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Ready to start TIG welding!

threewood

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I've had my Miller Multimatic 215 for a couple years and I finally got some filler rods and a huge tank of argon to start playing with it. I ordered the tig kit when I ordered the welder.

I'm going to practice on some scrap steel in prep for a Cetme C rifle I am building from a sheetmetal flat.

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I've had my Miller Multimatic 215 for a couple years and I finally got some filler rods and a huge tank of argon to start playing with it. I ordered the tig kit when I ordered the welder.

I'm going to practice on some scrap steel in prep for a Cetme C rifle I am building from a sheetmetal flat.

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Not sure how familiar you are with TIG welding, you're going to love the results, so much cleaner! But if you're running a dry torch just keep in mind the heat build up. It's easy to get into the job (stacking dimes) and forget about how hot the torch/handle is getting. :thumbsup:
 
TIG and hot rolled metal don't get along. You need to remove the mill scale before welding. In my experience on hot rolled, you can still get issues even after removing the scale. Looks like 4th of July fireworks, contaminates the Tungsten/ gas cup/ collet. Use either cold rolled or if available in your area, PNO which is pickled and oiled hot rolled. It's hot rolled metal but they run it through an acid bath to remove the scale, then gets oiled for protection. Thats what we used in our TIG class. Priced between hot and cold. Whatever you weld on has to be CLEAN of contaminates/rust/corrosion etc. You can use brake clean, acetone and some others to clean but it's imperative you let it dry for awhile before welding. If you dive right on it before evaporation, you create Phosgene gas. Aka, nerve agent. Way bad news. Alcohol is safer to use but still let it get evaporated. It's a good idea to have separate wire brushes for each type of metal you plan on welding. I use wood handled ones so I can mark steel, aluminum, stainless etc. Use stainless brushes. TIG is sensitive to cross contamination so don't use a steel brush on aluminum etc. Scrub the tar out of whatever you plan on welding.
 
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Yes. Dry torch. I plan on welding up steel flat bending jig out of some scrap metal. The receiver I'll be welding on is cold rolled and stamped.
 
Right off the bat I need to get smaller filler wire. I have 3/32 and it just wasn't melting into the puddle at the amps I needed for the thickness of the steel. I did get some good non filler rod welds on a practice plate and on a butt joint. Still a bit of learning curve on what will work and getting use to it. Practice practice practice.

Butt joint with 3/32 E70s-2 filler rod
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Butt weld w/o filler rod
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Unless you are lucky, its takes time to master. I thought it would be like gas welding but with an extra input. NOPE. I ended up doing some classes in 15/16 to learn. My wife wanted to learn how to weld so we both signed up for the basic which was stick, mig and tig. Stick I already knew from before, mig learned by just doing but welcomed actual classroom instruction. Did make advancements there. Tig was what I wanted mostly. The next semester I took Tig only. It's like shooting for me, must do a lot and over and over to get good at it. There were some kids there, I was late 50's then, that were just laying down these beautiful welds. They too were just starting to learn. Ffn disgusting! I asked them, what did you do, sleep with that thing? Like those gifted people who have never shot in their lives, other than a vid arcade, but rip bullseyes without any effort. See if anyone around you can give instruction or even classes at a JC.
Another thing I found then is that my eyes need more light to see what I'm doing when welding. I was using a Miller elite at the class but kept frying the SS with too much heat as it was hard to see the weld pool. When I saw it, it was too late. One day at the class I asked another student if I could try his new Lincoln unit to see if I had a helmet problem. Not much difference so I asked the substitute instructor if I could try his old Speedglass unit. BINGO! The Miller was blocking too much of the light coming in even on the lowest setting. Did some research and found out about a helmet from Optrel. On the WELDUSA website, they talked about it and that it was more true view coming in with less blocked light. I called and talked to the sales gal about what I was experiencing with my Miller and she said the Optrel would be a benefit. So I got it and it was. Started off with the Vega View 2.5 then later got the E684 unit which had improvements over the Vega. They are spendy but for me worth it. So if you have a chance to check out other units to compare to yours, do so. It may help. And I do wear readers behind the helmet since when I Tig, I get real close so I can concentrate and see.
 
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Listen to CKESSEL ! All good valuable information ! I couldn't have said it any better
No applause, just throw money.:lol:
Some other stuff I forgot. On the tungstens, you can get various types. There are a couple that make them somewhat universal for use on aluminum, steel and stainless. Check out WELDUSA site for more info. When sharpening, use a dedicated tungsten only wheel. Otherwise you contaminate it. I have a couple of diamond wheels on my Baldor motor. Price wasn't bad. Twirl them around like a pencil when sharpening with the point facing up. There are sharpeners available but are pricey. I've used my cordless drill, with the tungsten in the chuck, to slowly spin the unit when sharpening. And don't put a lot of force on it when sharpening.
 
I will be getting my tig up and running very soon. I'll be following along.
 
No applause, just throw money.:lol:
Some other stuff I forgot. On the tungstens, you can get various types. There are a couple that make them somewhat universal for use on aluminum, steel and stainless. Check out WELDUSA site for more info. When sharpening, use a dedicated tungsten only wheel. Otherwise you contaminate it. I have a couple of diamond wheels on my Baldor motor. Price wasn't bad. Twirl them around like a pencil when sharpening with the point facing up. There are sharpeners available but are pricey. I've used my cordless drill, with the tungsten in the chuck, to slowly spin the unit when sharpening. And don't put a lot of force on it when sharpening.
Done. Brand new wheel and I have been turning it in my drill. I have 1/16 E70 on order. No one has it in stock local. I did practice more today. Moving from R to L, dipping at the edge of the puddle. I used a steel wire as filler rod from a wire marking flag lol but it worked.

I switched from remote pedal control to set controls. Running between 50a and 60a seems to do the trick on 14ga metal. The 215 is a lift start. Gas is at 17.

I can see the puddle well at 10 shade. Distance from workpiece needs work as I tend to lift as I move. I like that I have better control with this as opposed to mig.
 
Bent up my receiver flat today in my homemade jig. Going to become a semi auto Cetme rifle. All the seams will get tig welded and the barrel trunion will get rosette welded.
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Tig is better on sheetmetal than mig as you can control the heat with the pedal. The weld is softer too. Its a pain though when what your welding doesn't have good access for you to work all of your appendages. Sometimes you get really contorted just to work the pedal. Some machines have an option where there is a finger control on the torch. Miller has that and it's like the pedal, cool it down or heat it up. On my Eastwood, not so. Its either on or off.
On the filler rod, you can use the wire from your mig too. I scored several Sprint Car torsion bar storage tubes some years ago from the shop I used to work at down south. They are adjustable in length. Going to use those for the various filler materials, will mark them for contents. The stuff I have will all get tossed since it was in damp storage for 3+ years, don't want problems. I did pick up some 319L stainless. That I'll use for the O2 bungs, stainless, for welding to the mild steel headers when its time. It's been since 01/20 since I've done any Tig, so the bungs may be interesting. At least I can get at them easy. The shop I was working at had a 210 Dynasty only, no other means of sticking stuff together. Bitchin machine. Want one but way too expensive for me. My Eastwood is very basic but its at least ac/dc.
 
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