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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    5

    Default tig welding sheet metal

    hi everyone new to the forums and new to tig. i have a new synchrowave 200 and i am currently attempting to fill the holes in the sheetmetal fire wall in my car. the gauges range from 18-22. i have adjusted the amps from 10 to 35, tried the pulse feature (no luck??), im using 2% tungsten size .040, 1/4"-3/8" cup, argon set at 20psig with 3 second post flow. having a lot of difficulty with burn through. just wondering where i should set the machine up for this size material. am i on the right track?? any tips for a beginner?? i have gotten a decent grip on thicker material 1/8" and thicker. thanks in advance for any advice.
    matt

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    132

    Default

    I think your gas flow is too high for starters.

    You don't say how big the holes are. How big are they?

    Try backing up the holes with some copper before welding. Get something heavy to lean up against the inside of the holes to hold the copper there.

    I slit copper pipe and flatten it out with a hammer to make copper backing strips. Heat it up w/ your tig torch and let it cool down. It'll be very soft and bend to any shape.

    Make sure the metal is clean. Start the arc a bit from the edge and move in, watching everything carefully.

    You might practice by getting some sheet metal and drilling the same sized holes in it, and go from there.

    Good luck,

    James

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    5

    Default

    the holes i am trying to fill with just filler rod are 1/4"-1'2". anything bigger i am cutting new metal and attempting to weld in. what should the gas be set at? i will definitely try a piece of copper behind the welds. thanks

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    132

    Default

    A 1/2" hole is pretty big. You should probably cut some metal to fill that.

    Depending on what you're doing, you could just back up the hole w/ sheet metal and weld it, then skim w/ filler before painting.

    I'd go down to 10 cfh on the gas.


    -James

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Ocean City, Maryland
    Posts
    951

    Default

    Filling a 1/2" hole in 18-22 ga sheet metal takes alot more practice than say a piece of 1/8". No room for being to hot Your going to need small filler as well. sometimes I just pull some off the mig. .035" and use that. It woudl be easier to cut a small plug and weld around it. Good luck and welcome here
    Scott
    HMW [Heavy Metal welding]

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Batavia, NY
    Posts
    159

    Default

    I think the best advice has already been given. Cut some sheet metal to fill the 1/2" holes, and on the smaller holes I like the idea of a backer material. Just for the record 20 CFH (not psig) is not too high for TIG. In fact I wouldn't go much lower. Normal TIG gas flow ranges are 15-25CFH for argon and higher (35-45 CFH) for helium or helium/argon mixtures. This is ofcourse with standard collet body/cup set-up.

    Let us know how you make out.
    Rich Ferguson
    Sales Technician
    Jackson Welding Supply Co.
    "Keep America Strong.....Weld It"
    www.jacksonweldingsupply.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    132

    Default

    I do a bunch of short welds on square aluminum tubing coming together at all sorts of angles.

    I get popping because of turbulent gas flow I think. At the edge of the tubing I'm trying to shove the filler in, the arc burns off my filler too soon and it'll keep popping as long as I try to put it in. I have to then change angles.

    -James

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Camden, SC
    Posts
    156

    Thumbs up Super-Heated Gas Has To Have SOMEWHERE To Go...

    Quote Originally Posted by jamscal View Post
    I do a bunch of short welds on square aluminum tubing coming together at all sorts of angles.

    I get popping because of turbulent gas flow I think. At the edge of the tubing I'm trying to shove the filler in, the arc burns off my filler too soon and it'll keep popping as long as I try to put it in. I have to then change angles.

    -James
    James, I doubt your popping has as much to do with turbulent shielding gas flow as it does with air/gas resistance flowing through your square tubing and then "blowing up" or "blowing back" into your puddle and onto your tungsten as you weld your seams closed.

    Either try back-gassing your tube (if ultra-clean looks are important) or try drilling a super-small hole somewhere along the tubing to let super-heated air and gas expand/escape as you're closing in your welds.

    One of the aerospace guys on here probably has something else that will work but that's a common problem for me when TIG'ing on aluminum tubes in rails or towers or sponsons on boats.

    ~Clint

    Clint Baxley
    Baxley Welding Service
    Rembert, SC 29128

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Deltaville, VA
    Posts
    2,239

    Default

    Nails,

    You've gotten some good advice here. Know it's all a lot to absorb at one time. I'll try to summarize and then make a couple of recommendations.

    Tungsten-2% Thoriated is good.
    Cup size is fine.
    20 CFH Argon gas flow is fine.
    18-22 ga material-challenging for experienced/intimidating for beginner.
    Copper spoon/backing plate almost essential.
    1/2" hole-about as big as you want to tackle.

    Get good ground as close as possible to work.
    Start with clean, reground tungsten. Popping, I suspect, is coming from a contaminated tungsten.
    As Clint suggested, start your puddle off the edge of the hole. Use your filler to control the puddle (.035 Mig wire works well). Move in a circular motion around the hole adding filler almost continuiously to keep the heat down. The more filler you can get in the more "heat sink" you create. Move pretty quickly til hole is filled. If that's not working for you, try doing short runs and stop. That will let the weld cool.

    The one thing I didn't see listed was whether you are using a remote control for your amps (footpedal or fingertip control). This would make your life a lot easier. You can then get your puddle started and then back off on the amps as heat builds in the weld. Without it you have to control the puddle with filler or by stopping the weld and allowing it to "freeze".

    Hope this helps some. Practice, Practice, Practice.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    5

    Default

    thanks for the replys guys, i am using a synchrowave 200 which i believe has the square wave technology. i am having better luck today, switched to a 1/16" 2% tungsten with a 1/2" cup, and i am using .040" filler rod and i am now seeing the puddle better. on the 22 gauge i have the amps set at 24, and on the 18 gauge i have the amps set at 34, i am using a foot pedal and i am by my self so not sure what the actual amps are im getting to. i have had the argon set at 20cfh all day with no problems, then all of a sudden the arc was very erratic and backed up into the cup and rounded my tungsten what causes this??? thanks

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