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how do I minimize warping

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  • how do I minimize warping

    I’ve been practicing my welding on some 16 gauge steel. One of my biggest problems has been the warping. If anyone could give me advice that would be great. Thanks

  • #2
    The better the question (details about what you are doing and what you are doing it with), the better the answers.

    In general, use a series of tacks spread out instead of long beads around a perimeter.

    Keep it clamped to a rigid work table until it cools.


    • #3
      Minimize total heat input by welding fast and hot, and not overwelding or adding excessive filler. Trying to go slow usually increases overall heat input and HAZ.

      You might want to also read up on fixing distortion through flame bending.


      • #4
        Since you are asking about 16 ga material you should look into fixing warping by shrinking or stretching. Any heat input will cause the material to expand and then as it cools it will contract to a slightly smaller state from where you started. Sometimes you can minimize distortion by part design, clamping to a "heat sink", minimal welding, etc. What exactly are you welding and what process are you using? Or is this just for general knowledge?
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        • #5
          Certainly joint geometry is key and of course application. As stated prior in this thread more detail on what you're working with (aside from thickness and material type).
          Too many variables here to list so please speak back up and share a little more!


          • #6
            Hey, I’m still pretty new to welding, so what I was trying to do was just practice by putting two pieces is 16 gauge that were approximately 1” by 12” together on the 12 inch side. I was putting them together at a 90 degree angle with a 7018 rod.


            • #7
              My advice is keep practicing.

              Parts expand and contract with heat. If you're welding long narrow pieces along the long side, the effect will be most pronounced. Per post 2, you can mitigate a lot of that by starting with a few tacks along the length. Then fill in sections of weld between the tacks.

              Plus, clamping the parts down to something immovable will help keep the alignment you want. I have an old steel welding bench with a slab of 1/2" steel about 4 feet long on the top. Not only does that act as a good heat sink, but I can clamp all sorts of things to it so they don't run around while welding, or cooling.

              Just keep doing it. I'm very far from an expert, but I can make a strong join which looks decent. That's due to practice.


              • #8
                Here is some advice I learned from "welding tips and tricks" (on YouTube and his video series). I'm a new TIG guy and have been practicing every weekend for a couple of years now: 18 and 16 gauge aluminum and steel. It sounds like, with stick welding, controlling heat input is limited , but what you can control is how fast you want to dissipate or suck out the heat from the coupons your welding. The clamping ideas area great and necessary (purchase the vise grip type from HF) , but you also need some "heat sinks" or "chill bars (as Jody refers to them) ;don't underestimate the effect that these will have on those small to medium size coupons / pieces. Get yourself some copper or aluminum 1/8" or 1/4" plate and 3x3 angle (it is initially expensive , but they make ALL the difference) ; when I'm TIG practicing with them, I have to change most of my settings! Anyway, if you can justify it, purchase some of these pieces from ebay or if you have access to some scrap copper or aluminum flat and thick sheet pieces, try them.
                When you mock up your pieces with clamps, clamp the chill bars or plates directly behind the pieces your are welding. Just use some tacks on the ends first, and then every couple of inches or so. As you progress, you will notice a difference in the way the puddle behaves. Also, after a few one inch stitches spaced apart..... let it cool for for 5 or 10 minutes ; patience goes a long way here! Then do a few more short strings/stitches and see how it goes. Search YT for some of Jody's videos, he is a good teacher!
                Last edited by stefdds; 09-30-2020, 11:22 AM.


                • #9
                  Awesome, thank you all so much!