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rsisson
06-01-2008, 07:48 PM
Started another thread since I might actually have a question of interest to others...

In just playing around and getting practice I've gone through a pound or so of sticks... I will need to get more soon.. SO...

QUESTION:

To us amateurs, trying to work with 14/16ga stuff, what is the difference between 7014, 6013, Super Contact, Easy Strike and Super 60 electrodes? What is the best all around and most forgiving choice?

Bob

n9viw
06-02-2008, 01:53 PM
The AWS number is easiest to deal with... I hate the "names" some makers give them, it makes it hard to know exactly what you have. You can reference the breakdown at Lincoln's site here: http://www.lincolnelectric.com/knowledge/articles/content/awsclassification.asp

I'm guessing "Super Contact" is a variation on a 70xx (probably 7014 or 7018), Easy Strike is probably a 6011, and Super 60 could be a 6013. Who makes them?

As for what rod is best with 14-16ga steel, 7014 has been the talk of the forum recently. You're best to get it in a small size, such as 1/16", to prevent burn-through and needing excessive current. I bought some from HFT, but haven't tried them out yet.

trikeman
06-02-2008, 02:12 PM
The 7014 is a sweet rod and very easy for new welders to use. The only problem I have with it is the amount of metal it puts down. If you don't move along fairly quickly you will get a fairly wide weld with it. Still, for a beginner I think it is nice to be able to weld with it on first try. I have only tried the 1/16" HF rods of it so far.

AtomicZombie
06-02-2008, 04:55 PM
It's like asking which beer is best, but here goes....

I like 6013 for AC welding, and it's all I use for everything.
For DC I would probably use 7018.

Brad

n9viw
06-03-2008, 08:51 AM
Brad,

Any problems keeping those 7018s dry? I have some, and the welds they put down are pretty good, but the putting down is a major PITA. I've heard that you have to keep them BONE dry, and in my garage, with no hot-box, that's just not possible. The best I can do right now is a 50-cal ammo can with desiccant bags in it.

AtomicZombie
06-03-2008, 10:51 AM
I have been using 3/32 6013 for five years now, but when I did use 7018, I never had a problem. My old garage was wet, rotting, and unheated, but this did not seem to bother the 7018 rods as much as it bothered me.

Brad



Brad,

Any problems keeping those 7018s dry? I have some, and the welds they put down are pretty good, but the putting down is a major PITA. I've heard that you have to keep them BONE dry, and in my garage, with no hot-box, that's just not possible. The best I can do right now is a 50-cal ammo can with desiccant bags in it.

n9viw
06-03-2008, 01:46 PM
I have been using 3/32 6013 for five years now, but when I did use 7018, I never had a problem.

Not meaning to thread-jack, but can you run your 3/32" on lugged steel? I would think, unless the tubing were pretty sizeable, you'd suffer from a lot of burn-through.


My old garage was wet, rotting, and unheated, but this did not seem to bother the 7018 rods as much as it bothered me.


HEY! How did my garage get up in Canada?! :eek: Sounds just like the 1.5-car 'shack' that I have! :rolleyes:

n9viw
06-03-2008, 04:27 PM
No, just the tubing. I have a Schwinn World Sport, which has a lugged frame. I plan to make a Bandito out of it, if I can, but don't know whether the head tube can take the heat of welding required without burning through or collapsing in normal use.

If not, I'll have to find another womens' or mixte frame to use.

trikeman
07-07-2008, 05:44 PM
I haven't tried 7018s yet, but I have heard that they make a 7018AC, which is specially formulated for smaller low open circuit voltage arc welders. Pros consider welders such as the Lincoln 225 and Hobart and Miller Thunderbolt to be small arc welders. The moral of the story is that if you are having trouble burning 7018s you might try the 7018AC. I don't think the AC has anything to do with whether you run in on AC or not.

TheKid
07-07-2008, 08:32 PM
Maybe that's been my problem with stick welding. I was under the impression from feedback on welding forums that 6013 is the stick of choice for beginners. On open seams, I had no problem after a month of practice, but I still have problems with sticking on inside corners and other tight spots. Just for fun, I'm going to try 7014's and see if there's a difference.

TheKid
07-07-2008, 11:20 PM
Thanks Papa. I'll try them out. I guess the gap filling properties could be attributed by the wide bead as described by Trikeman.

trikeman
07-08-2008, 04:22 AM
Some late night (early morning?) ramblings on welders and welding electrodes (rods)........It is interesting to read about people's favorite welding electrodes, if you are interested in stick welding. Even though I own a great little MIG welder, the simplicity of the basic arc welder has a gut-level appeal to me. I can't really explain it, since they are admittedly harder to use. Despite the difficulty of mastering it, there is something elemental about the stick welder that makes me love using it - sort of like the game of golf, but much cheaper and useful.

For one thing, stick welders have the lowest cost and the least number of parts of all welders, making them practically indestructible. Almost everyone can afford a name brand, high quality, "buzz box." A man with more time and patience than money, would do well to buy a good stick welding machine. Changing electrodes is much easier than changing a whole spool of wire in a wire feeder. There is no gas bottle to worry about, or twiddling of wire speed dials, or wishing your welder had enough oomph to weld a trailer (another insane and non-cost effective activity than men want to do).

What you trade off with this type of welder, vs a wire feeder is basically machine cost, practice time, and the ultimate appearance of the weld. Stick weld beads are usually not quite as pretty as wire feeder welds, and surely not as pretty as a MIG makes, although beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and it may also only be skin deep. MIG welders are notorious for letting amateurs make beautiful welds that have no fusion and fail at the first puff of wind. These are sometimes referred to as "lawyer's welds," for obvious reasons.

It is frustrating getting started in stick welding, because just learning to start the arc without sticking the electrode to the metal can be maddening. They don't call it "stick" welding for nothing!! I haven't burned much more than maybe 10 pounds of rods with mine, so I still find it difficult to strike and hold a good arc with 6010 rods, but 6013s are fairly easy, and 7014s can make a fairly effortless weld that looks like they were done with a wire feeder. It can be hard to get enough free time to put in the practice time you really need to become a good stick welder, or maybe that is just an excuse, especially since my wire feeder sits on the same cart ready and willing to lay down an effortless bead.

If you read much on the internet from professional welders, they mostly say that 6010s and 7018s are their "go to" rods of choice. 6010 is a deep penetrating rod that is a ***** for beginners to learn with. It is used to do what are called root passes (the first weld in a multi-stringer buildup) and on dirty or rusty steel, since it will cut through a lot of crap. After the root pass, a "filler" rod, such as the 7018 is used to build up the weld. We are talking about people welding thick steel here. Unfortunately, 7018s are supposed to be kept in a rod oven to keep them dry, but not everyone does this, and still seems to be able to coax a weld out them. 7014s are closely related to the 7018s, but don't require an oven. The 7018s are a low-hydrogen rod and far less susceptable to weld cracking, which becomes important in structural steel welding. The 7018s also have 10,000 psi more tensile strenght than the 60xx series rods.

You sometimes hear professional welders casting aspersions on the 6013s or 7014s. I have heard the 6013 called a "baby's rod," meaning that you learn to weld with it, since it is so easy, but when you are ready for solid food, instead of baby's milk, you move up to the 6010 and 7018s. I take such talk with a grain of salt for what we are doing here. When you are welding 16ga metal, you really don't want a rod that will penetrate all the way to china (the 6010). As a beginner, you don't want a rod you can't even light, and you probably don't have a rod oven. The low penetration 6013s were originally designed for sheet metal (before the MIG was popular). That is probably why the 6013 is Brads (and most of the rest of us) rod of choice, plus the fact that he uses only an AC welder (not all rods will run on AC). In my limited experience with the sticks on thin gauge metal, I have to agree, and would probably throw in the 7014, which practically welds itself and is good for poor fit-ups.

The most commonly sold rods in the big box stores are 1/8" in diameter. Those rods are mostly too large for welding thin gauge metal. The largest diameter rod I like for thin gauge metal is a 3/32, or even a 1/16." The 1/16" rods are harder to find, and are usually not sold at the big box stores. Harbor Freight does sell 1/16" rods, because they sell a lot of barely adequate (if you are welding big iron) arc welders, and the 1/16" rods don't take much amperage to use.

The other pain the rear with stick welding is chipping slag. I do not enjoy that part of stick welding at all. It is worse with some rods than others. When I bought my wire feeder I got one of those chipping hammers. I could not for the life of me figure out what to do with it, since a simple hand powered wire brush will remove the fine coating of slag powder a wire feeder usually leaves behind. With a stick welder, you actually have to use that hammer to pound on the slag coating to get it off most of the time. The 6010s adn 6011s have less slag than the 7018s and 7014s. In fact, you can actually see the molten metal in the puddle with a 6010, but all you can really see is the molten slag covering the weld when you use 7018 or 7014. Its much easier to remove the slag from a weld done with the proper amperage. In fact they claim that the slag will lift itself in one piece with a properly done 7018 weld curling up into what is known as a "scorpion."

and that is about all I know about welding rods, at this point.

trikeman
07-08-2008, 10:23 AM
Wow. That must be the one they use for welding the crack of dawn.

jimFPU
07-08-2008, 10:58 AM
Will those work for my Street Fighter frame?

AtomicZombie
07-08-2008, 12:38 PM
Ha - good one!



Wow. That must be the one they use for welding the crack of dawn.

TheKid
07-08-2008, 07:28 PM
I wouldn't know. Lately, I've been getting up at the crack of noon.

trikeman
07-08-2008, 10:12 PM
A good article from a Hobart Stick Electrode Manager (what a title lol) on the selection of various electrodes - for those that are still scratching their heads.

http://www.thefabricator.com/ArcWelding/ArcWelding_Article.cfm?ID=1674

TheKid
07-09-2008, 04:16 AM
Thanks. That was helpful.

Sparky
07-09-2008, 08:40 AM
apparently i'm masochistic.

i was taught on 6011, and thats all i ever used. used 1/8th for the streetfighter too. no wonder i kept burning through.

on the other hand, i visited my dad this weekend and had a peek at some of his welds.... made me feel better about mine! course, he was welding 1/4 inch steel plates to a bushhog....

trikeman
07-09-2008, 08:53 AM
apparently i'm masochistic.

i was taught on 6011, and thats all i ever used. used 1/8th for the streetfighter too. no wonder i kept burning through.

on the other hand, i visited my dad this weekend and had a peek at some of his welds.... made me feel better about mine! course, he was welding 1/4 inch steel plates to a bushhog....

I have heard it said that you are a far better man from learning on 6011 or 6010, and I am sure its true, but it is such a difficult rod for a beginner that has no instructor (many of us here) that I think the frustration factor would make many give up the stick before learning how to weld. Its nice to have some measure of success at first to spur you on.

Its not just that 6010/6011s cut deeper, its also that they require a fairly tight arc gap, which most beginners have trouble holding or even starting. That rod has probably made more MIG welders out of people than all the MIG advertising in the World lol.

I have often thought that it might be a good investment if a beginner could hire your local welding shop guy to give you a few hours lessons, if you don't have ready access to an inexpensive course. I suggested on the Hobart forum once that some of the older more experienced welders, who were not fully employed might think about doing that for some extra bucks. Hey it has worked for piano teachers for 200 years or more. Given the number of posts I see from people frustrated with trying to learn to stick without a course and instructor, an ad in Craigslist and they would probably have all the students they could handle at their normal welding hourly rate or more.