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Thread: Learning to weld

  1. #1
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    Default Learning to weld

    I'd like to learn how to weld basic stuff. I plan on taking a class at the local community college but would like to read a book first.

    Before I go buy welding for dummies, I thought I'd see if anyone here has a recommendation.

    E.g.:
    https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/Boo...%26sortby%3D17

    https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/Boo...%26sortby%3D17


    Thanks

    Tom

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    I plan on taking a class at the local community college
    best idea ever wrt welding
    miller's youtube page is pretty good too
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    +1 for taking a class. Then practice, practice, practice! I took the class in 2004, got a Miller MIG set and welded some things for my boat.
    Will

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Pless View Post
    best idea ever wrt welding
    miller's youtube page is pretty good too
    Not a welder, but I can generally stick things together.

    I agree that if you want to acquire a reasonable set of skills, the Community College is likely your best bet.

    Welding is a VAST subject. With several processes, and an unbelievable encyclopedia of knowledge available for each process, basic techniques for your chosen equipment is the best you can hope for, realistically.

    This is not to say that you can't learn to weld, but to suggest that drawing limits around what you want to accomplish will make the whole thing less formidable.

    Best o' luck, Tom.

    We really oughtta bend an elbow, you know.
    Rattling the teacups.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by oznabrag View Post
    With several processes. . .
    i'd like to learn play around with EXW some
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Comm college or trade school.............oh sorry I nodded off at the idea of a welding book. There is no substitute for practice in welding, and the good welders are expensive so going someplace that has them to use is really the best option. You can get a good stick or flux core for under $500ish, but again, you might find frustration or disappointed.
    Quote Originally Posted by isla View Post
    It's difficult to explain virtue signalling, as I was just saying to my Muslim friends over a fair-trade coffee in our local feminist bookshop.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Check out the you tube channel welding tips and tricks. Great guy, used to be an aircraft welder and welding instructor at Delta air lines. His videos are some of the best I have seen and he covers many different subjects.
    His website http://www.weldingtipsandtricks.com/Jody.html
    You tube sample
    http://youtu.be/iOWcncmRdZ8
    Tom

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Welding is a lot like playing the piano. You have to do it.

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    I've always stick welded really badly. I never do enough of it to become fluent. Have a couple of cheap arc welding machines, they kind of do the job but I suspect bigger is better. I seem to be able to stick stuff together, but far from elegant. I have heard MIG is better, easier, less likely to blow holes in light metal. So I hunted around a bit and a couple of weeks ago bought myself a used big ass 3 phase MIG, for $400. Our local big box hardware store sells the gas for $100 a bottle, with a $200 deposit on the bottle, no rental charge. So just waiting until I have $300 to spare then ready to play. I'm a dyed in the wool trial and error guy, so no books or classes for me.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Weldingweb dot com is a good hangout for the curious.
    +1 for classes, with a beater 4x4 being a close second.
    Nosce te ipsum

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Don't put your eye out and don't breath in the gases. Oh wait!

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    You can't go wrong with quantity...

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Y View Post
    I've always stick welded really badly. I never do enough of it to become fluent. Have a couple of cheap arc welding machines, they kind of do the job but I suspect bigger is better. I seem to be able to stick stuff together, but far from elegant. I have heard MIG is better, easier, less likely to blow holes in light metal. So I hunted around a bit and a couple of weeks ago bought myself a used big ass 3 phase MIG, for $400. Our local big box hardware store sells the gas for $100 a bottle, with a $200 deposit on the bottle, no rental charge. So just waiting until I have $300 to spare then ready to play. I'm a dyed in the wool trial and error guy, so no books or classes for me.
    And it shows.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Y View Post
    I've always stick welded really badly. I never do enough of it to become fluent. Have a couple of cheap arc welding machines, they kind of do the job but I suspect bigger is better. I seem to be able to stick stuff together, but far from elegant. I have heard MIG is better, easier, less likely to blow holes in light metal. So I hunted around a bit and a couple of weeks ago bought myself a used big ass 3 phase MIG, for $400. Our local big box hardware store sells the gas for $100 a bottle, with a $200 deposit on the bottle, no rental charge. So just waiting until I have $300 to spare then ready to play. I'm a dyed in the wool trial and error guy, so no books or classes for me.
    No TAFE courses in your area Phil? I did one 30 years ago called Farm Welding, it was very helpful.
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    If you've a local manufacturer that needs welders, ask who does the training for them they likely need workers. Reason why? A local trade school had an after hours, non-credit, poorly advertised welding course. Like $800 per technique, pay per technique.

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Y View Post
    I've always stick welded really badly. I'm a dyed in the wool trial and error guy, so no books or classes for me.
    Phil, do try to look at a few youtube videos, I've found them a big help. Unlike classes, no commitment needed, and I'm sure you can find 15 minutes or so here and there. I do agree with the view that practice is what helps the most.
    There is nothing quite as permanent as a good temporary repair.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Memphis Mike View Post
    And it shows.


    You've seen my welding then


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Is this course trade only or could you attend? https://www.tafesa.edu.au/xml/course...852453354.aspx
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
    Grateful Dead

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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Nobody mentions forge hammer and anvil?

    This is not pretty but the description is good.
    Last edited by P.I. Stazzer-Newt; 08-11-2018 at 12:06 AM.
    Creationists aren't mad - they're possessed of demons.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    I run a small local welding course, mostly for women who want to build scrap metal garden sculptures.
    I'm not qualified, or good enough to do serious structural work, let alone teach it.

    But I do get magic afternoon teas……………………..


    Whoops………big hail storm coming through…………...

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    I bought a little Lincoln 110v welder. Took a "so you want to weld" class at Clackamas CC. Bought the MIG kit for it and have had a ball ever since. Love it.
    Have a Holly Jolly Christmas🎅

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by Stiletto View Post
    Phil, do try to look at a few youtube videos, I've found them a big help. Unlike classes, no commitment needed, and I'm sure you can find 15 minutes or so here and there. I do agree with the view that practice is what helps the most.
    The weldingtipsandtricks guy I linked to has great videos. He not only shows what to look for but just as importantly what to listen for. I have found his videos immensely helpful and he covers just about every kind of welding.
    Tom

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Just bought a little inverter-technology flux core machine. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=idojlTSkwf0. First project will be to put some new floors in that little Ford truck my son and I share. Once we knocked all the loose and ugly scale on the truck's frame it was in much better shape than we had feared. So we had a real welder with 35 years of fabrication shop ownership behind him do the little bit of structural frame work it needed, and also to inspect the frame from one end to the other. All our newbie welding will have to do is keep the exhaust on one side of the floor and us on the other. Great place to have a first project, since it's gonna have all the ugliness hidden underfoot anyway.

    There isn't a course near me, so it's learning via websites and books, and practice. But I've wanted to do this for years - grateful that this truck gave me the excuse.
    Last edited by TomF; 08-11-2018 at 07:13 AM.
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  24. #24
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    I'd like to learn how to weld basic stuff. I plan on taking a class at the local community college but would like to read a book first.

    Before I go buy welding for dummies, I thought I'd see if anyone here has a recommendation.

    E.g.:
    https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/Boo...%26sortby%3D17

    https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/Boo...%26sortby%3D17


    Thanks

    Tom
    I don’t have any book recomendations but heartily support taking classes. I took an introductory course fifteen years ago through the community college. Didn’t go beyond that but it was great fun.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Our local voctional - technical high school teaches it. The cost of the supplies that you get to use might exceed the cost of the course - so it is a really good deal. The instructors are also glad to teach people that really want to learn, as opposed to a few of the day students.

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    I would venture that it's best to learn some oxy/acetylene welding first. Not that I did. Learning to adjust the torch and manipulate it while adding filler to the weld pool is as basic as welding gets. The other processes all derive from this basic technique, especially tig.

    I once took a night class at our local trade school which gave a good overview of the common techniques. Watching an instructor is most helpful, if only to see how things should be. Reading is most helpful, but only if you're practicing at the time. I always consult books for the basic settings on the machine before I begin a job. A more experienced welder wouldn't have to but there are a number of variables that have to be close before you begin

    Youtube is a good resource these days, Weldingtipsandtricks is a good instructor but you need to be a pretty good welder to utilize the full range of his lessons.

    Good luck,

    Jim

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Our local adult education program has a welding course. I took it years ago ($70). It introduced you to stick, MIG and TIG welding, but not enough of any of them to develop any skill. I used to be very proficient at micro TIG welding noble metals and tungsten and did some pretty fancy things, but never developed any skill with steel and aluminum.
    Last edited by Todd D; 08-11-2018 at 09:57 AM.

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    I too want to learn to weld and have a stick welder already. We were at an art show talking to a woman who does metal sculpture. She is self taught and said to watch Youtube and just get out there and mess around until you get the hang of it.
    Elect a clown expect a circus

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Ledger View Post
    I would venture that it's best to learn some oxy/acetylene welding first. Not that I did. Learning to adjust the torch and manipulate it while adding filler to the weld pool is as basic as welding gets. The other processes all derive from this basic technique, especially tig.

    I once took a night class at our local trade school which gave a good overview of the common techniques. Watching an instructor is most helpful, if only to see how things should be. Reading is most helpful, but only if you're practicing at the time. I always consult books for the basic settings on the machine before I begin a job. A more experienced welder wouldn't have to but there are a number of variables that have to be close before you begin

    Youtube is a good resource these days, Weldingtipsandtricks is a good instructor but you need to be a pretty good welder to utilize the full range of his lessons.

    Good luck,

    Jim
    That is how I learned. Gas. I learned to weld, braze and hard surface in a college setting. Dang, but pushing a puddle could keep me enthralled.
    I must have laid 11,000 miles of cast iron braze and hard surfacing rod.

    Then I learned MIG and TIG. Id love a nice TIG rig. I got a small MIG box now I use flux core with.

    Peace,
    Robert

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by oznabrag View Post
    Not a welder, but I can generally stick things together.

    I agree that if you want to acquire a reasonable set of skills, the Community College is likely your best bet.

    Welding is a VAST subject. With several processes, and an unbelievable encyclopedia of knowledge available for each process, basic techniques for your chosen equipment is the best you can hope for, realistically.

    This is not to say that you can't learn to weld, but to suggest that drawing limits around what you want to accomplish will make the whole thing less formidable.

    Best o' luck, Tom.

    We really oughtta bend an elbow, you know.
    Thanks. You bet. In theory I have more time now that I'm retried. How's the country estate coming along. I'm working on septic. Fun stuff.

  31. #31
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by skuthorp View Post
    I run a small local welding course, mostly for women who want to build scrap metal garden sculptures.
    I'm not qualified, or good enough to do serious structural work, let alone teach it.

    But I do get magic afternoon teas……………………..


    Whoops………big hail storm coming through…………...
    So do you mess around with plasma cutters too? Tell us about those toys....

  32. #32
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    I'll have a look at some of those you tubes. Thanks. Always a great source of info, although of course sometimes the production values can get in the way of the useful bits.

  33. #33
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    I welded an entire small steel shed frame yesterday afternoon, including storage rack at one end and hinges at the other. My electronic welding helmet is playing up, and would stop working every couple of minutes- only for a second or two, but long enough to cop a close up eye full of flash. Went to bed last night with blurred vision and my eyes feeling like they were full of sand. Biggest welding job I ever did on my own was a complete set of steel cattle yards, including race, balk gate, loading ramp and all gates. I remember being glad I wasn't paying for the steel JayInOz

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    I have a 200 ampere Unitor rectifyer DC stick welder. It runs on three phase power and weighs something like 150 kilos and the amperage is adjusted with a big crank on top. It was made in Norway in the 1960-ies...... but wow what a welder...... as a friend who is a professional put it "If I couldn't see where the cables come from I would have thought that you had bought a proper welder"......

    I rekon that a good quality welder of ample capacity is a lot more important than having all the latest bells and whistles.
    It is just too frustration to learn welding using a too cheap welder. I went that way and still hate all cheap welders. I am famous locally for my stubbornness but anyone with just a little less bone in his head would have given up believing that he doesn't have any talent for welding while if fact it was the equipment that wasn't good enough.

    I also rekon that stick welding is the most appropriate method for many of us hobbyists who don't have a fire proof workshop. You can stick weld outdoors as long as it isn't raining or snowing. Even in midst of a storm. Mig welding requires absolutely calm air or the gas will blow away and make the weld porous. Stick welding doesn't require any costly gas bottles that must be renewed every few years. However the method has it's limits. One cannot weld car bodies and other thin stuff with a stick welder.

    I suggest that you buy a cheap secondhand welder of good quality and some rod and some scrap iron. Then practice and practice and practice. Once you have practiced enough to produce some sort of welds you get much more bang for the buck when you take a class to improve your skills.
    I did never take any classes. I just had my friend examine my work and tell me what I did wrong and I learned that way. An old textbook also helped me. I am by no means a welding professional but I get the job done when I need and my friend says the resulting welds are mostly okay even for structural use.

    A cotton boiler suit and a leather apron and long leather gloves and a good welding mask are mandatory in my oppinion. Cotton doesn't ignite very easily and when it catches fire it just smoulders with a very typical smell so you can smell the fire in your boiler suit and put it out before it burns your skin. I try to protect my skin from the splatter and UV radiation that comes from the welding arc. I know that some people weld with bare arms but I personally don't like burns and subsequent skin cancer....... not on your body and especially not on mine.

    By the way I have some blacksmithing equipment and have tested forge welding. It is by no merans any magic nor lost skills involved...... only lots of training........ now that's a SKILL
    Amateur living on the western coast of Finland

  35. #35
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    Default Re: Learning to weld

    Quote Originally Posted by heimlaga View Post
    .I suggest that you buy a cheap secondhand welder of good quality and some rod and some scrap iron.
    I think you mean steel.
    There is nothing quite as permanent as a good temporary repair.

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