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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    5

    Default Newbie here, I can't see where I'm going. I don't see my line/mark... what to do ?

    Hi. I have about an 2 hours of diy training with my Thunderbolt ac/dc. I now try to make nice welds on a flat surface. I marked the steel with a welder chalk. but when I weld I don't see my mark at all. and I end up going everywhere... what is the cause or what to do plz . yes my mask lens is pitted. I just ordered a new shade #9 one
    how do you keep an straigh weld please?
    thanks
    stef

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Northern Arizona
    Posts
    468

    Default

    Practice! Sometimes it helps to do a few dry runs with the hood up to keep it straight. When I was a newbie I got a big thick plate and just burned it back and forth trying to keel it straight. Learning to watch the puddle but also the things around the puddle during the weld.

    Good luck!
    MillerMatic 251
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  3. #3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by herbeapuce View Post
    Hi. I have about an 2 hours of diy training with my Thunderbolt ac/dc. I now try to make nice welds on a flat surface. I marked the steel with a welder chalk. but when I weld I don't see my mark at all. and I end up going everywhere... what is the cause or what to do plz . yes my mask lens is pitted. I just ordered a new shade #9 one
    how do you keep an straigh weld please?
    thanks
    stef
    It sounds like you have a vision problem. I had the same problem when I went through school. I couldn't see the joint. I had nice beads, but they were all over the place. Try putting a cheater lens in your hood. If that doesn't work you may need glasses. If you can't see the lines you make with a soap stone-you will have a real problem seeing a butt joint.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    570

    Default

    could be your lens, I have a cheepo I can't see thru. the cheater is a good option or just some department store reading glasses.

    if you have light entering from the back of your hood it can cause a reflective glare and cause problems. you'll need to see to keep straight and even then practice like they say a lot.

    I read somewhere where a strong light on your work can help, been meaning to try that with very low amp Tig welding.

    make sure your not blocking you line of sight with your hands or rod.

    the dry runs mentioned is always good and lets you see how soon you will run out of position before you start. focus on running the puddle dead center of your mark when u get seeing fixed.

    maybe try some small circles or weaves so your actually controlling the rod instead of being stiff and trying to just hold it all in one line. kind of like holding the steering wheel, if your stiff and tight you'll run out of the road,,, if loose and moving it your continually correcting and staying in the road.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    East Tenn
    Posts
    148

    Default Newbie here, I can't see where I'm going. I don't see my line/mark... what to do ?

    My son complained about the same thing when he started. I just put my halogen work light to the side and light up his workpiece like times square. He no longer complains about not seeing anything, it's just how darn hot the lights are.
    Main thing is to get nice(not expensive) equipment, maintain it and burn burn burn. Btw, with your #9 shade be careful using higher amps. If you stop after a rod or three and you see white spots after you blink you will need a darker lens. Lowes has a variable shade auto darkening hood with a 3yr warranty for $85. It's a good hood for the money and you can lighten or darken it up as much as you need.
    Good luck Herb!!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    5

    Default

    all right thanks guy for your help

    -regarding cheaters, what magnification do you recommand ? ( btw I didn`t know a cheater exists)... I do wear my prescription glasses when i weld

    - yes there was light coming from the back of my mask, as I was practicing outide. I will try to block the light with a rag or someting

    - to protect my new shade to come from the splatters, do you know if there is something cheap and easy to find I could put in front, other than glass or what they sell at the welding supplier store. like something I could find easely at a hardware store or dollar store. I am cheap plus I have to mail order most of the stuff....

    off topic now, I welded 6011 and 7013 with the stick in the negatif yesterday. last night I saw a video where the teacher said use the stick in the positif. of course,I will try that later this week. just curious...do you think it will be much different or maybe easier to weld ( not to see the line) ?and my vertical welds were prettty horrible ,

    all right thank you again.

    stef

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    54

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by herbeapuce View Post
    -regarding cheaters, what magnification do you recommand ?
    Go to a place with a display of reading glasses, like Walgreen's, et al, and try different strengths and find one to your liking, unless your prescriptions are better for close work. You can get a cheater of that strength
    - yes there was light coming from the back of my mask, as I was practicing outide. I will try to block the light with a rag or someting
    Good idea

    - to protect my new shade to come from the splatters, do you know if there is something cheap and easy to find I could put in front,
    You can find plastic cover plates to protect your colored lens. These are usually available at hardware stores that sell welding equipment. Just toss and replace when needed.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    British Columbia
    Posts
    242

    Default

    Try drawing your target line and also a parallel line about a quarter to half inch away. Having the second line should help you relate to what's going on. An alternative would be to use a suitable straight edge and grind a slight groove to follow. The ground line shows up better and doesn't burn off.

  9. #9

    Default

    be careful using a rag. I used a towel to block light when I started out. The towel caught on fire one day. Talk about being a hot head. Now I use leather to completely block all light coming in from the back of the helmet. Works really good when you have a light source or reflective surfaces behind you (white walls, sheetmetal walls, etc).

    Take a look at this:

    http://www.elliottaustralia.com/BRN2...et-Nape/pd.php

    I got one of these, works pretty good. Had to sew additional leather on it to make it longer/wider. Blocks all light coming in front behind now. Can see a joint using a fixed 12 shade.

    I live in the US. Had to order one from Austrialia. Took about 2 weeks to get here.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    98

    Default

    Hood time and bury your face in there! Or you can practice on thick plate and start on the edge so all your follow up passes will be up against a straight line. Oh and dont start if you've been drinking beer all day lol.

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