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Where does xmt 304 get settings if connected to Optima but set to Mig not Pulsed Mig

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  • Where does xmt 304 get settings if connected to Optima but set to Mig not Pulsed Mig

    Hi Folks,

    I have been practicing and welding aluminum with my XMT 304 and XR push pull feeders for a couple of years now. Now building a 25 foot boat, with 3/16" hull 5083 alloy.
    I am no pro, but I am comfortable using .035 wire 5356 at around 22Volts and usually .047 / 1.2mm wie at around 23 Volts. Of course, depends on position and material thickness but with the wire speed set right, I find these setting lay down decent beads.

    When I added the Optima pulser, I set the XMT304 to pulse mig instead of just mig, and set the knob to remote instead of panel. I tried running program 2 (for .047 5356 wire) and program 3 (.035 5356 wire) with the appropriate filler wires, but did not really like the results with either setting over just running straight CV at 22 or 23 Volts.
    Especially the program 2, where the weld pool seamed quite hot, like it was instantly melting the parent metal, yet the whole bead afterward looks cold and terrible.
    Where I found the best results, by error, was when I was set to program 2, or 3 (with the appropriate filler wire) but forgot to switch the power source to pulsed mig - it was still in the mig setting, yet knob set to remote. It shows 42 Volts on the display, which I can't imagine to be correct, yet it welds really well.

    So, when you fail to set the power source to the correct Pulse mig setting, and leave it on mig, is it still getting it's voltage setting from program 2 or 3 - whatever setting that is?
    And, is there any harm in running it that way.

    PS. I know you can run the optima in straight CV mode, just as a remote voltage control, and this works fine, although when doing this I think I have often left the power source in Mig instead of Pulsed Mig as well (despite what the manual says) and it worked fine.

    I was not really trying to use the pulse settings for out of postition as much as practising with it for heat control, to minimize the heat/ potential distortion in welding the 25+ foot keel, chine seams, etc .
    Last edited by Northeaster; 04-18-2015, 06:03 PM. Reason: sp