Tools & Fabrication - Trying to improve my aluminum TIG welding




i6overboard
04-27-2012, 05:47 PM
Heres a pic of brake pedal that i did.

http://i1142.photobucket.com/albums/n616/i6overboard/f57122a7.jpg

Basically im trying to get shine in the weld like this

http://i1142.photobucket.com/albums/n616/i6overboard/1d34d068.jpg

What can i do to improve?

Im using a syncrowave 250. 100% argon. 1/16th r4043 aluminum rod. Set to max penetration. I do not have the pulse feature, does it make big difference?

Cleaning the shit out of it before doesnt seem to make any difference either.


orange88ls1s-dime
04-27-2012, 07:58 PM
set your ac balance alittle more towards cleaning. and drop your max amps down to about 95-105 amps or utilize more pedal control. another thing to try is use bigger filler material, it seems to act like pulse a bit as it cools down more with every dab.
just my 2 cents worth anybody else, chime in id like to have more info myself
Beaudacious

BADD SS
04-27-2012, 10:44 PM
Try 1/8" 5356 rod, your set amperage doesnt matter much on a sync 250 so set it high, you have a pedal and the arc control knob... Set it to between 3-4 on cleaning if it's an older sync 250... Use some pedal modulation, go full amperage, advance, the puddle will look like a U almost, dip, back off, advance and ramp up, repeat. Try Gold lanthanated tungstens, even though it's a "transformer" machine. I like high heat, with tons of pedal modulation. Black spots are contamination, it floats to the top...so something is getting in the weld.... I rarely clean the aluminum I do.... I use tons of HF with my syncrowave, or on my dynasty I run tons of frequency, and it welds better than cleaning the oxide off first.... Ive seen issues with abrasives embedding in the aluminum....scotchbrite sucks for that...


xfactor_pitbulls
04-28-2012, 12:27 AM
Try 1/8" 5356 rod, your set amperage doesnt matter much on a sync 250 so set it high, you have a pedal and the arc control knob... Set it to between 3-4 on cleaning if it's an older sync 250... Use some pedal modulation, go full amperage, advance, the puddle will look like a U almost, dip, back off, advance and ramp up, repeat. Try Gold lanthanated tungstens, even though it's a "transformer" machine. I like high heat, with tons of pedal modulation. Black spots are contamination, it floats to the top...so something is getting in the weld.... I rarely clean the aluminum I do.... I use tons of HF with my syncrowave, or on my dynasty I run tons of frequency, and it welds better than cleaning the oxide off first.... Ive seen issues with abrasives embedding in the aluminum....scotchbrite sucks for that...

Interesting perspective. I tend to lean towards smaller filler for small diameter/controlled weldments. Easier to to run smaller rod faster, than larger rod, and trying to poke it in there and not stick. Fundamental advice I would throw out there for beginning aluminum TIG welding, run a large gas lens, and get your flow up to 20+. Keep your tungsten hang out to around 1/4", no more. Its amazing the difference you will see with proper shielding on aluminum, vs. just shy of. Dont be shy about cleaning your work with any type of scotch brite and acetone. Pre-heat is also your friend on material 3/16" or larger if you have a small machine.

jlcustomz
04-28-2012, 08:17 AM
Interesting thread here, as I haven,t used my syncro 200 in a while & am getting ready to make a custom lsi cross ram intake I posted about a while back. While I,m not a true expert on welding, contamination is the first thing that stands out to me. Also I personally agree with using larger rod on what you were welding on if you're after the stereotypical perfect stacked bead and want a large consistant bead. Smaller rod could be better if you want to penetrate deeper & have an easier to smooth & polish bead.
While certain rules mostly hold true, there are always different methods that get you where you need to be for a particular app, not all may be the best for you. A more badass tig welder may set his amperage higher & pulse the pedal wildly, getting a stacked look quickly, where us less experienced may be better off with a lower setting. Preheat can definitely be beneficial with thick aluminum, some welders even use a helium mix to weld hotter with less amps.
Here,s a pic of my first aluminum welding project. I started out with a henrob cobra torch, which worked great on sample coupons, but not large stuff. Maybe I should of picked smaller for a first alum welding project??
http://i1094.photobucket.com/albums/i450/jlcustomz1/DSC00388-1.jpg

i6overboard
04-28-2012, 10:38 AM
great tips guys. I will be purchasing a gas lens kit and applying some of these methods and settings you guys are suggesting.

xfactor_pitbulls
04-28-2012, 02:43 PM
Good deal. Gas lens will help shielding on everything you do.

BADD SS
05-05-2012, 06:38 PM
Interesting perspective. I tend to lean towards smaller filler for small diameter/controlled weldments. Easier to to run smaller rod faster, than larger rod, and trying to poke it in there and not stick. Fundamental advice I would throw out there for beginning aluminum TIG welding, run a large gas lens, and get your flow up to 20+. Keep your tungsten hang out to around 1/4", no more. Its amazing the difference you will see with proper shielding on aluminum, vs. just shy of. Dont be shy about cleaning your work with any type of scotch brite and acetone. Pre-heat is also your friend on material 3/16" or larger if you have a small machine.

Here is a bracket I made a quick fix on, 3/16" Aluminum, 1/8" 5356 filler, gas lens, 1/8" lanthanated 18 scfm Argon, 260 amps on the dial, 80% on arc control, balance 4. (older sync 250). As you can see, there was no cleaning what so ever, the weld is so shiny, it reflects tons of light, to the point it's hard to see. I'll try and snap a better one without background light. Maybe I dont do things perfectly by the book, but all I do is weld all day... and have found what works at least for me....