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Porta-Tig will not start arc

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  • Porta-Tig will not start arc

    I picked up a Porta-Tig awhile back which I am trying to get running.
    The machine doesn't want to start an arc.
    I can hear a squealing sound that I believe to be the high frequency but the arc will not self start. If I strike the tungsten, it will start & maintain an arc.

    Sometimes it doesn't make the squealing noise & will not start an arc, even when touching the tungsten. After clicking the foot pedal a few times, the squealing starts & I can strike an arc, but no self start.

    I cleaned the points & set them to .049, which is what the manual I have says is the setting.

    Anything I can check or test? Any ideas?


  • #2
    Sounds like it could potentially be a grounding issue, is your ground clamp attached to a clean unpainted area of your work?


    • #3
      The ground clamp itself looks clean & shiny. It was clamped directly to a clean piece of stainless that I was trying to weld. I guess there could be an issue back up the ground cable, where it connects to the welder, or internal to the welder. I will look at all the connections upstream.

      Once I was able to get an arc going by touching the tungsten it seemed to be stable, although, I was only welding two 3/16 rods together so I did not keep the arc going for very long.


      • #4
        I would also check along the torch cable and torch head, if there is a spot along either cable that is cracked/rubbing on something metal your high frequency can be jumping to something else before it gets to the part