ARC welding Qustions

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  #1  
Old 12-02-02, 03:47 PM
migra002
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ARC welding Qustions

OK, I just obtained a Century AC/DC Arc Welder. I took some classes at a High School to get the basic whip form down. I've practiced on my own a bit too.

Butt... I never received any you do this why answers. This machine has an AC high and low and I dont know when to use one or the other. The DC setting is what I use mainly, yet I'd like some specifics on when is it better to use AC vs DC or vice versa. Also the Amp setting... not sure to know exactly when I want to set it for different jobs. ALso my only info I think I know is that to use 6011 rod for fairly rusty metal, and 7018/14 for new metal.

My instructor was more concerned with getting a good bead as opposed to the why's of it and I moved after 8 classes. He usually set up the machine and away I went. ANy info would be greatly appreciated and I do this for a hobby, I love making things. Thanks much, Art
 
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Old 12-02-02, 07:47 PM
S
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Thats probably a great machine. The only time I use ac on stick is for welding nickel. 6011 was originally designed as an ac rod but it will run well on dc also and is actually preferable. They still use it on sheet metal. I use 6010 instead if I have dc. It has a bit better characteristics for vert and OH. Better for multi pass also and there is no reason to use 6011 if you have dc,, go to 6010 Lincoln 5p+ is a popular pipe rod. 7014 also runs on ac and is often called fill freeze,, generally for higher deposit rates and poor fit up and downhill. It has its place but again if you have dc go to 7018. It tends to have the best elasticity, ductility, impact strength, and good crack resistance, easy to operate and stored properly works well up to medium carbon steels and low alloy steels,,will produce X ray quality welds. Even less than skilled operaters can produce strong joints with a little practice and runs very well vert and OH. As you probably know those 2 types of rods have different operating characteristics. Also on Dc 1/8th 6010 aprox 85-90 amps and for 7018 3/32 is the same and 1/8th is about 105-115. I like 3/32 for small stuff,, rods go a long way and are managable for light material such as eigth inch. Is there something else specific we can answer?
 
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Old 12-02-02, 08:04 PM
S
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http://www.mylincolnelectric.com/Catalog/consumableseries.asp?browse=104|2030|Stick%20Electrodes%20-%20Mild%20and%20Low%20Alloy%20Steels
There is the page for Lincoln rods,, that gives some specifics,, excuse any errors in my explanations,, I just generalize from memory. 6010 is good downhill also for sheetmetal and light joints,, seal welding and poor fit up.
 
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Old 12-02-02, 09:08 PM
scrapiron
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Sberry made excellent comments. On my truck I have a AC/DC engine driven welder and I use DC 99% of the time with 7018(DC) rods. Once you get used to them you'll like them. Their biggest drawback is a hard restart if the tip cools and they do need to be kept dry but for fill and bead appearance the're excellent. I keep a can of 6011s (AC) for when I don't want to drag out the cutting torch or if welding something really nasty like galvenized guardrail (caution: fumes) or heavy paint and rust and bead appearance isn't a concern. Someone (Lincoln?) makes a 7018AC rod now but it costs a little more and I've had no call to try it. When I got my first mig welder I kept a little notebook with the welder and wrote down my settings for everything I welded. Saved me time and headaches. By all means experiment with different rods and settings.
 
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Old 12-03-02, 04:20 PM
migra002
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Thanks for the info,

I did notice that 7018 seemed much easier to work w/ after learning on 6011. I'm definately gonna get some 6010 and give it a shot.

I'm still feeling a little uneasy about the amp setting. What do you look at when detemining where you are gonna set the amps at? Think about it from a newbie stance cause I'm sure ya'll set it w/ out even thinking. For instance, my first project will be to build a work table from angle iron. Using 7018 what would be the amp needed. And do you crank up the amps when you cant get the stick to burn good?? Is that a good way to measure where you want the setting at?

Another question, doesn't it seem like everybody you know needs something welded?? A buddy wants me to tack the stud on the door jam of his pick-up to the body. He was in an accident and the stud does not stay tight. Now the body is pretty flimsy, thin metal while the stud is thick heavy metal. Any suggestions on the rod and amp setting to use? This stud is what the door latches to. Thanks much for all the responses and your time.

Art
 
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Old 12-04-02, 08:24 AM
S
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You are right about it being almost automatic setting heats. I quoted in the first response the heats for the 2 styles of rods. As for the door jamb I could do it with any of them. A 6010 might be easier and you can buy a few of a smaller size in small boxes sometimes at hardware or auto parts stores. Tractor supply has them too. Rods are pricey this way. If it was me getting a machine like that I would get 10 pounds of 6010 1/8th and 10 pounds of 3/32 7018. They both run about 85-90 A DC. Make sure you have heavy enough wire running to the machine,, usually number 8 minimum. If it is sticking it is way too cold. Actually I dont change heat settings for materials but match them to the rod that I am using. 6010 you need longer whips to give puddle time to cool when working with light materials. Sometimes turn machine down 5 amps or so. That is about as much as I change a rod for most materials. Many times operators turn down too far when its really a techinque problem. With the 7018 which is more of a drag rod you can go downhill some on sheet and keep tight arc. Sometimes with 7018 if you look real close you can see tiny bubbles coming out of the puddle when welding. Looks like when water is first starting to boil. The heat is just right. Also the slag will tend to crack and curl after the weld is finished and a bump removes it. It is easy to demonstrate something like this in person or to correct mistakes and difficult to describe here. There is so much instinct experience, training and sheer repetition that comes into making that rod and puddle do what YOU want it to do. Probably somewhat like teaching surgery or painting. This is a proffession that has an extremly broad range of skill levels practicing it. Some never learn well some learn easily and develop great skill,, some sit at one level forever and make the same technical errors that prevent them from ever getting any good. Its kind of like typing,, you might get to 40 words per minute with 2 fingers,, but only someone that has good fundementals is going to get 100 plus words. Some can do ond kind,, or one rod well. I have seen 30 yr welders havnt got past 3 weeks. So,,, taking a couple short night classes or finding someone to coach a little is worth hundreds of hours of practicing the wrong techniques. Even with the advent of wire machines highly skilled stick welders are in demand. A good all position stick operator is almost never out of work. It is noticable when someone does it well.
 
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Old 12-04-02, 04:48 PM
migra002
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WOW, very informative!! Thanks so much for the info. I appreciate all the responses. I'll be in touch, I'm sure

Art
 
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Old 12-05-02, 08:11 PM
scrapiron
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When welding different two different weights of of metal together such as say, 1/2" and 1/16" you can use the thickest piece as a heat sink to keep from burning through the thin piece. Instead of running a bead along the center of the joint and possibly burning through you may be able to use a slightly hotter setting (which is easier to control) and concentrate your weld on the heaver piece while allowing just enough of the puddle to contact the thin piece without burning through. Reccomended amp settings for different rods and metals are just a starting point. Differences in technique such as rod angle, welding speed,arc length, etc. all affect your weld. Practice to find what works best for you. One rod not mentioned yet is the 6013. It was a favorite of mine when I was learning to weld on my AC Lincoln buzzbox. It's easy to clean up and makes pretty welds.
 
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Old 12-07-02, 01:07 PM
migra002
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Thanks for the info concerning the 2 different type metals. Makes alot of sense. Without that info, I sure would have tried right down the center of the joint. I'll be welding that this afternoon (SAT.)

Concerning the 6013, is that for A/C uses? Does it have characteristics like the 6011? Also this welder I have, it has a low and high selection for the AC? Can someone explain that?
 
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Old 12-07-02, 07:40 PM
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I think if I remember right the hi-low settings are for sheet metal,,, on low,,, I think it is a slightly different voltage,, higher and it makes it a little softer arc. Something like that. 6013 was formulated for AC and it is a softer arc with less penetration than 6011 or 10. It also has a smoother finish but its elasticity is a bit less. I used it before I had DC and it is still used by sign companies and some sheet metal places. Wirefeed has replaced it in most shop applications but I have run across it in places that have less skilled welders,,, like I said field apps such as some sign companies (I use those companies as an example only as that often the installers do some welding but its not their primary trade) and such cause its easier to run,,,they can kind of fake it and it will run fair downhill for verticals. Personally I have no use for it espically if I have DC. It will run on that too. If you have DC machine like you do stick with 6010 and 7018. Thats the 2 rods used by profesionals in the construction industry about 99% of the time.
 
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Old 12-07-02, 08:35 PM
scrapiron
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In my experience 6013s weld good horizontal, fair vertical and overhead. They leave a pretty bead and clean up easy. 6011s are better all posistion, penetrate a little deeper and work better in dirty, rusty work. They leave a rougher bead and don't clean up as easy. Depends on your priorities. In general 7018s will do most anything the 60 series rods do better and they are a low hydrogen rod which becomes important with many of the newer steels.
Many welders have a high and low setting with a rotary knob for fine tuning. Lets say low range is 20 to 80 amps. With the knob turned full down you have 20 amps, with it turned full up you have 80 amps. Halfway would be about 50 amps. Hope this helps.
 
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