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The Ultimate MIG Welding Tips Roundup

The Ultimate MIG Welding Tips Roundup

If you’re getting started with MIG welding or looking to upgrade your machine, now is the time to check out the great deals on MIG welders at Baker’s Gas and Welding. The prices are the most competitive you can find online, and almost every machine comes with free shipping. You can also find excellent sales on MIG welding gloves and welding helmets.

However, once you’re set up with a bestselling MIG welder or multi-process welder that offers MIG as well, we have a great roundup of articles that will help you get the most out of your MIG machine.

Rookie Mistakes MIG Welders Don’t Want to Make

This roundup of tips provides a basic overview of how to prep your metal work piece and set up your MIG welder so you don’t look like a ‘noob’ right off the bat. For instance:

Check Your Polarity Settings

If you’re welding with solid wire, set your machine to reverse polarity (DCEP), but if you’re working with flux core MIG wires, you may need to use the DCEN setting. You should also experiment a little bit on some scrap metal. In fact, you should definitely practice on scrap metal if you aren’t sure which setting is correct!

Save Your Sanity with THIS MIG Welder

Sure you can find plenty of cheap MIG welders if you dig around a little online. However, there’s a reason why name-brand welders have won over the loyalty of their users. Here’s an overview of what a top-of-the-line MIG welder from Miller Electric can offer you:

Big Power in a Small Welder

The Millermatic 141 weighs about 50 pounds, putting it on the portable but hefty end of the welding machine spectrum. However, welders have noted that it’s still easy enough to carry around for their jobs, and the 120V power runs easily on 15 amp circuits with few problems.

The 20% duty cycle has been called ‘overly-cautious’ by welders who rarely had to stop working while running beads. They were able to weld one piece of metal after another with few stops.

In other words, if you need a powerful welder that is portable, the Millermatic 141 may be for you. One exception to keep in mind is that one welder, who regularly worked at higher amperages, mentioned he would have preferred a 20 amp circuit over a 15 amp one.

Comparing Flux Core MIG Wire to Solid MIG Wire

MIG welding is extremely versatile, and one of the best options you have is switching your wire between gas shielded solid core wire and flux core wire:

Change the Polarity for Your Wire

When you’re MIG welding with a flux core MIG wire, you need to change your machine’s polarity settings to electrode negative in order to get a smooth, stable arc. Solid MIG wire calls for electrode positive polarity.


How to Make MIG Welds Stronger

While MIG welding is often described as ‘point and shoot’ welding, your technique can make a huge difference in the quality of your welds. For instance, by learning how to effectively weld in a variety of positions, you can make stronger, longer-lasting welds:

Vertical Uphill MIG Welding

Trace the front edge of the puddle in a series of upside down V. You don’t want to pile up your weld. The only way to get good penetration is to keep the weld puddle moving forward. Penetration happens at the front of the weld puddle. Otherwise you’re just building up a sloppy, ineffective weld that won’t hold under pressure.


Flux Core MIG Welding Tips

Flux core MIG wires will help you get a lot of welding done with very minimal prep work, but you should first learn how this highly convenient welding wire can be used to its full potential in this article:

Flux Core Wire Offers Advantages

Besides the simplicity of MIG welding with flux core wire, it also offers a number of advantages if you’re pushing your welder to the height of its power limit. A flux core wire will give you more penetration into the weld joint if your metal is thick or your welder simply can’t crank out enough amperage for a particular project.

The safety and longevity of your weld depends on getting solid penetration and fusion with the metal work piece, and a flux core wire can offer a slight edge sometimes.


How to Use a Low Amperage MIG Welder

We’ve all been there with a lower amperage MIG welder. It can handle 99% of the projects you throw at it, but one special project comes along that just seems a bit too big for it. Is there a way to max out your welder to handle a big project without frying it? This post will help!

Use a Ground Wire for Your Welder

If you need to crank up the heat on your machine, the last thing you want to worry about will be sparks, slag, and an arc that jumps all over the place. You want the machine to run as smoothly as possible, even if you are taking it to the upper end of its power settings.

The best ground wire will maximize your contact points with the metal by having enough copper on the parts that clip to your metal. Don't go cheap on a ground clamp! It will make a huge difference.


Ed Cyzewski


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