Well, I hope that's useful to you. I'm just a hobby welder, so I come
at it from that perspective...
The book I'd most like to see would have a "split personality" with a
focus on practical "How to do task 'x'" and also a focus on the theory.
I think that for each chapter, if you split the two section up (and
make it clear that the both the "how to" and the "theory" sections have
shortcommings) then the book will be useful to a much wider audience
because they can take what they need from it.
For the "how to" section, I'd like to see something like "Modern
Welding", where it shows how to move your hands & hold the rod, etc...
I like to see what you physically have to do to make a good strong,
For the theory section, most of the books are O.K, but I'd like to see
a little bit more about:
metallurgy, how metal expands/contracts when heating, types of
steel (e.g. welding clean stainless vs. dirty mild steel v.s aluminum)
some on they physics of how welding actually works, a little about
heat flow (for e.g., through solids vs. liquids).
I'd also like to see a better discussion of welding safety. For
example, there was a post on The Forge (a blacksmith's list) about the
unfortunate death of Jim "Paw-Paw" Wilson, who died of pneumonia after
giving himself zinc-fume fever. The post went into a little of the
physiology of zinc-fume fever, how it causes pneumonia, etc... (I don't
have the post handy right now, but I can forward it to you). Again, I
like to hear about "how it happened" *and* "why it happened", "what it
means to you".
There have been other good discussions on this newsgroup, that helped
me to be a safer welder, such as shipyard safety, fire prevention, how
important ventillation is, etc...
Maybe in the appendixes there could be a section about:
Business considerations when welding, running a small welding shop
History of welding (maybe talk about forge welding, diffusion
welding (like in mokume-gane, etc...)
More about hardfacing, welding/repairing cast iron
Welding around the home/home shop/amateur welding (O/A is often a
good choice for home use because it's versitile, how to get used
machines, what to look for in surplus equipment, when to rebuild O/A