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What type aluminum wire for casting work?

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  • What type aluminum wire for casting work?

    Q. I just bought the Millermatic 175 and the Spoolmate 3035 along with all the other equipment including 75-25 CO2-AR and pure Argon for aluminum. My question is what type of aluminum wire should I be using to do casting work such as filling in and porting heads? I know that there are various types. This is important as I do air-cooled drag racing and don't need any cracks in my heads! Also, on the same subject, what would be a good book/reference manual for the different metals and their applications (all for MIG and maybe even TIG) Thanks! (Submitted by: Andrew from San Jose)

    A. Congrats on the purchase of your new Millermatic. Unfortunately there is no way I would recommend using it to do critical head work. Not even fill or port work. TIG is the ONLY answer here. There is no way around it. MIG welding Aluminum is for fast production, non specific applications where weld bead placement is not critical. In other words, if you are building an Aluminum trailer, you got the right stuff. For doing heads and tanks that need to be pressure and leak sensitive, TIG it. If the air cooled head isn't too thick, you may get by with a Syncrowave 180SD. It's a low cost complete set up. The key to doing heads is, get them clean! Really clean. The oil saturates the head and pulls to the weld area during welding. A good book for you would be the "Welding Handbook," volume 3 "Materials and Applications Part 1" This book from the AWS covers a lot of Aluminum and filler selections.