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  • Straight Weld

    I was practicing vertical butt welding. I had good penetration and i was dragging the mig tip down weld looked nice. My problem is it is not straight from top to bottom there is a 1 inch difference. I tried positioning my body and gun tip without success. Is this just more practice or is there any tips to get a straight weld?
    Thanks

  • #2
    Downhill MIG is generally not good practice. How thick of metal are you welding?

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    • #3
      3/8 I tried running uphill but i need more practice.Running up is the correct way to vertical weld?

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      • #4
        Downhill is fine for sheet metal, but 3/8" plate? No way. It's the penetration and quality of weld that matter over appearance. What machine are you using? <br />
        <br />
        And to answer your question about welding a straight line...what makes the weld crooked is you, not the weld or the machine. So yes, practice.

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        • #5
          MM211 I had the same problem on a long horizontal bead butt weld making a transmission cross member. I thought maybe there might be a marking pen. I ended up making 2 long scribes so i could feel when the tip was crossing. On this piece i was think tacking a 1/4 square bar to run my finger along to give me a chance of straight weld. Thanks for the heads up on torch direction.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by ryanjones2150 View Post

            And to answer your question about welding a straight line...what makes the weld crooked is you, not the weld or the machine. So yes, practice.
            I don't know, Ryan. My MM211 sometimes makes crooked welds too......that's two of them I know of now... :-)

            OK, I'll be serious and try to help. What shade is your hood set to if it's auto darkening? If not, what shade lens are you using?

            Could also try adding a bright halogen work light aimed at the joint. The older I get, the more I need more light.

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            • #7
              Hit it with a hammer....your MM211 I mean. Clearly must be out of calibration. Like my DMM.

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              • #8
                That must be it-maybe kick it across the shop...

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                • #9
                  lol i'm using a #10 shade and i have it set to full dark sensitive. When i tried to put a light on piece my helmet goes full dark, What shade are you all using?
                  Last edited by davidmelley; 10-08-2016, 10:30 PM.

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                  • #10
                    #10 is good for most things. Try turning down the sensitivity just until the light doesn't trip it. Unless you are doing low current tig on thin material, you really don't need max sensitivity, at least on my Miller and Lincoln hoods. What make/model is your hood?

                    Don't know your age, or state of eyesight in general, but it is amazing to me how much harder it is to weld with old eyes than it was 50-60 years ago. I have good trifocals, cheater in my hood, and eye doctor says I'm doing great-no disease, etc. But, it just isn't the same. Things that used to be effortless now take a lot of concentration and extra light, and it's downright embarrassing on those occasions when the weld runs out from the joint. Grinders have become even more important. The only thing that still feels the same is OA. Light from the flame, and lighter filter in the goggles, makes it much easier.

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                    • #11
                      If I'm doing a lot of MIG welding, I turn my hood down to maybe 8 or 9 and then I wear sun glasses under my hood. Without the sun glasses on I'll have a big blue spot in the middle of my vision for a bit afterwards. I also use some sort of torch manipulation to play the light around so I can see better. I find that a push angle gives me better visibility of my joint ahead of the weld puddle. Getting in a good, comfortable position helps too. Although that seems to never be possible, at least for me lately.

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                      • #12
                        I've found, when I can't run a straight bead, I'm not seeing the root and I'm not seeing the puddle the way I should be able to see the puddle. Looking for a crutch to run a straight bead, for me, isn't the answer. Figuring out a way to see the root and read the puddle is the answer. It's a constant issue that I have to deal with.

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                        • #13
                          North of 50 and eyesight decent but far from perfect. I tried the wife's readers today and watching the bead was much better. Ordered those magnifier .75 to 2.5 to see which one works the beat. Must have made 50 practice beads pushing the puddle and around weld 40 it started to feel like i was getting somewhere. I never had a problem with over head stick welding but this mig is a different feel to me. I have become a master grinder lol.
                          Last edited by davidmelley; 10-09-2016, 09:34 PM.

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                          • #14
                            I thought Ryan's suggestion on lens shade was a good one-have to try that.

                            Glad the glasses helped. I tried those but they wouldn't work for me-one eye is farsighted and the other is nearsighted, so without prescription lenses, nothing works very well. I need the glasses to get both eyes even then have to deal with the trifocals.

                            I did find the cheater lens in the hood helped a lot, just had to consult with a friend who's an optician about what power to use with my glasses and my most common comfortable distance from the puddle. But, it's still not like it was in the old days. However, if that's all I have to complain about, I'm a very blessed guy!

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                            • #15
                              If you can't see good luck making a straight weld. Bi-focals help me read the blueprints but I still add cheaters in my hood 1.5 does the trick now. Did some sanitary tig last week and I had your problem couldn't see the seam turned my shade down to 9 and bumped up my cheater to 2.0 wow my eyes were 10 years younger. That cheater is to much for other welding so now I swap back and forth.

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