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  • tig welding carbon

    when welding carbon steel plate, with tig. why does it bubble? it has been cleaned wirebrushed and prepped. and as you are welding it bubbles up occasoinnally. why?

  • #2
    I am no expert on tigging carbon steel, but I have found that a gas lens helps, keep the tungsten point sharp, if it gets slightly contaminated it makes this much worse. Also contaminated argon will do it as well.
    Another thing is dont overheat the base metal, once its overheated it will bubble, to repair it I add some filler and try not to overheat the base metal again while flowing in the filler.
    It isnt as forgiving as 304 - 316 stainless steel, I have tigged that for years, and thats probably one reason why the carbon gives me trouble today, too set in my ways.

    Hopefully some of this may help you out..........
    mike sr

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    • #3
      In addition to what Popspipes said:
      TIG won't put up with mill scale and a wire brush on an angle grinder isn't aggressive enough. Either a hard wheel or a flap disk, depending on the desired finish. No oils, grease or paint, no spray cleaners either, like brake cleaner. Some use acetone or rubbing alcohol.

      No drafts allowed, if your dog wags his tail, put him in the house. (Yes, outside is a bad idea) 15CFH of 100% argon. I use a #8 cup (1/2" ID), it gives more shielding coverage for me and I don't weld in confined locations. Stickout is no more than 1/2 cup diameter, 1/4" in my case. Shorter is better. You also need to use ER70S filler. It contains the deoxidizers necessary for the TIG process. RG45 or RG60 are O/A rods, not for TIG. Coathanger is also a bad choice.
      RETIRED desk jockey.

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      • #4
        To the above comments I will re-emphasize the overheating topic. It is VERY easy to overheat and "cook" materials with the Tig process. Unfortunately that wonderful shielding gas also prevents tell-tale "sparking" that carbon steels give off if overheated with the O/A process. There are little signs like an "jittery" puddle, and puddle profile in general, that come with experience. Still its an easy one to miss.
        "Better Metalworking Through Research"

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Aerometalworker View Post
          To the above comments I will re-emphasize the overheating topic. It is VERY easy to overheat and "cook" materials with the Tig process. Unfortunately that wonderful shielding gas also prevents tell-tale "sparking" that carbon steels give off if overheated with the O/A process. There are little signs like a "jittery" puddle, and puddle profile in general, that come with experience. Still its an easy one to miss.
          Uh-oh. So that's what that means. One more tidbit to watch for (I've seen it, now I know what it is). The learning never ends.
          RETIRED desk jockey.

          Hobby weldor with a little training.

          Craftsman O/A---Flat, Vert, Ovhd, Horz.

          Miller Syncrowave 250.
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