Common TIG Welding Issues, Hard-Starting, Poor Quality Tungsten

Common welding issues. part 11. TIG: hard startingWhile taking a look at common TIG welders hard starting issues, it is important to point out that tungsten type and quality affect starting as well. Although a lesser factor, poor quality tungsten is out there in abundance. Individual tungstens in one package may weld fine, but another one may be a disaster to weld with due to poor quality control. If using any brand tungsten, even name brand ones, don’t assume that there isn’t a possibility of tungsten quality control issues. Try out a couple of different tungstens to see if it resolves the issue. It’s a cheap, quick way to fix a problem. Of course, using pure or zirconiated tungsten in an inverter welder like Everlast’s Power TIG line, will present immediate issues as the arc will not be stable, particularly if the tungsten has been purposefully balled up for welding in AC mode. The result is an arc that will wander around the circumference of the ball and will be difficult to establish. Another thing to consider is the amount of positive polarity being used. Too much AC positive will cause the tungsten to ball. In fact, people unaccustomed to inverter welders will typically set out to create and maintain a ball by turning the frequency up too high. Of course, as previously mentioned, it will make hard starting as positive polarity does not produce a stable arc. Reduce the polarity to under 40% EP for best arc starting. The welding gas itself is can also be an issue. Contaminated gas is an all too common issue these days. Welding gas companies by way of improperly trained or careless employees are not doing a proper job of purging tanks properly before filling with pure argon, and CO2 or other impurities remain in the cylinders. Even using Argon/ Helium blends with too much helium can cause arc starting difficulties. Keep Helium levels below 25% for best starting results, especially in Everlast TIG welders for best arc starting results.Everlast Power Equipment, you TIG welding experts.Learn more on our welding forum