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A Guide to Arc Welding

Arc welding is one of the most popular types of welding methods. An electric arc is created between metal and an electrode, forming a puddle where additional welding filler material can be added.

There are several kinds of arc welding that include Stick, MIG, Flux-cored Arc , Submerged Arc , and TIG. Welding methods such as MIG use a shielding gas in order to protect the weld, though a shielding gas is not mandatory for every kind of welding, as is the case with Stick welding.

Many welders choose arc welding since it is relatively cheap and easy to do, even if learning how to weld takes a good deal of practice. Beginners will need to learn how to “strike” an arc, which can be struck by scratching the electrode along metal rapidly like striking a match or by tapping it against metal.

Arc welders may use either consumable or non-consumable electrodes, as well as either alternating (AC) or direct (DC) current for their power. This power supply is used to form an electric arc between electrodes and base materials.

Manual welding calls for a constant current of electricity. The constant power supply is important due to the fact that it can be hard to hold the electrode rod perfectly steady when welding manually. The arc length and voltage would fluctuate as the electrode rod moves, but the constant power supply helps to keep them steady enough to make a good weld.

Arc Welding with a Consumable Electrode

Stick welding is one of the most popular kinds of arc welding. An electrode stick is used to act as a filling material. This technique is known for its versatility when it comes to repairs and construction, but the welds can take a bit longer because you must frequently replace the consumable electrodes. Metal inert gas welding, also known as MIG welding, is another common technique. The process is basically the same, but an inert gas shield is used to keep contaminants out of the welding point.

Arc Welding with a Non-Consumable Electrode

Tungsten inert gas welding, also referred to as TIG welding, is a slightly different process of arc welding. In this case, the manual welding is done with a non consumable electrode made of tungsten. An inert gas mixture is used to keep out contaminants, and a separate filler material is used since the electrodes do not break down as they do with the previously mentioned methods. This technique is especially popular when it comes to the welding of thinner metals. It is possible to get very high quality welds, but the TIG method also requires a greater degree of operator skill and patience for slower welding.