Decent Welding Rod??

Awl--
Whazzup w/ all the lousy rod I been getting?
Was grooving along just fine w/ my age-old pile of semi-no-name rod, finally
ran out of 60xx 3/32, and local welding supplier didn't have any! Got the last box at HD (lincoln), and wow, awful. Wild-assed arc, miserable to use. Used a couple of rods to get by, returned the box as unusable.
Local welding supplier finally got some rod in, Anchor brand, 6013 3/32, and wow, *worse than the HD*!!!! *Really* unusable, and a helluva lot more expensive than the HD: $17 vs. $10.50 for 5#. I'm sure this g-d supplier is going to give me a hard time with the return. Is this a familiar brand?
Arc is really hard to strike, cuz the metal in the rod burns out *into* the flux, leaving a tube of sorts, with the walls being flux. After a short bead, the flux flames/burns, like a match, and leaves about a 1" moist/glassy residue on the surface. The arc itself is incredibly short, no give whatsoever, and the weld is brittle like I've never seen before. A/C, DC +/-.
It was so bad, I thought there might be something wrong with the machine (miller econotig). Found some old rod, works perfectly. The old "brand" was ____-weld in Fort Lauderdale, FL, and another similar blue plastic long box says UNI-2000.
Anyone else have these problems? Solutions? Brands? Local suppliers also at times seem to buy generic, and put their sticker on the box. Fine with me, if the stuff worked. Mebbe a bigger supplier will give/sell me a shmorgasbord of 6013 brands to try. What an ordeal.
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Mr. P.V.'d (formerly Droll Troll), Yonkers, NY
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Hi p.v.
Some "good rods" are "difficult to use" in some ways.
This bit;
"> Arc is really hard to strike, > ... > The arc itself is incredibly short, no give whatsoever,"
that describes 7018 (and 7016, its sibling) spot-on perfectly. That's what they do... Now I reckon 7018 (and 7016) are absolutely the business for a lot of welds - fillet and V-prep in all positions - essentially "filling up" welds. But you have to keep a short arc at all times...
Many say that 6010's are really hard to use. If the welding machine can actually run them, I don't reckon so. If you have a situation where you want 6010's (powerful penetration/fusion and/or fast-freeze) any other rod is going to be hard work to get by with.
6013 "is reckoned to be" the easiest rod to use. I need someone to demonstrate what it is that I have missed!!! - if this claim is true! Though definitely - they are easy to strike and restrike, and they are tolerant of wondering arc-length. Problem for me is - 6010 works for me when I need pen. and 7018 works for me when I need to fill, leaving 6013 with not much role for me - it's trapped in a no-person's land in the middle, offering advantages I am not desperate for and not doing what I am after.
"white packet" / "white box" 6013's are notoriously less purposeful than branded 6013's with a clear intended use on the packet. You can control 6013's rutile slag to be entirely different things from a very smooth capping run downhand to a good positional rod...
One use of 6013 which I did have in my previous job - one where would only use 6013's... Because 6013's have the lowest properties by some way between cellulosics (6010/6011), rutiles (6013) and basics (7016/7018). - if you wanted to *guarantee* that the weld will fail first! - used with a joint design giving a progressively tear over a large angle of the structure failing - which you generally do want in height-restriction-barriers and the like which people routinely drive into - 6013 made sure that this happened - the weld would tear before any other part of the structure could tear - leaving intended "deformable" parts of the structure to deform!
Hope this is helpful...
Regards
Rich. Smith
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Proc wrote: (clip)The arc itself is incredibly short, no give whatsoever," (clip) ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Rich wrote: (clip)But you have to keep a short arc at

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ I think you guys are using "short" with two different meanings. "No give whatsoever" suggests a very brittle, non-ductile weld. This is the meaning of the word as it is used to describe shortbread, or hot-short aluminum. Rich took it to mean a short arc, as in, not a long arc.
How about that, Proc?

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Indeed, I meant a short arc. I have long been used to being able to play with the arc length, from right in the puddle to 1" away, in my amateurish attempts to control heat, penetration etc. With this Anchor brand rod, I almost had to be in the puddle.
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Mr. P.V.'d (formerly Droll Troll), Yonkers, NY
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Hi p.v., Leo
Leo - yes - his weld is definitely "short" as in lacking in ductility / malleability! I've never run basics (7016/7018) with a long (lengthwise) arc length, but I understand you get a "short" (ductility-wise) weld deposit.
P.V. - that is right - with a Basic/xx16 or xx18/"lo-hi" rod you do have to have the puddle following right up behind the rod! So what with one thing and another, you can't use a Basic/"lo-hi" rod unless you can get going and keep going at a consistent steady rate. "another" is that 7018's are reckoned to throw slag inclusions if you move the rod fast (never found out - always moved steadily!).
It means that you can only use Basic/"lo-hi" when you have a good fit-up. Which often means fabricating something new from new steel.
So you can't use Basics for many rough-and-ready repair jobs where rutiles - 6013's - excel
Anyone comment whether they agree on these points?
Richard Smith

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All the verbosity aside I think he was asking if anyone else is having a problem getting decent rods today??? Ones that compare to the older ones he's used to using.
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Clif Holland KA5IPF
www.avvid.com
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Well, actually, a lot of what you are saying is a little over my head.
Fairly recently, I posted a Q on "universal rod", basically asking iffin I had to pick ONE rod for general work, what would it be?
The consensus seemed to be 6013 and 7014 (farmers rod <g>).
So I went out and bought new 6013, and have been suffering ever since, when the old 60xx (incl. 6013) was just fine.
Mebbe rod needs to age?? :(
Didn't know they made 5/64!
And, what is a "Basic"?
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Mr. P.V.'d (formerly Droll Troll), Yonkers, NY
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P.V
"Basic" is about the type of flux convering on the rod.
There are three main categories: Basic - their flux is based on Calcium Carbonate - ie. limestone Rutiles - their flux is based rutile, which is titania - titanium oxide Cellulosics - their flux is based on cellulose - cotton, sawdust, ...
Which of these types the covering is dominates the properties of the rod in use and the properties of the weld metal obtained.
"Rutiles", 6013's, are the only type of rod most people know - they have no knowledge that the other two types exist.
Richard Smith
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Everyone needs links, so here is a few. :-)
http://www.arctech.com.tr/english/basic_electrodes.htm
http://www.arctech.com.tr/english/rutile_electrodes.htm
http://www.arctech.com.tr/english/cellulosic_electrodes.htm
http://www.lincolnelectric.com/knowledge/articles/content/awsclassification.asp
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If you want a good, general purpose rod, I'd suggest the 6011. Once you learn how to lay that bead, it will work on just about anything weldable.
"Proctologically Violated" wrote:

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Hi
"6011 welds through anything" - I dug a piece of metal out of the ground with about 3mm (1/8th inch) of saturated rusty scale in it - the worst I had ever seen, so... [ding! - lightbulb comes on in tiny little brain!] I went and got a 6011 and tried welding the thing! There was a line of lovely silver metal perfectly lap-welding - the weld recessed into the thickness of all the crud it had welded through.
So yup - I'll back up jp 100%.
Rich. S.

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finally
miserable
and
return.
the
a
on
Are you experiencing those problems all at the same time, or at different times?
Sounds like you are using the rod outside of it's operating range. Basicly at too high or too low of a current setting.
It sounds like what I see when I try to use 1/8 rod at 30 to 50 amps or so. or 1/16 at 5 to 10 amps.
Some rods from some manufacturers have a wider usable current range. If you got use to using a more liberal rod and then switched over to a more restrictive rod, you may think the rod is defective because it won't work where you used the old rod of the same size..
A suggestion is to try to diversify your rod stock. And try to shift down, or up in size in rough correlation with your operating current at that time, and you will have less problems.
Rod sizes I keep around of the 6013 variety. 1/16, 5/64, 3/32, 1/8, and 5/32. And a smattering of the 6011,, 7015, and 7024 rods of various sizes.
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On Thu, 24 May 2007 11:08:23 -0400, "Proctologically Violated"

make sure the rods are dry. I'd try baking some in the oven to make sure the flux coatings were absolutely dry. damp rods will misbehave like you describe.
i buy blue CIG rods in australia for just this reason although the chinese do occasionally make a decent batch. Stealth Pilot
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I've used a little 6013, and the metal needs to be very clean.
Maybe that was the problem.
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Mr. P.V.d writes: "Arc is really hard to strike, cuz the metal in the rod burns out *into* the flux, leaving a tube of sorts, with the walls being flux. After a short bead, the flux flames/burns, like a match, and leaves about a 1" moist/glassy residue on the surface. The arc itself is incredibly short, no give whatsoever, and the weld is brittle like I've never seen before. A/C, DC +/-."
Classic wet rod. Bake it first 350 degrees for 2 hrs.
Yes its hard to get good rod after Lincoln sold its factory to their competitor. I think that was like in '95 or '96?
Starbolin
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You want to remember that we are talking about 6011 and 6013 in this case. Cellulose based rods. They need some moisture to function properly. You can get them too dry. Getting them too dry will cause them to be more temperamental than getting them too wet.
I have never had a situation where drying 6013 has made them work any better. Or basically, I have never had a problem where they were too wet.
That is why I dismissed the idea when I originally replied to the other person. I would have been more likely to tell him that the 6013 rods might be too dry, than to tell him that they are too wet. Which could actually be a problem if he lived in a dry area where the building that the rods are stored in used a lot of air conditioning. That would cause the rods to be dried out by the heavily conditioned dry air in the building.
It's a totally different story for 7018. Unless they are perfectly dry from a freshly opened box, they are a pain in the ass to use on most welders. But we are not talking about 7018.
Heck...now that I think about it, the erratic arc, and the burning flux, the rods may actually be too dry. :-)
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Hi - I can back up what "N9WOS" says about 6013 from theory, and about 6011 from experience!
6013 relies on moisture to make a shield, I understand. However, the rod doesn't have aything in it which makes it absorb water, so it stays just about right. But you shouldn't dry them - we are always warned about that.
7018's do have mineral in them which willing grab water and I am told by experienced welding engineers that they can peak out at slightly higher moisture content than rutiles (6013's). So do keep 7018's in a dry dwelling where you would happily keep expensive fine clothes.
6011's - now the experience - if the arc is all limp and wonders, and the weld doesn't seem good - that 90something% likely shows the rod is too dry (using Arcos Nu5). Dip in water and the arc returns to its fiery ferocious self.. 6011's (and 6010's) come in a tin *to keep the moisture in*. That's why they have that nusty smell when you open the tin, isn't it? Richard Smith
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Richard Smith wrote:

You can hear when the 7018 rod has moisture in it. It spits and pops. It doen't have that smooth sizzle of a dry rod. An old time welder that taught me made a bet with me that he could lay a better bead with no hands than I could with two. He coiled the cable and let the stinger drag along the plate and it made the nicest bead. It cost me lunch.

6011 will burn through almost anything. I don't know how good the method is but I've seen several guys run a pass of 6011 and then run 1718 over it after the rust is burned out.
John
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John - thanks for this comment from experience. I've never seen this and didn't know you get this rough-and-ready warning of moisture absorption w. 7018/7016/Basics. Rich S.
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Bake 'em. For you local yokels, the best 6013 I've ever used is the bulk rod Pacific Industrial sells. Grab a handful every time I'm there. JR Dweller in the cellar
Proctologically Violated wrote:

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Home Page: http://www.seanet.com/~jasonrnorth
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