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Stick Welding Basics

Stick Welding Hints & Tips

Always read and follow the safety precautions and operational instructions in your owner's manual.

1. Take precautions with flying materials when chipping slag.
2. Keep electrodes clean and dry - follow manufacturer's recommendations.
3. Common steel electrodes: (Refer to Diagram 8. Recommended Stick Electrodes)
4. Penetration: DCEN - Least penetration, AC - medium (can be more spatter also), DCEP - most penetration.
5. When welding a fillet, the leg of the weld should be equal to the thickness of the parts welded. (Refer to Diagram 10. Recommended Fillet Weld Thickness)
Recommended Stick Electrodes
6. To set your amperage control, first determine recommended amp range for your electrode type and diameter. Then pick an amperage within the range based on your metal thickness (thinner metal, less amps). (Refer to Diagram 7. Example of Good and Bad Stick Welds)

Scratch Start Technique
Drag electrode across workpiece like striking a match; lift electrode slightly after touching work. If arc goes out, electrode was lifted too high. If electrode sticks to workpiece, use a quick twist to free it.
1. Electrode
2. Workpiece
3. Arc



Tapping Technique
Bring electrode straight down to workpiece; then lift slightly to start arc. If arc goes out, electrode was lifted too high. If electrode sticks to workpiece, use a quick twist to free the electrode.
1. Electrode
2. Workpiece
3. Arc


See Also:

FIVE TIPS TO IMPROVE STICK WELDING
Principles of SMAW (Stick) Welding Handbook (PDF)
Understanding a Welder's Personality

Stick Welding - Printable Version (0.46 MB, 1 min 9 sec at 56kb/s)