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welding in cold weather

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  • welding in cold weather

    I would like to know how cold weather affects shielding gas, I use a 75%Argon and 25% C02. This is the first time I have tried to weld in this cold of weather, Mid 20's to low 30's and the welds were just bad with no penetration, switched over to a Flux core wire and did just fine, Any help on this matter would be great.

    Thanks, Wingnut

  • #2
    Your shielding gas had higher than 75% Argon. I'll try to explane.

    Pressure that CO2 turns to liquid depends on it's temprature. At lower temps CO2 will turn to liquid at lower pressure. When CO2 is part of gas mixture it is the partial pressure of CO2 at a given temp that CO2 will turn to liquid. You gas dealer in great fozen north can fill shielding gas mixes to lower pressure than cylinder's max working pressure to prevent CO2 in Argon/CO2 mix turning to liquid or use lower CO2% mix. When CO2 turns to liquid in a gas mix the CO2% will be lower in full bottle then at lower cylinder pressures CO2 % will be higher. (Assuming you consumed mostly Argon to lower cylinder pressure)
    Last edited by ; 01-19-2003, 03:23 PM.


    • #3
      I didn't think it got that cold in Texas.....


      • #4
        cold weather

        Rocky, it got down to the mid-upper 20s in Houston the other night. If you don't think that's cold, ask people from Green Bay who have been here in the winter. We have a damp, bone chilling cold. Of course, the garage never gets too cold for welding.
        Last edited by cope; 01-18-2003, 08:48 PM.


        • #5
          It's been nice here all week. Temp was as high as -25 F.
          D. Paulson


          • #6
            I dont know but friday night 01/17/03 it was a wopping 5 F here in ohio and colder down on the lake. Heard it was zero or -1 down there. Its getting cold here

            Now -25 Thats cold

            Red Tomstone W/ HF for TIG
            Old Miller Engine Driven 225 Amp AC Stick Welder
            Smith O/A X 2
            Harris O/A
            MSC cut off BandSaw 6X12"
            And more!
            Shop Mechanic for Brinks Coin


            • #7
              Got up to -10 yesterday. Warming up!


              • #8
                Sorry to have started the great weather debate, Roger I would like to thank you for the good information. After reading your reply I now understand, Its not always this cold in the houston area and really the first time I tryed to weld in this cold of weather.

                Thanks again


                • #9
                  Brrrrr. I was welding with the same mix in N. Ohio and had some minor problems in 25 degree weather. Although, the steel was very cold and should have warmed it before welding. Had more splatter than usual.

                  Was playing with my old stick welder and works just great. Sometimes a good thing is had to give up!!!


                  • #10
                    Your gas dealer should have charts showing max pressure you can use a given Argon/CO2 mix @ a particular low temp. Then just bleed pressure down while bottle is warm to that pressure.

                    I have seen electric drum heaters maybe there is something for gas bottles.
                    CO2 regulators can freeze at high flow rates even on warm days so they are available with heaters.
                    I have seen large air tanks drained fast enough to have drain line ice plug stop flow until ice melted. It will happen even with High pressure tanks. Not a good idea as HP air tanks should be drained slow enough to prevent water condensing on inside walls causing flash rust or worse pin holes.


                    • #11
                      When the ambient temperature gets below 30 degrees F. you should always preheat up to at least 70 degrees F. If the ambient temperature is below 0, you need to have a protective hut and raise the immediate ambient temperature. These procedures are designed to keep you from making welds that will crack at the root.
                      Mike Sherman
                      Shermans Welding


                      • #12
                        Mike you were right on, the gas company were I get my bottle filled said I should never let the bottle get below 70 F. Thanks for your good info. By the way when I had my bottle filled today I found out that several bottle supplyers have a recall on the valves due to failure, might be worth checking into, will change the valve for free.

                        Thanks for all the info