Basic Tips to Improve Stick Welding
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Plasma Cutting Tips

1. Connect work clamp to a clean, paint free location on the metal workpiece, as close to the cutting area as possible.2. If your plasma system includes adjustable air, set the air pressure to the factory recommended pressure (psi) for cutting. 3. For standard (shielded) cutting, place the drag shield on the edge of the metal. For non-shielded cutting, use 1/8 in (3.2mm) standoff distance (dragging a non shielded tip on the metal will reduce tip life) 4. Raise trigger lock and press the trigger. The pilot arc will start. The pilot arc starts immediately when trigger is pressed5. Move the pilot arc into the metal being cut. 6. After the cutting arc starts, slowly start moving the torch across the metal. 7. Adjust the torch speed so sparks go thru the metal and out the bottom of the cut. 8. If sparks are being blown upward and back at the torch head, your speed is too excessive. 9. At the end of the cut, pause briefly before releasing the trigger to sever the work piece.10. Postflow continues for approximately 15 to 20 seconds after releasing the trigger. The cutting arc can be instantly restarted during postflow by raising the trigger lock and pressing the trigger. 

Stick Welding Tips

1. Take precautions with flying materials when chipping slag.2. Keep electrodes clean and dry - follow manufacturer's recommendations.3. Common steel electrodes: (Refer to Diagram 8. Recommended Stick Electrodes)4. Penetration: DCEN - Least penetration, AC - medium (can be more spatter also), DCEP - most penetration.5. When welding a fillet, the leg of the weld should be equal to the thickness of the parts welded. (Refer to Diagram 10. Recommended Fillet Weld Thickness)

21 Awesome Welding tips-tricks and Techniques to Apply Today for Smooth Welding(PART2)

12. Avoid big guns as much as possible to control the puddle:Big guns can be attractive if you are new to welding. But it is very hard to control.If you are not experienced, you will find it very difficult to control the puddle. Always start with the small guns gain control. Later you might shift to big guns.Special Tip: To get a more significant build-up, you can make the wire speed faster or opt-in for bigger wire size.13. Use smaller wire for thicker material:Thicker metal sometimes causes a lot of problems.Using smaller wire works well for the thicker materials.Special Tip: Generally .035 is suitable for thick materials than .045. This tip is convenient for general type welding.14. Install wiper for clean and consistent welding and clean the equipment when striking the arc:Ever felt the need for a wiper? Just install it.A wiper will help you to clean the wire clean and feeding well. If the machine and welder are neat and clean, it will work for a longer time than usual and help to get a problem free weld. If the wire is not clean, it will cause a problem in the feed.When you are striking the arc, first clean the material properly. Otherwise, your welding might be contaminated. Use anti spatter dips and sprays to keep the nozzle clean.15. Always have extra tips in hand:Sometimes the contact tips burn back when you are looking to start it.It happens for a different reason, Like, it might not be clean, it might have been used very often, or even the welding position is not proper. It is a very common scenario.So, always keep a few in hand so that you can replace those immediately.16. Use safety equipment and be safe when you are welding:We see lots of accidents when welding. Always be safe than sorry. The fumes, sparks might cause a problem in your lungs, eyes, skins. Use welding gloves for your hand. Lens for your eyes. Use proper helmets.a.) Use respirator to protect your lungs:Always try to work in a place with lots of air flow. It will help you to breathe well and be active. Use a respirator to be safer. The fumes which are generated from welding can cause long-term effects if not cared properly. Look at the color of the cartridge to understand what it is protecting you against. Change the R filters after every shift. P filters last longer if you are working near oil mists.b.) Use proper welding gear to protect your skin:Sometimes people tend to wear half sleeves in summer or hot condition. But do not do that in any circumstances. Always use full pants, jackets, and other instruments to be safe. Always cover the skin to avoid severe burn. Remember that, an accident may occur at any time.c.) Protect your eyes with proper helmet and lens:When you are working with welding, you might go on for a long time. You will see its toll after a few hours. You will feel a sudden burn in your eye or other problems. You can avoid it by using good helmet and lenses. Use auto darkening helmet to prevent lifting the mask when welding. The new models are excellent and let you keep the helmet on while welding.17. The right length of tungsten electrode makes the solder smoother:While welding, you must be aware of the whole scenario.If you do not know the right length, you will not see where you are welding.Guesswork is harmful in this sector.When you are TIG welding, having the right length of the tungsten electrode is very important. If it is not long, you won’t see it. And at the same time, if it is too far from the surface, you might melt your rod.So, make sure you are using the right one.18. Choose the right size of the rod that matches the metal:Your rods thickness should match the metal. If you are using a thicker rod, you might make a hole because of the excessive heat.It is controllable while TIG welding. But you need to have the perfect settings and tools for that.19. Always clean the metal before welding:Cleaning the metal will give you lots of facilities.This is a must for smooth welding.You might get away with MIG welding if you do not clean the metal. But TIG is different. You must clean it properly.You just cannot cut the line on preparation. Otherwise, the end product can be messy.Special Tip: Always use anti spatter dips and sprays to keep the nozzle clean. Usually, you get weld spatter on the tip. If it is not clean, it might get hot, and you will not get the right feed.20. Always point your wire at the leading edge of the puddle for better accuracy:Getting things right is very important while welding.You have to be accurate no matter what.If you point your wire at the leading edge of the puddle, you will get better accuracy.Special Tip: Keep the wire in a smaller diameter if the position is not pleasant. It will minimize the drip.21. Have a spotter to avoid the risk of fire:When you are working with heavy machinery, there is always a chance that things might go wrong.When you are working minutely, you tend to lose track of surrounding. It is always good to have someone around you, especially in a flammable area.Special Tip: when you are working, always know what is beside you and where the exits are.

21 Awesome Welding tips-tricks and Techniques to Apply Today for Smooth Welding(PART1)

1. Get rid of the unnecessary sound with good Ground Clamps:You are familiar with the earth-shattering sound from the MIG guns.Do you know you can decrease it massively with a small tweak?Here is how:Just use a good ground clamp.A bad ground is the primary cause of terrible sound which we get from the MIG gun. Just change the ground, and noise will decrease a lot.Special Tip: Try to go for the copper ones as they are good conductors.2. Use long stickouts for welding thin sheet metal:People often wonder what stickout to use. This is often overlooked.The wrong one might make a mess.Here is the deal:A proper stick out makes your welding smooth. Use long stick outs for thin metal.  When you are using a high amp, go for the long ones.Special Tip: When you are going for short range, try to go for the ones which are less than half an inch in size. Shorter ones work better in thick metals.3. Keep the angle of your torch 5 to 25 degree for an excellent weld:The angle of your torch plays a vital role.Now:Keep the angle of your torch correctly for a good weld. If you are joining two similarly thick items, place the angle at center.Special Tip: If the thickness is different, point the torch in the thicker one’s side.4. Weld uphill for thick sheet metal for smooth penetration:It often causes a dilemma when attacking a thick sheet metal.But the solution is very simple, and you can use this technique right now.If any sheet is thicker than one-fourth of an inch, always use uphill welding technique. It helps to penetrate smoothly.How?Just start from the bottom and go up.5. Use auto darkening helmet to get precision and weld like a pro:The regular helmet is not enough.You will have to open and close it to have a look if the tips and pointers are in the right place.Auto-darkening helmet allows doing the welding with precision. Without it, you won’t be able to view where it is pointing to without removing the front.So, use it for good welding experience. A small error might destroy the panel. It will save lots of time.6. Use solid wires on thin materials for clean weld:Solid wires are a must when working on thin metals.Solid wires comprise of Argon and Carbon-di-oxide or straightforward carbon-di-oxide. This works like a charm on thin materials.Special Tip: Make sure the area is dirt free, and you will get a clean weld. This is necessary for auto body works.7. Use magnet or Spark test to find the metal you are working on and avoid unnecessary complication:Sometimes, we face a bit of difficulty to understand the material we are working on.The best part?One or two simple test can narrow it down.First, use a magnet. If it is magnetic, it will come down to steel iron, nickel, cast iron, etc.If this fails, you can guess with the sparks it generates. Carbon steel will make a ton of sparks, and you will be able to guess how much carbon in there by the pattern. But this requires experience. If it is a 300 series stainless, it will sparkless and will be red. Titanium will go banana. It will be whitish and will go several feet.8. Find out which rod is suitable for welding and use it effectively:Finding the correct rod for welding is necessary. The wrong rod might cause a disaster.This varies from person to person and the material. But here are some basic ideas:Carbon steel : e70s2, 3, 4 or 6, er70s2Stainless Steel: use er308LAluminum: use 4043 or 4943 whichSteel to copper: Silicon bronzeCast iron: Nickel rodCarbon steel: ER 309Special Tip: Try to find out the material to use it properly. Check Tip 6 if you are not sure what you are dealing with.9. Use the on-off technique to weld clear anodized aluminumWelding anodized aluminum can be a nightmare. This often leaves a mark.You can use an on-off switch or get it on and off manually when welding. This helps to break the coat and leaves little to no marks.10. Move freely for broader welding and try to be in a flat position:Movement is significant during movement. If you can move freely, your welding will be smoother.When you are going for a side by side in the broader area, make sure to move smoothly along with the welder.  Make sure the heat is good.If you do not move freely, excessive heat will generate and will cause damage. Controlling the travel speed is the key for good weld fusion.You must make sure you give it enough time to penetrate.Special Tip: When you are starting to learn to weld, always try to weld in a flat position. It will help you to keep the momentum going. You will see the good molten metal flow, good bead and you will get good coverage.11. Use proper angle and distance of the torch:Why is this important?The length of the torch plays a vital role.A proper distance will give you better control. When you are working on thinner material, your reach can be higher. It will generate less heat and less penetration. But if you are working on thick materials, you should hold it closer. This will give more heat to work with.But make sure you are not too close or too far. Always keep a constant distance to keep the flow smooth.Special Tip: Use filler metal and base metal together for a good weld.

Processes That Are Not Recommended For Welding Aluminum

There are several processes that are not well suited for welding aluminum. Any welding process that uses a flux, such as stick welding, flux cored arc welding, and submerged arc welding, are generally not effective methods for welding aluminum. Oftentimes, the welds created by these processes result in large amounts of porosity.

Why Is Welding Aluminum Difficult?

Before highlighting different welding processes that are used for joining aluminum, it is important to understand some of the difficulties that are inherent to welding aluminum. One area of difficulty is filler metal. First, some aluminum alloys cannot be welded without filler materials. Alloys such as 6061 will undergo solidification cracking if welded without filler metal. Furthermore, the correct filler material must be selected. For instance, welding a 6061 alloy with a 6061 filler metal will result in weld failure. Instead, a 5356 or 4043 aluminum filler metal should be used when welding a 6061 base material. Another challenge with aluminum filler metal is feeding. If a mechanical wire feeding process is being used, special drive systems will most likely be needed. This is because aluminum has less column strength than steel, and will more than likely buckle and tangle if special wire drive systems, such as a push-pull gun, are not used. This is especially true for thinner aluminum filler metals (i.e. 0.8 mm or 1 mm diameter).Aluminum also has a greater thermal conductivity than steel. The heat created when the welding process is initiated on aluminum is dispersed more rapidly than when welding an iron-based alloy. Therefore, full penetration may not occur until the weld has progressed quite far from the start. This is known as a cold start. Care must be taken so that cold starts do not occur when welding aluminum. Another result of the increased thermal conductivity is larger craters. By the time the end of the weld is reached, more heat is present than at the start. This heat disperses well in aluminum and can create a large crater. Aluminum is very susceptible to crater cracking, therefore, craters should be filled in so that failure does not occur at the end of a weld.Aluminum also requires different pre-weld and post-weld processing. Aluminum forms an oxide layer that has a higher melting temperature than the actual aluminum itself. In order to avoid un-melted aluminum oxide particles in the weld, an oxide removal process, such as wire brushing or chemical cleaning, should be used prior to welding. Several aluminum alloys, such as 6061-T6, are artificially aged to increase their strength. The heat from welding ruins the benefits gained by artificial aging, and large reductions in strength will be found in the heat-affected zone. Therefore, post-weld artificial aging may be required for alloys such as these.

What are the advantages of robotic welding?

Robotic welding systems offer consistency and repeatability that can lead to significant improvements in productivity and finished part quality. That better quality also helps reduce the time and money spent on rework. In addition, these systems can lower production costs by reducing waste and labor requirements. For example, a welding robot has the ability to lay down the same amount of weld metal each pass with limited supervision, eliminating the issue of over-welding and the associated filler metal waste and cost.Such benefits translate to many applications in both large and small shops. Yet the investment in even one robotic cell in a smaller shop may result in welding automation taking over a higher percentage of the total welding output, for a potentially greater return on investment (ROI).Likewise, while larger companies may have more resources to draw on when adding welding automation, smaller shops can potentially gain greater flexibility while adding automation. In some cases, the owner may frequently be on the shop floor, and employees may wear multiple hats. The outcome is a collaboration that can result in greater employee buy-in on the purchase and an innovative approach to gaining the best efficiencies. Still, a good rule of thumb for any shop considering robotic welding — small ones included — is to fully evaluate the welding operation and parts before making the purchase.

Troubleshooting common problems

If you run into these common challenges when MIG welding aluminum, consider these steps to address the problem.Burn-through (melt through) caused by overheating the base material· Increase the travel speed and make shorter welds.· Move around on the part, spreading out the heat.· Use thicker material, change the joint design or switch the welding process to AC TIG.· Eliminate/reduce gaps.Dirty welds· Use a push angle instead of a drag technique.· Increase the voltage to get into spray transfer.· Use the proper base metal cleaning techniques, such as using a stainless steel brush.· Check for proper shielding gas and wire alloy type.Wire burns back to contact tip during or at the end of the weld· Maintain proper tip-to-work distance.· Check to make sure the contact tip size, drive rolls and gun liner match the wire diameter you are using.Wire birdnests (piles up) in front of inlet guide on gun· Check and adjust the drive roll tension.· Check to make sure drive rolls match the wire diameter.· Replace contact tip if necessary.· Check pressure adjustment on the aluminum spool gun hub.

Features to Consider for TIG Welder

1. Pulsed Welding2. Portability3. Foot Pedal4. High Frequency Settings5. Simple Controls6. Plasma Cutter and Stick Welding Options7. Air-Cooled Torch vs. Water-Cooled Torch8. High Quality Arc


1. Proper fit up :Proper fit up ensures that only the required amount of filler metal is used. 2. Filler metal :The thicker the rod or wire the more heat is required to melt it.3. Electrode size :Common tungsten electrode sizes range from 3/32 to 1-1/4 of an inch4. Electrode geometry :A taper of no more than 2.5 times the electrode diameter creates a focused arc capable of producing deep, thin beads, and a narrow heat-affected zone5. Fingertip and foot control :A foot control allows for a more precise control of amperage and doesn’t interfere with your torch hand.6. Puddle size :The weld puddle should be the thickness of the base metal.7. Gas flow and travel speed :Keep the gas flowing and directed at the puddle until the orange color fades.8. Polarity and pulsing :Use pulsed gas tungsten arc welding with a direct current electrode negative current

How Much Should a MIG Welder Wire Stick Out

 Electrode or the wire stick out should be about 3/4 of an inch. Less is OK but a much longer wire stick out won’t allow the shielding gas to do its job properly. I do want to mention that the shielding gas flow rate needs to be right for the stick-out. Too much gas causes turbulence even if the stick-out is just right and too little gas does not provide enough shielding gas. It is a balancing game that requires judgment for the situation. Just keep your stick-out between ¾ of an inch at the max to ¼ of an inch at the bare minimum.

Should I MIG Weld Forehand .vs. Back-Hand Welding?

There are two ways to MIG weld. The first and the most common is to push the MIG gun toward the direction of the weld, this is called forehand method. Forehand welding produces shallow penetration with a flat wide smooth surface. The second is backhand method where you drag the MIG gun like a stick welder. This produces a deep penetration weld that is narrow and is high in the center. In most cases you will be forehand welding and it is very rare to do backhand welding.

Disadvantages Of Aluminum TIG Welding

·Lack of portability (Shielding Gas Cylinder & Hoses)·Not ideal for outdoor welding – the shielding gas is susceptible to wind & drafts·Requires Clean Base Material·Low Deposition Rates·High Operator Skill Necessary·Often Slow

Advantages Of Aluminum TIG Welding

·A Filler Rod May or May Not Be Necessary·AC Polarity for Aluminum & Magnesium·High Quality Welds·All Position Welding·Can Be Used on a Variety of Metals·Excellent on Very Thin Materials·Fusion Welding is Possible·No Slag·No Spatter·High Efficiency