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Old 12-06-2013, 10:44   #31
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

You need a tig setup. It's harder than mig or stick for most people. Also it can look good and have no penetration or strength too. TIG welders are expensive also.
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:45   #32
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

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It's no more ridiculous to buy an entry level TIG machine and learn enough to make your own stern railing than it is to buy a Sailrite machine and sew your own dodger. And in the end it's a fun new hobby.

There's a lot of online machismo around welding. So what if someone will never be a virtuoso who can weld on a nuclear reactor. Welding stainless tubing on a pulpit is well within the capabilities of a self taught hobyist. With a few days of 1 on 1 instruction, and then a few more days of practice, I think he could pick it up well enough to make what he wants.

I think TIG is pretty easy for some people, who have a certain kind of artistic coordinated hand. My wife paints, and immediately got the hard part of TIG, for me, which is moving and rotating the torch while keeping the tip a precise distance from the surface. I guess you have to do the same thing with a paint brush. I'm not coordinated like that, but brute forced learning in a Karate Kid 'wax on, wax off' way. So that's what I suggest for someone making a pulpit: buy extra tubing and practice making a few dozen of every kind of joint that will need to be made, in the same orientation and body position. Then, when it's time to weld on the actual pulpit, it'll be the couple dozenth time doing that particular weld, and it'll look good.
There is an Aircraft Exhaust repair station in Northern California that has mostly women welders. I think most women welders don't drink enough don't smell enough paint fumes etc to be shaky. Holding an arc steady an 1/8 from the weld is not that easy for some guy's.
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Old 12-06-2013, 13:52   #33
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

Done some welding, would love to do it as artwork. Welded SS with stick, seemed to burn hotter than mild steel. Have not worked with TIG or MIG, will learn some day. Good skill to have in your bag of tricks.
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Old 14-06-2013, 19:11   #34
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

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To those who weld stainless, what do you use to polish the weld?

Thanks in advance,
Chuck
I second the jewelers rouge and buffing wheel. You can buy it by the stick at Lowes or Home Depot. Different colors for different grits. If you progress through the colors properly you can achieve a perfect mirror finish with no fine scratches. Deeper scratches must be removed first with progressively fine grit sandpaper.
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Old 14-06-2013, 21:59   #35
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That's true about the buffing wheel and rouge. I'm still working on replacing the swim platform ladder. The rungs are bolted on with 3" long bolts. I wanted them to sparkle so I was able to find five chromed bolts at the local motorcycle shop - but I needed six. Searched all over, finally broke down and bought regular stainless, filed off the manufacturing stamp on the bolt head and then used a buffing wheel to polish the bolt head so shiny that I can't tell the difference between the chrome and regular stainless - at least for now.
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Old 14-06-2013, 22:07   #36
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

Has anybody tried electropolishing ?
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Old 14-06-2013, 22:09   #37
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

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Has anybody tried electropolishing ?
Nice but you can't do it yourself
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Old 15-06-2013, 00:44   #38
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

If you grew up gas welding and brazeing, useing a TIG is a little easier to use a little sooner. At least it was that way for me ! Now the foot peddle was a different thing LOL
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Old 15-06-2013, 04:54   #39
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

well now ive heard about those nuclear welders im not only going to give up my ham fisted efforts forever, im also going to chuck all the junk ive built and used for the last however many years over the side...
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Old 15-06-2013, 06:23   #40
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To finish stainless welds I get them pickled,( nitric acid) and buffed , never Grind them



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Old 15-06-2013, 07:21   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captain58sailin View Post
Done some welding, would love to do it as artwork. Welded SS with stick, seemed to burn hotter than mild steel. Have not worked with TIG or MIG, will learn some day. Good skill to have in your bag of tricks.
You would find MIG pretty easy if you've arc welded. Arc welding with an old school hood takes a lot of practice just to see well, plus good dry rods, properly prepped work. A monkey can mig weld with an auto-darkening helmet and voltage and wire speed setup right. They are fun and easy to use. If you've ever arc welded though, there is something very satisfying tactilely about striking an arc and keeping it in the sweet spot.

TIG is the same although my experience is limited. The trick is having the experience to adjust settings and tempo/technique to varying work pieces. All boils down to experience and practice, but ya, some people are just natural at these kinds of things.

I think ill work on my TIG welding. Seems like there is some opportunity out there to generate some income, although not the kind of thing ill packing on the boat. What else could tungsten inert gas be used for?
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Old 15-06-2013, 07:39   #42
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

I use a Henrob oxy setup welds Stainless and other nonferrous metals just fine. Also MIG is super easy to learn and you can use flux cored ss wire with that and weld outside in the wind unlike tig.
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Old 15-06-2013, 14:54   #43
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

Just to clarify to all those "experts" out there.......
Sticking 2 bits of metal together does not make you a Welder
Our Welders completed 5 year apprenticeships, have to be tested for each type of weld and each type of welding process before they are allowed to weld on plant.
This isn't nuclear specific it is industry standard, oil/gas/chemical, you name it.

You may notice that I use a capital W in Welder, that is because it is a trade with a high degree of skill and knowledge required.

p.s. I am most definitely in the stick 2 bits of metal camp. Even though I do weld occasionally in my work, I would never call myself a Welder.

It irks me greatly that so many people on here look down on craftsmen, claiming they're a welder in 2 days or marine engineer after doing a weeks course.
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Old 15-06-2013, 15:15   #44
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

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Just to clarify to all those "experts" out there.......
Sticking 2 bits of metal together does not make you a Welder
Our Welders completed 5 year apprenticeships, have to be tested for each type of weld and each type of welding process before they are allowed to weld on plant.
This isn't nuclear specific it is industry standard, oil/gas/chemical, you name it.

You may notice that I use a capital W in Welder, that is because it is a trade with a high degree of skill and knowledge required.

p.s. I am most definitely in the stick 2 bits of metal camp. Even though I do weld occasionally in my work, I would never call myself a Welder.

It irks me greatly that so many people on here look down on craftsmen, claiming they're a welder in 2 days or marine engineer after doing a weeks course.

How about that. I said "Welders would be offended", however you have put it much it much better, thank you..
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Old 11-07-2013, 20:26   #45
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Re: SS Welding for Dummies

Something I just discovered today.
I do a little stainless stick welding (amateur status only) for various bits and pieces on my boat. I keep the amps fairly low so I don't blow the thin stuff to pieces and consequently find the rods can be hard to start. I am using standard 316L rods and have discovered that if you heat the tip of the rod with a butane micro torch or similar then they start very easily. I don't know why this should be, but it works for me.
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