Share
Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: How to minimize spatter?

  1. Default How to minimize spatter?

    My setup includes a Powermig 250 with a #4 bottle of argon/co2 mix flowing ~10 cfm. My wire feed rates seems to average roughly 10x my voltage. The beads look good and after cutting a few apart I'm getting good penetration on the welds. My last setup was 3/16" plate to 3/16" plate in a T joint setup. Voltage was 17.9, wire feed was 175-180. My problem is there is just a ton of spatter. While writing this post, I was browsing around and saw a lot of recommendations for up to 25 CFM on the shielding gas. I have set it that high before, and it seems like an awful lot of gas flow, and even then there was a lot of spatter. What would you guys recommend?
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  2. #2

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by agent4573 View Post
    My setup includes a Powermig 250 with a #4 bottle of argon/co2 mix flowing ~10 cfm. My wire feed rates seems to average roughly 10x my voltage. The beads look good and after cutting a few apart I'm getting good penetration on the welds. My last setup was 3/16" plate to 3/16" plate in a T joint setup. Voltage was 17.9, wire feed was 175-180. My problem is there is just a ton of spatter. While writing this post, I was browsing around and saw a lot of recommendations for up to 25 CFM on the shielding gas. I have set it that high before, and it seems like an awful lot of gas flow, and even then there was a lot of spatter. What would you guys recommend?
    What's your torch angle, stick out/arc length, inductance/arc force setting and technique (push, pull...) clean steel ?
    2013 250EX : SSC Pedal : I-MIG 250P 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60 p80 torch : 3M Speedglas 9100XX : Evolution Rage 3 DB cold saw

  3. #3

    Default

    Good question Zoama. Also I'd add, polarity? To reduce spatter, you can go with a slightly higher Ar content. I use a C 18. Perfect for lots of different situations where you may either spray or short circuit with low spatter results. Not the best for overhead, but for any other position, it will work.

  4. #4

    Default

    Your voltage is too low at 17.9 volts,,,,the voltage for 3/16 is 19 - 22 volts and CFH @ 20 - 25,,,at least that's according to mig spec's using .035 wire..
    Some of those lies people tell about me, are true

  5. Default

    Let me first say I had the machine incorrect, which really makes me look dumb. Its a Power I-mig 205P, not the 250. Not sitting in front of the machine right now, but I'll double check all the following answers when I get home in a few hours.

    zoama: Torch angles varies anywhere from straight up and down to almost sideways. I try to keep it about 30 degrees from vertical, basically leaned over far enough that I can get a good sight line on the puddle, but welding chassis tubing I have a hard time getting in good positions sometimes. Stick out I try to keep around 1/2-3/4", again just far enough that I can get a good sightline to the weld without dragging the gas nozzle across the metal. Depending on tubing angles though, sometimes stickout is closer to inch to reach into the valleys. Arc force I'm really not sure about, I think I set it at mid range during initial setup and haven't touched it since. I try to always to push welds, and the steel is normally fresh from the supply shop, cut into shape, wiped down with acetone or hit with a wire wheel. Its not rusty or reused steel.

    Mark: I followed the setup instructions in the book for mig. Ground is negative, "torch" wire coming from the machine goes to the positive terminal.

    geezer: I will try turning it up to 20 volts, increasing the CFM and doing some test runs on 3/16". Any suggestions on amperage at that voltage level?

    Also, when I go to start a weld with 1/2" stickout or so, more than half the time it tends to pop, burn back all the wire that is sticking out, and throw a large glowing red cherry across the room. At that point, I have zero stickout, pull the trigger again and when it makes contact it starts an arc I can weld with. I have a feeling that can be corrected with arc force, but should I turn it up or down from its current setting to fix that?
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  6. #6

    Default

    Voltage is the most important setting for the thickness of the metal,,,Amps which is wire speed comes next,,,,once you have your voltage set,,then you dial in your wire speed to prevent burn back,,,,fiddleing with arc force can really confuse things,,, until you have mastered ordinary settings I would avoid it,,,,,there are plenty of charts out there that give voltage settings for material thickness,,,,Voltage is what gives you dig into the base metal,,,,wire speed gives amps.....most older migs had dials that went from say...1 to 7,,,each click on the dial changed the voltage setting for different material thickness,,,then all you had to do was dial in the wire speed with a variable reostat to increase or decrease wire speed...not complicated ondce you have the proper voltage....good luck playing it...remember voltage is important when you weld different thickness..
    Some of those lies people tell about me, are true

  7. #7

    Default

    Arc force really is important geezer...especially on this machine as it can vary the results widely. But for many people setting around 7 is best. It really does affect how much spatter is produced. That is the major complaint. But yes, the voltage seems low for .035". But I'd start around 19.5-20 volts to begin with.

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by performance View Post
    Arc force really is important geezer...especially on this machine as it can vary the results widely. But for many people setting around 7 is best. It really does affect how much spatter is produced. That is the major complaint. But yes, the voltage seems low for .035". But I'd start around 19.5-20 volts to begin with.
    HI Mark...yes arc force can be realy important,,,,however I find that not playing with it until you have the basic voltage and wire speed dial in,,,is the best way to start...once you have that working for you,,,then,,,you can fiddle with arc force,,,,and,,the changes in arc force can make dramatic effects...everyone has to start with basic's,,,then move on to new features was my point...I have used arc force and it can suprise you when you play with it...best way to see the change is to zero it out and then max it out....as you run a bead...can really notice the effect then..
    Last edited by zoama; 06-20-2015 at 03:02 AM. Reason: repair
    Some of those lies people tell about me, are true

  9. Default

    Arc force is at 5 and had been forever. I'll turn it to zero and then max it and see what happens to the spatter. I turned the voltage and gas flow up and it made the bead look better, but it has a nominal impact on spatter. I guess it helped a little with it, but I'm still going at my tubes afterwards with a flapper disk to remove hundreds of little balls of metal. I also noticed that for amperage, the knob will be set between 130-140, but the digital readout will say 180-190. Which one should be believed? I will also verify tonight the wire thickness in case I got that wrong in my initial post too.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by agent4573 View Post
    Arc force is at 5 and had been forever. I'll turn it to zero and then max it and see what happens to the spatter. I turned the voltage and gas flow up and it made the bead look better, but it has a nominal impact on spatter. I guess it helped a little with it, but I'm still going at my tubes afterwards with a flapper disk to remove hundreds of little balls of metal. I also noticed that for amperage, the knob will be set between 130-140, but the digital readout will say 180-190. Which one should be believed? I will also verify tonight the wire thickness in case I got that wrong in my initial post too.
    I believe that the readout shows actual amps while you're welding but only gives a reference number while the machine is at idle.
    One way to setup a mig welder is to have a test piece of the material you want to weld, close to the machine so that you can adjust the wire speed while running a bead.
    Set the voltage for material thickness and start a bead with the wire speed a little low. Slowly turn up the wire speed while running the bead until it smooths out. Once there you can fine tune with the "arc force".
    Hold a fairly tight stick out of about 1/2" from the contact tip. All the mig torches I've seen come with these machines have the tip recessed about 1/4" back inside the nozzle so you have to allow for that or trim the nozzle to be flush with the tip.
    Make sure you have a good clean ground to the part you're welding and don't use too much torch angle.
    Skip to 6:30 on the video unless you want to watch it all.

    2013 250EX : SSC Pedal : I-MIG 250P 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60 p80 torch : 3M Speedglas 9100XX : Evolution Rage 3 DB cold saw

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Disneyland
    Posts
    2,659

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by zoama View Post
    One way to setup a mig welder is to have a test piece of the material you want to weld, close to the machine so that you can adjust the wire speed while running a bead.
    Set the voltage for material thickness and start a bead with the wire speed a little low. Slowly turn up the wire speed while running the bead until it smooths out. Once there you can fine tune with the "arc force".
    That's exactly how I do it. I keep a small test part that is made of a bunch of small pieces of plate and tube in different thicknesses all welded together. Perfect for running test beads on. Some machines have a very narrow sweet spot for wire speed, while others are more forgiving.
    Long arc, short arc, heliarc and in-the-dark!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Okinawa, Japan
    Posts
    30

    Default

    Is there a way to check voltage in a machine that doesn't have a readout? I-mig 140e

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Disneyland
    Posts
    2,659

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by pavetim View Post
    Is there a way to check voltage in a machine that doesn't have a readout? I-mig 140e
    DC volt meter.
    Long arc, short arc, heliarc and in-the-dark!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Okinawa, Japan
    Posts
    30

    Default

    I figured a volt meter lol but how do you test it? You stick the volt meter on the metal that your welding or something?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Disneyland
    Posts
    2,659

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by pavetim View Post
    I figured a volt meter lol but how do you test it? You stick the volt meter on the metal that your welding or something?
    All depends on if you want a static test, or a test under load. Some machines regulate the voltage real well so you won't see that much difference between the two, while on others, without a load the voltage will climb quite a bit over the nominal welding voltage.
    For a static test, just put the volt meter leads between the ground clamp and the contact tip on the gun, then pull the trigger.
    (Be 100% sure your meter is in volt mode and the probes are in the right sockets. If you accidentally have it set for current, you will be buying a new meter. ).

    For a test under load, you can again use the ground clamp on your work for one lead, but the other will have to pick up the voltage from somewhere else as the contact tip will not be accessible while welding. Usually you can pick that up from the wire feeder, or the polarity reversal terminals. Then watch the meter while you are actually running a bead.
    The best way to get a feel for what different voltage and wire speeds do is to be welding close enough to the machine that you can reach over and make adjustments while welding. Then when you find the sweet spot for a particular kind of material, you can make a note of it, or put some marks around the knobs. Every machine is a little different and before all these digital machines, many just had arbitrary scales around the knobs.

    I just added a small digital voltage and current meter to my scrapyard MIG machine. More out of curiosity, they anything else. I've never had a MIG that showed voltage or wire speed. Just something like A-B-C-D-E for voltage, and I think 0-10 for wire speed. At least I think so before all the paint wore away.
    Long arc, short arc, heliarc and in-the-dark!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Okinawa, Japan
    Posts
    30

    Default

    I tested it and didn't make any sense at all. I did static test without striking the arc, I loosened drive roll and tested voltage. All the way to each extremem on the voltage dial I got 56-59 volts. I tested with arc and it was all over the place I couldnt' see it. Like I think dial all the way to the left i got about 10V and all the way to the right I got like 16V. Doesn't make sense to me. Got good wire speed tests though it ranged from 65ipm-360ipm.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Okinawa, Japan
    Posts
    30

    Default

    Ok manual says voltage range is 15.3-21 thought there maybe a bigger difference and static voltage is 60V. Maybe just needs to have friend watch the volt meter for me

Similar Threads

  1. Keeping weld spatter off glass
    By Scotty1 in forum General Welding Questions
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 12-12-2012, 02:37 PM
  2. Best direction to minimize distortion on corners?
    By Trip59 in forum General Welding Questions
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 09-29-2011, 01:26 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •