Perfecting The Lift Start
We have made the case for lift start process, but many will be confused or unconvinced about the technique. To begin, each brand works slightly differently during lift starting. Some prefer one technique over the other. Some have no preference for technique. After working with the lift start function for several years now on our welders, I have found that the units are technique sensitive. You can’t just stab the tungsten down and lift up as the name suggests. Rather, you should place the cup on the metal; rotate the tungsten onto the metal, then roll the tungsten back to draw the arc. However, this motion needs to be as seamless as possible. This will ensure an easy smooth light up of the welding arc. Don’t bounce the tungsten or stick the tungsten down onto the metal too long or the tungsten may get stuck or break the tip. It really boils down to a point of timing and flair. The real issue that a lot of people experience is that the forceful approach creates a bounce effect on the tip of the tungsten, signaling the inverter to send full power to the tip. This light and imperceptible bounce on the metal fools the welder into thinking that you are ready to start the arc. Another issue is the fact that starts may be more difficult is excess resistance is present, through an imperfect work clamp connection, whether a damaged or malfunctioning work clamp or by trying to make contact through mill scale which has greater resistance than unoxidized metal. Practice, of course is the best remedy to most problems.