I was welding some mild steel when my tig welder went pop. Blew the breaker and a puff of smoke. I opened it and found a few resisters had blown. I replaced the Mosfets, Diodes, Resistors and powered it up again. Unfortunately went pop again but different things blew. Does anybody have any suggestions where I can get a schematic or where I should look for the problem? Thanks jim
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Re: Thermal Arc Welder 150 GTSW went ''pop''
You badly need a service manual, you might be able to get one at the Thermal Arc home page. Since it blew the input power breaker and let off a bit of smoke we'll take as given that something in there shorted. Inverter welders like this have a rectifier section, then an inverter section, then another rectifier section before the torch. I'd bet a little money that what went pop was one or more of the SCRs in the rectifier section. You really need the manual to do anything useful to this machine, pay particular attention to the repair sections where they talk about cold checks before powering the machine on again, it'll save you hours of replacing parts.
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It's likely that your pedal is the problem. Pull the cover and check it electrically - these have been problematic in the past. You can further troubleshoot by selecting constant output and test the output.
DC current, electrode negative (DC Straight, DC-), High frequency for start only (really don't have to use high freq at all for steel but it helps establish the arc without scratching), 1 amp per thousandth of material thickness is a good setting to start, adjust from there for the job. 1 amp/thousandth also applies to aluminum- it has a lower melting point than steel but conducts heat much better so power to weld is very nearly the same.
Use a sharp tungsten, don't ball it at all (as you would for AC work).
my guess would be the type of welding machine you have.usually there is extra switch which says start control also continious cycle , sometimes smaller machines dont have these switches to allow a wider variety of tweeking the welder ,also its ok if you have to touch the base metal cause thats what starts the contact with the work peice ,keep a arc after touching about 1/4 inch away from work peice ,also a good steady hand rest will make a good welder in any situation this should allow the arc to remaim stable with a comntinious weld arc puddle. happy welding
For certain type of work TIG is required, like welding chrome moly for some racing organizations. Intricate work, like gunsmithing is also well suited to TIG. TIG is used by many auto restorers who prefer a more precise, perfect finish that requires little to no finish work. TIG is most similar to gas welding in technique, so if you've done oxy-fuel welding, TIG should be a natural transition.
MIG is required by law and by insurance companies in many localities for structural repair of automotive frames. MIG is also much easier to learn and faster to weld. For doing other types of welding, like sheet metal, it can be a matter of personal preference. For an auto body repair shop or a novice welder, a MIG is a good, practical all-around welder.