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MIG Welding- what is learning curve

Guest Anonymous

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Guest Anonymous

Will I be able to teach myself enought to do my own patching? Any good resources? Probably will need professional to fix structual damage--should I let them do cosmetic work too??

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Guest Anonymous

Or will you put some time into practicing and learning?

Welding takes practice. MIG welding is probably easier than gas and stick, but it still takes practice. And you should put about 8 hours into research and reading before you start. Welding can be dangerous. Getting some metals hot releases toxic gases. Don't ever weld galvanized (zinc plated) metals. Make sure you have a fire extinguisher handy. Proper attire is a must, you can easily blind yourself permanently looking at the arc even with goggles, unless you have the right ones. Arc welding will sunburn exposed skin, cover up.

Personally I wish I had more time to play with it, I have a gas setup and occasionally borrow a friend's MIG (Century wire-feed). I hack and I get things done. I think I can get good enough to patch the holes in my rear shock towers, but for cosmetic work I'll practice on my rusty old pickup for a while before tackling anything I value.

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Guest Anonymous

You can 'weld' something within 5 minutes of picking up the gun. To be really good...well...I don't know, because after putting on a new rocker, new sections of my drivers side floor, 1/4 panel, etc, I still am barely an 'intermidiate', at best. More like an 'advanced beginner'.

But yeah, I would say take a class, or get instruction who knows what they are doing. I spent a ton of my own time (and half my own car) fumbling along. Then a bodyman of 20 years walked in, gave me a few pointers and reminded me of a few things (maybe 10 or 15 minutes) and I was instantly about twice as good after that.


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Guest Anonymous

try some coupons first. Drill a hole thru the one on

top and try to plug weld it to another one on the

bottom. Test your weld by pulling them apart.

Make sure that you have a good ground, gas, clean

metal and a helmet with an automatic dimmer: it

helps to "see" what you are doing. The rest of it is

practice, but if it doesn't sound like popcorn,

something is not right. Good luck


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Guest Anonymous


URL: http://www.2002tii-restoration.org

really flatten the learning curve. I have been learning by trial-and-error for a couple of years and was never completely satisfied with any of my work. Then this summer, at the Mile-High Nationals (NHRA event), Licoln Electric had a big display. One of their sales guys was kind enough to give me a 20-minute lesson on stitch welding. The quality of my welds improved dramatically. Moral of the story... Take some lessons if you can, get some 20 ga metal to weld, and practice, practice, practice.

You can get some good advice on this board, but also try the autobody store message board.

I'm getting the hang of it, but still have room for improvement. Here are a few recent shots.




Good luck!!



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