I think you'll be fine with either. Choose whichever is best for you in terms of available equipment and your experience. As for current, try welding a few test pieces before you make the frame. That way you can adjust the current to find the best setting, try different welding positions and improve your technique. The best current setting will depend on the type of electrode, the type of weld, weld position, how long your power supply line is, etc. - so experiment. But as a very rough guess, for stick welding try 100-150 A.
I would use E 6013 at 100 to 125 amps. When doing a TEE keep in mind to have the major part of the weld puddle located on the shoulder of the long tube. If you wander directly onto the wall of the tube you will likely melt through. Randy
What amp-setting should an electrode and MIG welder have welding my pipes?
What electrode tickness should I use?
I have a 270 amp electrode welder.
greetings, Thomas Evensen - norwegian newbie welder :)
If you are a newbie just starting out, you might want to go with the
2.4mm electrode. It doesn't deposit metal as fast as a 3.2mm would, thus allowing you to go slow and practice your electrode motion/weave pattern while observing puddle behavior. You might want to learn how to walk before trying to run.
If you are not sure what the amperage settings should be, start with the optimum amps listed for the electrode size and do some test welds on the material you will be working with.
You want enough amps for good penetration. If there is not enough penetration, turn the amps up. If it is burning through, turn the amps down. You do not want to go above or below the amperage range listed for the electrode size. If you need less amps than the range listed for the electrode, you need to go to a smaller diameter electrode. If you need more amps than the range listed for the electrode, you need to go to a larger diameter electrode.
For 4mm material either one of the two sizes I've listed above should work.
Thanks to all of you - as you hint I am a newbie, and I have a stick welder :)
Think I will try my stick welder with your recommended amps and sticks before bying a MIG/MAG. It's a 20 year old Einhell 270 AMP welder - bought it used, and it looks as shiny as new (never used I think) - probably the reason why I bought it before checking its age :)
Don't worry about the machine's age. There are stick welders over fifty years old that are still used in everyday production and have been since day one. They are nothing more than a transformer -- they neither wear out nor become obsolete. Your machine will outlast not only your great-great-grandchildren, but also, their great-great-grandchildren. :)
I wouldn't go /quite/ that far - there are ways that time and wear can kill almost anything, old welders included, but for all practical purposes they last a good long time. If it's an air-core transformer you can get corrosion inside and the insulation on the windings can fail - and if it's stored in damp or corrosive conditions, that can happen fast.
Oil filled transformer based welders (AIUI common in Europe) are mostly immune to that - except when the oil gets contaminated, or the can rusts through and the oil leaks out. Or someone discovers it's got PCB laced Transformer Oil inside, then you have to get it drained, flushed clean and filled with clean oil - for large (megawatt) utility sub-station transformers it's worth the expense to flush them out, because it can run over $1 Million between buying the new transformer, the labor of changing it out, and then disposing of the old one. For an old welder it might be cheaper to just scrap it as Hazmat and buy a new one.
There are tap change switches that can wear out, power switches or input breakers that fail, in and out cable connections that can go bad, electrolytic capacitors that can go flat, bolted connections that loosen up or Aluminum connections that start failing, stuff like that. Even dumb things like the rubber insulation in a SO Cord power lead petrifying and falling apart.
Not necessarily fatal failures, but items that will require a bit of service attention over the life of the gear.