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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So maybe I got a long way to go before I could do what H150 is doing, but I'm just glad I got my welding cart done without burning the house down, or injuring myself.

I got a old bed frame, and cut it up to use the steel. Cost: Free


Took me about 6 or 7 hours total. This includes ALMOST burning the house down, when I melted the insulation on the power cord to the welder when it was leaning up against the part I was welding. The shower of sparks is not surprising when you're in the middle of welding, but the sound of 220 shorting directly to ground 8 inches in front of your face is very scary.


I still need to put a brace, or a vertical piece of metal that will hold the neck of the bottle so it doesnt fall, break the regulator off, and shoot across my garage like a missle. Knowing my luck, I can't afford to leave it like this for long.


This was more of a practice project since it doesnt need to be very strong. This is my first welder, and I've never welded anything (aside from a couple rolling frames for cabinets) of importance. I'm slowly learning heat/wire speed settings...and the importance of penetration. I tacked a piece of metal in 3 places, and promptly broke it off with my hands. And one of my arms is still weak from breaking it 2 times in 3 months, and having surgery to fix it.


My biggest problem is hand control. My welds are not very straight, and not very consistent. Sometimes I get a badass weld with good penetration, at least for part of the bead, and I have no idea why. Other times I have the perfect angle, clean steel, and all I do is build up a big bead of steel without any penetration at all.



Side note: Hypothetically if one happened to obtain a bigass Pepsi CO2 bottle for drink machines, which still had CO2 in it...and that CO2 bottle's fitting happened to look like this...


How would one go about hooking this up to a MIG welder?
 

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Cut off those ankle biters, and use them to weld to your frame, to make yourself a gun reel, of sorts. Interesting design for it, but that's pretty cool. For your first welding project, it's not bad. You do still need to work on your control, but overall, not bad at all :thumbup
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
davids78bronco said:
Cut off those ankle biters, and use them to weld to your frame, to make yourself a gun reel, of sorts. Interesting design for it, but that's pretty cool. For your first welding project, it's not bad. You do still need to work on your control, but overall, not bad at all :thumbup
Yea they're comin off, but thats a good idea to use them as a gun reel. I definitely need one, and was just gonna toss them as scrap.

Had I owned this welder back in the day when I got my disk brake brackets welded to my 14 bolt...I still would have taken it to the shop to have a pro do it.

Thanks for the compliments.
 

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Some assembly required!
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It'll look good once you ditch those outriggers. I need to make something like that for my plasma cutter, I've got it sitting on the crate my winch came shipped in right now. Very undignified. Anyway, keep up the practice. You'll be turning out good welds in no time. One problem I kept running into when I bought my big MIG was I kept trying to weld with the current set too high, and I kept getting very inconsistant results. Good luck with that.
 

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Not bad. I second cutting off the extra steel.

The more you weld the better you will get.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Dave's Bronc 90 said:
It'll look good once you ditch those outriggers. I need to make something like that for my plasma cutter, I've got it sitting on the crate my winch came shipped in right now. Very undignified. Anyway, keep up the practice. You'll be turning out good welds in no time. One problem I kept running into when I bought my big MIG was I kept trying to weld with the current set too high, and I kept getting very inconsistant results. Good luck with that.
How did you know your current was too high?
 

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kf4amu said:
How did you know your current was too high?
I should start out by saying I have no formal welding training, although I have done quite a bit of welding by now. I figured it out by straight up trial & error. The old flux core machine I had been borrowing from work only had a high and a low setting, and I never used anything but high. It was completely incapable of welding heavy stuff, like greater than 1/8". Every time I used it I wished it had more current. So when I bought my big MIG I immediately started out on the higher current settings, which was a mistake. One weld would look good, the next would be too porus. I kept messing with the gas, the wire speed, the gun, everything but the current because I had it in my mind that more current = better penetration. Eventually I needed to weld some very thin sheet metal, so I turned it almost all the way down, and it welded like a champ. So I tried the next level up on some 3/16" scrap and I was amazed at how much better it worked. I then moved it up more and my crappy welds came back. After some pondering it seems to me that this makes sense. The point is to melt the two metals you are trying to weld togeather, plus the welding wire, and when they cool they have been bonded. The thicker the metal, the more current it takes to melt it. However, if you continue to increase the current past the optimum melting point of the metal you are introducing a lot of unneeded energy into the equation, so what happens to that energy? It can't be lost, so what happens is it boils the weld puddle instead of just melting it. That introduces a lot of porosity into the weld. Anybody who is more educated on welding than me please feel free to jump in and correct that if you think it is wrong, but that is the way it appears to work to me from trial & error.
 

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turn it down a bit, and try increasing your travel speed, just a bit. Your close, but making some minute changes will make a big difference

What's your regulator set at? And your welder too?
 

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all 3 are higher then I would run, but thats on a 135.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Went down to 15, E, and 4.

Put the outriggers on the frame as a cord reel.


Good looking weld


Worse looking weld


Same settings. Sorry for the quality, camera phone. Digital camera got pushed into a pool with me 2 months ago.
 

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turn your welder way down. Down to about C, and wire speed at about 3.5 - 4. Then turn your regulator down to between 10-12cfm. For the first attempt, keep your travel speed the same, then vary it, and see how it works out
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I've tried different methods. When the guy was welding my disk brake brackets, he would move a little bit at a time, let it pool, then move some more let it pool...so he ended up with the rings that alot of good looking welds have. I've tried that, and I've tried going smoothly. I think my mask is a little too dark, its a #10 shade. I had a #11 automatic darkening helmet and it was too light. I'm going to get an adjustable helmet so I can fine tune it.

Thanks for the suggestions david, I'll burn some more metal in a day or two and post up the results.
 

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kf4amu said:
I've tried different methods. When the guy was welding my disk brake brackets, he would move a little bit at a time, let it pool, then move some more let it pool...so he ended up with the rings that alot of good looking welds have. I've tried that, and I've tried going smoothly. I think my mask is a little too dark, its a #10 shade. I had a #11 automatic darkening helmet and it was too light. I'm going to get an adjustable helmet so I can fine tune it.

Thanks for the suggestions david, I'll burn some more metal in a day or two and post up the results.

dont worry about making it look like a stack of dimes. you can make a mig weld look awesome, but its actually crap. i think the best mig welds are done with a continous bead, no stopping and starting, no weaving side to side, to e or c shape made with the gun. if your metal fit is correct, and your settings are right, you keep the right travel speed, then going in a straight line will make the strongest weld you can get with a mig.

i used to weave before too, and its deff useful when your gap is too big, but after i was taught to lay a continous bead, it converted me. i think im a much better welder now.

here is a writeup i did on mig welding, i just moved it from another forum.

http://fullsizebronco.com/forum/showthread.php?p=935376
 

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kf4amu said:
I've tried different methods. When the guy was welding my disk brake brackets, he would move a little bit at a time, let it pool, then move some more let it pool...so he ended up with the rings that alot of good looking welds have. I've tried that, and I've tried going smoothly. I think my mask is a little too dark, its a #10 shade. I had a #11 automatic darkening helmet and it was too light. I'm going to get an adjustable helmet so I can fine tune it.

Thanks for the suggestions david, I'll burn some more metal in a day or two and post up the results.
The way the guy welded your brackets sounds like he had the machine set wrong or just didn't know what he was doing. On a good welder, you just have to pour the wire and if the machine is set correctly, it will end up looking like it should.
I find with my old wire machine, I have to weave it a bit to get the results I am after. Also you want to push the wire and not drag it.
Looks good to me, for your first time, though and you got that backwards, #10 is lighter than #11. I wouldn't go less than #10.

Keep practicing and you will get good in no time. Also, when I adjust a machine, I adjust it until it makes that certain noise that tells you all is set right, a crackling noise is the best way I can think to describe it, you will figure that out in time as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Walt:

My bad, someone told me the lower the number the darker. Either way it doesnt matter because I was wrong. The description on HD's website says its a 10 shade.

http://www.homedepot.com/prel80/HDU...ID=ccdeaddifhgjfemcgelceffdfgidgjm.0&MID=9876

Regardless of what they claimed, it was way too bright (much brighter than my fixed shade #10) to protect my eyes. My roomate agreed.

Squatty: I read your write up a month or two ago, probably a couple times. Thats where I got the "frying eggs" reference from. Thanks, it's a good one, but its just a matter of putting into practice what everyone recommends.
 
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