Question about TIG torches (Dinse vs. ...)



So I think I'm going to get the Thermal Arc Pro-Wave 185TSW and have been reading through old posts on this list regarding different TIG units.
I found the above message from Ernie and am not sure what it means. The local welding shop seems knowledgeable only about MIG...
Can't the inverter machines use water cooler addons? I've seen references to DINSE pass-thru connectors which seem to allow the use of other style torches, but not exactly sure whether that is what they are for. Also, when changing torches, does one generally have a separate entire cable setup or just disconnect the torch from the gas and power and put the new torch on?
Also, is the torch that comes with the Pro-Wave going to need to be upgraded? Can I put a gas lense on that torch? How much would a CK torch that has the gas lense collet body cost?
I will mostly be working with stainless and mild steel under 1/8". And occasional 16 gauge or less copper.
Also, in case I get the maxtar 150, how does one plumb the gas when doing DCEP? I read Ernies review of the Maxstar 140 where he tells of its capability welding aluminum. From reading the maxstar manual, though, it seems that the gas flows through the EN connector. So when doing DCEP, how does one get gas to the torch?
Thanks! Aaron
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Yes they can. CK Worldwide sells an adapter that allows a water cooled torch on a machine with DINSE connectors.

The pass-thru connectors are for the gas. Several of the small TIG machines pass the gas line through the middle of the DINSE connector. I have not seen this on inverters. Just the small transformer based TIGs from Miler and Lincoln.

You can switch torches in 3 ways.
1. Change the torch head out on the end of the feeder cables. I do this to swap between an air cooled normal torch head an air cooled 180 deg torch head on my inverter. 2. Install quick disconnects on the gas and water lines I do this on my main shop machine. I used Western brand disconnects, and adapted the oxygen disconnects to the water lines 3. Break the connections back at the regulator and water block every time you want to swap torches. Kind of a pain in the ass.

Yes
Yes, a standard #3 series gas lens or a CK #4 series stubby gas lens.

A gas lens is independant of the torch. That is like saying "what car to I have to buy to use radial tires".
Torches cost around $100 (with cables), the gas lens can cost up to $15.

Start with standard collet bodies until you stop destroying tungstens. Then upgrade when you can be trusted not to brutalize your tungsten. Gas lenses leave the tungsten very exposed.

You would need a break out adapter for the torch, and just use a torch with a built in valve. Run the gas straight to the torch bypassing the machine, or rig up a splitter that separates the gas line from the power. It would be easier to bypass the machine.
Just set up a second torch for DCEP TIG on Aluminum.
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The Maxstar 150 (at least the STH) uses a pass-thru 25mm DINSE power adaptor. When I called CK, the guy had to look up the part number & price. I gather it is a recent addition to their line as it was not yet listed on their price list.
It is part # SL5-25M for $57.50 -- not particularly cheap.
JLD
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wrote:

ArcZone has the type for a water cooled torch so I am guessing they have other configurations also....
http://www.arc-zone.com/catalog/tig.cgi
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Ernie, thanks once again for a very informative post with great info. However, I'm even more confused after spending two hours browsing the ckworlwide and the arczone web pages. Torch selection and purchasing seems to have more options than when buying a car.
First, what needs to be upgraded on the pro-wave torch? The entire thing? Or just parts of it? If so, is it not ergonomically good? Likely to wear out?
I found the CK torch head consumable PDFs that you referenced in previous posts. Is the CK gas saver line a reasonable choice? For the pro-wave 185, should one buy a 150A or a 200A torch (i.e. the prowave maxes out at 160/185A, but most of my working will be 1/8" or under SS which should be in the 125 - 150A range, right?) And I don't foresee getting a water cooler for the time being. Then again, I think I'll find TIG torches akin to woodworking where I have five different planes that I use frequently. So asking what torch I should get might not be a completely sensible question. In class, we just have a 200A water cooled torch that we use for everything.
Hmmm, should I be giving the CK people a call and asking them what I want -- i.e. do they mind talking to inexperienced people on the phone.

I understand that, but thought that there would be a package that has the torch, heatshield, collet, collet body, etc that comes with a gas lens. But I guess one just builds up the torch from the individual parts on the consumables page?

BTW, I'm taking a TIG class this semester and am getting fairly good at make nice welds and not butchering the tungstens, but the topic of consumables isn't discussed in class. The teacher has been TIG welding for 30 years at one of the local pharmaceutical companies, but has never used aircooled torches and isn't much help in hobby equipment arena. In fact, he's never used an inverter.
Once again, thanks for the help. The sci.engr.joining.welding group has the highest signal to noise ratio of any group I have seen.
Regards, Aaron
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I've also been struggling to figure out what parts I need from CK to outfit a small TIG inverter.
I am hoping to put together a Miller 150 STH this year.
I've got a nice flowmeter already and I would rather have a CK torch setup than the stock Miller torch. So I'll probably just pick up the bare-bones STH.
I plan to weld mostly mild and stainless under 1/8".
Here is a list of CK stuff that I put together:
http://www.drizzle.com/~dantzler/TIG_list.html
I priced out either a gas saver setup (with the clear, pyrex cup) or the regular gas lense setup.
In either case, I would use a 150 amp, air-cooled torch like the CK150. That is a #3 series torch body. The short or short gas lense collet bodies (part number starts w/'4')let you use a #2 series front end (ie gas cup) that is smaller than the 3 series front end. This gives a less bulky torch.
Disclaimer: My parts list hasn't been vetted by Ernie or CK, but I came up with it after quite a few emails to Ernie and a call or 2 to CK.
Upgrading some other brand of TIG torch should be possible since all 3 series gas-cooled TIG torches use the same parts based on the old Linde design. So it should be easy to convert a stock torch to gas lense.
Hope this helps,
Jeff Dantzler Seattle, WA
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Aaron
The best pricing I found on CK was from Precision Products www,precisionproducts.com
They sold to me at 40% off CK list.
One interesting thing I discovered on the torch I use (9 Series)is the CK makes both a CK100, and a CK9. The CK 100 with a 12' Superflex Cable list for $93.63, the CK 9 in the same configuration lists for $73.56. I talked to the engineering department at CK and the ONLY difference between these two torches is the Lable and the connection setup between the hose and the torch body. The CK9 Torch has a female connection on the torch body, and the CK100 has a male connection on the torch body. I bought the CK9 because it was less expensive AND my existing (industry standard) hoses would also fit it. With the CK100 you are locked into the special CK hose setup, which does not hookup to a regular 9 series Torch Body.
BTW if you are using a gas cooled torch be sure and get the Superflex Cable, it's incredibly flexible, and worth the extra money.
Frank
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The torches that Thermal uses are fine. Just add a gas lens collet body.

Gas Savers are a little more expensive than normal gas lenses. I don't feel they are worth it unless you are getting into the extra wide mouth gas savers. They are made for very high end work like titanium, and nobody else makes anything as nice.
For normal welding I use standard gas lenses. That way it doesn't matter what brand parts I use. Everybody's parts fit everybody elses parts.

The torch it comes with is a 150 amp air cooled torch. That should be sufficient.
I have a 200 amp CK210 torch for my Miller Maxstrar 200DX inverter, but I recently added a smaller 110 amp CK100 torch which works for most of teh stuff I need to do. If I need the higher amperage I just switch torches.

I thinkthe guys at CK are very lonely. They seem to love chatting to people on the phone about their torches.

Correct.
He is probably really good at pipe and flange welds though.

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