MOTORZ TV: Learn How To Weld – VIDEO
I’m a reader. Whenever I meet a challenge that is a bit difficult to understand, I read. I read in the morning, in the afternoon, at night – I even read in my dreams. But we’re not all readers, and when it comes to learning how to weld, even I prefer having some visuals to depend on.
I found this really informative video on how to weld, and it’s not boring! Trust me, you will not crash from watching wearisome-welding.
The video features Chris Duke – host of the iTunes podcast, TiVo program, and web-show TV – and his friend Brian Karas
going over MIG welding and offering some wonderful, basic tips.
Below the video is the full transcript, presented to you by yours truly. Now go learn!
I’m Chris Duke, and this is MOTORZ.
Welcome to Motorz.
Today we’re gonna cross the automotive customization lines and teach you the basics of welding and how affordable can it really be. We’re gonna cover MIG welding – as it’s the easiest to being with – accessories you’re gonna need to do the job, basic setup as well as some safety precautions and operation.
Learning to weld does not require a degree or extensive schooling. Many people are able to teach themselves how to weld out of their own garage. One of my personal friends, Brian, did just that, and is here today to share some tips and tricks on how to get started with a basic welding setup.
Chris: Welcome to the show Brian. Thanks for being here.
Brian: Hey Chris. Thanks for having me.
Chris: Great. We’ve got a Hobart Handler 140 right here. What’s the cool thing about this particular MIG welder?
Brian: Chris, this MIG welder is great. It’s 115 volt units, very portable, and that means you can run it off of a standard outlet in your garage, so it’s very easy to get started with.
Chris: Oh, that’s cool. So Brian, what sorts of things can I do with this MIG welder?
Brian: Well Chris, this unit is great for automotive and household jobs. You can do things like basic exhaust repairs, auto-body repairs. You can make custom brackets for mounting horns or fog lights and it’s also good for other around-the-house jobs, fence repairs- things like that.
Chris: Ok, pretty cool. Let’s take a look at some of the things we’ve got here that are gonna help us weld.
Brian: Some of the accessories we have here are wire for a MIG welder. We have our MIG pliers. We have a wire brush and hammer for cleaning up welds when we’re done. We have clamps to hold our pieces together as we’re working, and most importantly our safety helmet.
Chris: Now what’s cool about this helmet Brian is it’s custom airbrushed by Barbara Luck of Rippin Designs. Didn’t she do a good job?
Brian: She did an awesome job.
Chris: Now, in addition to all these other things, you’re gonna need an angle grinder, some extra tips, some nozzle gel, some gloves, and we’ve got this paintball cylinder, also from Holbart. It’s great for portability and it just holds CO2, and it’s great because even on weekends you can get this thing filled up at your local sporting goods store for about 5 bucks.
Brian: Very nice.
Chris: Yeah, so let’s take a look at how we set everything up.
Brian: So we’re gonna start . . . first thing here is we have a spool of wire, and this goes right here inside the welder. Now, one of the things to be aware of, this wire is tightly wound. If you’re not careful when you go to unwind it will unravel and spool up in your face. So you wanna have some extra precaution there.
Ok, after mounting and securing the spool as per the instructions, we’re gonna begin to feed the wire into our welder. Be careful as you unspool this so the wire does not come loose. Cut off any bent ends on your wire and being to feed it in.
As you get the wire through the rollers and into the hose, secure in place and turn on the welder so we can start to feed it through. Pull the trigger and the wire should feed through cleanly. When it comes out the other end, release the trigger and you’re ready to move on.
Brian: Ok. Chris. We’ve connected the regulator and hose that comes with our welder to our gas cylinder here.
Chris: Ok. What kind of gas is in there Brian?
Brian: This is a mix of Argon and CO2.
Chris: Ok. Is it flammable? Is this thing gonna blow up the garage, or what?
Brian: No it’s a completely inert gas. It’s completely safe. Its function is to provide some shielding around the welding arc as we’re working.
Chris: Ok, now what’s up with this chart here?
Brian: Well, this is really handy. This helps you pick the right wire and polarity settings for whatever kind of material you’re working with. We’ve gone with a .030 wire today ’cause we’re gonna be working with some thinner steel like you might find in typical auto-body applications.
Chris: Ok. What’s the polarity over here that I see?
Brian: Depending on which wire and gas setup you use, you might change a polarity from electro-positive to electro-negative. It’s just a matter of undoing these two bolts here and switching the wires around and the welder lays out which polarity you use for any given application.
Chris: Ok, seems easy enough. Now, there’s another thing here called flux core wire, which you can use without gas for small jobs. It does get a little bit messy though.
Chris: So Brian, when it comes time to actually do some welding, can I just wear a t-shirt, and some shorts, and some flips flops – or, what’s the deal here?
Brian: Well Chris it’s important we have the right safety equipment. You’re gonna want a good sturdy leather jacket, pair of gloves, as well as you want to make sure you’re wearing something like jeans and some closed-toe shoes or work boots.
Chris: Ok, so basically head-to-toe coverage. And why is that?
Brian: Well, [they’re] two important reasons:
One, when you’re welding you’ll get some hot slag coming off your welds.
There’s also UV light on the arc itself and you can actually get sunburn if you’re not properly protected.
Chris: Oh, sunburn and slag does not sound good to me. So let’s suit-up and check this thing out.
Brian: Alright, let’s get started.
Chris: Now that we are all suited up, what’re the final steps we need to perform in order to get it started and do some welding?
Brian: Alright Chris, let me show you. We’ll start. We’ll turn our welder on.
Come over here, open up the gas cylinder, you only need about a quarter-turn on this, and we’re going to adjust our regulator to get a gas level of about, between 20 and 30 here on the regulator. You’ll see this needle will go down when we actually start welding. And we’re starting with some eight-inch thick mild steel. So, we’ve got our wire feed set to 30 and we’re starting with a voltage of 2.
Now if we come over here, we’ve already got our pieces cleaned up and prepared. It’s very important when you’re doing any MIG welding that you remove any rust or grease or contaminants on your steel.
So we’ve already sanded these down with our angle grinder. We’ve got a good solid clamp and our ground is attached here.
And finally, we want to prepare our gun. So, you don’t want to have too much wire stick out when you begin. Usually about 3/8 inch to quarter inch is plenty.
So, I’m gonna trim off this excess wire before we get started.
Now, all that’s left is to put on our welding helmets and give it a try.
Chris: Alright, let’s go.
Brian: Ok Chris, so we’re gonna start by just trying to simple butt weld on these two pieces here. Now there’s two main ways you can go about this:
There’s what’s known as the push technique, where – as the name implies – you’re pushing the gun past your weld.
Or, a more commonly and what’s easier to get started with is a pull technique, where we’re starting up here and kinda pulling the gun as we go along.
So I’m gonna demonstrate a pull technique on these two pieces right here.
Chris: Ok, now do you go straight back or do you make a pattern?
Brian: You wanna. . . as you can see there’s a slight gap between these, so you’ll see as I move the gun we’ll be doing small arcs, kinda tracing the front of our arc and following it along as we go.
Brian: We tried to break this weld apart and didn’t have any success. That’s a very good indicator that we’ve picked the right wire speed and voltage setting for the material that we’re working with. Had we actually been able to break this apart, it would have been a good indication that this was a cold or inferior weld. The wire speed felt right, so had the weld not stuck I would have increased the voltage a little bit to get a little more penetration into the metal.
Chris: So it’s always good to test it out on some scrap metal before you work on the real thing.
Brian: Absolutely, get a feel for the material you’re working for. Get your welder dialed in and then proceed to your actual work.
Chris: Alright, well let’s try something a little thinner, maybe some automotive type of metal.
This concludes part 1/2.
Stick around WeldMyWorld.com for the 2nd part of this video and the transcript.