TIG welding is a popular arc welding process for combining two pieces of metal using a non-consumable tungsten electrode and inert gas.
It’s an excellent option for welding carbon steel for its superior strength and control compared to other welding processes.
Whether you are an apprentice or a DIYer welder, it’s important to know how TIG welding works.
I will talk you through the whole TIG welding process, its advantages, disadvantages, and common mistakes. You will also get to know essential tips regarding safety measures. So, let’s get into it.
Can Carbon Steel Be TIG Welded?
TIG welding is a welding technique used for welding various metals. You can TIG weld carbon steel. The process involves heating two pieces of carbon steel together using an electric arc and a tungsten electrode. It’s a very clean and precise welding process.
You will have to use the right filler material and maintain all the correct welding techniques to weld carbon steel.
The filler metal will depend on the carbon content in the steel bar and the welded steel’s strength and appearance.
What Gas Do You Use To TIG Carbon Steel?
The TIG welding process uses different types of gas depending on the metal you are welding. You will need an inert gas for welding metals together.
Argon is the most commonly used gas for TIG welding carbon steel. It is low-cost and readily available.
This is a non-flammable, tasteless, and non-toxic gas. It’s also a very efficient gas. You can also use helium gas, but it is less efficient and cost-effective than argon gas.
How Do You Set Up A TIG Welder For Carbon Steel?
To successfully TIG weld carbon steel, you have to set up the welder according to the welder’s user manual. However, here is a common process for setting up a TIG welder for carbon steel:
- Set the amperage of your welder to the appropriate level. For carbon steel, you have to set the amperage between 60 and 120 amps.
- Then, set the correct gas flow rate of the welder: 15 to 20 cubic feet per hour.
- Prepare the correct type of tungsten electrode for carbon.
- Also, keep ready the right filler rod for the process.
- Keep the tungsten electrode and filler rod in their holder and tighten them with set screws.
- Attach the ground clamp to the carbon metal, and your welder will be ready for action.
How Do You TIG Welding Carbon Steel
TIG welding is a very complex process, and you need precision and skill to complete the process successfully. Let’s see the step-by-step process of how to TIG weld carbon steel:
- Firstly, set your welder machine to the appropriate settings based on carbon steel. You must adjust the amperage rate, gas flow rate, and other settings.
- Then clean your carbon steel workpiece using a wire brush or sandpaper to remove dirt and debris from the metal steel.
- You have already kept the tungsten electrode, filler rod, and ground clamp in place. So, it’s time to begin the welding process.
- Now, strike an arc by touching the electrode to the metal and pulling away quickly.
- You may have to adjust the amperage of the welder and torch angle to get a stable arc.
- Then, add the filler rod into the weld puddle according to the need.
- Finally, as the welding process is going on, adjust the amperage and check the weld puddle as necessary.
- When you are done with welding, turn off the welder machine and remove the ground clamp.
- Check your carbon steel weld and see whether there is any flaw.
What To Focus When TIG Welding Carbon Steel
Since TIG welding is a complex process, you should be careful about every step. There are several factors you should focus on while running the process.
- Make sure the carbon steel joints are clean before starting the welding procedure.
- Must use the right size and type of tungsten electrode.
- Constantly adjust the gas flow rate depending on the carbon steel.
- Adjust the welder amperage, arc length, and other settings according to the requirement.
- Make sure to clean the workpiece after TIG welding is completed.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of TIG Welding Carbon Steel
The following table shows the advantages and disadvantages of TIG welding carbon steel:
- TIG welding is a highly precise method with excellent control over the process.
- It produces a cleaner weld producing less splatter.
- This welding process creates a strong bond between the two pieces of carbon steel.
- It’s a versatile welding method and can be used in various applications.
- The TIG welding process is expensive.
- It’s a slow welding process and not suitable for high-volume production.
- The process requires highly skilled welders.
TIG Welding Carbon Steel Common Mistakes & How Avoid Them
Even the most experienced welder makes some common mistakes in TIG welding. Let’s see some of those mistakes and tricks to avoid them.
Not Using the Right Electrode Size
The right electrode size is very crucial for TIG welding. Make sure to use the right electrode size based on your carbon steel.
Not Cleaning the Steel Before
A lot of welders do not clean the metals before welding. It’s a mistake. You must clean both workpieces before starting the process.
Not Pre-Heating the Metal
Pre-heating your carbon steel will ensure they don’t break or crack while welding. So, remember to pre-heat the carbon steel for some time.
Not Using the Right Filler Metal
You have to use the right filler metal for carbon steel. The wrong one can produce weak welds and cause high porosity.
Safety Precautions When TIG Welding Carbon Steel
You have to ensure the following safety precautions during TIG welding:
- Always use protective safety gear, such as a welding helmet, gloves, etc.
- Use suitable types of welding equipment for specific jobs.
- Adjust the settings of your TIG welder machine based on the work metal.
- Perform TIG welding in an open place so that toxic fumes are well-ventilated.
- Keep the working place and working materials clean.
TIG welding is a great way of joining carbon steel. Since it’s clean and precise, many expert welders prefer TIG welding.
You can use this welding process for a variety of applications. Just make sure you have the proper training and are proficient in it.