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  • Originally posted by burninbriar
    What are the machine settings ?
    My friend said to lower it to about 30-40 amps, and go really slow just to get the hang of it. I did do that, but the bead still looked the same. I will keep on practicing.
    http://www.rcautoworks.com

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    • Maybe you want to try plain 18 gauge plate first then? I started on 18 or 20 gauge, and when I moved up to thicker material, life was much easier. The thin flat sheet was easy to clean, and you can run a ton of beads while concentrating on torch distance, etc. Just a thought.
      I also have experienced that the grind angle does make a big difference. I try to be consistent, even though I am only grinding by hand. Same with everything else, be as consistent as possible. That will eliminate variables, which will help in the long run. I realize it is only practice, but start the good habits early. Sometimes I try stuff I shouldn't just to see what happens, like weld on dirty aluminum without touching it with a brush, and it actually worked fine once I got moving. Experimenting is good, just not while trying to learn basics.
      Joshua

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      • I follow the 1 amp per .001 thickness rule and set my machine just a little over that and use the peddle for fine adjustment. If the rule isn't working its usually becouse something else is wrong, tungsten,distance, angle, you know what I mean.
        To all who contribute to this board.
        My sincere thanks , Pete.

        Pureox OA
        Westinghouse 300 amp AC stick
        Miller Syncrowave 250
        Hexacon 250 watt solder iron

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        • I only looked at the first pic, but you're getting porosity big time. BAD thing, very very bad - think "dirty finger nails" bad (ocd joke).

          You gotta clean that metal better. AL and zinc do messed up things to mild steel tig welds. You gotta get rid of it. When you start seeing those pores, you need to either cook it out by keeping the heat there and adding some filler (where the s2 helps out) till it goes away, or you have to stop and grind it out till it's gone. That's contamination in the puddle. Your weld with that in it is crap.
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          • Ok I will clean the pipe a lot better and try it over.

            I cleaned a few spots off, maybe they were going good and I just got discouraged because when I welded on the dirty section, it just sucked.

            Could I be adding the filler wrong, maybe the angle I'm doing it at ?
            http://www.rcautoworks.com

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            • Originally posted by 90blackcrx
              Ok I will clean the pipe a lot better and try it over.

              I cleaned a few spots off, maybe they were going good and I just got discouraged because when I welded on the dirty section, it just sucked.
              If you were doing fine where the metal was clean or at least cleaner, that may be your answer. It really looks like your metal is not clean in any of the pictures that I looked at (I didn't look at all of them). What are you using to clean with?

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              • CRX,
                i know you've been advised to clean your weld zone, just a friendly reminder that means both sides, inside as well as out on tubing, this is critical for GTAW, and on thin material any contaminant on the back side is in effect on the front.

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                • Originally posted by RST200
                  If you were doing fine where the metal was clean or at least cleaner, that may be your answer. It really looks like your metal is not clean in any of the pictures that I looked at (I didn't look at all of them). What are you using to clean with?
                  Usually use my bench grinder, or a sanding drum I have on my dremel. Then acetone if I feel the need.

                  How do you suggest cleaning the inside of the tubing ?

                  Also I did clean a few spots on the pipe, yes it did seem easier but I was still getting the same look, a long flat ( very flat ) solid bead.

                  I'm going to try today and report back, I will try with very very low amps and see how that turns out.
                  http://www.rcautoworks.com

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                  • Originally posted by 90blackcrx
                    Usually use my bench grinder, or a sanding drum I have on my dremel. Then acetone if I feel the need.

                    How do you suggest cleaning the inside of the tubing ?

                    Also I did clean a few spots on the pipe, yes it did seem easier but I was still getting the same look, a long flat ( very flat ) solid bead.

                    I'm going to try today and report back, I will try with very very low amps and see how that turns out.
                    I'm guessing that you don't have a hand held grinder. If not, you probably have a drill or cordless drill. if you go out and get the little sanding discs from 3m, I think it will help you clean better. I think they are called RocLoc or RolLock or something. They are about 2" in diameter and have replaceable pads. You can get them at auto body places or most home stores. I'm sure sombody here knows the name of these things. They work really good for cleaning metal. I think you'll see more improvement if you get your metal cleaner (like shiny, fresh metal clean). You may have some other things going on there that's creating problems for you also, but if you eliminate one problem at a time you'll get back to practicing good welds.

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                    • Well I switched pipes; I found a piece that was already clean with no coating on it. And it welds so much better; I can see the ripple effect happening. Beads are still a little flat but I would assume more filler and less heat would help that.

                      I'm still having a tough time rotating around the pipe though, its like I can only move about 1/4 around the pipe and when I have to start moving whole arm ( not just the wrist and hand ) I can't keep the arm stable going around.

                      I'm starting at the left and moving to the right, instead of starting at the bottom of the piece and moving upwards. I positioned the pipe different.
                      http://www.rcautoworks.com

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                      • Only thing I found at home depot was a sand drum ( 2 inch ) for a drill , not made by 3m though. Is that what you were talking about ? Should work pretty good I think.
                        http://www.rcautoworks.com

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                        • Didn't have time to read all the answers but I looked at the pics. Heres my opinion 1) it looks to hot. Even turning the machine down shouldn't affect you if you are using the pedal to vary your amps. I would set my machine at 75 amps & use the pedal. Do not just push the pedal all the way. Look inside the pipe, if you see the weld protruding inside this is why your welds look flat. They are falling through. 2) It looks contaminated. Some exhaust tubing is aluminized in & out. Even if you clean the outside you will get contamination from the inside. You can try to grind off the coating on the inside with a die grinder. Also this is why some things are purged because you get air/contamination into the weld from the backside. 3) I would get some new unplated, uncoated flat steel to practice on. About 1/8 is good to start. Make sure it is clean (no rust, oil, etc) Then you will know if it is the tubing or not. Once you get good at that then move onto tubing. & yes it takes lots of practice to go around a tube & make a good weld that looks good. Sorry if any of this has been said before.---MMW---
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                          • Thank you, this is what I got. And yes the aluminized pipe was the problem.

                            http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y72/90blackcrx/sd.jpg
                            http://www.rcautoworks.com

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                            • Originally posted by 90blackcrx

                              I'm starting at the left and moving to the right, instead of starting at the bottom of the piece and moving upwards. I positioned the pipe different.
                              Are you left handed ?
                              To all who contribute to this board.
                              My sincere thanks , Pete.

                              Pureox OA
                              Westinghouse 300 amp AC stick
                              Miller Syncrowave 250
                              Hexacon 250 watt solder iron

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                              • Originally posted by burninbriar
                                Are you left handed ?
                                Yes I am
                                http://www.rcautoworks.com

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