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There's usually some discoloration on then end of the tungsten above the sharpened point after it's been contaminated during practice.
Is sharpening the tungsten enough or do I need to clear that discoloration as well?
If it must be cleared what's the best way to do that?
Was thinking of putting a clean fine wire brush on the other end of my bench grinder for that.
I don't really bother with the discoloration, especially if I am just practicing.
If you touch the tip or dip it, you'll see the arc flare, that's it for me, I can't stand it. But just a quick grind / sharpen on the tip and the arc is right back like it should be. IMO this tell me that the discoloration above the tip is not a problem.
Like already stated, these aren't worth worrying about too much.
You probably have plenty of practice on re grinding them, most of us do, LOL
Sharpen a whole pack, both ends. This way when your practicing welding your not spending time cleaning tungstens. If you load it up, you'll have to break it off to use the other end as it wont go back into the torch or just grab another one.
If you find yourself dipping the tip repeatedly, have a look around. You may see your sitting in a fog of smoke and the area is not being ventilated properly.