First TIG welds in Aluminum, feedback please
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Phoenix, AZ
    Posts
    6

    First TIG welds in Aluminum, feedback please

    Today was my first day welding aluminum. I have very little TIG experience - mostly MIG with some stick and some Oxy/Acetylene brazing.

    I tried on some C channel, about 3/32" thick, 1" x 1/2", and the results were horrible - like, break the internet horrible, so I cut some scrap 1/8" aluminum into 5" x 5" squares and tried some practice beads. Here is my result.

    I was using 3/32" 2% Lanthanated Tungsten, 3/32 ER4043 filler, and about 110 amps. I was using a #7 cup, with about 15cfh on the argon (100% argon).

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    I left space between each pass, so the first passes are the odd rows, and my 2nd attempt is the even rows. Between the two passes I quenched and wire brushed.

    I figure I have at least a hundred more of these before I can do anything with decent consistency, so I'd appreciate any specific feedback. That last pass, I was running low on filler rod and tried to use too short of piece and things got ugly.

    Thanks
    Lee
    Last edited by LeeG; 09-14-2017 at 01:39 AM. Reason: Added filler type

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    1,536

    Re: First TIG welds in Aluminum, feedback please

    Those look good for a first day alright.

    I think you're ready for some joints, which is where welding begins, i.e., joining pieces.
    Peace to you all,
    Christian Livingstone

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    Everlast 210EXT AC/DC (2015)
    CAT250D 200 amp DC TIG/Stick/Plasma

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    2,718

    Re: First TIG welds in Aluminum, feedback please

    You were clearly overheating the plate on your second pass. Allow the base metal to cool a bit every 3rd or 4th bead. Just a minute ormtwo of cooling. Grind your tungsten or change to a fresh one imediately after you dip it into the aluminum. Dont forget to fill the craters at the end of the weld bead.
    Hobart Handler 190
    Syncrowave 250
    Purox Metalmaster

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    SoCal-LA
    Posts
    8,446

    Re: First TIG welds in Aluminum, feedback please

    You are off to a good start. Taper off your arc at the end while circling the torch some to reduce the crater in the end.
    Weld like a "WELDOR", not a wel-"DERR"
    Miller Dynasty700DX, Dynasty350DX 2ea., Dynasty200DX, ThermalArc 400 GTSW, LincolnSW200 2ea., MillerMatic350P, MillerMatic200 with spoolgun, MKCobraMig260, Lincoln SP-170T,PlasmaCam/Hypertherm 1250

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Posts
    6,147

    Re: First TIG welds in Aluminum, feedback please

    Looks really good for 4043. Try starting with 150 amps. Then back of as need after u get going. Somtimes 1/8" aluminum takes over 240 amps depending on the joint setup and mass of the part.

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