TIG Welder Setup Basics - Pulse Part 2

Pulse is more than just a setting you make or switch you flip on the machine. Though some "simple" machines may only have an adjustment for pulse frequency, there are other components to the pulse cycle that can be made with most welders. The appropriate terminology for pulse settings is not clearly standardized. This is mainly because of gaps in welding terminology and difficult terminology used by electronic engineers to technically describe what s happening. It is also because of differences in function between brands of each feature Pulse Amps, or Peak Current is used to establish a “high” current setting on some welders. On welders that use a ratio, or percent scale, this is actually a “dip” in current and is sometimes referred to as background current, or even base amps. In a welder that uses a fixed amps setting you will typically see base amps/ current, and Peak amps/ current used. In ratio controlled pulses where percentage of another current is used, this will often be listed as Main welding amps/Peak amps, and Pulse Amps/ base amps/ background current.

Next you will typically see a setting for Pulse width, Pulse Balance or Pulse time on. This is sometimes referred to as pulse duty cycle, but is often avoided because of the confusing terms involved with actual welder operation times referred to as duty cycle. The length of each stage of the pulse cycle is controlled by setting this function. It means that you can make the high amp stage of the pulse cycle longer or shorter than the low amps stage of the pulse cycle. Each half cycle doesn’t have to be balanced…it can be skewed to achieve the best result between melting and freezing. Even though the pulse is happening several times a second, each half phase of the pulse can be metered to give optimum results.