View Full Version : aluminum filler rod

01-20-2005, 09:58 PM
I saw some aluminum electic fence wire at a farm supply store and was wondering how that might work as a filler rod for TIG welding? It was about $20 for 1/4 mile of wire, where-as by the welding supply area filler rod is $5-10 for about 20 ft.

Has anyone tried this?

01-21-2005, 12:00 AM
No...haven't tried that...lots of other things (chunks cut off parent metal etc.). Actually never knew there was alu fence wire. Must be for those who prefer "Lite" fencing! Is there a tag on it that say what it is? You could email the mfg to find out the properties. Would be neat if it would work,,,I have some boxes of tig rod here that I payed around $200 each for them. Now that would make me mad if this wire was 5356 or 4043 (the two I use the most)!

01-21-2005, 12:13 AM
Hey..I just checked out the Malin Wire Company. The wire they sell is 1100 series wire. This is a common rod that I use for welding 1100 and 3003 aluminum. It's really only recommended for these two "soft" alloys. Most utility aluminum is 5356...cast is often welded with 4043. I like the 1100 rod for gas welding alu...it's really nice to hammerform. It (1100) does work to weld other alloys but is NOT recommended. I've used it to weld 5356 and have had some cracking problems. Depends what you want to weld with it. If it's the frame for your hang glider....you might want to fly REAL low! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

02-07-2005, 08:31 AM
I bought some fence wire and tried it on a broken aluminum casting. I used both purchased aluminum filler rod and the fence wire and couldn't tell the difference as far as weldability.

The cast aluminum composition is different than both of the filling materials that I used. I don't think it was a significant concern. I "V"ed the break and built up the surrounding area for reinforcement.

02-07-2005, 08:42 AM
how about mig wire for tig use, not as cheap as fence wire bit at auctions it goes cheap around $5.00 per 12"spool give or take. Oh and you know what alloy it is.

02-07-2005, 02:56 PM
Sometimes use MIG wire to TIG weld, especially when the gauge is really thin (0.015", more or less). Hard to buy small quantities of TIG filler that thin.

Fencing wire may work O.K. I'm told the biggest difference in TIG filler & MIG wire is the composition of the alloys that are added to improve flowout. The specialty companies (UTP, Harris, etc.) make some fillers that don't conform to any ASTM standard, BUT THEY ARE NICE!!!

Larger quantities will lower your cost. My welding supplier gave me this quote on 3/32", 4043 alloy:

1# @ $7.25

3# @ $16.96

10# @ $34.40

Barry Milton