As experienced TIG welding gas suppliers, we understand a thing or two about welding. Today, we’re exploring the dos and don’ts of TIG welding so you can make the most of the process and end up with high-quality, visually appealing welds whilst also working safely. So let’s take a closer look at what you should and shouldn’t do when working on a TIG welding project.
DO Prepare Your Weld Surface for Welding
Before starting to weld, you want to make sure that the metal surfaces are ready to be worked on. This includes making sure the metal is the right thickness, that the joints are clean and ready for the weld, that there are no impurities.
DON’T Weld onto a Dirty Surface
As mentioned, part of getting your surfaces ready for TIG welding is ensuring that you’re not working on dirty metal. If you do, then the impurities on the surface will lead to messy or uneven work, which isn’t just unsightly, but can also compromise the quality of the project.
After all, a good weld is necessary to ensure that the final product is sound in terms of quality. Use a brush to remove dirt or dust, sandpaper to even out imperfections, and a cleaner to make sure the metal is ready. When TIG welding, it’s important to choose the right solvent because certain chemicals and products can lead to defects in the weld. Avoid oily products to prevent residue, as that would make it harder to work.
DO Look After Your TIG Welder
Your welder is the most important tool you have, so make sure that you’re storing it properly, cleaning it well and using it correctly. For instance, consider how you’re going to angle it when welding and whether you need to use cooling – this will help you extend the lifespan of the machine and, of course, help you enjoy quality welds for longer.
DON’T Forget Safety Equipment
Never start welding without protecting gear, even if you’re doing something very simple or quick. It only takes a moment for things to go wrong, and you want to be as safe as possible since injuries from welding, including TIG welding, can be life-changing. For this reason, make sure that you wear a helmet, the right gloves, fire retardant clothing, and also extractors to get rid of fumes if you’re working in an enclosed space.
DO Use the Minimum Amount of Power
One think to keep in mind when welding is that you shouldn’t use too much power, since that can damage the weld – keep it controlled and use a small amount to ensure a consistent and strong weld that looks great and is of high quality too.
DON’T Weld When It’s Windy
Of course, this doesn’t apply if you’re working indoors, but if you’re outdoors, avoid working when it’s windy. Not only can it be hazardous, depending on the circumstances, but it can also compromise the quality of the weld. The TIG welding gas will get blown away, leaving your weld irregular and porous.
DO Prepare Your Tungsten Beforehand
Ensure that your tungsten is ready for your TIG welding project; you’ll want to grind it to a point before starting. This is one of the most important steps you can take to ensure a good, solid weld. The tungsten electrode transmits the arc from the welder to the metal, so you’ll want it as sharp as possible. TIG welding uses tungsten electrodes because it can handle high temperatures without melting.
DON’T Go Off Angle
The angle of your torch during TIG welding should be considered, too, as it will lead to a better weld by helping you easily see what you’re doing. Keep the angle to about 15 to 20 degrees away from the metal so that the filler rods have easy access.
DO Mix Helium in Your Argon
If you’re working with thick metals and alloys, using a mix of argon and helium can help minimise porosity and create a stronger, more solid joint, so make sure to check your gases before you start welding. We’re on hand to help with your projects, so let us know if you have questions about any of our bottle gases (or how to use them best).
DON’T Overdo the Welding
If you focus too much on a joint and over-weld it, you’ll be wasting time, filler rods and gases, so it pays to be as efficient as possible, even if you feel tempted to work on a joint several times. It’s not the quantity that counts, but the quality of the weld and, as you do more and more TIG welding, you’ll improve your process and boost your efficiency.
Looking for bottled gas? We have everything you could need at our shop, whether you’re TIG welding and require pure argon gas bottles or need MIG welding gas. Don’t hesitate to speak to a team member today to learn more about our products and how you can benefit from them. Get in touch, and we’ll be happy to help!