Welding has evolved in recent years, and there are modern methods that have further simplified the process. You may be wondering what is a stick welder used for, but this article focuses on how to use a stick welder. In case you need to attach metals or thermoplastics, then you will need to use a welder. Because metal is a rigid material, it needs heat and enough pressure to work effectively.
Therefore, a stick welder, otherwise referred to as a shielded metal arc welder, is a welder that applies electricity while joining metals. It features an electrode made up of either a stick or a metal bar, hence the name stick welder. In addition to this, its exterior has a coating of metal powders that can adhere to its surface because of the binding agents they contain.
What is a Stick Welder used for?
Among all the welding types, this is the most common as it is easy to use and quite versatile. It can be useful in many applications to join metals such as steel and iron. Furthermore, it must-have a tool for electricians, heavy steel and iron industries, people owning welding shops, farms, home users who are DIY enthusiasts, construction sites, manufacturing industry, marine, and petroleum, among others.
How does it work?
A stick welder has four main parts, including a voltage power supply, a holder that carries the electrode, a ground clamp, and finally, the rods that you will need for welding. The stick welder is the electrode as it is the part that melts out due to either AC or DC electric current to create a weld pool.
You can choose direct or alternating current depending on the material of metal you are welding. But DC is more popular because of its flexibility and the fact that you can use it in many projects. More so, it is most ideal for welding steel, thus a safe option. AC is perfect for when you need little penetration.
Before welding, you must make sure to connect the welder’s ground clamp and holder to a power source. Take the metal you want to weld and attach it to the ground clamp. Pick welding rode and place it in the holder that houses the electrode and identify the appropriate area to weld.
The current will infiltrate the electrode, coated, and then bend where the electrode and the other metal meet. Once the electrode starts melting, the protective coating on its exterior releases gases that will ensure no melted metal oxidization occurs. And that is why it has the name shield metal arc welding. After that, the gases will cool and appear as a slag on the metal’s surface. After welding, you can get rid of the slag.
You might be wondering what kind of materials your stick welder can weld. Some of them include any steel type, be it regular steel or stainless steel, chrome, aluminum, and nickel-based alloys.
Benefits of Stick Welder
Usually, stick welders do not cost much and will, therefore, not dig deep into your budget. The fact that they are budget-friendly makes them quite common, unlike the other types of welders. Besides, the equipment needed for stick welding is neither expensive as well.
Suitable for use both indoors and outdoors
You can comfortably use a stick welder both inside and outside your working area. It can withstand harsh UV rays and rainfall, and fierce winds. Moreover, the protective cloud of gases on its outer part keeps your metal safe from oxidization.
This welder boasts of versatility. It allows you to switch between electrodes in case you are using different metals. Besides, you can use it to weld many metals at a faster rate.
No need for separate gas shielding
A stick welder has a cloud of protective gases that shield against the oxidization of the metal base. Thus, you will not need to look for another alternative for gas shielding, as this is already taken care of. This saves on cost.
What you need to know before purchasing a Stick Welder
There are factors that you need to familiarize yourself with before you invest in a stick welder.
Type of current
There are two types of current that you can use for welding: AC or DC currents. Naturally, DC is a safer option for you because it is highly flexible. But again, the current you choose will depend on the stick welder needs. A positive electrode gives room for deeper penetration while a negative one suits thinner metals.
Length of Arc
If you need to achieve excellent results from your stick welder, you need to look at the arc length. The length of your arc should not be more than that of the electrode’s diameter.
Safety Precautions When Using A Stick Welder
You should never begin the welding process without taking any safety precautions. There is a risk of massive damages that can even lead to death, and this is not what you want to happen. Invest in personal protective equipment if need be as this will surely keep you safe.
Because you will be dealing with heavy and poisonous welding fumes, having a ventilation fan is an added advantage, especially if you are working in a limited space. Wear shirts that have a long sleeve or a welding jacket for more security. Cover your head with a welding helmet, and your wear protective gloves on your hands. For your feet, put on fireproof shoes. Ensure there is a fire extinguisher close to you in case of a fire break out.
Over the years, stick welding has become the most popular among all the welding methods. This is because it is cheap, flexible, and gives out clean welds. Visiting our website is essential to gather information on what a stick welder used for. It is vital to invest in a good quality welder that will ensure maximum output.