Arc welder help - rod sticks to the metal


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Old 05-03-15, 02:22 PM
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Arc welder help - rod sticks to the metal

I have 2 welders. 1 is a 2 setting high low 70 amp walmart welder. Both welders just spark and stick to the metal. I'm loosing my fricken mind, why do they do it?!?!
 
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Old 05-03-15, 02:31 PM
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It's a "touch" thing. Only comes with experience. You don't actually touch the rod to the metal, you let it arc back, then weld. Hard to explain. Correct rod temperature and correct amperage is a must. What rods are you using? 70 amps is a small welder, but can do the job.
 
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Old 05-03-15, 03:15 PM
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Strike it like a match. To ask the obvious, the welders are plugged into the correct voltage?
 
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Old 05-03-15, 05:01 PM
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You do have to tap the rod to the metal but it needs a light tap..... just enough to get the arc started.
 
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Old 05-03-15, 05:11 PM
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I'll add that the cheaper the machine the harder it is to establish an arc.

I learned how to weld on an inexpensive machine. When I had an opportunity to weld using a high-priced industrial machine I couldn't believe how easy it was.

These days I'm back to the machine I learned on some fifty years ago and I still have trouble. I'd love to have a new machine but I cannot justify (or afford) the $800 or more price tag.

One thing that I DO recommend is a self-darkening hood. I just got mine a month or so ago and I wish I had bought one years ago.
 
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Old 05-03-15, 05:36 PM
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Good rod to learn with is a 3/32" E6011 or E6010. The E6010 is for welding on a flat surface with no rust. The E6011 is for welding all positions and will burn through some rust. It strikes an arc easy and can maintain it even when submerged in weld puddle.
Rod size is important for beginners. Smaller will strike and hold arc better.
While you are learning, stay away from the low hydrogen rods such as E 7018.

I have been welding for nearly 60 years and my machine doesn't have enough arc voltage to do a good job with low hydrogen rods.
I do most of my welding with a MIG wire feed.

Practice and then practice some more.

RR
 
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Old 05-03-15, 05:43 PM
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My limited experience, granted, allows me to keep up with broken farm equipment. Laying dimes, hardly just wish I could. My old Hobart does just fine.
 
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Old 05-03-15, 06:02 PM
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Furd.... you should be able to find a Lincoln 225 around fairly inexpensively. That's what I use mostly for stick welding. I bought a used one in like new condition for $100. There are some on eBay but I'd imagine shipping would be a deal killer.

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Old 05-03-15, 06:21 PM
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Oh, gosh. I sold my Hobart and use the Lincoln, exactly like you picture, Pete. Neighbor wanted to close up shop. Got it, welding helmets, slag hammers, and a kazillion 6011 rods in sealed boxes.
 
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Old 05-04-15, 03:41 AM
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Are these welders 240 volt or 120? If the latter smaller diameter rods are almost a must! I also learned [self taught ] on a little buzz box that I still have but I also have a nice 240 volt Airco that I bought used. Now days I only use the buzz box if I have to weld something away from the shop.
 
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Old 05-04-15, 04:18 AM
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The Lincoln I have requires 50 amp 240 volt service. I've never used it on any high setting, as I am sure it will do much more than I need, or am capable of doing correctly. I have extra long leads and it is basically stationary at the door of the shop.
 
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Old 05-04-15, 05:39 PM
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Are these welders 240 volt or 120? If the latter smaller diameter rods are almost a must! I also learned [self taught ] on a little buzz box that I still have but I also have a nice 240 volt Airco that I bought used. Now days I only use the buzz box if I have to weld something away from the shop.
My guy that welds 50 years says they are automatic... Plug it in at 120 or 240 no matter... He said he never sticks with 240.

3 / 32 rods at 120 are good for everything...



rare thick plates need 240 and a different rod sometimes... ( What my welder says anyway..)
 
 

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