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DC SMAC stick welder used for aluminum TIG

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  • DC SMAC stick welder used for aluminum TIG

    If a constant voltage (CV) Welding machine , i.e. Milermatic 190 or 211 MIG (GMAW ) will weld aluminum with external spool gun with argon gas plumbed to the an external spool gun, why does the constant current (CC) SMAW stick welding machine, i.e. Maxstar 161S not weld aluminum , but using different TIG (GTAW) method instead of the GMAW method?

    Both machines would have the identical external aluminum spool gun and argon plumbed to the spool gun.

    DC power is supplied to the external gun with aluminum wire from the MIG and Stick machines, the only differences difference is one CV , other is CC?

    The arc is established from the potential between the electrode and the work.
    Some stick machines will perform lift arc initiation for carbon steel & SS while others do not.
    Last edited by Almond farmer; 11-28-2017, 08:10 PM.

  • #2
    Tig is CC like stick. Spool gun/mig is CV...Bob
    Bob Wright

    Spool Gun conversion. How To Do It. Below.


    • #3
      Yup, that sums it up. In one, the electrode is the metal filler as well, and is meant to be consumed within the welding arc (MIG). In the other the electrode is meant to be a non-consumable electrode to only carry the current (protected by an inert shielding gas) and not deposit itself into the weld bead, which is accomplished by other means of adding the filler metal(TIG).
      HTP Invertig221 D.V. Water-cooled
      Eastwood MIG175 w/spoolgun
      Eastwood Versacut40 Plasma cutter


      • #4
        The consumable electrode vs non consumable electrode difference makes a whole lot of sense.
        I seen DC stick rod/electrodes for AL and some U Tube videos showing these rods in action.
        Result was a compromised bead.
        Apparently the AL filler has an issue ionizing when inserted into the DC TIG arc, while carbon steel & SS have a better chance of ionization in the DC arc column.


        • #5
          Found a U Tube video by weldingtipsandtricks when aluminum is welded using a DC coated stick arc rod made to weld aluminum with a constant current SMAW, but this rod is used in GTAW process with TiG torch and argon.
          The bead had plenty of penetration and the crown looked all right, but not the quality of high frequency AC GTAW method.