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  1. #1

    Default Best way to lay a good weld bead down.

    I'm a newbe and just picked up a millermatic 135. I was wondering whats a good way to lay a good weld bead down.. I was told to do a "c" as i'm laying down the weld by my brother. I just started out on my own just pulling the weld slowly, not doing a "c" or "u" type move. What do you guys suggest.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    So. Cal

    Default Hey there..

    Welcome to the forum and welding. A good bead is the result of many things. Proper voltage/amp settings, wire speed, gas and gas flow are a few things to get right first. Everyone seems to develop their own preference as to the pattern they use for various welds and most of these patterns take into place a sound weld first before beauty. Now that that's out of the way, dive right in playing with different settings (your miller chart that came with your machine is a good starting point) and also patterns. Push/pull, side to side, forward/back and then forward, c pattern and of course my favorite circles. Check out millers resource center for more info and you can also find great resources at your local library. My advice is to concern yourself with a good sound weld, then work on your cosmetics. A good looking weld is essential in appearance work and you don't want an eyesore weld on a custom chopper or the like so after you have dialed in your settings and performed some good welds, then is a good time to start making it pretty.

    Good Luck,

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    New Orleans, LA


    You left out the most important part of making good beads, practice, practice, practice.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    near rochester NY


    practice, practice, practice

    yep, yep, yep.
    i like an S pattern for some uses and a start stop start for others as well as the standard C & U shapes. what you are welding will dictate the motion you chose to some extent. best thing to work on at first is consistency, without that you will never get it. and for that you need practice, practice, practice
    don't let it drive ya nuts, as said above worry first about getting a solid weld then once you know the look of a solid weld you can work on making it look good. if you are too concerned with looking good you will get a great looking weld that wont hold. its easy to get a cold MIG bead that looks great, but dose little to hold. be shore to stay within the limits of your welder.
    thanks for the help
    hope i helped

    feel free to shoot me an e-mail direct i have time to chat.
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  5. #5


    Thanks thats what i'm trying to do is get the setup right on speed and volts.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    North of Phila. PA


    It's not that hard to learn mig. I got along fine for years as a hobby welder with just the basic info I got from the guy at the Carlisle car show that sold me my first mig and what I learned years ago in shop for brazing and gas welding.

    That said I really wished I had taken a basic welding class sooner at the local tech school. I took it to learn stick for a job that I was starting but the info I got helped with the mig to. My instructor is great, he's always ready to help or make suggestion even if I asked about mig problems. I enjoyed the class so much I'm taking Tig just to see what it can do and see if it will solve some of my SS and Al problems that I have running mig. When I'm done with this I'll still probably go back and do his mig class. (Took Tig first since I don't have access to a Tig machine and can snoop on the mig class at the same time and practice what he suggests to them at home on my mig.)

    Look into a class, the money for mine isn't bad for what I'm getting and it's one night a week wish it was more. Practice what you lean in class at home and bring your samples to your instructor with the info on what you did and what the setup was and you'll fly along.

    Good luck.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2008


    Quote Originally Posted by Jolly Roger View Post
    You left out the most important part of making good beads, practice, practice, practice.
    thats exactly what i was going to say
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008


    From another homegrown weekend weldor. Read the book that came with the welder. Set the settings per the book. Get a bunch of scrap and cut it up and then weld it back together in many ways. butt, lap, 90, up, down, overhead, corner, tube and any more you think of. Take your time, get set up and comfortable in a good work space, tools, safety and lighting. Concentrate on good work even when you are "Just messing around". Use your non gun hand to steady the gun. Try and break the welds. If it is not going well go back to the book and recheck the standard methods and settings. Try increasing and decreasing the wire speed to see what happens. Try turning the tap knob up and down to see what happens. Make some too cold bird poop welds, blow some too hot holes through. Start with 1/8 inch stock. It is easy to weld as it is not too thick and not too thin. Once you are making welds that look like in the book and are stronger than the base metal repeat using thicker and thiner stock and add in more positions such as overhead and complications such as getting into a hard to reach corner or the like.

    IMO bead runing or weave type depends on the work at hand as well as user preference. Take thick to thin as an example. I like to set the puddle up on the thicker metal then dart over into the thinner metal pulling the puddle over. Once the puddle fuses into the thiner side I move the wire/arc back into the thicker metal. Might spend 70% of the time on the thicker side. Good bite into the thicker stock less chance of blowing a hole in the thin stuff.

    I do a lot more than I should with my Miller 130XP. It was my first Mig welder and I am used to it. Good welding skills are for a lifetime.
    Weekend wannab racer with some welders.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Scottsdale, AZ


    I too am a hobby welder and I will pass on advice I received from a friend who welds for a living.

    1) Practice all you can

    2) What is important is good welds, welds that are strong and hold.

    3) Good welds do not have to be pretty and pretty does not guarantee good. Pretty gets pretty ugly if it fails.

    4) Grind you welds smooth and look for internal holes or fractures and undercutting on the edges.

    5) Pretty will come with time and practice.

    My friend still surface grinds his visible welds to this day and he has been at it for over 20 years. I asked him why since he lays down such good looking beads. He told me he just likes the way it looks and as he owns his shop he does it his way, but it is time consuming.

    This has proven good advice for me as it very rapidly let me ascertain whether or not my welds were good strong welds. And like my friend I grind my welds down cause I think it looks better and MOST of all so does my wife.
    Scottsdale, AZ

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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Near Great Smokies Ntl. Park


    Best way to do practice a lot, will make you good welder...............
    Quote Originally Posted by 68 bowtie View Post
    I'm a newbe and just picked up a millermatic 135. I was wondering whats a good way to lay a good weld bead down.. I was told to do a "c" as i'm laying down the weld by my brother. I just started out on my own just pulling the weld slowly, not doing a "c" or "u" type move. What do you guys suggest.
    MillerMatic 211

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