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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    NJ
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    23

    Default Tungsten sharpening

    Hi guys, I'm on the site alot reading , but never posted much. I've been around drag racing for many years now and also race. I do some tig welding in my home shop, have a dedicated grinding wheel for my tungstens and sharpen them vertical to the wheel. I've been in alot of chassis shops (some well known) and see the tungstens held horizontal to the belt sander. The same belt sander they use to debur, remove chrome moly, mildsteel etc. and their welds come out beautiful. Here's the question, what's the right way and does it really matter.
    Last edited by ant1277; 04-05-2008 at 07:25 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Queens NY
    Posts
    1,547

    Default

    I'm a little curious too, i have alays sharpened mine along the length with a belt sander or diamond wheel. recently i started a TIG class and the instructor sharpens his on a grinding wheel that is not dedicated, he uses a slight angle from parallel and has clear spirals. Another welder who is a certified AC welder with over 40 years of experience showed my friend the same technique and makes his point slightly convex. They both use a very long taper. I have always gone by the Miller/diamond ground reccomendations. I wonder if there is any advantage to each method.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    La Porte, Tx.
    Posts
    56

    Default

    We've always used a bench grinder to sharpen the tungsten, personally I point my tungsten up into the wheel, resting my hands on the table, I also use a twist drill holder to grip the tung. and rotate it.

    I like to take mine to a fairly decent needle point, also when sharpening with the point "up" into the wheel the material removed goes away from the finished point instead of down and collecting on the point if you held the tung. down.

    Holding the tung. level/ perpendicular to the wheel is the way I use to do it, but I found I could do a better job vertically.
    pull-do

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    National City CA
    Posts
    1,086

    Default

    The text book answer is grind it in the direction of the rod not perpendicular to the rod.
    But it comes down to this One is the grit of the abrasive you are using. Too course will foul things up either way you grind it. so if there is a fine enough abrasive it wont matter much. Then there is the matter of what you are welding and how many amps you are using. The more power put through the tungsten the less the grind matters.

    Either way I use a bench grinder and grind it like the book shows, Inline with the rod and always finish it up on the fine wheel.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    621

    Default

    I am ready to get a freakin' Sharpie. I spend way to much time grinding my tungsten. I guess I don't have a steady enough hand but it's been years since I last sat at a table.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Lake of the Ozarks MO
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    Default

    Here is my take on tungsten grinding technique...the shape matters more than the method.
    Once you get so good that the only area you could improve your welds is the little inconsistencies in your tungsten surface then you would be wise to spend your time on that.


    I have laid down some of my best beads ever, that nobody will ever see, using a 4 1/2" grinder loaded with aluminum with one hand and tungsten in the other because I was simply too wore out to crawl out from under the boat on a trailer and use a better method. SAFE? NO! PERFECT SHAPE? NO!
    BUT... perfect enuff to get done and get paid

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  7. #7

    Default

    http://millerwelds.com/education/tec...ps/setup.html\

    There information is itself on this site you just need to look for it. I myself have a wheel that all it is for is shaping nothing more. Vert or horiz. Makes a big difference when your welding AC in my experience DC its makes a difference but for myself not noticeable. For the guys using Flapper wheel or belt sander you stop preppin your welding material as well cause your loading your tung with what ever is on the belt of flapper so why put forth the effort for a clean weld when you cant go the extra step in your tung prep.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Lake of the Ozarks MO
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    3,558

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Champagneracing View Post
    http://millerwelds.com/education/tec...ps/setup.html\

    There information is itself on this site you just need to look for it. I myself have a wheel that all it is for is shaping nothing more. Vert or horiz. Makes a big difference when your welding AC in my experience DC its makes a difference but for myself not noticeable. For the guys using Flapper wheel or belt sander you stop preppin your welding material as well cause your loading your tung with what ever is on the belt of flapper so why put forth the effort for a clean weld when you cant go the extra step in your tung prep.
    You really aren't that far off...There are loads of times I don't do hardly ANY prep whatsoever on the base material. AC cleans good enuff to lay down acceptable welds in many situations. Not everything is the freakin' space shuttle and not everybody is willing to pay you to screw around with laying perfect beads. They just want it to be welded strong and look reasonably well at a reasonable price.
    There are many times I have gotten everything absolutely perfect only to dip tungsten right off the bat
    I can get as persnickity as anybody...but....I only get paid for the jobs I finish. I normally sharpen both ends of my tungsten in a cordless with a dedicated bench grinder btw.
    I still have a ton of work from as far back as November left to do. Every stinkin' time the sun shines my phone goes crazy. My customers LOVE my dirty unprepped welding
    Truth is if I could weld things and make them look as tho they had NEVER been welded (ie undisturbed patina) I could charge a bunch more

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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oahu, Hawaii
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    2,469

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FusionKing View Post
    I have laid down some of my best beads ever, that nobody will ever see,
    Awww...c'mon....
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Austin, TX
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    621

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    Quote Originally Posted by FusionKing View Post
    I have laid down some of my best beads ever, that nobody will ever see, using a 4 1/2" grinder loaded with aluminum with one hand and tungsten in the other because I was simply too wore out to crawl out from under the boat on a trailer and use a better method. SAFE? NO! PERFECT SHAPE? NO!
    BUT... perfect enuff to get done and get paid
    x2 on the pics. I cannot visualize this, and now I'm curious.
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