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Tig Welding Aluminum Intake Manifold - A Welding Project part 1

Tig welding Aluminum intake manifold for a project car…

A 280z to be specific.

I agreed to weld this aluminum intake manifold because I thought it was a great opportunity to talk about welding thick aluminum to thin aluminum...a question that comes up quite often.

The parts of this welding project range from as .060” (1.5mm) to 1/2” (12.5mm) thickness.

PArt 2 TIG welding aluminum intake is ready here to watch it

Watch PArt 3 and done with the aluminum intake

see more tig welding aluminum videos or go to the main TIG welding page

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TIG Welding Aluminum thick to thin, and build up on injector bungs

For this video, I am using 255 amp tig welder.

Its the only welder I have that is connected to a cooler unit and since I am welding at over 200 amps on this project, a water cooled tig torch makes sense.

The first task was to build up one of the injector bungs.

It was shorter than the rest and also had some saw blade grooves that needed to be corrected.

I used some old copper wire from an old tig torch to warp around the part to help dissipate heat....worked great.

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TIG welder settings for the intake manifold

After a few test beads, I settled in on some settings.

For AC frequency I set the machine to 77hz.

Not all machines have this setting.

I usually set AC frequency to 100-120hz but since a lot of the welding is on 1/2" (12.5mm) plate, 77hz works well to establish a puddle right away.

31% cleaning on the AC balance. on this machine that indicates 31% electrode positive.

The amperage was set to 225 but I rarely needed that much.

I used a foot pedal and was at 225 amps briefly here and there.

I used an argon/helium mix  of 75 argon, 25% helium for this project.

Using this mix works great on all kinds of aluminum welding jobs.

aluminum heads and other aluminum castings weld great using this mix.

I knew the 1/2" thick plates would require a bit of heat and the 25% helium mix helped a lot.

No preheat needed for welding this aluminum intake

I have done one or 2 manifolds over the years and usually needed a preheat.

By using this Everlast 255ext inverter tig welder along with a 25% helium mix, I didnt need any preheat at all.

if all goes according to plans, part 2 of this video will feature  the Miller Dynasty 280dx and settings comparable to what were used for this video.

next up is fitting the sheet metal, welding the injector bungs, and maybe some machining.

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