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A few tips about welding equipment, MIG and TIG welders, plasma cutters. Identify the types of welding projects and materials you will weld most of the time. Are you creating metal sculptures? Do you intend to restore an old muscle car in your garage? Does the motorcycle you bought years ago require some fabrication? Maybe you need to do basic repair on farm equipment. Taking the time up front to identify the projects that will occupy the biggest percentage of your welding activity will help you determine the specific thickness of metal you will likely weld most often — and ultimately help you select the most suitable welder. Time to get a bit more specific. Let’s take a look at what welding process you can use for each metal type. Keep in mind that many of these materials are also processed using varying combinations of two or more metals to reinforce strength and functionality.

Welding supplies tips: how to become a better welder and how to pick the top welding equipment. For DCEN welding on steels, 1/16″ will work in the 20 to 100 amp rage as long as you prep it right. If you are using 20 amps, you will need a needle sharp point to get good crisp arc starts. At 100 amps, you might not want quite a needle sharp point or you might be putting a smidge of tungsten in the weld. You need a blunter taper. Some charts extend the range to 150 amps for 1/16, but I think that’s way too much. Why not just swap to a 3/32 at that amperage.? 3/32″ is good from about 65 – 200 amps. And 1/8″ 2% thoriated electrodes are good in the 85 – 300 amp range. ( Drop all these numbers by about 30% for A/C) Using helium mixed with the argon will also change the recommended currents because the arc is hotter with the same amps. These recommendations are from down and dirty experience and don’t come from a chart. Most charts I have seen tell you a 1/16 tungsten is good all the way to 150 amps…Please.

Eliminate Any Extra Welds from the Design: Look for ways to modify product designs to eliminate unnecessary welds. For example, one company that manufactured boxes originally had a design that called for welded lift handles on each side of the box. By simply changing the design of the box to cut out lifting slots, it eliminated the need for welding the handles – saving time and money. In another instance, rather than making a part with an open corner, the design was changed to accommodate a closed corner, which meant 1/3 less metal required to fill the corner. Look for Items That Can Be Welded Rather Than Cast: We’ve already discussed ways to eliminate welds to create efficiencies, but what about adding welds? In some cases, it may be more cost effective to weld metal pieces to a part rather than cast the entire component in a costly alloy or exotic metal. For example, a company that originally used a part cast in a high-nickel alloy found that 50 percent of the part could be composed of standard, structural steel which allowed a savings in material and thus a savings in total cost. Also, the company was further able to redesign the part so that it was more efficient. Looking for the best TIG Welders? We recommend Welding Supplies Direct & associated company TWS Direct Ltd is an online distributor of a wide variety of welding supplies, welding equipment and welding machine. We supply plasma cutters, MIG, TIG, ARC welding machines and support consumables to the UK, Europe and North America.

Extend your Tungsten Electrode out Far enough but not too: Too short of a tungsten stickout from the cup will not let you hold a close enough arc length and will not let you see the tip of your electrode. You need to be able to see the tip of the electrode without getting a kink in your neck in order to keep your arc length right. Some textbooks are just plain wack when they only recommend extending your electrode one tungsten diameter past the end of the TIG cup. Holding too long an arc will not pinpoint the heat well enough and will let your rod ball up and blob into the weld.. but we already covered that didn’t we? I remember a consulting gig once where the welder at the aluminum body truck repair shop could not get the aluminum socket weld to puddle. The only thing wrong was that the electrode was recessed back in the cup. Once I extended it out about 3/8″, Everything was fine. ( I also talked them into getting some helium argon mix.)

MIG Welding Increases Welding Speed: In addition to welding aluminum and other softer metals, MIG-welding works faster, provides cleaner welds, and handles many different types of metals. The downside is its complexity. MIG Welders need direct currents, a steady stream of inert gas, and precise control of their torches. The amount of heat generated from MIG welding provides the deep penetration required for a strong weld, while also melting the feed wire rapidly enough to maintain a higher welding speed than other techniques. Given the inert gas required for MIG welding, keep in mind that this technique cannot be conducted in windy areas. The Right Stick Electrode Increases Welding Speed: There are three kinds of electrodes used for stick welding: fast-fill, fill-freeze, and fast-follow. While each electrode has its advantages, the fast-fill electrodes melt quickly and allow welders to work faster.

Keep in mind that heavy-duty MIG welding often produces a lot of heat, sparks and spatter, and requires a lower degree of dexterity than some other forms of welding. Therefore, using thick, stiff leather gloves that provide a higher level of protection is smart. Similarly, choose leather footwear that covers your entire foot and leaves as little room as possible for spatter to fall along your ankle line. High-top leather shoes and work boots often provide the best protection. Finally, always be sure you have adequate ventilation per OSHA recommendations and check material safety data sheets (MSDS) for each metal being welded and filler metal being used. Use a respirator whenever required by the MSDS.

Look for ways to support your hands. Having good support for your hands or arms is crucial for moving the torch with precise control. I do my best welding when the base of my hands or my wrists is supported in some way. Often you can rest your wrists on the part being welded. I keep an assortment of wood and metal blocks near my welding bench, and I often can get better support by positioning a block to rest my torch hand on. There are occasions where I rest my forearms, or even my elbows, on something for support. Many welders set up special support bars, positioned parallel to the joint being welded, and they slide their torch hand along the bar to help follow the joint with fine control. For some out-of-position work, I’ve had to rely on resting only my shoulder on something, and while not ideal, it’s better than having no support at all. Even placing my hip against something stationary can offer a bit of support, but I can’t weld very well when standing ‘free,’ with no support at all. Source: https://www.weldingsuppliesdirect.co.uk/.