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  • Beginner TIG Questions

    Right, so I have finally been able to get out into the garage and fire up the free loaner Dynasty that I got last December. It was just too miserably cold out there up until the last few weeks. Some of you may remember me - I'm the guy that built a wooden welding cart in my woodworking shop for it while I waited for the temperatures to increase in the garage.

    Anyway, I'm happy to say that I now have 'er all rug up and have put several hours into tinkering with some beads and attempts at lap and T joints (with miserable results so far).

    I have a couple of questions that I thought of tonight as I was practicing -

    First the background -
    All of my practice is with steel - about 0.100-0.125" thickness. I am using 3/32 2% Ceriated tungsten, 3/32 filler and the amps are set to 100-125 (depending on my "twiddle and see" approach I have been taking). I have a chart that I downloaded off the forums here that gives settings depending on the joint, material etc. and I have been going by that.

    Question 1 -
    When you tack things up before you start to run a bead - should you wait the necessary post-flow time like you do when you finish a bead or just bang-bang-bang with the tacks as you end up going over them again with the bead laying process anyway?

    Question 2 -
    Is is technically "bad" to go back over a tig weld and re-melt it again without the filler to "smooth" things up ? Does it affect the weld as far as strength etc.? I'm a long ways away from the stack of dimes yet, but discovered that a second pass smoothed up the welds nicely - they sort of looked like worms - very closely spaced ripples.

    I'll post up some pics when I get a bit further along so I can get some feedback but I have to say I'm liking this very much. It's close to soldering in that you are watching for the "wetting action" somewhat. I have been soldering electronics components and circuit boards my whole life and TIG seems to be the closeest welding process to soldering as far as "feel" goes. Obviously the temps are much higher but watching the puddle feels the same to me.

    Sorry for rambling but I am quite pumped up after tonights session.

    Cheers,
    Lewis

  • #2
    I hold the torch in position untill the base metal cools even on tacks.

    Going back over a weld can be done but its best to do it in one pass, try to get it right the first time.
    Steel is kind of finicy about going over it the second time, it will tend to gass off and you will get some porosity especially if its done at a bit too high heat.
    Stainless isnt so critical, but its best to get it the first time also............

    On a multi pass weld you add filler each time so its a bit different procedure.

    The dynasty is quite the play toy, I dont see how you let it sit since December cold weather or not???

    mike sr
    mike sr

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by popspipes View Post
      I hold the torch in position untill the base metal cools even on tacks.

      Going back over a weld can be done but its best to do it in one pass, try to get it right the first time.
      Steel is kind of finicy about going over it the second time, it will tend to gass off and you will get some porosity especially if its done at a bit too high heat.
      Stainless isnt so critical, but its best to get it the first time also............

      On a multi pass weld you add filler each time so its a bit different procedure.

      The dynasty is quite the play toy, I dont see how you let it sit since December cold weather or not???

      mike sr
      Hi Mike -
      So that's what's causing the little bubble holes to appear in some of my welds !!! I do strive to get it right the first time, but it's too tempting when I lift up the helmet and see a flaw, to "touch it up" - I usually end up making it worse though !

      It was hard waiting until the spring to fire this welder up let me tell you, but I have a woodworking shop that is heated and I hid out in there most of the time when I have spare time. The more I read and get into this welder though, the more the projects are stacking up in my head - there's a long list of things I'd like to build for the wood shop - mobile bases for the machines, custom dust collection hoods for the dust collector, a steel lumber rack....my mind is just racing when I come in from just laying a few beads - haha.

      I'll probably stay away from the aluminum for a while - most of the things I want to build are steel initially - and there's no sense in becoming frustrated. I took a welding course for adults last fall and although we spent most of the time on stick, we did have a go at the MIG and the TIG units. I was ok with the steel on TIG but the aluminum was a humbling experience. I stare at the custom motorcycle and diamond plate contraptions on the road now and am just in awe at the fellow that made them ...

      Thanks for the input.

      Cheers,
      Lewis

      Comment


      • #4
        Lewis,
        It does take lots of practice thats for sure!
        I tigged stainless for years, the steel was new to me and without a foot control it was a bear! I have a dynasty now and current control and that helps on the porosity, as steel overheats it will cause the gassing or porosity much more so than stainless. The steel that I am doing is .020, two pieces on the edge, the heavier stuff may not be as bad. My stainless was .062 dairy tube mostly.
        I havent tried stick with the dynasty yet. tigging aluminum is very nice with the squarewave and the adjustable cleaning and frequency control. I have never welded aluminum with a pointed tungsten till now, this machine will do it!
        I wish I had a higher quality paper manual, this one is getting kind of ragged ha!!
        Have fun

        mike sr
        mike sr

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by popspipes View Post
          Lewis,
          It does take lots of practice thats for sure!
          I tigged stainless for years, the steel was new to me and without a foot control it was a bear! I have a dynasty now and current control and that helps on the porosity, as steel overheats it will cause the gassing or porosity much more so than stainless. The steel that I am doing is .020, two pieces on the edge, the heavier stuff may not be as bad. My stainless was .062 dairy tube mostly.
          I havent tried stick with the dynasty yet. tigging aluminum is very nice with the squarewave and the adjustable cleaning and frequency control. I have never welded aluminum with a pointed tungsten till now, this machine will do it!
          I wish I had a higher quality paper manual, this one is getting kind of ragged ha!!
          Have fun

          mike sr
          Mike - The first thing I did was to punch and put the manual in a binder. It seldom goes far from the welder unless I am forced to watch some "chick flick" on tv with my wife - in that case it's in my lap and being studied with the other "noise" in the background.

          One other question that just came to mind - how does one grind the welds in corners of say 1" square tubing so they are smooth ? I have a borrowed angle grinder but using that for that task would be like using a chainsaw to build kitchen cabinets.

          And speaking of grinding - what's the best way to clean the surface rust and mill scale off the steel before tigging it? Again, the angle grinder works but it's a little heavy handed if I am only tinkering with small 1/8" pieces of steel and angle. Maybe there's some special wheel that can be bought for a pneumatic die grinder? (Looking for an excuse to get a compressor).

          Thanks again,
          Lewis

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by LewisCobb View Post
            Mike - The first thing I did was to punch and put the manual in a binder. It seldom goes far from the welder unless I am forced to watch some "chick flick" on tv with my wife - in that case it's in my lap and being studied with the other "noise" in the background.

            One other question that just came to mind - how does one grind the welds in corners of say 1" square tubing so they are smooth ? I have a borrowed angle grinder but using that for that task would be like using a chainsaw to build kitchen cabinets.

            And speaking of grinding - what's the best way to clean the surface rust and mill scale off the steel before tigging it? Again, the angle grinder works but it's a little heavy handed if I am only tinkering with small 1/8" pieces of steel and angle. Maybe there's some special wheel that can be bought for a pneumatic die grinder? (Looking for an excuse to get a compressor).

            Thanks again,
            Lewis
            Good idea on the manual, I have just taped the back seam on mine so far and where the info is recorded. There isnt a good way to get into the inside corners except with a die grinder or possibly one of those vibrating tools for sanding cutting drywall etc.
            A flap disc on a 4 1/2" grinder works pretty well too for cleanup, doesnt gouge as bad as a regular grinding wheel.

            mike sr
            mike sr

            Comment


            • #7
              "Now I Remember!"

              Lewis: Yes we do. It was around Xmas time, and seems like you went to buy some supplies, and FORGOT to get TIG wire!


              We suggested MIG wire to get you through.


              Glad to see things are warming up, and you're getting to have some fun.


              Looking forward to seeing some pics.

              Dave
              "Bonne journe'e mes amis"

              Comment


              • #8
                Hey Lewis . Fredericton ?? We're practically neighbors ( I'm in Riverview)
                Lucky you to have a Dynasty to play with . That's an awesome machine .
                You might want to try Lanthanted tungston . Nothing wrong with Ceriated , but , the inverters really seem to like lanthanted a lot . Also good for AC too .
                For 1/8 ( .125 ) steel , you also might try dropping your tungston down to 1/16 instead of 3/32 . Especially if you get lanthanated . The 1/16 will produce and arc that's easier to start and and control and will easily tolerate
                140 amps or so . Also , consider turning the pulse feature on with a slow .5 sec pulse . This will help to get your timing down consistant .
                Rob
                Miller MM252 with Bernard Q300
                Hypertherm PM30

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by davedarragh View Post
                  Lewis: Yes we do. It was around Xmas time, and seems like you went to buy some supplies, and FORGOT to get TIG wire!


                  We suggested MIG wire to get you through.


                  Glad to see things are warming up, and you're getting to have some fun.


                  Looking forward to seeing some pics.

                  Dave
                  Hi Dave !
                  You have a good memory. I see you are still toughing it out down in Phoenix still We're back up above room temps here in this part of Canada again and the grass is starting to grow again.

                  There was another small incident after that tig wire one. I got the cylinder of argon at the same time around Xmas. Last week I connected everything up only to discover the thing had a whopping 250psi in it. Back to the welding shop. The owner there calmly said "oh yea, we had a few bad packing seals on bottles a few years back and this might be one that slipped through the cracks". Here's a full one - have a nice day. Before I left though, he jury rigged something up and partially filled the bottle with a full one, and then sprayed some soapy water on the seal - sure enough, after about 5 minutes a small bubble began to appear. He figured it probably took about 1-2 months for the thing to drain down.

                  I'll try and get some pics up here in the next bit. It all depends on how long I can hide in the garage this weeked from my wife who has a long list of tasks for me....

                  Cheers,
                  Lewis

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mustang View Post
                    Hey Lewis . Fredericton ?? We're practically neighbors ( I'm in Riverview)
                    Lucky you to have a Dynasty to play with . That's an awesome machine .
                    You might want to try Lanthanted tungston . Nothing wrong with Ceriated , but , the inverters really seem to like lanthanted a lot . Also good for AC too .
                    For 1/8 ( .125 ) steel , you also might try dropping your tungston down to 1/16 instead of 3/32 . Especially if you get lanthanated . The 1/16 will produce and arc that's easier to start and and control and will easily tolerate
                    140 amps or so . Also , consider turning the pulse feature on with a slow .5 sec pulse . This will help to get your timing down consistant .
                    Rob

                    Hi Rob - Good to hear from a "local" You might be sorry you introduced yourself though - I will probably have a million questions and might end up getting in the car and driving to Moncton some day to see an "expert" at work.

                    I actually looked around for the lanthanated tungstens but could not find them locally. Just the 2% ceriated. Most of my tinkering will be .075" and 1/8 to 3/16 steel with the odd bit of 1/4 but not much. I figured I needed a 1/16, 3/32 and 1/8 tungsten but so far have only been able to get the 1/16 and the 3/32. The lads at the local Praxair outfit will sell me a piece at a time but they have had the 1/8 tung. on back order for weeks (good thing I am not doing a paying job with this thing). Of course in classical style I got home on at least one occassion and discovered that 'doh I need the collets and bodies as well for the new sizes.

                    I'll give the 1/16 a try on the 1/8 steel though and see how that feels. The chart I have did not show that as an option and I was afraid to go "out of bounds" for fear I'd melt the tungsten and increase my already frequent visits to the grinder. Will try the .5 second pulse to get my timing better as well.

                    Do you do welding as a hobby or is it your job? I was actually in Moncton last night visiting a buddy of mine - too bad I didn't get your mail until today or I could have dropped over for a handshake. Right after the obligitory visit to Princess Auto !

                    Cheers,
                    Lewis

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hi Lewis
                      I am by no means an expert . Just a hobbyist . But , I do a lot a research and I've tried a lot of things . In the case of the Dynasty 200 , I would get 1/16 and 3/32 lanthanated tungston and I would not look back . I use a Syncrowave 200 and I have found this tungston to be a lot better . On an inverter machine like yours , it would be even more so . It is a problem to find in our area though . I've had to special order it in and that's a pain in the butt . Too back we did not connect earlier . If you were in Moncton I would have given you some tungston for free to try . You'll like it , trust me .
                      If you ever want to "chat" , just give a shout directly at [email protected]

                      I keep a pretty good stockpile of "supplies" and I'll help you out any way that I can . Oh , you're welcome to stop by anytime . Rob
                      Miller MM252 with Bernard Q300
                      Hypertherm PM30

                      Comment

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