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Arc Welding Tips

Arc welding is an integral part of all industries that are involved in designing and infrastructure. But whatever is arc welding? It is a metallurgical process of fusing two metals by applying intense heat at the juncture of fusion. The final product after welding has all the properties retained as that in metals. An arc welding is named so because the heat used for melting the metal at juncture of joining is caused by an electric arc. This arc is generated by a mechanically guided electrode that carries the current between the tip and the joint of fusion. Arc Welding Tips for Beginners Some of the welding tips and techniques have been detailed here. Safety Measures Safety precedes work always. Before commencing with any welding processes, proper safety measures must be adopted first. Eyes and skin must be protected from the UV light emitted from the electrodes. So, wearing helmets during arc welding is mandatory. After all, self protection is a must to reduce risks of fire accidents and electric shocks. So before starting with arc welding, make sure you have a bucket of sand, a welding helmet and a pair of welding gloves ready with you. Adjusting the Rod and Arc This is the most sensitive and crucial part of this procedure. If you are starting with arc welding for the first time, then it is better to try on a rusty metal work as arc welding is more tolerant to rusty surfaces. Like, if your work medium is a 6mm mild steel (rusted), take a 3.2 mm (7024) rod (ensure it is good quality). The current setting should be correct. For the setting you have, 110 amps current is fine. If you are using 2.55mm rods, then 80 amps current supply is enough. Also, polarity settings have to be adjusted. Polarity setting is such that the rod is positive and the earth is negative. Other parameters to be considered before starting with arc welding are rod angle, arc length, travel length of the arc and welding motion. Rod angle must be approximately 10-20 from vertical along the direction of the arc. The arc length is the distance between the weld pool and electrode which should be ideally short, resulting in a sharp crackling sound when the rod touches the metal work medium. Starting Arc Welding Turn the welding machine on. When the electrode (rod) of the welding machine is made to touch against the juncture of fusion, an electrical circuit is completed and an electric arc is generated. The common methods used for generating an electric arc are "Tap starting" and "Scratch starting". In the former method of welding, the electrode is made to tap on the work. This will remove the excess flux from the tip of the electrode, thereby making the electric contact to generate the arc. The tap should not be too slow or heavy, else the rod will stick to the work medium. In the later method, the rod can be made to scratch against the surface of the work slightly and as soon as the spark is generated, the rod can be lifted off. Remember, do not exercise pressure in scratch starting method of welding as there is a high probability that the rod might get stuck to the work medium. Preparing the Joints Make sure that the metal to be welded is clean of impurities like dirt which can alter electrical conduction. It is very important to prepare the joints during arc welding. The electric arc melts the parent work medium (metal), creating a metal crate i.e., weld pool. The filling material is applied by the rod in arc welding. This is a suitable way of avoiding instances of cold joints and also helps in making the fusion stronger. It is better to understand welding basics before kick starting with arc welding. Mistakes do happen the first time and making mistakes is the only way to learn the tricks of arc welding. With practice, one can acquire the correct

judgment of technical details like length of the arc, angle made by the rod, which arc welding method to adopt, the amount of current required, etc.