MIG Welding BAsics part 6

This is MIG welding basics part 6.

go here for mig basics part 7

A little something I like to call the "Tee Joint Drill".

Basically, instead of just making a single pass fillet weld on a tee joint, you keep going and stack beads until you cant stack any more beads.

that's how you get tuned up.

that's how you train your eye to watch the edges of the puddle.

Where you're going, where you've been, and how far you are overlapping other beads so you stay on track.

I didn't invent this Tee joint Drill.
But I highly recommend doing it.

So what is this Tee joint drill?

Its just a multi pass Tee joint fillet weld...thats all.

But I found it so helpful at one point in my past, that I have to include it as part of my mig welding basics series.

Mig Welding Muscle Memory

Here are 4 tips for doing this drill...

  1. use a short stickout ...like equal or less than 1/2"
  2. dont weld cold just for appearance.
  3. Dont use too much gun angle either pushing or pulling
  4. Use a technique that keeps the arc on the leading edge.

Way back when, I was sent to a weld test shop to take a stainless pipe test.

This test was unlike a lot of other tests I had taken.

It was different because I already passed the hire on test.

So the pressure was off...and it was more like training than testing.

It was a short circuit mig welding test on 10 inch pipe.

Open butt pipe downhill root and uphill fill and cap in 5g position using tri mix gas.

90% helium, 7.5% argon, 2.5% co2

So the test shop supervisor hands me some stainless plate and tells me to just start stacking beads ...first 2f horizontal, then 3f overhead.

When I had welded for a whole day and had some decent multi pass welds in horizontal and overhead done, he waived me on to the 5g pipe.

How does practicing a tee help you on pipe?

Welding a multi pass tee joint is not exactly the same skill set as welding a 5g open root pipe joint.

Yet somehow, it helped a whole bunch.

Maybe it was just a confidence builder. or maybe it was just a chance to settle in and get comfortable with the mig gun and machine settings.

But I think there was more to it than that.

It really seemed to help with pipe test.

Common Denominators in mig welding training

Lets face it. there are basic things about welding that bleed into all other areas of welding. Even into other processes.

Learning to watch the edges of the puddle, the leading edge of the puddle, the hash marks around the bead in form of other beads previously welded... These are all things common to any manual welding process.

So whether welding a multi pass tee, or 5g pipe joint, there are enough things in common that the lowly multi pass tee joint is actually a very good warmup for a pipe test.

Watch parts 1-5 of this mig basics series

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