MIG welders are ideally suited to welding a wide range of metals, but one of the best uses for MIG welders is to weld aluminium. Aluminium is thin metal and you need to control the amount of power used when welding. However, there are a few things you need to know before you start buying a MIG welding machine and a matching spool gun.
A solid weld penetrates deep into the metal and fuses the joint together, so you need sufficient power to ensure the correct depth of fusion is achieved. 230V MIG welders will provide you with enough power to penetrate the metal. Generally speaking, 115V welders do not have enough power to melt aluminium and provide the proper fusion required.
Once you know which machine you need to use, the next step is to match your machine to the right size bobbin gun. Depending on your welding machine, you will need to consider different guns and connections. The most important factor is to match the bobbin gun to the duty cycle of your MIG welder so that you don't get bogged down when working on aluminium projects.
MIG Welding Machine
When you're welding aluminium, you don't usually have to think about which MIG welding wire to use. Most professionals recommend using 0.030 or 0.035-inch diameter aluminium wire for aluminium welding projects.
While 4043 is the most common wire alloy used for aluminium MIG wire, you can choose 4043 or 5356 wire. These types of wire can be used to weld the following types of aluminium: 3000, 4000, 5000 and 6000.
5356 tends to melt faster and requires a faster wire speed and more skill to keep up with the wire melting into the welded joint. 4043 is the best choice for DIY welders at home.
Aluminium MIG wire will oxidise when exposed to these elements. Do not open your MIG welding wire until you are ready to load it into the spool gun. Oxidised spool wire can cause unstable arcs, resistance, soot and affect the wire feed speed of the MIG wire while welding.
MIG welding with aluminium is made easy with the correct spool gun and feed wire, resulting in clean, smooth welds for automotive, farm and other welding applications.
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