How to weld using a MIG welder

How to weld using a MIG welderMIG welding is the easiest way to weld, and it is generally considered fort he beginners’ welders in institutions and training centers. MIG welding is an arc welding process where you use a solid electrode to connect two base metals.

Suppose we consider the MIG’s literal meaning, so it refers to the “Metal inert gas” welding, which means that when a welder would weld through this method, he will be using some inert gases. If you are having some training on welding, you will know that this method is technically referred to on an international level as the gas metal arc welding (GMAW); you may also hear people claiming it to be the wire welding.

Who can do MIG welding?

The MIG is the easiest way for welding two wires or metals together, that is why anyone who wants to connect two metals can apply this welding method. It is best for the metal that is 2 to 4inches thick, and anyone who is a homemaker, DIY artist, a professional artist, a scientist, or a researcher can do the MIG welding. Many people who are experts in welding would say that it is easy as ABC, but it is not primarily for the beginners.

Things you need for safety

Welding is not for ids, and it is not safe. You cannot expect to stay intact while you weld because it includes electricity and heat. You need some great leather boots while you weld, a pair of amazing goggles, a long sleeve jacket that is flame resistant, a welding helmet, and a bandana to keep your head cool while dealing with high voltage electricity and heat.

Now, coming to the voltage. How much voltage do you need to do the MIG welding? If you live at a place where there is a low voltage, you may not weld properly. The ideal voltage and current for the MiG welding are no defined.

The voltage value of MiG welding depends upon several factors. The first thing to consider is the thickness of the metal. If you are going to weld a thick metal piece, then you need high voltage. Next is the wire diameter, you can also consider it as the thickness of the metal, but it is a different thick as it is related to the pin’s rotation.

Apart from these two factors, the voltage for MiG welding also depends upon the welding configuration, location of the welded points, and the inert gas. The welding machines now are automatic, and you simply need to select the wire-diameter, and the voltage will auto-adjust.

How to weld using a MIG welder (Steps)

Here are a few steps that you need to follow if you are planning to do MiG welding.

1. Prepare your equipment

But before you do this, you must observe the objects and metals you are going to weld. For a great arc start, the welding machine requires a constant voltage; these machines have DCEP. So, you need to check the spoof of wire and the machine’s voltage before you use it.

Net is the handler; it is a gun for several purposes. It works on the principle of triggering. You must pull the gun, and it will automatically trigger the wire and fill it between the metals. In MiG welding, you cannot let the air disturb the melted metal; thus, it is necessary to shield the welded wire.

This shielding is done through the inert gas; the inert gases are non-reactive and can be used to shield the welded portion for the time being. Next is the flow of gas, which is managed by the flow meter. The gas used for shielding is usually the mix of argon and the carbon dioxide, you can control the gas flow through the flowmeter, and the ideal gas flow for the normal welding is 20 cubic feet per hour. If you are a beginner, try to work with a lowered gas flow, as you will learn to work with the skill, you can increase the gas flow.

2. Consider the voltage and millimetric table.

Along with the voltage, you also need to consider the wire feeding speed of the welding machine. You can select the ideal range according to the wire diameter and the thickness of the metal being welded. Some automated welding machines only require you to set the wire diameter; then, the machine automatically sets the rest of the pre-requisites for the proper welding.

3. Clean the metals

You cannot expect a finishing result unless you clean the metals before you weld them. Even during welding, the metal will get dusty and dirty, but it is better to wipe off all the dirt before connecting two metal prices. In MiG welding, the welders usually do not consider cleaning because, unlike TIUG welding, it will not pose any sort of issues, but the cleaner the metal, the easier it will be for welding.

You can use the sandpapers for welding, or a simple abrasive cloth will be enough for cleaning the oil and any dirt off the metal. The most important thing to clean is the base metal.

4. Holding and moving the gun

When your gun and the base metals are ready, it is time to weld; while you weld, the most important thing is the angle you work on. If you are not holding the machines and metal in the right way, you will not get the desired results.

Next is the gun’s distance from the welding point; you cannot place the gun too close to the base metal. You should maintain a constant distance of almost 5 inches while welding; in case of thin metals, ensure 8 inches. The distance of the welding gun and the metal is known as the stick out, which is crucial for the outcome. If you want an even welded point, then you must maintain the most suitable distance.

For assurance, take a piece of the base metal and then place it at a distance of 5 inches, weld it and then check if you are getting the desired results.

5. The travel and work angle

The ideal travel angle for MiG welding is 15 degrees. You must make sure that the gun’s motion is slightly tilted and in the direction of the welding points. We practice different angles for different types of joints; for example, for a butt joint, the 90-degree angle is the best.

6. The speed of the gun

If you do not move the gun swiftly while welding, there will be a high chance of building up beads and studs of molten metal, you might have seen these when you reach out to some unprofessional welders; you see teras of solidified metals.

Sometimes when you are welding relatively thin metal, the speed needs to be very fast, but on the other hand, when it is thick metal, you need to move steadily. So, there are no hard and fast rules for the speed and movement of the welding gun. You need to observe the metal first, and then decide what is better for the base metal.

Final Words

MIG welding is an easy welding method, and its equipment is available all across the globe. It is the most common welding method, and anyone can do this if he knows a bit about welding and the working of the welding machines. The only risk in MIG welding is the mismanagement of the devices and the base metal. It can turn out to be fun if you stay alert and focused during welding.