Rate my rookie welds, and a chance to say "penetration" - JeepForum.com
 
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post #1 of 8 Old Yesterday, 03:14 PM Thread Starter
hbar
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Rate my rookie welds, and a chance to say "penetration"

Since inspiration & excess free time have coincided, I figured I should practice some welding. The spots seem ok from the top, if a little bit on the high side. But what I'm really wondering is what should the back side look like? How much weld should I be seeing on the other side, and does this look ok? If not, can you diagnose what I need to do differently/better?

Specs: Lincoln Handy Mig, 0.030 wire, voltage is Low-2, speed is about 3.5...seems to be the sweet spot for this.

EDIT: having trouble uploading my images....





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post #2 of 8 Old Yesterday, 07:05 PM
John Strenk
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That's because you tried to post a link as a picture.

Fixed it for you, I hope.


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post #3 of 8 Old Yesterday, 07:07 PM Thread Starter
hbar
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Well I first did it as part of the upload bit, but that didn't seem to work. And since I last posted, apparently photobucket has decided to suck out loud....it's been too long I guess.
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post #4 of 8 Old Yesterday, 08:55 PM
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Not very much penetration. Ideally, you want to the gap to be fused together on the back side of the weld. Usually with sheet metal, you would grind the front weld off and without good penetration, you will have no weld left. You could use 0.023 as some people like it better for sheet metal. I have a roll but I have never bothered to take my 12 pound roll of .030 off my welder when I need to weld a little sheet metal. You can also try using a piece of copper as a backer. You can really turn out the heat when you do that and not burn a hole. A flattened piece of 3/4" copper water pipe makes a great backer.


Run it hotter and get on it and then get off quick


Gets interesting at 24:10

Good luck
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post #5 of 8 Old Today, 06:56 AM
Jim1611
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A few ideas on welding. Every time you make a weld like you have cut the oxidized wire off, provided you're using gas as a shield. You'll find the arc much easier to strike as it takes less time and it's a cleaner weld. Also a 1/32 gap between the metal is better in my opinion that no gap. By the time you grind the weld flat there's not much of it left.


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post #6 of 8 Old Today, 11:03 AM
StoneTower
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Just like the guy says in the second video at 27:25. Actually Jim was the person who first told me about snipping off the end of the wire when welding sheetmetal. It works great. Thanks Jim.

Unless your welder has a spot welding setting like some of the newer digital welders, running it a little hotter really improves the results. The settings for 18 gauge metal (for example) are really for putting down a continuous weld bead and not a spot weld. When you start a weld, it has to get up to temperature and not burn through the metal after the weld bead starts. When you spot with those suggested settings, it may not fully melt the wire into the weld because the metal has not come up to the required temperature and the spot just builds up on the surface. The copper backer can really help the home hobbyist get really good results with complete fusion without the weld puddle falling through the sheet metal.

There is also some debate as to if the patch should fit tightly in the hole you are filling or if it should have a gap. Some say tightly, but others say that as the patch heat up and the surrounding metal heats up, they both expand and if they have no gap, it will cause the area to distort. I think leaving a small gap like Jim said is probably best. It is also easier to make a patch with a small gap rather than carefully grinding a patch that fits perfectly. It you weld the patch with the small gap properly, you will never know there was a gap there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim1611 View Post
A few ideas on welding. Every time you make a weld like you have cut the oxidized wire off, provided you're using gas as a shield. You'll find the arc much easier to strike as it takes less time and it's a cleaner weld. Also a 1/32 gap between the metal is better in my opinion that no gap. By the time you grind the weld flat there's not much of it left.
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post #7 of 8 Old Today, 05:54 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneTower View Post
Just like the guy says in the second video at 27:25. Actually Jim was the person who first told me about snipping off the end of the wire when welding sheetmetal. It works great. Thanks Jim.
I had already been trimming off the wire most every time to get the right-ish stickout.

Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneTower View Post
Unless your welder has a spot welding setting like some of the newer digital welders, running it a little hotter really improves the results. The settings for 18 gauge metal (for example) are really for putting down a continuous weld bead and not a spot weld. When you start a weld, it has to get up to temperature and not burn through the metal after the weld bead starts. When you spot with those suggested settings, it may not fully melt the wire into the weld because the metal has not come up to the required temperature and the spot just builds up on the surface. The copper backer can really help the home hobbyist get really good results with complete fusion without the weld puddle falling through the sheet metal.
I only have 4 heat settings (hi/low, & 1/2) so I maxed it and I did get it looking better on the back side. I realize I'm new at it, but I've watched plenty of YouTubes of other amateurs and for your basic butt joint patch nobody uses a copper backer, so I'm just trying to mimic them. I'm on a harbor freight welding table, so the table surface should be drawing away a good amount of heat, I would think.

Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneTower View Post
There is also some debate as to if the patch should fit tightly in the hole you are filling or if it should have a gap. Some say tightly, but others say that as the patch heat up and the surrounding metal heats up, they both expand and if they have no gap, it will cause the area to distort. I think leaving a small gap like Jim said is probably best. It is also easier to make a patch with a small gap rather than carefully grinding a patch that fits perfectly. It you weld the patch with the small gap properly, you will never know there was a gap there.
When I set that up I even thought to myself, "man, you should probably put a gap here because even if this is ideal, you're never going to fit a patch this perfectly so why practice this way?"
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post #8 of 8 Old Today, 07:17 PM
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Most of the time when you weld sheet metal it is on a car. You cannot get your fender flat on a HF welding table. The backer does more than just suck the heat out of the weld. You can actually put a copper backer behind a small hole and weld on the edge of the hole and fill the hole up with weld metal. If you did that with a piece of steel, you would spot weld your work piece to the steel backer. Steel MIG weld will not stick to the copper so it makes a nice flat back to the weld. You can really turn up the heat. Try it. It does not cost much to smash a 4" piece of 3/4" copper pipe. Harbor Freight used to sell a "welding spoon: which was a curved piece of copper with a handle on it.

http://www.weldingtipsandtricks.com/...ing-spoon.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by hbar View Post
I only have 4 heat settings (hi/low, & 1/2) so I maxed it and I did get it looking better on the back side. I realize I'm new at it, but I've watched plenty of YouTubes of other amateurs and for your basic butt joint patch nobody uses a copper backer, so I'm just trying to mimic them. I'm on a harbor freight welding table, so the table surface should be drawing away a good amount of heat, I would think.
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