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Old 05-10-2021, 11:31 AM   #1
tdwinklr
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Default alum. welding settings ...

welding up some 1 1/2" square aluminum tubing and its thin, 1/8" and less.

Using a MillerMatic 252 with spoolgun, can't get the settings dialed in without blowing through everything.

Help !
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Old 05-10-2021, 12:23 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdwinklr View Post
welding up some 1 1/2" square aluminum tubing and its thin, 1/8" and less.



Using a MillerMatic 252 with spoolgun, can't get the settings dialed in without blowing through everything.



Help !
I'm no expert.
The wire flux core?
Do you have the correct gas?


When I weld aluminum it's with a stick and I SUCK at it.
2 things I try to not suck so bad.

1) weld faster, not the spool gun but your hand
2) make sure it's clean.

Hope this helps
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Old 05-10-2021, 12:34 PM   #3
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I've always used 4043 .035 wire. Set your wire speed on 5-6. Depending on what you have your spoolgun tied into on the amps or temp. 1 1/2" x 1/8" tubbing is going to heat up fast you might have to spot weld it. Make sure you are using straight argon. If you have any other questions PM me.
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Old 05-10-2021, 12:39 PM   #4
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I've always used 4043 .035 wire. Set your wire speed on 5-6. Depending on what you have your spoolgun tied into on the amps or temp. 1 1/2" x 1/8" tubbing is going to heat up fast you might have to spot weld it. Make sure you are using straight argon. If you have any other questions PM me.
Using the same wire and straight Argon. I've used it successfully in a little thicker stuff, 1/8" + . Will send PM.
thx
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Old 05-10-2021, 12:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pushbutton2 View Post
I'm no expert.
The wire flux core?
Do you have the correct gas?


When I weld aluminum it's with a stick and I SUCK at it.
2 things I try to not suck so bad.

1) weld faster, not the spool gun but your hand
2) make sure it's clean.

Hope this helps
yes, it is clean and its straight alum. wire. 4043, .035. 100% Argon
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Old 05-10-2021, 12:41 PM   #6
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Haul azz. And stainless steel brush it. Even if it looks clean still brush every weld.
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Old 05-10-2021, 12:41 PM   #7
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yes, it is clean and its straight alum. wire. 4043, .035. 100% Argon
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Old 05-10-2021, 01:31 PM   #8
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You have to run with it really fast.
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Old 05-10-2021, 02:15 PM   #9
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Weld on lots of aluminum... but only once with a spool gun. 99% of my aluminum welding is with my tig. Outside of the fact that welding aluminum period is kinda tricky at times, doing it with a spool gun is at least “somewhat” similar to regular mig welding. And I use the term somewhat very loosely. As some have mentioned, wire speed/amps are key. And yeah, you can’t jack around on your hand speed. I will say this though, you should be able to slow down the wire feed speed, and turn the amperage down low enough to weld way thinner than what you’re trying to weld, so it’s definitely doable. The only time I ever used one was on my jon boat rebuild, and i know at least the hull was quite abit thinner than what you’re welding. And also as somebody mentioned, if you can’t seem to overcome your problem with settings on the welder, you can do lots of single tacks overlapping that’ll look just as good as if you stayed on the trigger. PM me as well if ya got any additional questions. I bet we can get it figured out. Good Huntin, and God Bless, Rusty
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Old 05-10-2021, 02:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spidermonkey View Post
Weld on lots of aluminum... but only once with a spool gun. 99% of my aluminum welding is with my tig. Outside of the fact that welding aluminum period is kinda tricky at times, doing it with a spool gun is at least “somewhat” similar to regular mig welding. And I use the term somewhat very loosely. As some have mentioned, wire speed/amps are key. And yeah, you can’t jack around on your hand speed. I will say this though, you should be able to slow down the wire feed speed, and turn the amperage down low enough to weld way thinner than what you’re trying to weld, so it’s definitely doable. The only time I ever used one was on my jon boat rebuild, and i know at least the hull was quite abit thinner than what you’re welding. And also as somebody mentioned, if you can’t seem to overcome your problem with settings on the welder, you can do lots of single tacks overlapping that’ll look just as good as if you stayed on the trigger. PM me as well if ya got any additional questions. I bet we can get it figured out. Good Huntin, and God Bless, Rusty
yeah, talked to Johnson(Steve) on here earlier and he recommended spot welding it because of the heat. I believe the problem is the .035 wire, I just don't have any .030 on hand so for now the spot welding is working with the .035 but don't like the looks of it yet. Oh well, maybe the grinder will level it out enough. lol
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Old 05-10-2021, 04:01 PM   #11
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Yep. The .035 takes “X” amount of amps to melt/flow good, while your tubing wall thickness takes “X” amount to do the same. So sometimes it’s a matter of figuring out what you can do to make a good/strong weld with what you have. I really would think you could get your mig setup to weld that tubing with .035 wire, but I ain’t there experiencing it, so could very well be wrong. Like last night I welded (tig) up a cracked boat prop for a friend, but I was out of the filler I needed that would have worked perfect for the thickness of aluminum on the prop blade, but I made do with the 1/8” filler I had. There’s ways to get around stuff sometimes. Not always, but every now and then. Good luck, and holler if ya need any help. Good Huntin, and God Bless, Rusty
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Old 05-10-2021, 08:06 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdwinklr View Post
welding up some 1 1/2" square aluminum tubing and its thin, 1/8" and less.

Using a MillerMatic 252 with spoolgun, can't get the settings dialed in without blowing through everything.

Help !

Which spoolgun do you have? Maybe I can walk you through it.
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Old 05-10-2021, 08:29 PM   #13
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First thing I ever learned to weld back in 1976 was 1"x1"x 1/16" aluminum squaretubing using helium mix and a spoolgun.
I'm still weld-n aluminum today. Only it's tig-n mostly. And have learned to run all kinds of metals working in the aircraft industries for the last 20 years. Also all kinds of other industries like structural, oil&gas, automotive, EPA, all kinds of stuff. I've been a job hopper most of my life. And got a fairly good hands on welding layout, fit up, and weld out education.

I have the same M 252 here at the house. And a 225 Precision Tig. Both just for fooling around and special projects. I was going to start building custom bicycle frames about 15 years ago out of 6/4al ti and Ultra Faco, when I had a USAC coach's license. But got of the health and fitness industry I had as a part time. Plus carbon and plastic bike frames have swallowed up the market. Name:  20210510_200742.jpg
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The fish are biting, and there's hogs to be kill-t. Gotta go!
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Old 05-10-2021, 08:37 PM   #14
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Just realized it's past my bed time. Gotta get up at 4:10. Send me a PM and we'll talk tomorrow when I get off work.
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Old 05-10-2021, 10:33 PM   #15
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My 252 is set to 18 volts and 280 on wire speed to weld that kind of tubing.
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Old 05-11-2021, 08:20 AM   #16
tdwinklr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Draco View Post
My 252 is set to 18 volts and 280 on wire speed to weld that kind of tubing.
that makes more sense. The chart on the machine shows 18.5 / 380, looks like a misprint.
Is your setting with .035 or .030 wire?
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Old 05-11-2021, 10:05 PM   #17
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It's with .035 hard wire. If my normal settings seem too hot then I usually just trigger weld it. Hit the trigger, push back a puddle and stop. Hit the trigger same same. Works really well for short welds.
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Old 05-12-2021, 06:29 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdwinklr View Post
that makes more sense. The chart on the machine shows 18.5 / 380, looks like a misprint.

Is your setting with .035 or .030 wire?
Checked mine last night and my chart said 520.

Wire speed is controlled by my lead in the handle. I set temp and Wire speed to type of weld (up, down, flat butt, ect). Don't hold nozzle to close. And set Gass at 35-45.

The fish are biting, and there's hogs to be kill-t. Gotta go!
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Old 05-12-2021, 09:38 AM   #19
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TIG has the advantage of preheating the material in advance of the weld. So, more weld penetration is more likely to take place.
When using wire, the guys at work will often preheat the joint with a torch to make the aluminum more receptive for welding. They get less sputter and the speed of the weld is faster. With better penetration.
Most of the guys attended vocational schools when those schools existed.
You might try beeline the ends of the parts with a grinder. This allows for a better visual joint, more penetration, and a flatter weld. Hopefully no grinding.

Last edited by Bluesman; 05-12-2021 at 09:45 AM.
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