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Grind Hard
11-16-2012, 06:11 PM
I have the option to certify in ONE or the OTHER.

Now, the tough question. WHICH ONE is more "useful" as a certification?

Basically the course offers Oxyfuel-cutting, plasma-cutting, Stick/SMAW and basic shop math. From there, you take additional courses in MIG and TIG.

Training grant looks to only cover the basic and one cert.

I would ideally like to learn BOTH of them, but given this this is a grant and I have to choose... it comes down to a question of "which one" should I learn.

Let me ask a different way. I want to be able to weld both aluminum and steel, mostly "precision sheetmetal" type items, maybe the occasional bike frame or other light fabrication.

loose nut
11-16-2012, 06:30 PM
Both are useful but generally used for different things. If the training is on someones else dime them go for the Tig, it is the harder of the two to master for most people and probably cost more also. You can pick up mig welding at another time maybe for less money. Aluminum can be welded with Mig, Tig or stick but Tig is the best unless you are doing production work. With skill and a lot of practice a good tig welded can do wonders with aluminum. Tig is good for fine sheet metal welding too. Tig can be used to weld just about anything, it just takes longer and requires the necessary skills to do it. Some people don't have the ability but that goes for welding in general.

Welding is an art not a trade.

Grind Hard
11-16-2012, 06:46 PM
Ok that caught my eye. For production work.

Many of the positions that they are pressing to fill are "production" welding positions.

One company is a maker of large heat-exchangers and vacuum ejectors, the other makes substation transformers the size of my house.

Looking at it from that perspective... TIG still? Or we sliding twords MIG.

Fasttrack
11-16-2012, 06:48 PM
I would take the TIG welding cert class. If you're cert'd in TIG, you'll be able to pick up MIG in a short time. The reverse is not true and employers (by and large) recognize this. Also, if you are interested in thin sheet metal or highly visible welds where aesthetics are important, it's very tough to beat TIG.

I agree with everything Loose Nut said. You can even use TIG on exotic materials or use it for brazing. This may be advantageous if you are making and selling knives and other products where the "art" is as important as the functionality.

Grind Hard
11-16-2012, 06:50 PM
I should add the rest of the story.

I am being pressured to return to the workforce because I have skills. On the other hand I'm tired of doing the same "daily grind" and turret-punch stuff I did.

"They" who are pressuring me have put up $3K for welding certification. That covers Welding I and Welding II and either TIG or MIG.

wierdscience
11-16-2012, 07:46 PM
Another vote for TIG,once you learn that MIG will come easy.A lot of the better paying pipe welding jobs you will find will require a TIG root followed by stick or wire.

danlb
11-16-2012, 07:49 PM
Your best bet is to call some of the prospective employers and ask them which would be more valuable. Once you are employed, then you can learn the other skill.

Dan.

dp
11-16-2012, 08:52 PM
Definitely TIG. Use the money you save to buy a cheap used MIG welder and learn it on your own time. There's a place for both but TIG will pay the bills.

flylo
11-16-2012, 09:02 PM
Tig for sure.

grumpygator
11-16-2012, 09:31 PM
Another vote for tig from me.
I built tuna towers for seven years and when you get that first "row of dimes" you will never think mig again.
*************Just Saying*************************Gator************** ***

GT1
11-16-2012, 10:25 PM
Another vote for TIG certification. Far more valuable skill. MIG welding while often used for production, can almost be just as easy for a robot. Far fewer TIG robots.

Fasttrack
11-17-2012, 01:44 AM
I have to believe that if you apply for a production welding job and you are certified for TIG, you won't be turned away because you are under-qualified. Like I said, most of the employees and employers I have talked to (which is a just handful - so take it with a grain of salt) look at a TIG cert as being > than a MIG cert with the general feeling that if you know how to TIG, you can get certified in MIG no problem. If they really need you to be cert'd for liability/paperwork reasons, they will probably help you attain the MIG cert.

+ or - Zero
11-17-2012, 02:27 AM
TIG. Comparatively MIG is a Sunday stroll in the park. If an employer does not know that you probably shouldn't be working there anyway.

John Stevenson
11-17-2012, 05:46 AM
Let me ask a different way. I want to be able to weld both aluminum and steel, mostly "precision sheetmetal" type items, maybe the occasional bike frame or other light fabrication.

In that case TiG

Mig is high speed production work usually on steel, Mig can do aluminium but again it's more suited for high speed production.

MiG is easy to learn yourself, TiG isn't hard but for precision work there are a lot of wrinkles that an expert can pass on.

I use MiG day in, day out and pretty good at it, I also use TiG for repair of broken alloy castings etc but no way would I tackle a alloy bike frame, whole different skill set needed. Not saying that in the future I couldn't do it , just I would need a lot of experience and probably a bit of training.

camdigger
11-17-2012, 06:31 AM
I'd vote for TIG
1.) expensive gas and equipment used on grant certificate time.
2.) TIG is closely related to OXY acet - both processes teach puddle management which is an essential skill for almost all welding processes with exceptions for spot welding and friction type processes.

A.K. Boomer
11-17-2012, 06:48 AM
Yup go for the Tig.

for all the reasons above plus its just plain cool to say you know how to do it, again if you can say that it's almost a given that you either already know Mig or can pick it up real easily.

Mig boxes you in, it's nowhere near as creative due to the process of having to add material as you go - then it's a done deal whether you like it or not (or break out the grinder) - with Tig like gas you can go back over the spot till you get it right... It's more of an art, Not to say Mig does not have it's place - sometimes it just plain rocks when your doing uniform pieces of depth and size and you get your machine dialed in perfectly for it and then watch out, you will run circles around a Tig as far as how much you can get done in the same amount of time...

strokersix
11-17-2012, 07:11 AM
I have to agree you should go for TIG. The only things I use MIG for anymore are auto body work and the occasional angle iron frame fabrication. My MIG welder is off in the corner and I need a good reason to pull it out. My TIG machine is close and accessible.

rollin45
11-17-2012, 10:10 AM
TIG without question. MIG welders are a dime a dozen, TIG welders are relatively scarce, guess who gets paid more in general?

A.K. Boomer
11-17-2012, 10:29 AM
I also use TiG for repair of broken alloy castings etc but no way would I tackle a alloy bike frame, whole different skill set needed. Not saying that in the future I couldn't do it , just I would need a lot of experience and probably a bit of training.


I found a crack in my frame a couple months ago - even though it's just starting and only about 1/4" long the frame is scrap... I could tig it - but C-dale has something like a ten step hardening process that the entire frame goes through after being welded in the annealed state,

Now there's a chance I could get the weld right if I was in practice (which im not) and I only say this because they are one of the few remaining bike companies that still files their welds - so you can just file the crack out out - build it up with the filler rod and then re-file and blend...

Yet the point is moot if im going to turn it and the surrounding area's into a piece of silly putty...
It's also a place where you just plain don't mess with - the headset.


But personally, why would I bother and why take a chance when C-dale covered me for a new frame...

lazlo
11-17-2012, 10:39 AM
I'd vote for TIG
1.) expensive gas and equipment used on grant certificate time.

+1. You need a lot of hood time to get good with TIG. Like 100 hours worth... And that's a lot of argon and coupons.

TIG welding aluminum is a lot harder than steel, because you have to get really good at modulating the foot pedal to get the bead started, then let off to get the bead going, slope off as the workpiece heats up, and then really let off to cap the bead without a blow-hole.

Stainless is easy to weld with a flat grey bead that means you've cooked the alloy out of the HAZ and made a brittle weld. It takes really good tempo and heat control to get the pretty rainbow colors that mean you've got good penetration without cooking the stainless.

Grind Hard
11-17-2012, 11:29 AM
Ok, looks like TIG is the way to go. Thank you for answering the question.

The grant is not a done-deal at this point. I'm still filling out forms and shopping around for an "educational provider" here in Buffalo.

I'll know by Christmas if I get in or not. :)


Oh and by "bike frame" I mean the occasional old bicycle that crosses my path. I currently have a friend who touches up welds for me, then I clean them up repaint them and attach wheels/gears/shifters and anything else they need to make them ride-able.

Then, I donate them to a program that grants bikes to people in need. :)

Why? Because long ago and far away someone loaned me a bike at a critical point in my life, and here I am today. ;)

justanengineer
11-17-2012, 11:31 AM
Oh and by "bike frame" I mean the occasional old bicycle that crosses my path. I currently have a friend who touches up welds for me, then I clean them up repaint them and attach wheels/gears/shifters and anything else they need to make them ride-able.

Then, I donate them to a program that grants bikes to people in need. :)

Why? Because long ago and far away someone loaned me a bike at a critical point in my life, and here I am today. ;)

Bravo! Hope the holidays bring you all the best for your good deeds.

A.K. Boomer
11-17-2012, 12:18 PM
Oh and by "bike frame" I mean the occasional old bicycle that crosses my path. I currently have a friend who touches up welds for me, then I clean them up repaint them and attach wheels/gears/shifters and anything else they need to make them ride-able.

Then, I donate them to a program that grants bikes to people in need. :)

Why? Because long ago and far away someone loaned me a bike at a critical point in my life, and here I am today. ;)


Good for You dude - that is one of the best gifts you can give to someone and now your giving it back - I helped a kid once like that and put my time and money into it because he was a young dad that was walking many miles back and forth to feed his kids - get him the bike and fix it and he didn't even lock it up where he worked, he was walking again real quick like....

as long as the "kids" aren't doing this kinda stuff with your frames you should be good to go...


http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r249/AK_Boomer/Carloshorsethiefridge.jpg

John Stevenson
11-17-2012, 12:36 PM
Why? Because long ago and far away someone loaned me a bike at a critical point in my life, and here I am today. ;)

Been there. That describes one of my first girlfriends, I think every one rode it........................................

Except me.

Plain ol Bill
11-17-2012, 02:44 PM
Take the TIG class. I have previously certified stick, MIG (hard wire, flux, and dual shield), and TIG. All have their uses but TIG will give you some good basics. Most welding I do anymore I reach for the MIG. Haven't fired up the stick welder in probably six years. Was by the local welding supplier recently and noticed a 6G pipe coupon someone had run w/ a TIG root and welded out using MIG. I am old enough and entrenched enough in methodology that I would never try using MIG on an ASME test. MIG has always had a cold start to me that would never make an X-ray examination. But - the welding supplier said they do have machines with the technology that give acceptable starts that WILL make an xray. There I go rattling on again - yep getting older ----

loose nut
11-18-2012, 09:23 AM
Around here, all Mig test are bend tests. X-ray's not allowed. Cold lap, for one, doesn't show up very well on an x-ray. People assume that a Mig welder is good for anything but that isn't true. It has it place but it can't do everything as well as other processes can.

Grind Hard
11-18-2012, 12:18 PM
Been there. That describes one of my first girlfriends, I think every one rode it........................................

Except me.

Every village has one of those. ;)

Anyway, so looks like TIG carries the day as far as class goes. That's what I'll sign up for.


Ultimately it comes down to "DO AS THE INSTRUCTOR SAYS" during the training program. With that in mind, any advice to pass along? Something you know now that you wish you knew as a noob welder? Aside from the obvious "I should have signed up for the accountant program." :D

dave5605
11-18-2012, 12:39 PM
I'd recommend getting the Miller student package for Tig. Money well spent (and fairly cheap).

Then really try to pay attention to and see the importance of things like:
Preflow
Post flow
AC cleaning parameters for aluminum
Amperage calcs (rule of thumb is 1 amp per .001")
Gas lenses
Walking the cup
Foot pedal amperage manipulation
'Kinds of 'tungsten' electrodes
Tungsten' size vs amps
Grinding the 'tungsten'

...and....
CLEANLINESS
This last one can't be emphasized enough. The other welding disciplines can let you get away with a lot here but not Tig. Also no cross contamination. Ie:no steel brush for aluminum. Should use a stainless steel brush.

Even if you can't remember all the above when you go to class at least you will be able to say to yourself, yeah I remember reading about that and it's important to pay attention now.

Plain ol Bill
11-18-2012, 05:03 PM
Reccomendations - Do it off the bench in all positions! When you can put in a good weldment upside down hanging on with a toenail in zero degrees and snow blowing up your butt then you can start to be a welder. Seriously - be able to weld in all positions in tight places and discomfort. Practice doing the same thing with a mirror. Practice, practice, practice.

Grind Hard
11-18-2012, 06:24 PM
Reccomendations - Do it off the bench in all positions! When you can put in a good weldment upside down hanging on with a toenail in zero degrees and snow blowing up your butt then you can start to be a welder. Seriously - be able to weld in all positions in tight places and discomfort. Practice doing the same thing with a mirror. Practice, practice, practice.

Any mannerisms or conceits I need to develop in order to be mistaken for a real welder? "Yep I can weld the crack of dawn provided she shaves first. As for a broken heart, that's easy once you get that medical-grade rod."

taydin
11-19-2012, 10:43 AM
Read that the Hobart welding courses are the best that you can get ... I would attend them if it was possible.

fjk
11-19-2012, 12:07 PM
Any mannerisms or conceits I need to develop in order to be mistaken for a real welder?

A "welder" is a machine that a "weldor" buys from Hobart/Miller/Lincoln/...

If you're really serious about learning to weld (especially TIG), I suggest you sign up on the Miller and/or Hobart bulletin boards and maybe ask the same question there. Like most boards, you'll get a lot of advice that's worth what you paid for it ... but there are also several guys on both who Know Their Sh.. and are worth listening to. (Truth in Advertising: the only thing I know about my Sh.. is that it's brown, so I won't give you advice on welding :-)

Frank

Grind Hard
01-15-2013, 11:15 AM
Training grant has been approved, class starts on the 30th of this month. TIG filled up faster than the line at Taco Bell in Stoner-Town the morning after they print a buy-one-get-one coupon.

Not a huge issue, several larger shops and manufacturers are looking for Mig and FLUXCORE folks, I can always learn TIG on my own dime.

rollin45
01-15-2013, 03:40 PM
There is a lot of "carry over" from one type welding to another, the physical hands on part is different, but the theory behind the joining of the metal is the same. The muscle memory comes from practice, the various types of welding use slightly different methods of creating a "puddle" and adding filler, but controlling the puddle is the aim of and end result of learning to weld successfully.

Good luck!

rollin'

J Tiers
01-15-2013, 08:50 PM
If it is any consolation.......

In the welding class I took, tig wasn't on the bill of fare, but a couple of us wanted it anyway, so we got to mess with it when we were done with the stick and mig.

Anyway, I have heard that tig is hard to learn...... I disagree..... I found stick and mig to be hard to learn, mostly because I never saw the pool doing those.....

Tig is a different animal..... 10 min after picking up the torch, I could get a good weld reliably. It was the first welding I did where I could actually see and manipulate the weld pool to do whatever I needed done. I love it, and would get a tig welder except that I will do all my at-home welding outside in the wind.....mig for me there, FCAW.

Knowing how to tig weld has come in handy, since I am the "designated tig welder" at work.... although it leads to being dressed for my regular design work in the office and finding out I need to tig something when I get in.

My only problems are that I have not done much aluminum, and that I still dunk the electrode too much if I don't do welding regularly. I need to keep in regular practice to co-ordinate the torch and rod well, but it's an every-so-often thing at work.

"Walking the cup"..... I thought I was cheating bigtime until I found out that was an actual recognized technique.....

I'd bet you can pick up tig welding acceptably, if you can't wangle into the tig classes somehow.

Grind Hard
01-15-2013, 09:06 PM
At this point I will be happy with the following... which I know is covered:

* How to light and adjust an oxy-fuel torch and oxy-fuel cut.

* How to strike an arc and stick weld.

* MIG and/or FLUXCORE.

* Plasma-cutter.

If we cover all of those I'll be perfectly happy.

rollin45
01-15-2013, 10:41 PM
If you are aware of this web site, I apologize but if you aren't you can find a wealth of information and excellent welding advice here, videos showing exactly what is going on and why... I only found this a few months ago, but I've watched many of his videos and this guy is right on the money.

http://www.weldingtipsandtricks.com/

rollin'