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steel vs alum on the gun liner

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  • steel vs alum on the gun liner

    I have heard that switching back and forth between steel and alum wires can cause trouble ... maybe the alum that rubs off and builds up in the liner.

    As a hobby and hacker welder, I am trying to use one set up to do all as much as I can (HH-135). Can you offer some guidance?

    How many pounds of alum can I run before it will mess up my ability to switch back to steel? (or maybe it is the other way around?) Seems like the softer alum wire would be more likely to have trouble feeding?

    Bob

  • #2
    If you take an air hose and blow the liner out every time you switch you shouldnt have a problem. By the way it is the steel that gets dust and grit in the liner that will cause the aluminum to bind up and not feed good.
    Thanks
    Dave Evans

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    • #3
      HI BOB.......ABSOLUTELY THE ALUMINUM IS HARDER TO FEED, IF YOU USE THE TEFLON LINER NUMBER 194014 IN THE HANDLER IT HELPS TREMENDOUSLY.............COST IS NOMINAL LESS THAN 25.00 DOLLARS AS I RECALL.........IT WILL ALSO HELP TO KEEP THE GUN AS STRAIGHT AS POSSABLE.............THE AMOUNT OF WIRE THRU A LINER WILL VARY TO THE USE INDOOR VS OUTDOOR, EXPERIENCED VS INESPERIENCED, ETC......... YOU GET THE IDEA...........GOOD LUCK............HAVE SOME FUN WITH IT..... [email protected]

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      • #4
        Bob, keep in mind the pricey part of having the aluminum setup on hand is purchasing the extra cylinder, need argon/co2 for steel and straight argon for aluminum. As Rock said, the cost of the liner is nominal. Also welding 1/8 aluminum single pass is doing pretty good for that size machine. One last note, some things that I have tried to repair in the past thinking they were aluminum (lawn chairs and the like) have turned out to be the dreaded white metal, and not able to be welded with the small mig. Best of luck and if you do get the alum setup let us know how it works for you. BW

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        • #5
          envelope with a black dot

          Thanks All,

          I have the argon and hope to start experimenting with alum this weekend. Back when Lyndon Johnson was president I did have two college classes in 'gas' and 'electric' welding ... but I have to rate my skills as clearly inexperienced at this point. I am still on the sample roll of self shielding wire that came with the HH-135. Getting better. Having fun.

          What does the envelope icon with the black dot mean It appears on this message thread and another question I asked?

          Bob

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          • #6
            Teflon linner is easier to damage than steel liner. When you cut your wire grind off sharp end before threading it into teflon liner.

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            • #7
              If you do decide to get the teflon liner, only use it for alum. just like the steel liner will screw up the alum. wire the steel wire will wear through the teflon....JPCWELD

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              • #8
                Re: envelope with a black dot

                Originally posted by Bob
                Thanks All,

                What does the envelope icon with the black dot mean It appears on this message thread and another question I asked?

                Bob
                I believe the black dot will appear on any thread you have participated in, either asking the original question or replying to someonelses question.

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                • #9
                  another question re first time alum

                  Friday night.

                  I got all set up to try alum for the first time tomorrow.

                  HH-135 calls for voltage setting 4 (max) and wire speed 90% (of max). That seems like lots and lots of wire coming really fast.

                  Am I moving the torch much faster and/or leaving a much larger bead?

                  When you get it right with alum, does it settle from initial crackling into a sizzle noise like with steel?

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                  • #10
                    Hello Bob, Have you tried it yet or are you just wondering what to look for tomarrow, and what size wire are you using,and what is the material thickness?

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                    • #11
                      alum wire

                      Have not tried it yet, but soon. Wire is .030, material 1/8".
                      =========================================
                      Later (hey I can edit my posts!). Went fairly well. By the time I had used up my scraps, I had some decent looking beads.

                      I did notice the arc starts with a rapid "put put" sound and progressed to a not to high pitched squeal in the better beads. Had to keep the nozzel real close. Argon was set at the recommended 20 cfh, but maybe more gas would help.

                      Had my first "rats nest" when I got too close and welded the wire to the nozzel.

                      Also seemed to be less margin between too cold (metal piled on top) and too hot (burn thru).

                      Keeping my day job for now, but having fun.
                      Last edited by Bob; 09-14-2002, 04:15 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Why do you think need to keep nozzel real close?
                        Aluminum is better conductor than steel so stickout increase doesn't affect amps, and aluminum is better heat conductor expanding more than steel when heated causing it to stick in contact tip. For these reasons extending stick out a little is generally recommended. 3/4" aluminum 1/2" steel wire
                        If your having shelding problems with extended stickout extend your nozzel to reccess contact tip. Special nozzels are sold to recess contact tip or you can try screwing nozzel out a bit. to see if it helps.

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                        • #13
                          HI BOB........YES YOU NEED 1/2" MINIMUM STICK OUT AND OH MY YES DO YOU TRAVEL REAL FAST ON ALUMINUM. AND........ DON'T CRANK A BUNCH OF HEAT INTO HER OR SHE WILL WARP ON YOU.. AND OH MY ONLY ONE BIRDS NEST I'M IMPRESSED.......I USUALLY HAVE 3 OR 4 ON AN ALUMINUM PROJECT.......... HELPED MY BROTHER WELD A DOOR (ALUMINUM) ON THE BACK OF A ALUMINUM DUMP TRAILER..........HAHAHA..........WHAT A MESS HE CRANKED TO MUCH HEAT INTO IT AND WARPED IT.........NOW IT LEAKS GRAVEL OUT FROM UNDERNEATH........ ALTHOUGH THE WELDS LOOKED GOOD IT STILL WON'T DO........ JUST WHAT WE NEED MORE WORK TO DO.................BUT I'M STILL HAVEING FUN WITH [email protected] .COM

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                          • #14
                            still trying

                            Thanks Roger, for trying to help.

                            On the first few attempts I was get very 'gloppy' results with lots of black soot on the side and a "snap crackly pop" sound.

                            A little closer reduced the soot, looked a little better, and was more of a steady crackly sound (not quite a smooth "sizzle").

                            Closer still, the sound changed dramaticaly to a whine ... not sure what that was ... from what you've said, that is probably also not a goal.

                            I turned up the gas a little (30 cfh) and extended the nozzle. That does help. Still some soot and a little crackly. I may just need practice at this point.

                            Thanks Again

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Your on the right track and will improve with practice.

                              Drive roll pressure for welding aluminum is set as low as possable. When set right should be able to point gun at wood board 1/4" away pull trigger and not have bird nest. Set drive roll pressure from slipping to just driving wire not much extra.
                              Still will have problems if not your day.

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