Welding 101 (1 Viewer)

Where did you learn how to weld?


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Nostradamus

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Joined
Sep 6, 2013
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333
Location
Seattle, WA
I took an adult education class offered through the county extension office and held at a local community college shop. Was 1 night a week for a couple of hours for something like 6 weeks (was in the mid 1980's, so I don't recall exactly). Was me and a few farmers who wanted to gorilla weld on their farm equipment. We did some stick welding, simple wire feed stuff, and oxy/acetylene using old coat hangers IIRC. I'd say it was a step below a normal community college class, but a step above nothing. I've not had nearly enough practice to be any good, but have a 110V wire feed welder that even my kids can use, and a 220V AC buzzbox stick welder. Someday when I have more time, I'd like to play around with more exotic stuff I see on youtube.

My personal experience with anything that relates to craftsmanship is to apprentice yourself to a guru who can show you the ropes. I've never had anyone say no to a sincere request for guidance on something they're good at. Offer to pay for time/materials/beer and you'll likely move up the curve quickly.

The older I get, the more I realize that I should have taken advantage of some old timers when I was young, they could have and would have taught me a great deal.
 
Joined
Dec 7, 2004
Messages
1,825
At the age 12 I would help my dad with his projects. He would tell me what settings he wanted. Get tools and the part I hated most was hold stuff while he welded. We did not clamps. Anyhow, I learn when he would go to work. I got pretty good after a lot of practice.

There is a lot of good advice given here. Learn to weld 3 inch beads on scrape metal. Prep your metal. Once you can weld a bead on a flat surface practice doing "vertical" beads....like if welding on wall. Do a lot readingon structure welding. Google welding sites for more info. The last thing I will say is if you like it enough, get a nice220 v. a/c welder.
 
Joined
Jan 4, 2018
Messages
96
Location
Naches, WA
I learned to weld as a kid helping my dad do body work on cars with a flux core wire feed and went from there.

I would say unless you find a need don’t worry about stick welding. You can fabricate most things with just a wirefeed. If you get into intricate welding or different materials then learn tig welding but in my opinion unless you are going to get into a career in pipe welding or structural stick is not really needed. I learned tig to weld stainless working for a sanitary stainless company and got tips along the way from the welders we employed. I have to say having them to ask advice from has made my welding progress leaps and bounds. If you have access to a professional welder I would buy a lot of beer in trade for critique of your practice welds. More beneficial than any class I have seen offered. But just my .02.
 

g-man

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Joined
Sep 5, 2006
Messages
3,021
Location
Charlottesville VA
Learned from a friend. Learning how to set up the machine right ...i mean the right size wire, tip, heat ie voltage, wire speed is all pretty important. Read your owners manual a few times. Use the table under the lid to match the material with the right wire and voltage. Make sure the polarity is right. Make sure the wheel that feeds the wire out has got the correct size wire in the corresponding groove. Make sure you have the right tension on the feed wire...it's the minutia of the detail that will make or break you. Mig welding isn't that hard to get started. But a friend will help get you going. Let you know why your wire is popping like popcorn..maybe a bad ground or the voltage is off. He will get you to the best place in town for the best deals on supplies and gas bottles.
 

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