When welding both stainless and aluminium at low currents (typically 20 - 40
30A) I frequently find that the arc changes from a fairly dim to a very
bright light, apparently for no reason and at random. This makes it very
difficult to see what's going on because my eyes can't react quickly enough
to the light level before it changes.
What causes this and how do I avoid it?
I'm using a Lincoln Invertec 205 with pure argon and 1.6mm rods (red ones for
stainless, white ones for ali). (And no, I don't have the pulser switched
+1 for auto helmet (if that's what you're using)
I had an issue with my cheapo Harbor Freight auto darkening helmet,
where it would cut out intermittently. I complained, sent it back, and
got a replacement, which now workes more consistently for aluminum. But
for some reason it still cuts out when I'm welding steel.
It might be caused by the input voltage to your welder temporarily
deviating from standard. This tends to happen in industrial areas
where the power distribution transformer is shared with other
industries that place a periodic varying load on the power utility.
If you are certain that this is not a TIG torch operator error (ie.
you are not dipping the tungsten into the puddle) you might want to
call up your electrical contractor and have them attach a recording
voltmeter on the power input side of your welder. A recording
voltmeter is a device that graphs the voltage level on a roll of cash
register tape over a period of time for later review.
If your input voltage is varying widely, you might want to take the
matter up with your local power utility, using the voltmeter
recordings to support your complaint. The typical solution is for the
power utility to install a power distribution transformer for your
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