TIG Aluminium troubles
RSS | Subscribe | Contact Us | Advertise | About Us
Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Posts
    14

    TIG Aluminium troubles

    Hi guys,

    I keep running into a situation where I try to run a bead and really struggle with it, in every way possible. If I go and grind it flush, or dig a bit of it out if it's a fillet, I can then weld over it again and put a perfect bead down with nice little stacked puddles. What the heck am I doing so wrong that I can't do it the first time?

    I quite often get the arc biasing to one piece or the other piece, creating a puddle on one side only. Why does this happen what are you supposed to do here? I try to bridge it with filler which gets the job done but it doesn't look good.

    Otherwise I'm just having contamination issues. I've cleaned it as best as I can, brand new wire brush and acetone wipe down, same with the filler. It's 6061 and I'm welding with 5356. I get the typical black oxidation, cracking/popping, or the wrinkly skin forming on balled up rubbish. Or I get a shiny spot under the tungsten as I should and I go to dab with filler and the filler balls up before I even get close. I know this screams torch angle but I've played around with this too I feel like I'm holding a drinking straw sometimes. I've tried upping and lowering the clean cycle, diff frequencies etc. Sometimes the only thing I can do is struggle along putting weld on both surfaces anyway I can, then flap disc it, then go over it with a pretty bead but I sure would like to stop double handling stuff!

    Below is some 1mm sheet I was playing around with on a previous project. Sometimes it went great like this but most of it was just painful the first time round. Same story again though I could flap disc it back to reduce the profile then put a nice bead on top of it...

    Thanks in advance as always

    Name:  70664360_10220070867911708_3718924031697616896_n.jpg
Views: 206
Size:  83.7 KB

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Cumbria, UK
    Posts
    614

    Re: TIG Aluminium troubles

    arc length?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Near Traverse City, Mi.
    Posts
    335

    Re: TIG Aluminium troubles

    My thinking from what you said...if you are having issues welding an area, then you grind it out and have fewer issues. Maybe the metal you are joining is not clean enough to start. The grinding of then1st attempt might act like tinning if you will. Then when you go over it the tinning acts like cleaner metal? On really dirty cast aluminum a similar strategy has helped me from time to time.

    Is it possible that the shape of the project combined with maybe a little too long of arc length is splitting the shielding gas stream allowing air to creep in?

    Just a couple thoughts from a guy who is not a pro...
    Miller Dynasty 280 DX, Lincoln 210 MP

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Southern Montana
    Posts
    852

    Re: TIG Aluminium troubles

    1. Is the 6061 anodized? Try surface prep of your work piece by flap disc or rotary wire brush before attempting to lay a bead on flat plate, until you get the issue solved.
    2. What is your gas setting... CFH?
    3. Balling filler rod, as you describe, can be caused by reflective heat from the arc off of the work piece. Try changing angle of the torch or filler rod, so you can sneak the filler in from outside of the heated area.

    A video (or photos) of your failures will be helpful. Let us know what you discover.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Posts
    14

    Re: TIG Aluminium troubles

    Arc length I keep minimal as best I can. Still occasionally dipping, particularly on out of position welds. I just got done my last project today which was a boat canopy, the argon needle is resting on zero so I'll see if I can use the dregs on some practice stuff for photos here.

    One thing I was having particular trouble with was not venting sealed tubes. I never did appreciate just how impossible it makes sealing up the last of a bead. I must have tried a dozen times with absolute failures before I thought to vent it (definition of insanity I know..)

    I think on some out of position stuff I was removing the filler from the shielding gas while moving too, will need more practice at that. I still have this issue of the arc swinging back and forth between joining material.. Anybody ever experience that? Maybe it's just when my fitup is poor. Would I be right saying it's not quite as easy to bridge gaps in Ali as it is with mild steel? I sure suck at it.

    Name:  IMG_20191107_154453.jpg
Views: 67
Size:  135.7 KB

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
RSS | Home | Penton Media | Contact Us | Subscribe | For Advertisers | Terms of Use | Privacy Statement