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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    14

    Default Some help with grounding my welding table (Ideas please)

    I would like to ground my welding table (not just make it part of the weld circuit).

    Please post your ideas and or pics of how you have your weld table grounded.

    I am going to be welding in a solid concrete and cinder block enclosure (with windows). I can't easily drive a ground rod and tie to that. And I have no water pipes nearby. What other ways are there? I might be able to use a ground from the building circuit, but that is also the same ground as the weld circuit I believe.... so that might negate the whole idea/purpose.

    The weld table is on wheels and I don't believe they conduct electricity. Thus I want to make sure the table has a good ground (don't want the ground to be "me").

    Thanks for any input....
    Last edited by cybordolphin; 11-10-2010 at 11:15 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles
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    1,163

    Default

    In all my years of welding I have never heard of running a separate ground from the table to earth. In some cases you will not use the table, so what's the point?

    But then I don't use ground rods either.
    Nothing welded, Nothing gained

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Evansville, IN
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    2,348

    Default

    Generally if your working on static sensative things like electronics that is necessary. However the welding circuit is not always ground negative, sometimes it maybe ground posative and not in any way related to an earth ground causing more issues than helping.

    I am referring to tig operations and hi-frequency.

    I am uncertain what your intent but I think your over thinking the issues.
    Peace,
    Paul

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Central Fla.
    Posts
    311

    Default

    I've never seen a grounded welding table. Doesn't mean they don't exist, however. Both of my tables sit on wood floors and are not grounded and I've never had a problem. Just have to watch my sparks.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Northern Adirondack Mountains
    Posts
    7

    Default Grounding Equipment and High Frequency interference of computer and stereo.

    I am not quit sure why you would want to ground your welding table. Perhaps I missed something in the instructions for my welding equipment.

    But ....

    The cheap MP3 player I have jacked into the stereo in my shop goes bonkers and reboots when the High Frequency from my TIG machine kicks in. Happens with the Plasma Cutter too.

    I have a copper coated ground rod outside the garage by the service panel but have considered driving another one outside adjacent to the wall where my welding table is and then connecting it directly to the 50 amp receptacle that I plug my machines into. I wonder if connecting it to the welding table and the steel cabinet my equipment is in would help limit some of the HF interference.

    If this HF hammers my MP3 player, I'm sure the laptop computer is also having to fend the HF off.

    There is a difference between an earth ground and the circuit ground clamp on your welding machine. Though at times they might be the same. And then there is the ground in the electrical receptacle which is tied eventually to the earth ground which is also tied to the neutral line in your service panel (Breaker Box). The "ground" that you stand on in your garage is probably not conducting to the earth ground unless it is wet. There is no way to simply and safely explain this in a blog post. I always pull out my book which explains how to wire circuits properly and according to code. So far I am still alive.

    Part of the purpose of having a grounding scheme is to keep stray electrons from traveling through you. If you are barefoot in a water puddle or touching your hand on a grounded welding table while holding a broken electrical tool, that is more of a chance for the current to go through you first. So maybe I will just put an extra earth ground to my 50 amp equipment receptacle and forgo earth grounding the table.

    I would suggest that you make sure your shop wiring is up to Electrical Code Specifications and that your machines have properly wired receptacles to plug into.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    2,834

    Default

    http://www.millerwelds.com/om/o353u_mil.pdf


    Check out section 6 for HF Grounding
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    16919 Pole Rd. Brethren, MI 49619
    Posts
    4,376

    Default

    Part of the purpose of having a grounding scheme is to keep stray electrons from traveling through you. If you are barefoot in a water puddle or touching your hand on a grounded welding table while holding a broken electrical tool, that is more of a chance for the current to go through you first. So maybe I will just put an extra earth ground to my 50 amp equipment receptacle and forgo earth grounding the table.
    An extra "earth" ground is not going to help safety
    or touching your hand on a grounded welding table while holding a broken electrical tool,
    especially not in this condition, only a wire back to the panel. In a sense anything metal in this shop that one might be able to come in contact with that has the possibility of becoming energized should be electrically grounded. There is some potential for setting up ground loops for welding currents though so unless this is an engineered deal probably not a good idea to ground table, a good thing would be to use GFCI for any power tools though.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Northern CA, Shasta CO.
    Posts
    144

    Default

    What Miller proposes with their multi-point (mesh) grounding is difficult to maintain, dangerous and a recipe for trouble. In trying to solve a hi-freq problem with the quickest and cheapest method from back in the dark ages they're setting up a scenario where a couple of years down the road you're gonna have ground loops and current flows that'll look like a maze if you mapped them out.

    Reminds me of the situation where the lil woman can't navigate in the kitchen with out getting tingled every time she touches the electric stove and the sink or she gets buzzed if she touches the washing machine while the dryer is running, on-and-on. Issues resulting from what Miller is proposing is exactly why the single point grounding system had to be developed.

    Sometimes you can cause problems when trying to solve problems if you zoom in too close. Ya need to zoom out and look at the overall picture every now and then.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    16919 Pole Rd. Brethren, MI 49619
    Posts
    4,376

    Default

    My benches have 120V on them. I used gfci on this circuit and did not connect ground wire,,, but,,, they are grounded thru steel in the floor which is electrically grounded at the point I have several welding machines work ground connected. I considered many options,, as Sandy pointed out can get tricky. I have 2 benches, one reason I did it this way was I didn't want cords or wire in 120 circuit to become part of the welding path, say from a grounded drill sitting on bench, etc. My building is steel which added some other issues. Most of this is moot with a single bench that doesn't have its own power though.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    25

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sberry View Post
    An extra "earth" ground is not going to help safety especially not in this condition, only a wire back to the panel. In a sense anything metal in this shop that one might be able to come in contact with that has the possibility of becoming energized should be electrically grounded. There is some potential for setting up ground loops for welding currents though so unless this is an engineered deal probably not a good idea to ground table, a good thing would be to use GFCI for any power tools though.
    I am not sure why grounding the table would be a bad idea. We weld on steel in buildings while they are connected and they are bonded to the building's grounding system. I think it is a good safety measure to make sure anything metal with the potential to be energized ( a frayed or melted extension cord hot touches the table for instance) is required to have a bond to the electrical panel ground.

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