How To Care For Welding Rods Part 2
Discarding welding rods is, as we said, no fun. It’s costly and wasteful. If you cannot or do not wish to buy based off of monthly use patterns, or even if you are, you will need a way to store the balance of the opened container until it is ready to use.
Making a long term purchase of welding rods demands some sort of planning. There are several ways that come to mind of storing welding rods. The first are the rod ovens. Rod ovens have drastically come down in price over the years, but even a small one may be a couple hundred dollars or more. It is what is required by the industry for code welding, particularly the low hydrogen rods like the 7018. Under code work, these rods must be stored in rod ovens after they are opened from a sealed container, or in the open air for no more than 4 to 8 hours after the seal is broken. The rest have to be rebaked at a high temperature, or discarded. Rod ovens aren’t hot enough to cook your Thanksgiving turkey in, but they are warm enough to keep moisture at bay.
Welding rods like a 6010 or a 6011 have no such requirement. However, they do break down and begin to rust when exposed to the environment after extended periods of time. In that case another alternative for storing welding rods is by keeping them sealed in a vacuum packed bag. A simple home type vacuum sealer used for freezing and storing food long term works well. It’s a simple alternative to rod oven on a regular basis. This will keep them preserved indefinitely.
Also as a cheap “home” oven type thing, you can recycle an old refrigerator and convert it into a “hot box” so the incandescent light will stay on while the door is shut (with the refrigeration part deactivated of course). This works well and will keep most welding rods toasty warm.