My TIG butt weld, thanks to all for suggestions

pictures are here
http://igor.chudov.com/projects/Welding/07-First-Tig-Butt-Weld/
Thanks to acrobat ants, Wayne Cook, Keith Marshall, bobbym, Boris
Mohar, Brian Hill, RDF and others for encouraging me to overcome my TIG frustrations and giving suggestions. Today I made my first TIG butt weld that I am not as embarrassed to show..
I welded 1/8" steel plate and used 1/4" steel plate as a mini welding table. I first ground them a little bit to make a little groove on one end. I laid a piece of filler rod in the groove. I set the tig welder to 138 amps. I ground the electrode to not have a sharp point, it was ground like a pencil that had its very end filed off. I also made sure that the rod barely sticks out of the cup.
Importantly, I made sure that I was comfortable and practiced my hand movement without current.
I simply went with the torch a little above the filler rod laid down.
The weld looks relatively uniform. You can see pictures of the destructive bend test performed on a little cutout. It bent but did not break.
One defect that is apparent to me is a little groove on one side. Not sure why it happened. Had this piece been repeatedly stressed, it would probably experience particularly acute stresses in that groove.
As much as I liked stick welding, TIG welding clearly is superior to it in terms of neatness, being able to weld small stuff (like a nut to a steel plate), and controllability.
(Click on the thumbnail images to enlarge)
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You're on your way. Some things to try next: With your other hand, try feeding your filler rod into the pool that you make with the torch. Some tips there - you want to keep the rod so that it doesn't disrupt the shielding gas any more than you have to. An angle close to parallel with the surface seems to work best for me. You don't want to get the rod melting before your pool is ready for it, but you want it to preheat some so it doesn't go into the pool cold. You'll find the right distance by experience. Being able to feed the rod in by hand lets you control your bead better. If you have a depression on one side of your joint there are a couple of things you can do. Add a little more filler, make your torch path a little wider, or add a little more heat or some combination of all of the previous. A gas lens for your torch lets you stick your tungsten out of the cup a little further. There's been lots of info written here about them here. I still don't know exactly how you're controlling your start or heat while you're welding with a pendant. Being able to make little corrections to the heat while you're going is REALLY nice. Some would probably say essential. You'll love stainless when you give that a try. Keep experimenting.
Bob
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Thank you! My wife and kid are not going to be here today and I will tig weld a lot of scraps... Will follow your advice...
i

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Ignoramus4371 wrote:

The joint is obviously strong just looking at the bend test but the cometics of the bead would make me worry that the crosssection is not indicative of the entire joint.
Try welding them together without using filler. Once you get uniformity, then introduce filler into the mix.
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Thank you cl. I will try welding butt welds without filler. Maybe in a day or two. I will post pictures of that.
i
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You're on your way. Some things to try next: With your other hand, try feeding your filler rod into the pool that you make with the torch. Some tips there - you want to keep the rod so that it doesn't disrupt the shielding gas any more than you have to. An angle close to parallel with the surface seems to work best for me. You don't want to get the rod melting before your pool is ready for it, but you want it to preheat some so it doesn't go into the pool cold. You'll find the right distance by experience. Being able to feed the rod in by hand lets you control your bead better. If you have a depression on one side of your joint there are a couple of things you can do. Add a little more filler, make your torch path a little wider, or add a little more heat or some combination of all of the previous. A gas lens for your torch lets you stick your tungsten out of the cup a little further. There's been lots of info written here about them here. I still don't know exactly how you're controlling your start or heat while you're welding with a pendant. Being able to make little corrections to the heat while you're going is REALLY nice. Some would probably say essential. You'll love stainless when you give that a try. Keep experimenting.
Bob
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Not bad. keep it up.
B.H. http://www.totalprocessservice.com /
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Your getting there. Make sure your comfortable and rest your arms on something if you can. It'll help. I'll see if I can't post some video of some differant welding techniques I use in my work which may help you. I'll try and get something this week.
B.H. http://www.totalprocessservice.com /
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Thanks. That would be greatly interesting.
i
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