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  • Tunsten types and their characteristics

    I have been using ceriated tungsten for all my practice work up to this point. Last night at TIG class all the students were given 2% thoriated for use during the class. I used it during the class with good results. I thought my skill was improving. I went out and practiced earlier today using the ceriated again and was experiencing difficulties getting the bead appearance that I was getting last night. I had some thoriated here to try so I did so and low and behold the bead appearance improved (though still not as nice as last night).

    Just for background, the machine at school is a transformer based Linde. The joint we are working on is an outside corner.

    What I would like to know is: Does the performance of the different tungstens really very that much? Are some types more suitable for inverters such as mine?

    Thanks in advance for the input.
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  • #2
    Yes it does matter. I like 2% thoriated (red stripe) for steel, stainless & aluminum. I use tranformer type machines.---MMW---
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    • #3
      Another point that I was wondering about involves the transformer vs. inverter debate. Does a transformer based machine generally have a smoother arc than an inverter?

      The thoriated seemed to have a smoother arc than the ceriated in my TA185.
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      • #4
        Some additional information.
        Ron

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        • #5
          Originally posted by katiebo View Post
          Another point that I was wondering about involves the transformer vs. inverter debate. Does a transformer based machine generally have a smoother arc than an inverter?

          The thoriated seemed to have a smoother arc than the ceriated in my TA185.
          Depends. I actually prefer the transformer arc on steel. My experience with the inverters I have on steel is fine and I don't have any problems welding steel with them at all. I think the transformer arc on my Precision Tig 275, amp for amp, seems to run hotter and maintains a more stable arc than the one on my inverters.

          Aluminum is just the opposite for me. I much prefer the arc shaping characteristics that inverters provide over a transformer based unit.

          I like the 2% thoriated and it seems to last longer and has better arc control that any other tungsten I have used. I stopped using it though because of the potential health risks.
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          • #6
            much like Kevin i ditched the 2% thoriated, i now use 2% lanthanated on both AC and DC. i don't like having to stock a bunch of diffrent kinds so the fact that the lanthanated works well for both was a real plus.
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            • #7
              you might be having truble with the cerated because you have used it up befor regrinding, cerated has the best dilivery of oxcides at the begining but do to its high migration rate, but later it runs out so to speak and you get grain groth and problems with the arc. it is also not recomended for AC use. it can split (not spit but split) when used on AC. i think you should try 2% lanthanated or 1.5% lanthanated. i perfer the 2% lanthanated myself, it produces a great arc and is the only tung. i have used that looks the same after the weld as it dose befor it. lanthanated usualy starts the easyest and has the lowest heat at the tip, witch resits grain groth and promotes longer service life.
              i would say try the 2% lanthanated, i use it on my TA-185 and so do several others. it functions just as good with DC as it dose on AC. i was not real impresed with the cerated, and have no intrest in dealing with the radio active stuff so i'll pass on the thoriated. it is not recomended to be in contact with it in an open cut even wile still in a solid tung. state much less what the dust from grinding will do to the lungs
              thanks for the help
              ......or..........
              hope i helped
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              • #8
                James,
                I keep reading here that the ceriated will split. Can you please point me to a publication where this has been discussed. I would be interested in reading up on it.

                I plan to try the 2% lanthanated soon. Iome need to contact Diamond Ground for samples.
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                • #9
                  it's in Diamond Ground's tungsten guid book. i can scan you in a copy of the page if ya want. or they will send you one when you order. they are good people to deal with , and there pre-ground is not a bad $$.
                  thanks for the help
                  ......or..........
                  hope i helped
                  sigpic
                  feel free to shoot me an e-mail direct i have time to chat. [email protected]
                  summer is here, plant a tree. if you don't have space or time to plant one sponsor some one else to plant one for you. a tree is an investment in our planet, help it out.
                  JAMES

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                  • #10
                    James,
                    Thanks, I see it now. For whatever reason when I read it the first time I missed it. It must have been getting late.
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by fun4now View Post
                      you might be having truble with the cerated because you have used it up befor regrinding, :
                      I'll not forget the first time I had to regrind becous I used it up instead of regrinding becaus I contaminated it. At first I didn't know what was going on since the tip looked fine, then it dawned on me what I read about the migration you refered to.
                      To all who contribute to this board.
                      My sincere thanks , Pete.

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                      • #12
                        katiebo
                        i had the same problem the first time i read it. i think i have read it about 6 times now, i almost understand now.
                        burninbriar
                        yep, although i did'nt care for the arc as much on the cerated as i did for the lanthanated, and the 1.5% VS 2%in lanthanated just came down to the 2% holding the tip better. i did try them all (except thoriated, just dont want to mess with that stuff) and i realy liked the 2% lanthanated best all around. real good starts and a good long life. i actualy rean a few aluminum beads around 150/170 amps AC and was real pleased to see the tung looked exactly as it did when i ground it, after the weld. that was proof enough for me. figuring my TA tops out at 185 i was close to full power and had no efect on the tung. i dont have a sharpie yet so i dont much like grinding, i settled into using a belt sander to o my grinding and just grind up like 5 sticks and use them till i have to grind again. i keep them in a cuple of the sample bottles diamand ground sends out. one is marked good the othere is Needs ground, when the good bottle is empty i stop and go grind.
                        i just picked up a new bottle of argon so with any luck i will get a good start on my aluminum cart for the TA this weekend, might even finish it.
                        have you tryed the lanthanated yet ??
                        thanks for the help
                        ......or..........
                        hope i helped
                        sigpic
                        feel free to shoot me an e-mail direct i have time to chat. [email protected]
                        summer is here, plant a tree. if you don't have space or time to plant one sponsor some one else to plant one for you. a tree is an investment in our planet, help it out.
                        JAMES

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by fun4now View Post
                          .
                          have you tryed the lanthanated yet ??
                          I've pretty much settled in with useing all lanthinated. My 1/16" is 1.5 and I want to get some 3/32" in 2 percent. I still have a some ceriated, but rarely use it, guess I'll keep it for spares.
                          I don't do much alluminum at all yet so I'm not to worried about that yet.
                          To all who contribute to this board.
                          My sincere thanks , Pete.

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                          • #14
                            [QUOTE=KB Fabrications;65929]Depends. I actually prefer the transformer arc on steel. My experience with the inverters I have on steel is fine and I don't have any problems welding steel with them at all. I think the transformer arc on my Precision Tig 275, amp for amp, seems to run hotter and maintains a more stable arc than the one on my inverters.

                            Aluminum is just the opposite for me. I much prefer the arc shaping characteristics that inverters provide over a transformer based unit.


                            I 100% agree. I hate my dynasty on steel, but i love it again when it comes to aluminum. My favorite welder of all time for steel was my old 330a/bp.
                            I've been using 1.5% lanthiated for everything.
                            Mike. R


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                            • #15
                              "Selecting the right tungsten: How your choice affects AC GTAW"
                              http://www.thefabricator.com/Consuma...cle.cfm?ID=834

                              from The Fabricator magazine-- its an oldie but a goodie.
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