Home Welding Tips


In just six simple steps, a broken patio chair once destined for the garbage heap can be transformed into a good-as-new piece of outdoor furniture. Here's how to save the expense of replacing numerous items around your home. If you are just starting out, and looking for a versatile machine for home and automotive projects, the Lincoln Handy MIG 115/1/60 is a great choice. Or try the Eastwood MIG 135 which is just as powerful, but costs less than the Lincoln, despite having more built in features.

Evaluate the repair for safe welding.
Be certain your work space is clear and free of chemicals, paints, solvents, and other flammable material. You should always weld in a dry area, such as a garage or workshop, which provides circulation of clean air. Dress properly to protect yourself from sparks and rays.
Determine the weld piece material.
Prior to beginning your welding project, determine what type of metal you will be welding. If you are unsure, you can test the metal by placing a magnet on the material. If the magnet attaches itself to the metal it is most likely steel. If the metal appears to be galvanized or plated, have it identified by a welding specialist before welding. Most metallic items are made of a low-carbon steel and are quite easy to weld.
Prepare the welding surface.
Like painting, the weld surface must be clean and free from oil, paint, rust or other contaminants. Use sandpaper or a wire brush to remove any traces of solvents.
Attach the work clamp.
Set the voltage and wire speed according to the chart on the inside of the unit's wire feed section door. Next, adjust for the steel thickness which can be measured using the gauge chart also located in the unit. Once you have adjusted the settings, attach the work clamp as close to the joint as possible to complete the electrical circuit back to the welder. Be sure it makes solid electrical contact. Now join the steel together by creating a weld joint, at both ends; otherwise the heat will cause the pieces to move apart.

Start welding.
To achieve the correct welding position, hold the gun in your right hand and the face shield with your left hand. Weld from left to right. (Left-handed welders simply do the opposite.) Tilt the gun toward the direction of travel, holding the gun tip at an angle. To strike a correct arc, position the gun over the joint to be welded with the contact tip 3/8" to 1/2" away. The end of the wire may be lightly touching the workpiece. Once the arc has been established, maintain the correct length of wire. It should be 1/2" long for nearly all applications.

Begin welding by turning on the machine and squeezing the gun trigger. To stop welding, release the gun trigger. When finished, turn off the machine and allow the workpiece to cool. Then chip away the residue with a hammer or wire brush.


Paint the welded surface.
After the weld has been completely cooled (this could take several minutes) and the surface has been cleaned, just add the finishing touch by painting the welded surface to match the rest of the item. Your job is now complete and you are officially a home welder.