Pulse Versus Advanced Pulse In TIG Welding, Part 1 of 2

Pulse Versus Advanced Pulse In TIG Welding.

Even though we have covered this before, it’s worth  going over again in more detail as we frequently get questions about the Advanced TIG pulse and what it is. As we worked with releasing the PowerTIG 210 EXT and the PowerTIG 255 EXT, we knew we needed a new way to identify the new type of pulse that would be included in the long list of features of these all new digital units. Both units carry two forms of pulse.  After a little thought it was decided to refer to the new form of pulse as “advanced” and the regular form of pulse as “standard” to delineate the two. It was simple enough to name  for sure. But it still leaves open the need to answer several questions...

1) What is the difference in Advanced Pulse and Standard Pulse? 

2) Where should I use standard pulse and where should I use advanced pulse? 

3) How do these affect the weld differently? 

To identify what either pulse is, it’s helpful to break down pulse into the simplest terms and components.  Pulse as defined in a TIG welder (MIG pulse is different) as a controlled cycling of amps between a high amp value to a low amp value to achieve greater heat control and arc definition.  On most welders, the pulse can be broken down into 3 basic adjustments.  Some welders for convenience and simplicity are preset, but most do have the following:  The first critical adjustment is the amp adjustment.   Some units refer to this as a background current adjustment.  Usually this represents the “low” part of the amps, or the base part.  The normal amps set on the panel represent the “high” part of the amps, or the peak amps represented in a pulse. The second adjustment is the Frequency of the pulse Pulse frequency is simply the number of complete pulse cycles in a second.   The pulse frequency can typically adjusted from less than a half cycle per second to several hundred. The frequency helps shape the arc cone and control the heat input. The next part of the pulse is the pulse balance or pulse ratio control. This allows you to control the time between the high and low part of the pulse within in one cycle. In other words, it allows you to control how long each stage of the pulse lasts within in one cycle. This allows further tuning on heat control, and the freezing of the puddle which affects the bead profile indirectly. All these features combine together to form the standard form of pulse that is common on most Pulse TIG welders equipped with the pulse option.