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Thread: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

  1. #1
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    New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    hey guys,
    quick question here. i started with my ac225 tombstone 15 years ago and its still my preferred way to go just for nostalgia reasons. I learned on 6013 and now i only use 6011. small projects here and there (log splitter, table etc)
    I decided to try 7018 since they say its a drag stick and much easier to maneuver compared to the whip/pause of the high arc 6011.

    I went and bought 5lbs of 7018 H8 rod from the depot and i tried to run a few lines. i found out i made better beads if i slowed down and made lowercase cursive e's than just dragging. 120 amps, 3/16" plate.
    I then found some old 7018 H4R's in a air tight container that i havent opened in 15 years. i decided to run a bead with them and see how they looked.
    the new rod (red dot in pic) were much shinier/glossier than the old rod beads. You can really tell on the top red dot bead.
    is that because they're new? I received the old rods maybe 15 years ago when i bought my ac225 lincoln. i put them in one of those sealed o ring containers right away but who know how the previous owner kept them.

    anyways, i can keep or scrap the rods, i dont care, i was just wondering if the shininess of the new rod beads had something to do that they're new or that they're H8 instead of H4r?
    anyways, thanks in advance!
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  2. #2
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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    With an AC225 Lincoln, I would be running more like 135 amps or so.
    Your beads look like that would be appropriate in your case as well.

    Your description of needing to weave a little are one of the things that indicate more power (same for a tall bead that doesn't appear to wet out quite enough).
    More amps will spread your bead a little and make it easier to just run straight if you want.

    Edit: to get the same effect with AC vs DC, rule of thumb is increase 10-15% for AC.
    Last edited by MinnesotaDave; 05-26-2021 at 03:28 PM.
    Dave J.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    got it. thanks for the tip. in the videos ive seen, the orange molten puddle length always seems shorter and the 'C' crest where its cooling seems to be closer to the stick than when i do it. i was thinking that was an indicator of amp/heat setting. maybe im wrong and my stick height is too far.... i have a crappy auto darkening harbor freight mask and need something else to see the puddle better i think... but thats another story.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Old rods that were not in the original hermetically sealed can are going to produce somewhat poorer results than brand new rods. You will also probably get better results on DC electrode positive. I know they say its possible, but I never liked running 7018 rods on AC. Maybe its just my lack of skill, who knows. Also if you really want to practice and make better welds with 7018 rods, do this:

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    im definitely not grinding that off! nicely done.

    Im in the market for a 180+ amp mig welder now, and i called primeweld and Gene told me the newer IGBT inverters LOVE 7018 but not so much the 6011s. Its one of the reasons i am playing with 7018s in case i decide to say bye bye to the tombstone to save space and maybe get a mig/stick welder that does it all. 3/8" is the most i do really.... unless i do another log splitter...i'd rather get too big than not enough.
    i like the hobart 210 mvp but it doesnt do stick so i would have the ac225 still hanging around (which istn the end of the world)... Gene at Primeweld said theyre coming out with a 250 and another 300+ larger model soon (beginning of 2022). probably mig/arc/tig. maybe ill wait for that.

    That brings me to another question, how good of a machine is the AC 225 at laying 6011 or 7018 or 6013 for that matter? I'm wondering if one of these little inverter units that does stick welding is going to be the same quality or better or worse....
    Last edited by woodbutcher; 05-26-2021 at 04:43 PM.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    I personally won't own a welder that can't at least run 6011. I know lots of inverters can't run 6010, and that's ok to me since the difference between the two is immaterial for my purposes. Maybe if it was cheap enough (and a decent enough MIG welder) I might consider buying a separate stick welder like the Esab Miniarc 180. But that's up to your judgement. Me, I am waiting on the freight company to deliver my new Multimatic 255 this afternoon. ;-)

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    7018 isn't really a drag rod like 7014. Sometimes you can drag them. You can weave it slightly but no circles or similar manipulations that could introduce slag into the puddle. You're not building nuclear reactors. If the bead looks decent with no porosity use up the old rods. Just keep them sealed and dry and they will last a long time. I wouldn't buy a welder that has trouble with 7018 or 6010/6011. They are the go to rods for anything I do.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Sounds good Good to know. I'll just keep using the old rods since they seem fine. I was more curious on the sheen of the bead on the new rod compared to the old. Probably has something to do with it being older. Yeah you really have to stick to the old school transformers to run 6010/6011 and that's my favorite rod. I was told it's because the arc is too strong on those rods. That's why all these little inverter boxes like to run 7018 since it has a mild arc. I'll probably just keep the buzz box since it does everything I need to do and cost me 150 bucks with 50ft if #2 extension. I can then get a nice dedicated MIG welder that can go up to 200 amps for quick work. Should cover me nicely.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    All of the inverters I've used, and it's been quite a few different ones, had no problem with 6011 and most would burn 6010 but not ideal.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by M J D View Post
    All of the inverters I've used, and it's been quite a few different ones, had no problem with 6011 and most would burn 6010 but not ideal.
    Interesting. Primeweld said it's extremely difficult but it can be done with 6011 but not with 6010. And I'm guessing a lot of these come from the same place....

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by woodbutcher View Post
    Interesting. Primeweld said it's extremely difficult but it can be done with 6011 but not with 6010. And I'm guessing a lot of these come from the same place....
    I'm not familiar with the primeweld mig machines but the 225 Tig will run 6011 fairly well and it's passable with 6010. It would be interesting to see what other mig machines they may be coming out with in the future. Am custom fab has a few videos running stick with a few different Primeweld machines.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Some like Everlast had a 6010 stud for your cable. CEP bought one and really liked it for 7018 and 6010. DC is so much nicer to weld with than AC. DC inverter that will run 6010/6011 and 7018 or AC225 for close to same money, I'd go inverter all day long. If I found an Idealarc 250 AC/DC for around the same price I'd get that. Shop around and don't just buy the cheapest machine. Buy the welder that will work best for you.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by Welder Dave View Post
    Some like Everlast had a 6010 stud for your cable. CEP bought one and really liked it for 7018 and 6010. DC is so much nicer to weld with than AC. DC inverter that will run 6010/6011 and 7018 or AC225 for close to same money, I'd go inverter all day long. If I found an Idealarc 250 AC/DC for around the same price I'd get that. Shop around and don't just buy the cheapest machine. Buy the welder that will work best for you.
    Primeweld is not the cheapest inverter machine by a long shot. I only like it since a stateside employee picks up or calls me back everytime I call and they pay for shipping returns for 3 years. I'd spend 1500 bucks if it's the perfect machine for me... Heck I'd spend more if it did AC Tig then I wouldn't need a spool gun option... decisions decisions.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by woodbutcher View Post
    Primeweld is not the cheapest inverter machine by a long shot. I only like it since a stateside employee picks up or calls me back everytime I call and they pay for shipping returns for 3 years. I'd spend 1500 bucks if it's the perfect machine for me... Heck I'd spend more if it did AC Tig then I wouldn't need a spool gun option... decisions decisions.
    825$ for the Primeweld 225 AC-DC Tig and that will run 6011. Find a decent mig and you would still be under 1500$. I agree on their warranty and service. You won't get that from the other " importers".

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Hey that's a great idea and something to think about. Funny things is the primeweld rep told me that you can turn any tig machine into a mig machine just by flipping polarity and adding a lead or something? Or maybe he meant tig into arc... Would be great if they did it to that machine.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    If you're running 7018 on AC you could well be seeing the difference between the two different kinds of 7018 as well as the age come into play. Some variations of 7018 are much better on AC than others.
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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by woodbutcher View Post
    Hey that's a great idea and something to think about. Funny things is the primeweld rep told me that you can turn any tig machine into a mig machine just by flipping polarity and adding a lead or something? Or maybe he meant tig into arc... Would be great if they did it to that machine.
    That would be tig into arc or more commonly, stick. Tig or stick is constant current and mig is constant voltage. Yeah on the Tig you would reverse your ground lead and unhook your torch and pedal and substitute your stinger lead.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Hi. Interesting when you mention some beads have a nice clear shine on them I notice I can judge the quality
    of my settings and welding beads by the clear bright silver shine when everything is set right. If the amps for the
    rod and the material thickness and the travel speed are all right. The slag will peel off almost by itself and leave a
    nice clear silvery bead If it is too hot or too slow travel speed the bead is black and the slag burned in and very
    difficult to chip or remove. This is just my theory based on my many years in the farm shop welding.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by Josey View Post
    Hi. Interesting when you mention some beads have a nice clear shine on them I notice I can judge the quality
    of my settings and welding beads by the clear bright silver shine when everything is set right. If the amps for the
    rod and the material thickness and the travel speed are all right. The slag will peel off almost by itself and leave a
    nice clear silvery bead If it is too hot or too slow travel speed the bead is black and the slag burned in and very
    difficult to chip or remove. This is just my theory based on my many years in the farm shop welding.
    goo do to know. if thats the case maybe my arc length was off on the old rods... who knows. With only having 8" of bead on a 7018 rod anything is possible! I just noticed a big diffeence between new and old.
    oh well. itll still hold my metal together. thanks guys.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by woodbutcher View Post
    got it. thanks for the tip. in the videos ive seen, the orange molten puddle length always seems shorter and the 'C' crest where its cooling seems to be closer to the stick than when i do it. i was thinking that was an indicator of amp/heat setting. maybe im wrong and my stick height is too far.... i have a crappy auto darkening harbor freight mask and need something else to see the puddle better i think... but thats another story.
    I mostly run 7018 hot enough that the flux can slightly graze the surface occasionally and not stick.
    If you lift the rod the voltage increases and the weld flares out farther - but this also can create porosity - it's a fine line between too long and just right.

    My experience with inverter welders is that they weld 7018, 6013, 7014 awesome.
    6011 is no problem and 6010 depends on the machine.

    If the inverter won't run common rods like 7018 and 6011, it's likely a junk pile, door stop, boat anchor.

    Btw, you can tell if you are running a rod too hot by burning the whole stick in one pass - if the stub is glowing when you lift your lid, it might be too hot for that rod.
    Dave J.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by MinnesotaDave View Post
    I mostly run 7018 hot enough that the flux can slightly graze the surface occasionally and not stick.
    If you lift the rod the voltage increases and the weld flares out farther - but this also can create porosity - it's a fine line between too long and just right.

    My experience with inverter welders is that they weld 7018, 6013, 7014 awesome.
    6011 is no problem and 6010 depends on the machine.

    If the inverter won't run common rods like 7018 and 6011, it's likely a junk pile, door stop, boat anchor.

    Btw, you can tell if you are running a rod too hot by burning the whole stick in one pass - if the stub is glowing when you lift your lid, it might be too hot for that rod.
    I would say 3/32" 7018 is the exception to the glowing thing. Seems like they always do. I've yet to see an inverter that won't run 6011, my Thermal arc 181 said no cellulouse but it ran 6011 ok.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by M J D View Post
    I would say 3/32" 7018 is the exception to the glowing thing. Seems like they always do. I've yet to see an inverter that won't run 6011, my Thermal arc 181 said no cellulouse but it ran 6011 ok.
    Maybe I should change that to "brightly glowing" - lol
    Dave J.

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by MinnesotaDave View Post
    Maybe I should change that to "brightly glowing" - lol
    That works. If you ever had the pleasure to run 1/16" stainless rods you would definitely see brightly glowing

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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by M J D View Post
    That works. If you ever had the pleasure to run 1/16" stainless rods you would definitely see brightly glowing
    I've not run stainless ones, just 6013 and I think 6011 if I remember correctly.
    ...did not really like them...
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    Re: New 7018 beads vs old. See pic

    Quote Originally Posted by M J D View Post
    That works. If you ever had the pleasure to run 1/16" stainless rods you would definitely see brightly glowing
    You wanna see "brightly glowing," try CUTTING stainless sometime. I tried that ONCE. Felt like I was staring at the core of the sun through binoculars.

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