need help - aluminium on DC electrode
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  1. #1

    need help - aluminium on DC electrode

    He fellas - bought some 3/32 and 1/8 auminium electrode sticks on amazon.. Tried some this evening - what a mess.. Experimented between 55 and 85 amps.. had positive electrode, seems others have had much better luck than i have:

    http://hildstrom.com/projects/stickaluminum/

    Every time I get the arc started it dies and the tip is full of flux (scrape off on coarse stone / try again - same thing).. I might try angle the stick forward instead of dragging it like stick..

    and the most current review on amazon for the same sticks reads:

    "This is fantastic. Everyone says you need fancy equipment to weld aluminum. It is just not true. This stuff works great with (DC electrode +). In only have an AC buzz box and thought I'd give it a try. It doesn't work. You can not keep an arch with an AC machine. I rented a DC welder for $35 and it worked perfectly. I was amazed. I am not a good welder and it because of that, it didn't work perfect, but it sticks. I am sure a good welder could lay a great bead with this stuff."

    Product link here:

    http://a.co/d/0P66VCF

    My welder is a little CT-312 110v inverter DC welder -

    any help appreciated! Im plugged into a 30a socket (no leads), clean ground clamps / etc.. Thing is my test piece was a volvo penta boat exhaust, not sure if they used some special alloy perhaps - not that I would even know where to begin -

    If i could get ANYTHING as close to this guys welds id be more than happy -

    Name:  3564967441_9fcf9e67b0.jpg
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    Last edited by SavedInChrist; 10-04-2018 at 11:10 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    SE Nebraska
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    668

    Re: need help - aluminium on DC electrode

    I have never used it myself. I have TIG and spool guns so no need for it. Even in the field I'll run my spool gun off of my Trailblazer. However I have seen the outcome of my customers attempting to use them when I can't get there soon enough. The end result always costs them significantly more money. I have yet to see any attempt that had even a gimmir of hope. I honestly would question if that weld was indeed welded with stick.

    One thing to possibly consider is if it's your welder. I know some of the small cheaper inverters don't like 6010, it might be possible they don't like aluminum electrodes either?

    Best of luck!
    -Doogie

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Bemidji MN
    Posts
    13,528

    Re: need help - aluminium on DC electrode

    Mostly I believe you're not using enough amps for the 1/8" rod. I haven't used 3/32" in aluminum.

    In general, if you are near the bottom of the range for a given rod, it's harder to keep it lit.

    Since aluminum stick welding is generally more difficult to do well anyway, using too little amps compounds the problem.

    Although I can stick weld aluminum, I do not like to. Greatly prefer tig, my push-pull gun, or a spool gun - in that order.
    Dave J.

    Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance. ~George Bernard Shaw~

    Airco 300 - Syncro 350
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    Tried being normal once, didn't take....I think it was a Tuesday.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    new york city
    Posts
    5,908

    Re: need help - aluminium on DC electrode

    i've used aluminum stick several times as a very last resort. i couldn't ever make welds to brag about but got the pieces to hold. bad appearance and lots of splatter was typical.
    i.u.o.e. # 15
    queens, ny and sunny fla

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Near Traverse City, Mi.
    Posts
    237

    Re: need help - aluminium on DC electrode

    I tried some, standing on my work barge under a large aluminum boat house structure thing. Used a buddys engine drive. I found that preheating the area to be welded helped a lot. It got the job done.
    Miller Dynasty 280 DX, Lincoln 210 MP

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Western New York State, USA
    Posts
    1,732

    Re: need help - aluminium on DC electrode

    Quote Originally Posted by SavedInChrist View Post
    He fellas - bought some 3/32 and 1/8 auminium electrode sticks on amazon.. Tried some this evening - what a mess.. Experimented between 55 and 85 amps.. had positive electrode, seems others have had much better luck than i have:

    http://hildstrom.com/projects/stickaluminum/

    Every time I get the arc started it dies and the tip is full of flux (scrape off on coarse stone / try again - same thing).. I might try angle the stick forward instead of dragging it like stick..

    and the most current review on amazon for the same sticks reads:

    "This is fantastic. Everyone says you need fancy equipment to weld aluminum. It is just not true. This stuff works great with (DC electrode +). In only have an AC buzz box and thought I'd give it a try. It doesn't work. You can not keep an arch with an AC machine. I rented a DC welder for $35 and it worked perfectly. I was amazed. I am not a good welder and it because of that, it didn't work perfect, but it sticks. I am sure a good welder could lay a great bead with this stuff."

    Product link here:

    http://a.co/d/0P66VCF

    My welder is a little CT-312 110v inverter DC welder -

    any help appreciated! Im plugged into a 30a socket (no leads), clean ground clamps / etc.. Thing is my test piece was a volvo penta boat exhaust, not sure if they used some special alloy perhaps - not that I would even know where to begin -

    If i could get ANYTHING as close to this guys welds id be more than happy -

    Name:  3564967441_9fcf9e67b0.jpg
Views: 296
Size:  90.8 KB
    .
    1) you might be having a welding machine issue. some machines especially if plugged into 120 volts have a open circuit arc voltage drop trying to run over 50 amps. never going to weld that good if you got a poor welding machine setup
    .
    2) aluminum stick like all sticks rods but more so there is a minimum rod size for thickness to be welded. usually use 1/8 stick rod to weld 1/8 thick material. for thicker you use bigger rod or preheat or use TIG and the rod as filler. usually if welding 1/8 thick with Tig you often are over 200 amps. so trying to stick weld at less than 100 amps of course you would have lack of heat
    .
    3) aluminum stick rod has a narrow amp range above a certain point you melt rod more than transfer heat to part
    .
    4) arc start many pull a slightly long arc starting and do a circle to try to warm start up other wise the arc starts are easy to be cold.
    .
    5) aluminum stick rod is never easy. reason they sell 3/32 and 1/8 is cause with a Tig or Oxyactelyene torch many just use it as filler rod flux and all. if somebody wanted 5/32 or 3/16" aluminum stick rod normally the would just get a mig and argon and use 200 amps mig welding

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