Learn to weave

They say practice makes experience. And when it comes to learning to weld with an electrode, with tin or with any other system, this becomes a reality. Therefore, in addition to knowing the different welding techniques, it is essential to put them into practice, to develop your abilities to the fullest.

For many handymen and DIY enthusiasts, welding is one of those jobs that command a certain amount of respect. Standing in front of arc welding equipment for the first time is a complex experience. However, once the first nerves pass, it’s all a matter of knowing what to do to succeed in our project.

To achieve this, it is obvious that knowledge is needed. And although you can always resort to a welding course to train yourself, if what you want is to have the first notions about how to weld iron, steel, copper or any other material, we will give you some initial guidelines. Ideal to know how to weld comfortably and obtain good results.

The team

The first thing you must do to weld is to have quality equipment . Among these elements, we need welding gloves, safety glasses, the usual mask and a leather apron. It is also important to wear natural fiber clothing that does not have traces of fat and that cannot cause us discomfort while using the product.

On the other hand, it is obvious that to weld you also need a welder with the right power for the work to be done, the corresponding electrodes, a hammer to remove the larger remains and a brush to clean the smaller ones. This would be the basic kit for soldering in a conventional way, although if you want to learn to solder with tin, all you have to do is resort to a complete kit, which includes all the elements in a simple case.

arc welding

Virtually everyone who has started in this world has done their first job as a welder with arc welding equipment. This system is one of the most classic on the market and continues to offer good results for all types of work. This welding is based on the use of an electric arc , which is activated when the electrode touches the metal.

To carry out this technique, we begin by fixing the terminal of the machine as grounding on the table, as well as the electrode on the corresponding clamp. Next, we set the welding amperage, higher the thicker the electrical and the harder the metals. In parallel, if we use electrodes to weld thin sheet metal, we will have to reduce the amperage.

To execute the welding, we will touch the metal with the tip of the electrode, then separating it about 3 millimeters, to drop the material. This move is basic and mastering it is one of the first good welding tricks to learn.

Another basic trick is not to be scared by the sparks that are generated at the contact of the electrode. It is something logical and intuitive but you must repress the pull, not withdrawing the electrode more than what we have mentioned.

Once you’ve managed to pour just the right amount of material, the next step is to practice creating the weld bead. To do this, you must move the electrode along the area to be welded, creating a thread that must be twice as wide as the diameter of the electrode used. As you gain in skill, it will be easier for you to get better results. Do not forget to check that finish and clean the area of ​​debris using the brush.

How to weld with inverter

Another common technique when welding is the one offered by inverter technology. These models are not very different from the operation of a traditional welder, being the differences in the format of the machine and what it allows to do.

The main difference is where the heat is concentrated . If the poles of the machine are connected inversely, with the electrode negative, an estimated yield of 70% is obtained on the electrode. If direct polarity is used, with the electrode negative, it is the area of ​​the base material that accumulates the heat.

The use of direct polarity focuses the heat on the material, so the electrode is more consistent and can be applied better to the material, achieving finer and more precise beads. On the contrary, the reverse polarity melts the electrode more, which favors a greater penetration of the weld into the material, creating a deeper and more resistant fusion. It all depends on what the job requires.

How to TIG weld

The TIG welder is another of the options we have when it comes to welding, offering more resistant, ductile finishes and capable of withstanding the corrosion of the metal. The secret is in the inert gas envelope that covers the weld area, which protects the electrode tip and generates better results.

The TIG welding process follows the lines that we have been commenting on, although it is true that it is somewhat more complex than normal welding. And it is that in this case, two elements are used instead of just one, as usual. On the one hand, we have the welding rod, which is placed at an angle of 15 degrees on the area to be welded. On the other, the gas torch, which is located at 75 degrees. This should not touch the metal, to avoid contaminating the tungsten. 

For this reason, we must also hold the pieces to be welded, reducing the space between them as much as possible when covering the area. We will start spot welding the entire length of the pieces, to later add the final thread. As always, we will verify the union and remove the remains with the brush, trying to create a homogeneous and quality thread.

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