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Old 01-30-2010, 01:24 AM   #1
BucksPA
 
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So my buddy is in Iraq and has a Bluestar 6000 Gas Powered Arc Welder. I picked it up from his parents house and want to give it a go with lots and lots of practice first.

I have 2" x 2" x 11 gauge (.120) 304 stainless steel tubing. This is a heavy duty welder, and should be capable of putting my stand together.

Home depot stopped selling welding rods around here and Lowe's selection is pretty much limited to 7014 and 6013 electrodes. I'm looking for Stainless rods, but am curious if these will do the job in regards to protecting from any rust.

Anything else i can do to make sure this weld turns out good with a stick welder. My experience is limited to high school metal shop so again....lots and lots of practice before i go to town.

thoughts?

 
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Old 01-30-2010, 02:50 AM   #2
kladue
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You will need stainless welding rod, preferably 3/32" for the gauge of metal you are working with. Most of my SS stick welding was with Red Baron 3/32" 316L welding rod, it's not perfect but adequate. A starting amperage of 50-70 amps should work, turn up amperage until weld flattens out. Watch out for the glass like flux popping off after you lift your hood to look, put the wire brush or file over the flux to save a painful lesson when it pops off. After making a pass and knocking the flux off let it cool a minute then brush the weld area shiny again while still hot, do not let it cool too much or it will be sandpaper time. Be prepared to file and grind the spatter from welding, the spatter will get a better grip than you expect when it hits. Last thing is stainless grows and shrinks a lot more than carbon steel so plan on moving around when welding, 1- 2" pass on one side, then jump to opposite side and make same size pass, then let joint cool before hitting other sides.

 
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Old 01-30-2010, 03:06 AM   #3
BucksPA
 
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useful information, very useful. thanks kladue. i'm gonna run some practice beads this weekend and see what happens. i've been doing a lot of reading and found out that i should not attempt to install couplings in my kegs with a stick welder. i may have to hire out a tig welder for that, but am wondering if my buddy can stick weld them in when he gets back.....just dont know if I want to wait that long.

 
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Old 01-30-2010, 03:25 AM   #4
kladue
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If you were to use a heavy coat of solar flux on inside and grind the start and stop points of the weld to knock out any residual flux you should be able to attach couplings. Suggestion would be to chamfer the end of the coupling and undersize the hole so just a 1/32" or less of the chamfered coupling reaches into the keg, you can grind that flush later.

 
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