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Can You Mig Weld Aluminum


In comparison with metal or different metals, welding aluminium is sort of difficult. Nonetheless, aluminium is among the many most typical metals that’s used for melding because it has sure properties that makes it distinctive. It’s comfortable, non-magnetic, immune to corrosion or rust and doesn’t spark. You will discover its software whereas making aeroplanes and boats. After all, you received’t be making them at residence for pleasure, but when you recognize the suitable course of and have a correct welding setup, chances are you’ll go forward and make a ship within the yard.

Opposite to TIG welding aluminium, MIG welding is less complicated and necessitates inexpensive tools. When MIG welding aluminium, it requires extra warmth in comparison with metal.

You might be prone to face a number of points whereas welding this steel similar to eradicating the oxide layer earlier than welding aluminium, excessive conductivity of aluminium, it may well simply burn by means of or result in cracks. So, to make it simpler so that you can perceive the method of welding, this publish will take you thru a whole information of the fundamental methods.

How To MIG Weld aluminium

MIG welding aluminium is simpler than you assume when you recognize the suitable methodology. The welding process aids in bonding metals like aluminium along with the appliance of warmth at a excessive temperature that helps in melting and fusing aluminium. Being thinner than metal, aluminium MIG welding needs to be completed cautiously because it might simply burn by means of.

Listed here are the steps to MIG weld aluminium:

  • Step 1: Acquire the aluminium items that you just wish to weld. Polish them totally to take away the oxide layer utilizing a sandpaper or brass brush. Guarantee to carry out this step with care to stop creating particles which may impede a neat weld line.
  • Step 2: Safe the 2 aluminium items by connecting them and there have to be no gaps earlier than welding. You’ll wish to obtain a clear line that fuses firmly.
  • Step 3: Place the ceramic tile on all sides of the aluminium to get an excellent grip across the steel so that you could be tighten the grip vice.
  • Step 4: Place your brazing rod firmly inside your needle nostril pliers. Start heating the aluminium, however be certain to take away the flame intermittently.
  • Step 5: When your brazing rod has reached a temperature of 730-degree Fahrenheit, on touching this rod onto the aluminium you’ll begin to see a puddle of the steel rising. So, when the aluminium turns into sizzling sufficient, will probably be simpler so that you can mould it into the specified form.
  • Step 6: Lastly, when you might have moulded the aluminium into your most popular form, keep away from touching it as it might nonetheless be too sizzling to the touch. Regardless that you may be carrying your gloves, it’s higher to let it cool off fully.

MIG Welding Aluminium

When welding, you will need to keep in mind that it’s thinner in comparison with metal as already talked about above. Due to this fact, you might be prone to burn a gap by means of it particularly in case you are a newbie. So, you have to be prepared for this case and there’s nothing to be anxious about. Ideally, it’s higher to maintain in useful some additional items for observe to make it a better course of. Additionally, select an aluminium piece that’s not thinner than eighteen gauge.

Journey velocity is a standard time period broadly used within the welding procedures. This refers back to the velocity at which one strikes an arc over the welding steel. This additionally performs an enormous position in welding. When welding metal, it is possible for you to to maneuver this arc slowly as this steel is thick. So, there received’t be a lot burn by means of the metals.

Since aluminium is thinner than metal, you might be prone to burn a gap by means of this steel. This could occur to anybody who’s a newbie. So, when you’re welding aluminium, you will need to transfer the arc sooner as it might give much less likelihood to the warmth to burn a gap by means of it.

Weld puddle is one other time period that you’ll come throughout when welding a steel. The small portion of steel the place the arc is positioned melts into the liquid on account of the warmth. Your current weld puddle will quickly harden because it begins to chill as you progress on from it, producing the weld. The welding puddle is a red-hot, small, area of the melted steel that’s instantly identifiable when it’s product of metal.

The puddle will look completely different and like moist foil if it had been product of aluminium. When working with aluminium, it requires a bit sharp imaginative and prescient and focus to concentrate to the weld puddle.

A sure wire is required for metal or aluminium throughout a MIG welding process. As a result of aluminium is a softer steel usually, the wire you utilize for it can even be softer. The softer aluminium wire could turn out to be rattled up for those who try and go this wire by means of a hose in the identical method as one would whereas welding metal.

It’s easy to hunch up, which may be irritating. Nevertheless, a spool gun is a workaround. It is going to be significantly easier to feed this wire immediately into the arc utilizing a devoted spool gun. Though the spool can solely carry a lot wire, aluminium MIG welding will make issues simpler.

Protected Welding Practices

You will need to all the time arrange your tools accurately. Welding is a talent that requires cautious dealing with of doubtless harmful equipment. At all times cross-check this stuff earlier than beginning:

  • Test the cables: Confirm that every one the cables being utilised along with your tools are in wonderful functioning order earlier than beginning your arc. It’s essential to eliminate and substitute the worn-out cables or wires which have been lower. Remember the fact that you might be working with the gasoline that has been heated, so one must remove any likelihood of sparks must be eradicated.
  • Choose the electrode polarity: Reverse polarity is critical for MIG welding so as to full the duty. indicating that you just require a constructive DC electrode. You could do that with ease, and your setting could be proper subsequent to the welding tools.
  • Set the gasoline circulation: Set the circulation charge and activate the shielding gasoline. You’ll require a circulation charge that’s on the next finish. This may assist to ship the next warmth charge. It’s since you are welding aluminium. MIG settings are sometimes between 20 and 25 cubic toes per hour. Setting the right gasoline circulation for aluminium will get you off to the suitable begin, at in regards to the 25-mark.
  • Test the stress: To have the suitable pressure set, it’s essential to contemplate each the driving rolls and the wire spool hub. Poor wire feeding efficiency may end up from utilizing an excessive amount of or too little. The spool wants to have the ability to really feel the wire by means of effectively as you progress by means of your challenge and weld your challenge part. Because the machine feeds the wire by means of to the arc, it progressively works down and burns away the wire.
  • Examine consumables: At all times Clear the contact tubes of splatter. It’s additionally essential to vary contact lenses’ liners and suggestions as essential. Exchange the wire as nicely if it seems to be corroded.

MIG welders may even be accountable for making certain that their welding setting is secure and productive. This suggests that they must determine on their wire and gasoline decisions. They may even determine whether or not to push or pull when performing the duty, whether or not to make use of volts or amperages, and the way far the wire must protrude from the arc. Moreover, there are a number of angles and places that have to be understood to ensure that the welding to achieve success.

Wanted Safety

To stop accidents, welders should put on protecting goggles, gloves, helmets, and masks. Staff also needs to obtain thorough coaching on working tools and potential hazards. To guarantee that it’s secure to make use of the tools, it have to be frequently inspected and maintained.

For visibility and to guard the eyes and pores and skin from x-rays, it’s suggested to start out with a darker lens and transfer as much as a lighter one progressively. To assist forestall burns, the gloves used needs to be flame resistant.

Significantly when flammable supplies are current, welding poses a hearth threat. The welding space must be shut to fireplace extinguishers and a hearth alarm. The gauge on fireplace extinguishers also needs to be checked to ensure it’s full. Commonplace processes needs to be in place, offering those that discover themselves in perilous conditions with rapid route. Well being needs to be taken into consideration, and that features conserving a primary support package shut by with all of the provides wanted to deal with any accidents immediately.

Solely secure places which can be away from muddle and fireplace hazards needs to be used for welding. Flammable supplies have to be cleared away from building websites. It’s best to weld in a dry space.

Gasoline cylinders have to be dealt with correctly. Regulators shouldn’t be switched between the cylinders, and they need to be stored upright.

Tools must be adequately insulated to guard welders from electrical shock. Carrying the right gloves will forestall electrodes from coming into contact with moist pores and skin or clothes when welding.

Maintain the physique of the welder sufficiently electrically insulated from the welding steel. Earlier than welding begins, electrodes also needs to be inspected.

Why Is It Troublesome?

Resulting from aluminium’s excessive affinity for oxygen, oxygen from the air and aluminium atoms combine to supply an oxide layer on the floor of aluminium. The primary issue you’ll encounter when welding aluminium is that the oxide has a better melting level than the underlying pure aluminium.

The floor oxide of aluminium has a melting level of 3700°F (2037°C), whereas pure aluminium has a melting level of 1200°F (650°C). In a nutshell, because of this previous to making an attempt to MIG weld aluminium, the oxide layer have to be eliminated.

The excessive conductivity of steel is the following drawback you’ll encounter. This steel transfers warmth from the welded junction rapidly. Due to this fact, in comparison with gentle metal, this alloy requires better warmth to be utilized throughout welding.

However as a result of pure aluminium has a low melting level and must be heated up rapidly attributable to its excessive conductivity, there’s a restricted vary of temperatures the place it could be labored. This means that it’s easy to burn by means of or to not present sufficient warmth to start out the puddle.

As well as, because the weld cools, the quantity of the aluminium welds will lower by round 6%. Resulting from important joint deformation from the following strains, the shrinkage could trigger cracks.

Aluminium is extremely vulnerable to air pollution. Consequently, it must be rigorously cleaned earlier than being welded in a usually clear setting. Watch out for cross-contamination introduced on by sparks and gentle metal mud which can be airborne steel mud particles.

How To get Settings Proper For Aluminium

The voltage required for the spray switch was already established, however you’ll discover a number of extra variables that have to be adjusted exactly so as to MIG weld metals like aluminium.

To be able to help you keep away from typical issues, listed here are the methods to arrange MIG welder settings.

1. Attaching Push-pull Gun or a Spool

You want the spool gun for those who intend to MIG weld steel along with your wire feed welder. Aluminium wire can not merely be inserted into your MIG machine.

On account of MIG aluminium wire’s decrease power than metal and propensity to draw birds to your cable liner, As a result of the wire isn’t as agency as gentle metal wire, you will need to use a spool gun to make up for it.

Spool weapons are helpful for do-it-yourself welders, however they often solely accommodate a bit 1 lb. roll inside. The benefit of utilizing the spool gun is that the aluminium wire could keep away from passing by means of the MIG pipe, the place it can most likely kink.

2. Wire Feed Settings

The selection of aluminium welding filler wire depends upon the bottom aluminium alloy and the environmental components that the finished part will encounter. Consequently, it’s essential to coordinate the filler wire with these two components.

When in comparison with welding metal, MIG welding aluminium requires a lot sooner wire feed charges. The MIG setting chart is commonly supplied by welding tools producers. If this chart on the machine’s inside compartment is lacking, see the consumer handbook.

Nevertheless, a good rule is to boost the velocity of the wire feed velocity used for metal by round 30–100% in case your MIG welder lacks a settings chart.

3. Polarity

Setting your machine to DCEP is required for MIG welding steel (Direct Present Electrode Optimistic).

The electrons are leaving the machine by means of the bottom wire and returning by means of the gun when the polarity is switched to reverse polarity. Your welds received’t come out for those who don’t get this setup accurately.

4. Amperage Output

When MIG welding, the velocity of the wire feed impacts the output in amps. The deeper the penetration and the better the amperage required to weld the steel, the sooner the tempo.

The welder model determines the exact output of amperage for a particular wire feed velocity. Consequently, whereas using a wire feeding velocity of 400 IPM, 1 machine could generate 200A whereas one other would produce 180A.

The output amperage can also be influenced by the wire diameter. The amperage output decreases as wire thickness will increase. Due to this fact, a thicker wire must be fed at a sooner charge than a skinny wire so as to produce the identical quantity of amperage.

When you weld, sure welding tools signifies the exact amperage. On this method, the quantity of amperage equipped with the predetermined wire feed velocity can be visually confirmed.

5. Gasoline Circulation Fee

Nearly all of the time, 100% Argon shielding gasoline is used for welding. Hobbyist welders received’t revenue from utilizing some other gasoline mixture, however you need to be conscious that helium could also be added to gasoline mixtures to help you obtain deeper penetration on exceptionally thick aluminium elements.

Probably the most typically used shielding gasoline is pure argon as a result of it offers wonderful arc initiation and stability. Helium is added to enhance with penetration, however arc stability suffers in consequence. It additionally makes the weld bead wider. Thus, pure argon shielding gasoline is the best choice for almost all of individuals.


As a result of it’s extra simple to make use of MIG welding than TIG welding whereas welding aluminium, which is a difficult steel to weld. Nonetheless, for those who’ve by no means completed this earlier than, you would imagine the entire process to be excessively tough.

However when MIG welding aluminium, there are a lot much less components to keep in mind. Due to this fact, MIG welding is usually a incredible possibility for a novice to get began welding this frequent materials.

Aluminium MIG welding isn’t so tough as some folks assume. You could work with this in style steel utilizing MIG welding and the information on this article.

Aluminium precleaning, fine-tuning your MIG welder settings, and perfecting your welding talent are the primary areas to focus on. With a bit observe, you’ll turn out to be proficient. Earlier than you weld one thing invaluable, don’t neglect to check your welds on any scrap piece.



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