Jimmie, I think you are thinking of AUDEL books, and I too remember seeing such a book once.
The Welding Handbook, Vol 3, 7th ed., Welding Processes...," published by the American Welding Society has about four pages of useful information on carbon arc welding. Try finding it in a book search like abebooks. Just now three come up for $12, $20, and $24. Google, "book search."
They make it sound like a useful technology used somewhat in the fashion of TIG, but with less effective shielding. Most of the shielding is from CO produced in the cabon arc (which also suggests that good ventilation would be important). Temperature is 7000 to
9000 degrees F, depending upon current, which reinforces (to me) my earlier suggestion to use contact heating of the carbide with a carbon pressed hard against the carbide insert, rather than using a carbon arc.
For welding, they suggest a long tapered tip to 1/2 the carbon rod diameter. The illustration shows a taper length of about 5 rod diameters, but it's not clear that that is intended to be accurate because it also shows the taper going to a point. They give a table of current ranges for "baked carbon" rod diameters:
1/8" 15-30 amps.
3/16" 25-55 amps.
1/4" 50-85 amps.
5/16" 75-115 amps.
3/8" 100-150 amps.
7/16" 125-185 amps.
1/2" 150-225 amps.
7/8" 300-500 amps.
Higher currents can be used but carbons will be consumed more rapidly. Recommended current ranges are about 10 - 15% higher for Graphite electrodes, but graphite rods are consumed more rapidly than baked carbon rods.
Electrode negative. 4 or 5 inches rod stickout from holder for steel. Clamp joint tightly together with no root opening (for steel plate). Initiate arc by contact and pulling away, but if reigniting an arc on a hot bead, strike away from the bead to prevent a carbon inclusion that can harden the deposit at the point of restriking. Use technique like TIG with or without filler rod as required for the joint. (Sounds like a poor man's TIG welder.) Vertical or overhead welding difficult because you are puddling the molten metal. Use backing for welding thin sheet. They comment that carbon arc welding on outside corners on 14 - 18 ga. sheet steel with no filler produces neater joints more cheaply than SMAW.
They point out that the carbon arc can be used to braze galvanized sheet without burning the galvanizing by directing the heat on the brazing rod, rather than on the work (but I have my doubts).