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  #1  
Old 06-13-2009
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time to flame the welding noob...

So I got a welder for my birthday last month and i've been practicing before I start working on my bumper. With my work schedule I can't get into a welding class, but I've tried reading anything i can to help. I've got a Lincoln Electric 125 FCAW (it was a birthday present so don't flame it. it was free)

I tried making this weld with the settings on the side of the welder. It's 1/8th inch with Hobart .35mm wire. My question is with the beginning and end part of the weld.



A is the beginning of the weld... it sits higher than the rest of the bead and only thing i can think of would be that it's not hot enough to melt the metal before i start moving down the metal. Is that correct? If I hover that spot just a little bit longer while welding, will that fix it or is that going to put too much filler in the spot?

B is the end. it looks more like a hole than anything. I'm pretty sure that's caused by me pulling away too quick. just hold it there a little longer with out melting the metal?

Looks sooo easy but [email protected] it's hard.

And my current version of dimes.
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Old 06-13-2009
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doesn't look too bad, i have had the same with my welding skills, it just takes paience, and practice
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Old 06-13-2009
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in the first pic it looks like you were running it too hot, and the second pic looks not hot enough
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Old 06-13-2009
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Silver, I don't want to sound like a noob but how can you tell? I'm using the reccomended setting on the side of the welder. The only thing I can think of would be the speed that I'm moving across is either too fast/slow. Should my metal be glowing red?
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Old 06-13-2009
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well i dont know much either, like number wise, but you can tell on the first pic because the main piece of metal is sunken in so that means you got it too hot and it warped, it was too cold on te second pick and you can tell that because it looks like its just sitting on the metal. in welding, you want both peices to bond, you dont want one to do more than the other. you have to know your metals, and know your welder. sounds like you need to find a metal fabicator or someone on here that knows their temps for metals and stuff.
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Old 06-13-2009
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but good work though, like stated above, patience and practice
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Old 06-13-2009
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but good work though, like stated above, patience and practice
yep. it took me awhile to get decent at stick in metal shop, but once i learned it its a snap, same thing with mig,wich is a hell of alot easier than stick lol.. still havent learned how to tig tho
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Old 06-13-2009
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Roger. Thanks guys. I usually practice a few hours on my "weekends"... My welds used to look horrible until I realized the wire was sticking out too far. Now I just need to play with the tempature and steadying my hand.
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Old 06-14-2009
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Step down to .30 wire... thats what I've been using while learning and I like it much better, melts much easier!
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Old 06-14-2009
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Does your welder have the ability to use non cored wire with gas? Not sure if thats the little lincoln that doesnt have the ability to use gas or not. if it does I would get a gas setup and try using that. I found it much easier when I was learning to start out with a MIG setup instead of the fluxcore.
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Old 06-14-2009
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Looks pretty good. I know you said classes conflict with your schedule, but most CC's have welding classes at night. Mine were all in the evening, once or twice a week and I was working full time. It was like $90 and I used probably $300 worth of materials to learn on. Anyways, I have the same welder basically and you might find it is sensitive to which 110V outlet you use. I get the best welds when plugged into a full 20amps, eg. your washing machine's 110V outlet. Mine will sputter if I use some of the random household wall outlets that are 15A.
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Old 06-14-2009
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The problem with the welding classes anywhere is that i work two days during the day and then two at night... and they rotate weekly so I'd miss alot of the classes. Else I would LOVE to take some classes.

I've learned that the welder HATES anything less than 20a. Especially on the 1/8th or 1/4th steel.

Redranger, I believe that it can convert to the gas system... but the upgrade costs $200. I'll look into it some more and see i can work out the price.

Thanks all for the help
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Old 06-14-2009
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save your 200 and buy a sick *** miller with a gas feed
also adjust your wirespeed, that helped me alot, if its too fast the wire will just shoot out and wont have the proper time to melt and your welds will look like ***. but too slow and youll have the same results, adjust it to the speed at wich you run beads
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Old 06-14-2009
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thats not bad for just starting to learn to weld ive been welding 8 years now and ill say im not perfect its a hard art to master but it looks like your on the right track just keep at it and you will have it
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Old 06-14-2009
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I will say that learning to weld the hardest part is getting the machine set right. If its not set right no matter how good your technique is your not going to get a good bead.
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Old 06-14-2009
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I will say that learning to weld the hardest part is getting the machine set right. If its not set right no matter how good your technique is your not going to get a good bead.
+1 to that. I had the art of welding down pretty fast, But getting the settings right was by far the hardest to master.
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Old 06-16-2009
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roger. thanks guys. i played with the wire speed today a little and the welds are looking much better.
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  #18  
Old 06-16-2009
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Your welds look pretty good for flux core wire. Like was mentioned above, a gas setup will make it look soooo much better. The only problem is that with a gas setup on a 110V welder, the thickest single pass weld you can make will be on 3/16. You will need the flux core on anything above that. I just got a new Hobart a few months ago (Handler 210). Before I bought it, I shopped around a lot and quickly realized that a 110V just wasn't capable of doing what I needed it to do, so I turned my back to the Lincolns (which was what I actually originally planned on getting). I found the Hobarts, which are made by Miller, and they didn't cost too much more, and this one can single pass 3/8" with gas, 1/2" with flux core, and has a 35% Duty cyle, which is higher than any other welder in its class. If you plan on doing a lot of welding once you learn, sell what you got and upgrade to a 220V Gas feed welder. You will like it a lot more.
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  #19  
Old 06-17-2009
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I'm really leaning towards the gas setup on a 220v... but i don't think i want to switch over yet if i don't really like the welding gig. so far it's kinda fun because with a welder, most things are possible. and spending $300 for metal/paint/wire is alot cheaper than buying a bumper.
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Old 06-17-2009
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exactly!

i made a table for my room that looks identical to one i saw at ikea ( they wanted 120 bux) and i bought 12 dollars worth of 1 inch sqaure tubing and used my chop saw to cut it to length and welded it all up
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Old 06-17-2009
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maybe you can even do a few small welding jobs for some friends to get a little extra money
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  #22  
Old 06-17-2009
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I suggest going to gas as well. Flux core makes everything harder.

Also crank the heat up more. IMO its easier to weld HOT than cold then just watch the metal, you will learn speed, distance and movement based on how you are burning the metal. then as you learn slowly adjust the settings to get what you like.

When you turn the power down typically you will also turn the wire speed down.

Also I hate welding flat like you show, its not practical, actually weld pieces together dont just lay a bead it proves nothing.
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  #23  
Old 06-17-2009
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I dunno, I learned on flux core and I can lay down a decent lookin weld after bout 5 min of warm up... Practice practice, I've actually grabbed junk lawn more blades and practiced welding them together!!
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  #24  
Old 06-17-2009
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I dunno, I learned on flux core and I can lay down a decent lookin weld after bout 5 min of warm up... Practice practice, I've actually grabbed junk lawn more blades and practiced welding them together!!
hahaha, Imagine doing that when your younger and your welding dad's lawnmower blades together.. gosh, that would be a fun argument to watch
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Old 06-17-2009
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haha. no kidding. we had a 3 blade commercial mower for our yard.... i wonder how long it would have taken my dad to realize he was missing a few blades.
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