Tig Welding student here. 1st month, I have 3 to get the trade. Any suggestions you guys can offer would be appreciated.
Rotate between 3-5 pieces you have set up. If your instructor says anything... explain why. You will actually spend more time welding rotating pieces than to stop and let shit cool.
When you get fucking pissed...which I am sure you will; take a break. Smoke, get a drink, do push ups.
If you are doing fine precision work avoid stimulants....like coffee.
Smile.Take you licks and fuck ups in stride and bury them.
A decent understanding of metallurgy, if you haven't already. Check out weldingtipsandtricks.com videos and the guys in the forum are usually pretty knowledgeable. Also practice, practice, practice, and when you're done practicing, practice some more.
Back when I was in school, my teacher lent me a torch to take home and I stuck a pen into it like a tungsten and practiced walking the cup on paper. Would draw 2 lines and walk it down the middle. Helped me at least
Use a gas lens. You get much better gas coverage, and it lets you get more stickout if you want it. If you're doing a root pass or the first hot pass on sch.40 pipe, having a little more stickout can help you see wtf is happening.
Get a "tig finger" from Jody at Welding Tips & Tricks, or make your own tig finger. Helps you slide the glove along or prop your fingers in place without roasting your hand.
Focus on learning how to do nice restarts. Weld 1-3", stop. Reset & repeat until you can't visually find your restarts anymore.
Taper the heat up to start, then taper down and back up a little to stop the bead.
Almost forgot: besides Jody, also check out a guy named Wyatt Swaim. He does a video series called "Tig Time," where he shows how to weld a wide range of metals. Steel, stainless, aluminum, chromoly, inconel, blah blah blah. He's an ace welder and his videos are worth watching.
>tfw spent a fuck ton of money going to a great school to give this a shot.
>Tfw by the 4th day I was positive I was suffering from some sort of poisoning and had to quit.
Literally fuck welding to death. You people deserve the retarded salaries you get
So you were that one retard in every class/job that did stupid shit like stand right in the smoke plume when you have a perfectly good fume extractor next to you or tried to pick up glowing hot metal with his bare hands?
I took a community college class and couldnt deal with the fumes either.
Im pretty sensitive to stuff.
They other people in the class were chain smokers and shit.
I finished the class but dropped the course.
Practice different patterns of walking the cup. When doing a full penetration weld, keep the tip of the electrode pointing to the middle of where the bead will go to maintain a strong forward current of hot metal in the puddle that enhances penetration (watch the current and adjust accordingly). If you're doing a fillet or cover pass, swing the aim point way to the sides to assure tie-in and fill. This also reduces penetration and lets you move/fill faster for a given amperage, and it produces the fish-scale ripples you might have seen in images of nice tig welds.
With that in mind, freehanding is important too. When you'll be walking the cup on a weld that starts at an edge, freehand until you're far enough to walk. With practice, you can make the freehand bit look like it was walked. And there are some situations where walking the cup is impractical or impossible, so be sure to keep in practice with freehand.
A couple comments here. Gas lenses do indeed improve coverage, but that's not necessary for most tasks. It does, however, let you turn down the gas flow a bit to save on gas. The smaller size of a normal cup can be nice, so I usually just use gas lenses where the coverage will make a difference.
Also, in a work environment, you may be using a torch-mounted switch to control the current rather than a foot pedal. Nicer welders have upslope and downslope settings you can adjust for different situations, but it's probably a good idea to learn to weld without a remote at all. Manually turn on torch gas valve, scratch/lift start, manually break arc, etc. In my time at school we had to do 6g on .065" tube like that. Doing that without pinholes is tricky, but it is a skill that can help you elsewhere.
I wear a respirator that filters 99.9 percent of everything in the air. So I'll be fine the air I breath with that thing on is probably cleaner then the air in the basement I'm which you dwell.
Practicing horizontal walking thw cup .the top is most recent
Some body turned on a fucking fan and gave me some pin holes but I repositioned and turned the gas up the last one came out OK I think.
sing to yourself it gives you a rhythm. on aluminium when the puddle goes from a oval shape to a circular shape you are getting 100% penetration. walking the cup is for shitter fitters learn to do your welds free hand then learn to walk the cup. if your on a job site chance are you will be in a fucked up spot in a more fucked up position walking the cup isnt going to help you there. on that note you will more then likely have a shitty machine in the field also so learn to roll with a single setting on the machine. switches are nice but its easier just to roll with it when in a shitty position. learn to weld with both hands your just learning so spend time on using both hands.
Does the term "freehand" mean that the hand holding the torch is in the air the whole time or does it also apply to when you rest part of your arm/wrist as you move forward? I have very little exp with tig and it seems pretty tough keeping a steady arc without propping your hand on something, or maybe I just need more practice.
The term "freehand" in this context is usually used to contrast with "walking the cup", where the torch is rolled back and forth along the weld on the edge of the gas cup. If you're not doing that and you're TIG welding, you're probably welding freehand.
And stability is very important, so it's usually a good idea to support your torch hand as close to the torch as practical. For long welds, be sure to support your hand such that you can slide forward (a TIG finger can help with that). But since you can't always do that, practice welding unsupported until you can get at least a decent weld out of it.
this guy answered for me thank you. comfort is also important the more comfortable you are the better the weld will be. Free hand is important and you will use it more then walking the cup. just get comfy rest your hands where you need to and roll with it. I weld heavy copper(1/4" to 3" thick) on a daily basis no cup walking going on there you have to move quick when you weld at 350-450 amps
unless it draws from air outside of the Oxygen UV breakdown zone it wouldn't do shit. Unless you are retarded and burning paint, or dipping the tungsten ever other second the only "fumes" given off when TIG welding are Ozone.
distillation equipment for distilleries and ethanol plants around the world. If you have had a bourbon ,whiskey a scotch or a beer in europe,america, canada,japan,russia, or the caribbean or central america. then you have more then likely drank something I have had a part in building or repairing. I weld about 50 amps hotter then most people Like I weld 10 gauge 304 at 175 amps and sanitary tubing at 115 hot and fast. the copper welds are always very nice looking 95% of my stainless are super nice looking which i think is good considering the speed they are done at. Also take my advise from the other post and learn with both hands. it will make your life so much easier. like if you are doing a tee joint in piping you can stay in place and just switch hands and do both sides uphill (vertical up) also make a 6g test a cake walk. it will also help if your shop need a procedure done it will make it that much easier. the guy who i watched when i started was like a fucking machine all his welds were the exactly same. I strived to be better then him or as good as him and think i need another decade before that happens. listen to what the old timers are telling you. remember that their eyesight may not be as good as it was so their welds may not look like you think they should but their style and experience is solid. some of the best advise i have received has been from a old guy who couldnt see very well anymore(10 power reading glasses with a 5 cheater lense) but could explain what he was doing and i could see what he was saying by his welds being big so he could see them. the exaggerated movement made it all clear to me.
well, I'm not the OP. I'm not really all that gung ho about TIG. I like tigging thicker shit, but really I'm more of a stick guy. I was just wondering what you were making welding copper.
How does copper behave anyway? Does it glow when hot? Do you use AC on it like with aluminum? You've made me curious. One of my teachers from trade school was welding with copper SMAW rods a long, long time ago for a brewery or distillery, I can't remember, and he told me that it had a tendency to crack. I imagine this would be less of an issue with TIG because of the more focused arc and whatnot.
i've taken a couple stick and mig classes to learn how to weld. i'm great with both, can weld pipe with stick almost to the point of passing. (always fuck up the underside). anyway each class costs 1 grand and i want to learn how to TIG, but don't want to drop another grand for the class. i have my own 3-in-1 welder and a lot of my own equipment and i've been building some shit.
so basically what i want to know is if i should take the class and get the experience and knowledge from the teachers as well as my own practice. Or is it feasible to just learn it on my own by practicing it and save money for more equipment and material?
Especially because with aluminium oxidizing on the surface in 15 seconds or so and not melting until +1000°, by the time you punch through the top layer of oxidation, base metal is already nearing boiling point and rooting in deeper. Helllloooooo blowout
They don't have to be rocket surgeons. But they do have to have a clear understanding of what you expect from them. Assume they know nothing.
Tell them what to do, then show them. Then, they do it as you talk them through it. Finally, they do it while telling you what they're doing.
>How does copper behave anyway?
It glows when hot (not as bright as steel, but easily visible), and forms a dark oxide. This oxide doesn't require AC to deal with, but it should be cleaned off if you're going to weld in a spot that got hot previously, or it won't wet together as well. No professional work with it, but I've welded it for some DIY stuff.
Depends on the kind of knowledge you're looking for. If you just want to use it for DIY stuff, practicing on your own is fine, but if you are going to be doing stuff where the stakes are a bit higher, it would be a good idea to have input from someone with professional experience. If you just work things out for yourself, you're reinventing the wheel, and may end up making a square wheel since you lack the experience to know how a good wheel performs.
That's less from the oxide layer (especially if you're using AC) and more from aluminum having 6x the thermal conductivity, two thirds the heat capacity, lower surface tension, and half the melting point of mild steel. This means that there is a much narrower window between "not enough heat to melt a decent puddle" and "blowout".
Only weld while suffering from mild alcohol withdrawals. Your shakey hands will make your oscillation more consistent. Ever notice that welders are usually drinking the most at bars? This is why.
i have never used stick welding for copper but i have used oxy acetylene. it will turn cherry red,dc current. it is like any other metal the cleaner the better. and yes if you are not good at it the puddle will drop on your foot or if in a pipe on your balls. sometimes you just have to man up. there are only a couple people who can keep up with me. my welding heat and speed are on the fine line between damn and oops.
they need to be smart enough to catch on not come in and say shit man i lost a quarter bag somewhere in here have you seen it. Nope and get the fuck away from me. like i said i dont deal with dumb. peoples lives depend on the welds being good if you cant comprehend that and put your personal shit on the side and do a great job then i dont have the time to teach you. out of maybe 60 apprentices i have taught 6 or 7 the rest are worthless and are lucky their body breathes on its own.
>mom…dad. i want to try welding. please pay for my schooling and gear and i swear ill do something with my shit life!
>ok son..we love you. we are so happy you've finally decided to get out and do something!
>instructor will these fumes kill me? i swear something is happening!
>im not going through with this because i know I KNOW I'm being poisoned!
>mom dad i have some bad news…i was being poisoned…to DEATH
>we understand son. we still love you. always
I can garauntee thats a thermite wand...but cant find much in the US
in the meantime, ill leave you with this other option...http://www.broco-rankin.com/tactical/forced-entry/micro-torch1/
I have a welding question not tig related.
Is there a resource that explains flux core (mig) wire types? Specifically wire types for different steel. I got wire diameter down.
Went to local farm supply store for new spoil and was greater by a rainbow of colors all claiming to be flux core.
>take SMAW class
>hear coughing from all the other welding bays
>have passive hood and accidentally start an arc several times
>hard as shit starting an arc where you intended to
>Can't overlap worth a shit
>hot as fuck California summer
>wearing cowhide jacket
>cowhide jacket is soaked in sweat by the end of class
I'm just not cut out to be a welder.