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We used nitrogen all the time at my previous employer. I believe it was cheaper than argon. Just make a small hole in the cardboard about 1/8 to 1/4 in diameter for the gas pressure to escape. Make sure you have the cardboard fastened really good. I would purge it really good and set the flow meter at about 5 to 7 lbs as you weld. If the weld starts to blow out at you, stop and either make the relief hole bigger or lower the purge gas pressure.