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  #1  
Old 10 Jan 2007
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need tig welder advice

Hi
I am fairly adept at soldering, brazing and stick welding, but would now like to learn tig welding. What I have in mind is one of those inverter type welders which will do both stick and tig.
Does anyone know which is a fairly modern book on 'how to tig weld at home' type of book?
What I would like to to is read something to learn enough to make a good choice of machine.
also , anyone has any preference for features or models of home tig welding machine

The uses for this machine are a small amount of car bodywork (possibly) 1/8th thick or less aluminium and stainless. The stick part would be farm maintenance ( I have a good old fashioned stick welder anyway)

many thanks
Larry
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  #2  
Old 10 Jan 2007
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tig welding

for that thickness tig welding the smallest - and cheapest inverter will do fine.go to the library, there will be books there - free - on how to weld with tig but the best way is to practice. all the small inverters require striking to start where you'll find most books etc tend to assume you are using big posh machines so practice makes perfect.
you can get them for 100 +- quid so they are not that expensive, but you need to get an argon cylinder which when you've done the contract etc etc can be a bit pricy. you'll also need to buy guages and regulator for the bottle so the price starts to rise - invest if you will be using it alot otherwise get a mig - cheap and cheerfull, not as pretty as tig but ok.
as i say there's no substtute for experience so if you're set on a tig, get all the gear and practice practice..it's not that hard if you can braize etc.
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  #3  
Old 10 Jan 2007
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forgot - you will need big and expensive tig welder and years of practice / tutoring to be able to weld alluminium nicely - stainless is easy and can be done on small inverter no probs. you need dc welder for ally mucho dosh, mucho skill required
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Old 11 Jan 2007
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Thanks bikerz
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  #5  
Old 12 Jan 2007
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I bought a nice tig outfit to teach myself to weld aluminum, not easy at all I would suggest a class, I can produce a good weld only about 10% of the time.
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  #6  
Old 12 Jan 2007
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seems that to weld aluminium, you have to buy one that welds ac. These are expensive.
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  #7  
Old 12 Jan 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldbmw
seems that to weld aluminium, you have to buy one that welds ac. These are expensive.
This is correct. Aluminium is by far the hardest allot to weld. You need AC power and LOTS of it. With a 180 amp DC inverter you can weld up to 1/4" steel. For the same thickness in aluminum you will need at least 200 amps and pre-heat with a torch. Aluminum needs AC to clean the metal as you weld, or oxidation occurs. Aluminum also sucks away all your heat rather rapidly, so you need the high amps to maintain this temprature. I've welded 3/4 ally plat using a full 300 amps and preheat with a tiger torch for 5 min. before achieving adequate penatration. With Ally, you can never touch down! Steel is a little more forgiving. If you plan on welding ally, an inverter thats less than 200 amps will be limited to the point of useless IMHO. You can use Argon for both ally and steel. TIG welding is lots of fun once you get the hang of it. If you can tap your toe, rub your belly and pat your head all to a diferent beat, your halfway there!
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Old 13 Jan 2007
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If you can gas weld with oxy/acetylene then you can TIG weld .
You will need to practise though and evening classes would be a good idea to set you on the right road .
A 185 amp welder AC/DC with high frequency start should do the trick .
It can be used for stick welding too and will handle all you might want to do as an amatuer .
Avoid the cheap brands and look for models made by Lincoln ,Miller or the better brands in your country .
If you don't need to weld aluminium then a DC welding machine will suffice .
You will need a TIG torch and regulator for an argon cylinder.
Don't buy used equipment unless you have seen it working.
Good equipment is not cheap but it IS worth it if you want to do the job properly .
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Old 13 Jan 2007
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more info
http://www.millerwelds.com/education/TIGhandbook/
This is a very good site and you can read about all the Miller models .

Lincoln stuff here
http://www.lincolnelectric.com/

You don't need an inverter unless you really want to go down that route .
Once you have mastered the art of TIG on mild steel , then you can start on stainless and finally aluminium which is fairly straightforward once you have the hang of it .
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Old 28 Jan 2007
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aluminium and its alloys are very hard to weld, especially on DIY kit. it takes the lads at work (aircraft repair) four years to learn, and then they might never get it. and if you think thats hard, try titanium!

steel on the other hand is pretty easy. to get kit able to weld alu will cost a lot to buy, but nearly any small welder will do 1/8 steel. TIG takes practice, have you cosidered a MIG set?
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Old 28 Jan 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAVSATO

steel on the other hand is pretty easy. to get kit able to weld alu will cost a lot to buy, but nearly any small welder will do 1/8 steel. TIG takes practice, have you cosidered a MIG set?
Years ago i thought to get a mig set for fabrication ( at that time mainly mild steel with some stainless) butthe tig was intended to produce better looking welds.
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Old 28 Jan 2007
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Talking

ah i see. it does look better, but i found MIG a bit easier. after welding a few expensive tungsten electrodes to my test pieces i gave up and went gasless MIG.
heres a question for you then..........
you buy a budget TIG set, it comes with some filler rods, a handset, AND A HANDHELD FACEMASK.
how do you hold three things with two hands?

please, i dont want to hear from any isle of wight sister shaggers wondering why ive only got two hands
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  #13  
Old 28 Jan 2007
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Smile Classic

please, i dont want to hear from any isle of wight sister shaggers wondering why ive only got two hands[/QUOTE]


Got to smile at this !!
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  #14  
Old 29 Jan 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAVSATO
ah i see. it does look better, but i found MIG a bit easier. after welding a few expensive tungsten electrodes to my test pieces i gave up and went gasless MIG.
heres a question for you then..........
you buy a budget TIG set, it comes with some filler rods, a handset, AND A HANDHELD FACEMASK.
how do you hold three things with two hands?

please, i dont want to hear from any isle of wight sister shaggers wondering why ive only got two hands
Maybe you hold the facemask between your teeth .
Might have to bend the handle a bit .
I've heard the raspberry flavoured ones are really good .
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  #15  
Old 29 Jan 2007
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I have to admit i use a helmet type mask, with changeable filters plus plain glass for the spatter. ( necessary for brazing )
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