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Welding Aluminum with Oxy/Acetylene ??

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  • #16
    Aerometalworker Hello Aero, I bumped into this thread tonight and am feeling lucky about reading your post.
    I have several years of experience, as a hobbyist, in thin steel sheet welding with O/F with smaller torches, mostly gauge #20 to #25 for tuned pipes. This summer I got an old Hitachi TIG welder for aluminium and magnesium, but as far as these thin steel I had too much struggles on especially #25. I feel TIG is a hard thing to learn than torch welding for thin steel. So now I prefer O/F more than TIG for thin steel though, since O/F torch gives me a lot more easy maneuverability in keeping the puddle to where I aim at. Incidentally I mostly use lanthenated 1.0mm electrodes, sharped with a fine diamond wheel, for these thinner steel under the amperage under 50A with 500Hz pulse.
    For a couple of months lately I tried aluminium thin sheet, gauge #22 but this attempt was terrible too, lol. In these thin aluminium sheet, the arc wonders too in the minimum amperage, e.g. 10A in ENAC. Instead, for # 14 to #16 not very bad in butt and T-joint since the arc does not wonder so much in higher amperages.
    My question is if O/F with small torch can give you easier maneuverability of the puddles in thin aluminium sheet welding? like the way I feel better results in thin steel sheet?
    Appreciate your advice please, thanks in ahead.
    Chy
    Oxy-A (Koike, Sakaguchi)
    HITACHI Inverter Pair 300GP(AC/DC TIG)

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    • #17
      The GSXR frame 100% GTAW, forget trying to gas weld it, the tubing can be worked with on A/C current, if the heavy castings are involved plan on using some helium mixed in your argon and possibly going with D/C electrode negative to get the penetration.

      Thin sheet metal sometimes responds well to small amounts (20-30%) of helium added to the argon.
      Last edited by Vintage Racer; 01-12-2018, 01:32 PM.

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      • #18
        Good evening Vintage Racer thanks, appreciate nice information on thinner steel sheet, will have a chance to try helium someday.

        Still I do not want to give up O/F welding for aluminium though, will look forward to having more tips from any pros who have good experiences. Thanks.
        Chy
        Oxy-A (Koike, Sakaguchi)
        HITACHI Inverter Pair 300GP(AC/DC TIG)

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        • #19
          This is a very interesting thread dredged up from some eight or nine years ago.

          Still, I am late a couple weeks!

          All kidding aside, o/f welding aluminum really works well on sheet metal.
          :~ATTITUDE MAKES THE DIFFERENCE!!!:

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          • #20
            Originally posted by crabber View Post
            This is a very interesting thread dredged up from some eight or nine years ago.
            Yep, can not forget nor throw it away!

            Originally posted by crabber View Post
            All kidding aside, o/f welding aluminum really works well on sheet metal.
            Aren't here old soldiers or pros who do not mind to answer to mine;
            >My question is if O/F with small torch can give you easier maneuverability of the puddles in thin aluminium sheet welding? like the way I feel better results in thin steel sheet?

            Looking forward to seeing any pro-tips on this, thanks in ahead!
            Oxy-A (Koike, Sakaguchi)
            HITACHI Inverter Pair 300GP(AC/DC TIG)

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            • #21
              Originally posted by chy_farm View Post
              Yep, can not forget nor throw it away!


              Aren't here old soldiers or pros who do not mind to answer to mine;
              >My question is if O/F with small torch can give you easier maneuverability of the puddles in thin aluminium sheet welding? like the way I feel better results in thin steel sheet?

              Looking forward to seeing any pro-tips on this, thanks in ahead!
              Actually, most of all old soldiers have moved on.
              Some died. Some got bored. Some became more excited about other things. Some had their feelings hurt. Some got sick and tired of the newer formats we keep trying to improve the forum with.
              I would suggest going back through the archives of the people's/member's posts as well as their profiles and read all you can.
              You might even google some of the people's/member's names, because they use the same handle on other forums.

              www.facebook.com/outbackaluminumwelding
              Miller Dynasty 700...OH YEA BABY!!
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              Miller Dynasty 280 with AC independent expansion card
              Miller Dynasty 200 DX "Blue Lightning"

              Miller Bobcat 225 NT (what I began my present Biz with!)
              Miller 30-A Spoolgun
              Miller WC-115-A
              Miller Spectrum 300
              Miller 225 Thunderbolt (my first machine bought new 1980)
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              • #22
                Aerometalworker where are you!?
                Oxy-A (Koike, Sakaguchi)
                HITACHI Inverter Pair 300GP(AC/DC TIG)

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                • #23
                  He went crazy.

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                  • #24
                    Believe the first 759 GSX-R frame was fabricated from square AL tubing probably 6063-T52 rather than 6061-T6, because the 6063 will bend without cracking.
                    also would guess that Suzuki heat treated the frame after welding, what ever process was used,
                    could have been electric resistance without filler metal similar to AL motorcycle wheel rims.
                    heat treating would be required to regain the strength in the annealed HAZ.

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                    • #25
                      >My question is if O/F with small torch can give you easier maneuverability of the puddles in thin aluminium sheet welding? like the way I feel better results in thin steel sheet?

                      If you can make cookies you certainly can bake a cake.

                      Understanding the difference's of the materials is the first step.... Really. I can answer your questions but before I can you have to understand the material.
                      Think solidus and liquidus.
                      Thermal conductivity.
                      Cooling rates
                      Refactory oxide.

                      Then the OFW process? Yup...do you understand how these key points could effect and out come?
                      Tip size.
                      Flame shape.
                      Fuel gas used.
                      Flame type.
                      Flame stand off.
                      Torch inclination.
                      Gas pressures.

                      The need for flux, it's application in the process and finally technique and why. And funny thing...it would probably be more value to you to improve your GTAW and your understanding of its process then for me to type a long winded story about such things above. However...short story, your success or failure will come down to practice.

                      Might I suggest, if your using a powder, only mix enough to do the job. Don't over water it. Remember it's corrosive so don't breath the powder.
                      Heavy oxides should be removed with a SS brush, a used for Aluminum only brush.
                      Control the application of flux and you control the " spread".
                      Seek out improved consumables, they do sell flux cored aluminum rods.
                      As well, SMAW Aluminum rods can be used with great success and the flux is the same. On that note, remember the filler rod should be small enough to melt easily yet large enough to cool and control the puddle. The flux acts as a cleaner, protector, lubricant and temperature indicator.

                      After all that it's your application of heat and time.

                      And while this is happening the bright yellow flame will be a distraction. Cobalt Blue Lens helped cut the glare but offered limited UV protection, and the green ones of today, go glass over plastic. Depending on again your consumable selection different techniques or variations to applying the filler, your control of filler additions, quality of appearance you seek will come into play. One thing for sure and when working with a flux, seeing through or under the flux is hard but remember this, Aluminum is like ice cream. Ice cream with an oxide layer.

                      Ok
                      ...Aluminum. Hard or soft? Think ice cream. Think of the flame? How solid or liquid things become is you applying and controlling heat as it's being conducted until saturation. Control is the key. Learning is good but applying the knowledge will be the success.
                      Ok...you never heard this from me but depending on the flux, it's melting will break down the oxides, you will apply rod and your consistency in doing so with the volume of heat available, it focus and spread, your steadiness of progression, will result in melting and liquefying? You seeing it being like carbon, it almost can be?

                      Hope that helps?

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                      • #26
                        Noel Good evening, your tips are very helpful to me. thanks. Impressive is that you said it's like ice cream! Yes it really is!

                        >Tip size.,Flame shape.,Fuel gas used.,Flame type.,Flame stand off.,Torch inclination.,Gas pressures.

                        These factors you gave me above are informative. Will put them on a board and place near by my welding desk,lol.
                        Thanks.
                        Chy
                        Oxy-A (Koike, Sakaguchi)
                        HITACHI Inverter Pair 300GP(AC/DC TIG)

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