy one over the summer.


Top 
  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 8:42 pm 
Offline
Pro Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 9:04 pm
Posts: 15138
Location: Charlotte, NC
racintom wrote:
Thank's Supe I'm gonna copy and past this to a file save it for future reference. I've done some TIG with a friends machine and hope to buy one over the summer.


Sounds good, if it ever goes down on the forum, I've got the original file/photos backed up.

And thanks again to all for the kind words. Hope you can get some use out of it.

_________________
Don't leave home without your Umbrella


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 9:58 pm 
Offline
Frequent Racer
User avatar

Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2005 6:46 pm
Posts: 696
Location: Long Island
Thanks a lot Supe, I plan on buying a TIG soon. I hate the fact that I can't weld...I cut, bend, notch, and make everything fit on my car and when people ask me who welded it I feel like an idiot when I tell them someone else. I mean I have a MIG, but it just isn't as versatile as the TIG. Now is the time for me to learn to TIG, because I am an aspiring chassis builder, and I'm still young(16). This will help A LOT. Thanks


Joe

_________________
Known as SmallBlockNova everywhere else


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 10:03 pm 
Offline
Pro Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 9:04 pm
Posts: 15138
Location: Charlotte, NC
Sickness wrote:
Thanks a lot Supe, I plan on buying a TIG soon. I hate the fact that I can't weld...I cut, bend, notch, and make everything fit on my car and when people ask me who welded it I feel like an idiot when I tell them someone else. I mean I have a MIG, but it just isn't as versatile as the TIG. Now is the time for me to learn to TIG, because I am an aspiring chassis builder, and I'm still young(16). This will help A LOT. Thanks


Joe


I'm in the same boat, looking to do chassis work/engineering once I finish up my degree. As long as you have good fitup, a good TIG unit can be invaluable. Takes a lot of arc hours to do right consistently, but once you really drill it in, it's like riding a bike.

_________________
Don't leave home without your Umbrella


Top 
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Fri Jan 26, 2007 12:35 am 
Offline
Pro Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Sat Dec 18, 2004 6:14 pm
Posts: 5404
Location: Gainesville, FL
Man that was a loooong post, lol.

Lots of good information there. I learned quickly that the best thing you can do to help your TIGing is to CLEAN CLEAN CLEAN, and then clean again!! Also have separate stainless steel wire brushes, one to use with each different type of metal that you are welding.

_________________
Kevin 78 Cutlass
KSR Performance & Fabrication
352-225-1210
http://www.InHisWakes.com http://www.TRZMotorsports.com


Top 
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
 
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 48 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next

Board index » TECHNICAL » Advanced Technical


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests

 
 

 
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to: