In this post, we will know How to do Arc Welding. Stick welding, known as “Arc Welding” or SMAW, is common among first-time welders. Unlike MIG and TIG welding, no shielding gas is required. This makes it inexpensive to get into and makes it easy to weld in any environment.
How to do Arc Welding Steps
Step 1: Machine Setup
- Make sure your machine is set properly. DIfferent stick welding electrodes are manufactured to weld with different settings.
- The electrode you’re using will find whether you use the DC Positive (DCEP), DC Negative (DCEN), or the AC (Alternating Current).
- Some machines only have the capability to weld in one or two of these modes, so make sure you select a stick rod that is compatible with your machine.
Step 2: Arc Length is Key
- In stick welding, few things are important than arc length. Arc length is the distance between the electrode and the workpiece.
- Stick welding is what is known as the Constant Current welding method.
- That means, like all CC weld methods, your arc length controls the welding voltage.
- When you learn to Arc weld, it is essential to learn to maintain a steady arc length.
- A good rule of thumb is to keep your arc length the same as the diameter of your electrode.
- If you determine that the electrode is getting stuck to the workpiece, your arc length is too short.
- If you’re getting excessive spatter or undercut, the arc length is too long.
Step 3: If there’s Slag, you Drag
- If you’ve ever had the welding lesson, you may have heard Arc welding tips like, “If there’s slag, you drag”.
- This refers to the travel direction and the electrode angle.
- Generally speaking, a 10 to 15-degree drag angle when stick welding will yield the best results.
- This isn’t the case in some applications, like vertical, but that is a more advanced lesson for a future article.
Step 4: Manipulating the Electrode
- Some welders prefer to run the steady line, while others prefer the whip and pause motion.
- Welding is an art, and it is up to you to experiment with different methods and decide what works best for you. If there is a gap in what you are trying to weld, you might want to try a slight weave.
Step 5: Travel Speed
- Travel speed determines how much metal is deposited onto the workpiece as well as how much heat is dumped into it (along with amperage).
- Once you strike the arc, attempt to keep your arc on the leading edge of the puddle without outrunning it.