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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    18

    Default TIG shielding gas alternatives

    I am TIG welding stainless and am using 100% Argon. I will run out of my argon over the weekend.

    I have two cylinders of an argon + helium blend that I use on stainless using MIG.
    Will this blended gas work with TIG welding stainless? The term "heli-arc" is synonymous with TIG welding but I am un-sure if this will work.

    Thanks guys!

    Tom

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Ukiah, Ca
    Posts
    280

    Default

    It should work just fine. The arc will be hotter with the helium blend, so lower your settings.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    18

    Default

    Thank you Bob!

    That's what I was wanting to hear

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    265

    Default

    Is that gas a tri-mix with CO2?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    18

    Default

    Argon and helium only.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Las Vegas Nevada
    Posts
    132

    Default

    Bob, can you explain to a novice why the arc will be hotter with Helium? Less dense gas allows a stronger arc??
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    388

    Default

    From "The Miller Tig Handbook" available in pdf format on this site.- Meltedmetal

    Unlike argon, helium has high thermal conductivity. Due to
    this higher thermal conductivity, the arc column expands,
    reducing current density in the arc. The arc column will
    become wider and more flared out than the arc column with
    argon shielding gas. Figure 4.13 illustrates the two arc
    columns. The more flared out the arc column, the more work
    surface area is being heated. The heat at the center of the arc
    can move more readily downward toward the colder metal
    at the bottom of the workpiece. This results in a deeper
    penetrating arc. Figure 4.13 also illustrates the resultant weld
    beads and the difference in penetration produced by argon
    and helium.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    18

    Default update

    Well I tried the argon & helium mix. I works but is much hotter.

    I slipped up and didn't realize I was on my last bottle.

    I am definitely used to 100% argon.

    Thanks,

    Tom

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