tungsten splitting issues

mikeyfrombc

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was practising on SS tonite and was switching back and forth between a 1/16 red tip and a 1/16 orange tip to see if there was any difference is weld quality and such and while sharpening the orange tip it looked funny like it had a some SS laminated to the tungsten as it kept getting a purpleish blue line on the tip , i go to shorten the tungsten a 1/4 inch or so and i notice the tungsten has split down the center anyone experiance this before it was a brand new tungsten and i never used more then 60amps
 

mikeyfrombc

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Never heard of it before, but I've never used the orange before. . .I've used red, green, brown, and gold.

orange is 2% cereated ( spelling ) supposed to be good for any material so i thought i,d try it , with the red i've never had issues
 

punchdrunk monkey

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Sorry for the hijack....
....I just started having the same problem with my TIG. My tungsten is splitting while welding alum. I'm using a red tungsten, 100% argon, 1/8" alum, Miller Syncowave 200. It only happend every-so-often????
 

Chase 2

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Tungsten tips typically split from extended use at higher amps. Going the next size up will help if it is creating problems.

I think the OP is saying that while sharpening his tungsten it was showing signs of SS contamination. Unless he had the "dippity does", with straight polarity, there shouldn't be any contamination or material transfer from the work to the tungsten. (I am assuming that he's not trying to weld SS with AC). The purple color while grinding seems to me to be saying that it is getting too hot without being protected by a shielding gas as he grinds.

Tungsten is quite brittle, its possible that he got a bad/damaged one and it has nothing to do with technique. It could be something as simple as the tungsten was dropped.
 

tmathews

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I have seem some problems with import tungsten.. I.e. made in China.
 

tmathews

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Sorry for the hijack....
....I just started having the same problem with my TIG. My tungsten is splitting while welding alum. I'm using a red tungsten, 100% argon, 1/8" alum, Miller Syncowave 200. It only happend every-so-often????

Have you tried using a green tip tungsten? Ball up the nose don't try to sharpen it.
 
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mikeyfrombc

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Tungsten tips typically split from extended use at higher amps. Going the next size up will help if it is creating problems.

I think the OP is saying that while sharpening his tungsten it was showing signs of SS contamination. Unless he had the "dippity does", with straight polarity, there shouldn't be any contamination or material transfer from the work to the tungsten. (I am assuming that he's not trying to weld SS with AC). The purple color while grinding seems to me to be saying that it is getting too hot without being protected by a shielding gas as he grinds.

Tungsten is quite brittle, its possible that he got a bad/damaged one and it has nothing to do with technique. It could be something as simple as the tungsten was dropped.


i touched the tungsten with the rod and went to touch the tip up , i typically shorten the tungsten after i touch it too insure there is no contamination issues , as i was regrinding the tip i noticed the discolouration , so i went to shorten it again and that,s when i noticed it had split . i was welding .065"600grit 304 SS 15CFH gas flow with a gaslense , 56amps on DC and .045" 308 filler wire my welds where a nice goldy purple looking colour
 

atomicjoe23

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Doesn't sound like a technique or machine setting problem to me. . .sounds like you got a bad tungsten.

As for the aluminum, yeah try a green tungsten and definitely weld with a ball on the end vs. a sharpened tip.
 

Chase 2

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Are you snapping it off when you shorten? If so, what is your technique?
 

Chase 2

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Doesn't sound like a technique or machine setting problem to me. . .sounds like you got a bad tungsten.

As for the aluminum, yeah try a green tungsten and definitely weld with a ball on the end vs. a sharpened tip.

Ever tried brown with a sharpened tip? Great control on thin aluminum. If you ever get a chance, try helium when welding aluminum. Yeah Baby!!!! real Heliarc!
 

mikeyfrombc

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Are you snapping it off when you shorten? If so, what is your technique?

no i grind it down , i use the edge of the stone to to neck the tungsten down and they resharpen it from there
 

mikeyfrombc

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Ever tried brown with a sharpened tip? Great control on thin aluminum. If you ever get a chance, try helium when welding aluminum. Yeah Baby!!!! real Heliarc!

try GOLD as well it works well on my 200syncrowave with straight argon , and ya i,ve been told about helium(75/25 mix) with aluminum helps with thicker pieces on smaller machines
 

Chase 2

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Back in the early 70's 75/25 was all we used on everything! If you're grinding down then I'll have go alone with that you got a bad one. I'll admit I've never used orange.
 

punchdrunk monkey

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Have you tried using a green tip tungsten? Ball up the nose don't try to sharpen it.


No I've always used the red. The guy who got me started told me red is fine and not to worry about balling the tip. He said with my machine the ball will happen on it's own (sometimes it does - sometime it doesn't). He is a welder at General Atomic and has been doing it for 30+ years. But for the most part I am self taught and not very good at it.
 

atomicjoe23

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Ever tried brown with a sharpened tip? Great control on thin aluminum. If you ever get a chance, try helium when welding aluminum. Yeah Baby!!!! real Heliarc!

I haven't tried helium before, but I have tried a sharpened tip. . .and I have to admit I like the sharpened tip because of the extra control I have over the arc and the puddle control. I generally sharpen the tip and then put a VERY small ball on the tip. . .my instructor didn't like my tip technique for aluminum that much but I had much better welds than anyone else in my class so he accepted it.

I'm done with my welding degree now and I don't have a TIG machine at home so I haven't got to play with TIG welding aluminum that much since I finished the degree.

try GOLD as well it works well on my 200syncrowave with straight argon , and ya i,ve been told about helium(75/25 mix) with aluminum helps with thicker pieces on smaller machines

I have used the gold quite a bit. . .it worked very well. I liked it a lot better than the green.
 

mikeyfrombc

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No I've always used the red. The guy who got me started told me red is fine and not to worry about balling the tip. He said with my machine the ball will happen on it's own (sometimes it does - sometime it doesn't). He is a welder at General Atomic and has been doing it for 30+ years. But for the most part I am self taught and not very good at it.


you sure he didn,t mean orange/gray depending on source ?? that,s a 2% cereated tungsten and it works very well on all materials AC or DC
 

Chase 2

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I know a guy who bought like 200 lbs of red striped tungsten at auction when the Long Beach Naval Shipyard closed. It works just fine for everything! LOL!!!
 

NicksTrix

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I know a guy who bought like 200 lbs of red striped tungsten at auction when the Long Beach Naval Shipyard closed. It works just fine for everything! LOL!!!

with 200# i can imagine it works for everything! hope they wheren't all 3/16 or something huge like that.

sounds like a bad stick of tungsten to me as well. i've had a few in the past. pitch it and start a fresh one. once it's splitting you'll never stop it.
 
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