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.03" contact tip with .035" wire

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  • .03" contact tip with .035" wire

    I don' know if anyone else does this, but we use .030" contact tips with .035" wire. A few years ago we ran out of the proper size tips one day and grabbed a smaller one to see if we could get the wire through it to get by. As it turns out, welding performance improved noticeably. Arc starts are better, smoother arc, and less burn back. On a job that we had well established parameters, we actually turned down the voltage about 10% and got better results. This is now standard procedure in our shop now.

  • #2
    That's not terribly surprising since the connection should be more efficient with a tighter fit. What sort of machines?

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    • #3
      Very interesting, I'll have to buy a pack and try that.

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      • #4
        Agreed. Interesting. Would like to hear more details. We don't even know if you were GMAW or FCAW. Do you weld a large variety of things at many different settings? Just thin stuff? Just thick stuff? What brand equipment and tips?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by G-ManBart View Post
          That's not terribly surprising since the connection should be more efficient with a tighter fit. What sort of machines?
          The adventure started on an old CP 200. And latest machine is a new Millermatic255 with a MDX gun, ER70-S6 wire all positions. Variety of thicknesses.

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          • #6
            Most tips are way oversized so some will work
            Bob Wright

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            • #7
              Ran a 252 yesterday with .035 70S6 (.030 tip). The liner was worn with increased drive roll pressure. Thinking the drive roll serrations (at that pressure) grew the OD enough to bind in the .030 tip.

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              • #8
                So when the wire gets hot, it swells... and so does the tip. This will cause un-needed stress on the drive systems that will likely result in users cramming the tension knob down 100%, and that will in turn bend the shaft that the main drive-roll is on and cause skipping...

                I say this with 6 years of experience just repairing welding equipment, not trying to be a **** or anything. LOL. I just worry that hotter temps (if you are not running super close to that consumables 250 amp limit area) that others will not have the same luck. It could definitely work under the right circumstances, but probably isn't the best common practice as most wont have a liner in good condition etc.. only amplifying the amount of work/tension needed at the drive motor/rolls.

                Less the motor has to work to push the wire to the work without slipping, less wear on motor, on its shaft, etc. just food for thought!

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