Video Review: "ARC WELDING II" by Wall Mountain Company

I've been trying to find a good video to help me learn to weld better. This is the second video I've bought, and I thought I'd share my
impressions on it as well. This video is being sold on the web and at Northern Tool stores. It is produced by Wall Mountain Company (http://www.weldingvideos.com /) and features Steve Bleile. This is one of a series on cutting and welding put out by Wall Mountain, and this one is focused on advanced arc welding.
The short review is that I highly recommend this video.
Now for the longer review. My background: I took a high school welding course 26 years ago. It was about half gas welding and half arc welding in the flat position. Last year I bought a welder and since then have burned about 5 pounds of rod. So I consider myself to be a rank beginner.
What I was hoping for was something to show me proper technique to produce quality welds in the various positions, which is exactly what this video provides.
The production quality of the DVD is very high. Perhaps half the total time in the video is very clear close-ups of welds being made. The weld pool is shown as clearly as I think it is technically possible to do. There are also a lot of sequences showing rod position and motion for different positions and joints without welding taking place. In addition, there are good quality graphics used to help explain points and graphics superimposed on weld video to point out things to look out for while welding. The DVD has a good menu system to allow you to quickly get to a particular topic.
Information in this video is very concentrated. The narration is well written, explains things very well, is to-the-point, and doesn't contain any fluff. After watching a minute of explanation and demonstration of how to do a particular joint in a particular position, I feel like I need to stop the video and go practice for three hours before going on. It's like trying to drink from a fire hose.
What I especially like is a discussion and demonstration of how weld current, rod position, arc length and travel speed affect the weld. I think this knowledge gives me a fighting chance of understanding how to get the kind of weld I want. Fast freeze and filler rods are also explained. The video then goes on to show how to make butt joint, lap joint, tee joint and corner joint welds, each joint in each of the different positions and usually with the technique for both fast freeze and filler rods, and shows the techniques for multiple pass welds on each joint. Joint prep is also covered, as well as hints throughout for keeping your weld high quality. Like I said, it's like drinking from a fire hose.
All the welds shown look like textbook examples. I come away from watching this video with a lot of confidence that Steve knows exactly what he's doing.
This is Wall Mountain's second arc welding video and you really need to have some welding experience to benefit from it. I haven't seen their first arc welding video, but if it's the same quality as this one, I'm sure a beginner would do very well with it.
I can't really think of anywhere that this video misses. There is some material on tacking and distortion. I'd like to see more on these issues, but there's only so much you can cram into one video.
So, on the whole, this video did exactly what I wanted, and I highly recommend it.
Tim
(Usual disclaimer: I am not affiliated in any way with Wall Mountain Company.)
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On 8 Feb 2006 13:46:30 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

The pictures of welds in progress look really clear. Too bad they don't have a TIG DVD :-(
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Are there any good TIG welding videos out there?? I've got the DVD "The Basics of TIG Welding" from Mr. Tig. It's too basic. He goes through the pieces of a tig torch and how to sharpen a tungsten; stuff that should be covered in the first three pages of any owners manual. When he finally does weld a tack, lap, and fillet you can't see the weld puddle through the flare or it's a close up of the back cap. Either way the puddle is hidden. There is also no sound during the welding. It's sort of a "nice to know Tig demo" playing on a kiosk screen at the booth in a trade show.
I have all the Wall Mountain videos which have an excellent view of what's happening at the puddle. I agree with Jerry - too bad they don't have a TIG DVD.
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Mike H.

"It's not what folks don't know that gets 'em in the most trouble, it's the
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wrote:

It sounds like neither of you got a welder. I bought a small lincoln arc, and mig, years ago.
Just picked welding up by practice, practice, practice.
As for the tig stuff, I got that cheap hf red box tigger. Getting fairly good with it. Only had it a week though.
xman
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I have TIG, MIG, Stick, and OA. Didn't say I couldn't weld. My comment was on the videos. There are several new to welding here that don't try to re-invent the wheel. They're trying to learn from someone who can show them the right way and analyze the mistakes they're bound to make. "Mr. Tig" can do the process well, very well in fact. He just dosen't show it well in his video.
I'm extremely thankful for the knowledge shared here in this group, on good videos, books, and people who have taken the time to show me how to do something new or better from the marina to the ironworks nearby. And yeah - Practice, but with foreknowledge of how it's supposed to be done and not merely dragging around molten metal like hot glue and hope it sticks together. I hate it when parts fall off - gotta get better coat hangers. :)
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Mike H. (To reply remove FOOBAR)

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xmradio wrote:

I think how you want to learn depends on what your objective is.
About a month ago I posted a review of a welding video featuring a welder named Joe. He said he was a professional welder for 25 years, but it was clear from his welding that he learned everything on his own.
The review I posted yesterday had a welder named Steve, who also said he was a professional welder for 25 years. It was clear that Steve had good training, and he has an ASME welding certification, which means he can do pressure vessel welding.
Absolutely night and day difference between the welding done by these two. I'm sure Joe's welding serves its purposes, and he seemed happy with his skill level. Personally, I think the welds I do look better than his, and I think my welding is about one notch above hillbilly quality. But, his objective is to stick metal together, and he's achieved that.
My objective is to turn out the best quality welds I can. I don't know how far I'll get, but once you've seen the work of real pros, it's hard (for me, anyway) to settle for being happy just sticking stuff together. Maybe _lots_ of trial and error practice will get me where I want. Or maybe not. But I can guarantee learning from a pro will get me there a lot faster. Unfortunately between work, family and home renovation, time to practice is in short supply.
So, for me this video does exactly what I want. For anyone else, as they say, your milage may vary.
Tim
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Mike H. wrote:

Darrell,
We plan on making a TIG video. I don't have a release date yet, but hopefully it will be around the end of the year.
Steve
Sent: Thursday, February 09, 2006 9:24 PM Subject: Tig video
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