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MIG Welding Gas


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#1 Toecutter

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 07:49 PM

On the topic of welding, I bought a small MIG from Dimitri ages ago and finally got some time to have a go this week. I'm using 0.6mm mild steel wire with Argon/CO2 mix in a disposable bottle. Got the hand of it pretty quickly. I tried 0.9mm to 3mm metal welds with good results. Then the welds on some 1.6mm gal squre tube turned to chicken shite. I played around with the settings and even checked my regulator. Finally worked out the gas had run out. I could'nt believe it, those little 60L bottles are $35 so I expected it to last much longer. I pushed the valve through to confirm it was empty and yep all finitto!
Anyhow after checking on the net tonight I read somewhere that a rough a flow rate of gas required for good shielding is about 10L/min and the small bottles are 60L so 6 minutes, ha what a rip. So I'm of the assumption if you get away from any breeze and turn it down you might get 10 minutes. Maybe good for a pro that can get the job down efficiently but not good economy for the begginner that wants to get some practice in.
Now I'm stewing over what to do, get another disposable or bite the bullet and get a big bottle!? I only have a bit of work left to do so the disposable is a good idea but I'm sure I'll need the big bottle when I find my next Swiss Cheese S30. 

Cheers,
Sulio

#2 Brabham

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 08:50 PM

There is a guy in Sydney who actually sells the bottles on eBay for $300 with Argon mix of your choice - he may deliver. $300 to own your own bottle and not have to pay hire fees is probably a reasonable deal if you do not use it much. Thanks for the info on disposable bottles-I think MIGs usually run at 15L/min so that gives your 4 min!!! Better work quickly :P

#3 Zeddophile

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 10:10 PM

On the topic of welding, I bought a small MIG from Dimitri ages ago and finally got some time to have a go this week. I'm using 0.6mm mild steel wire with Argon/CO2 mix in a disposable bottle. Got the hand of it pretty quickly. I tried 0.9mm to 3mm metal welds with good results. Then the welds on some 1.6mm gal squre tube turned to chicken shivere. I played around with the settings and even checked my regulator. Finally worked out the gas had run out. I could'nt believe it, those little 60L bottles are $35 so I expected it to last much longer. I pushed the valve through to confirm it was empty and yep all finitto!
Anyhow after checking on the net tonight I read somewhere that a rough a flow rate of gas required for good shielding is about 10L/min and the small bottles are 60L so 6 minutes, ha what a rip. So I'm of the assumption if you get away from any breeze and turn it down you might get 10 minutes. Maybe good for a pro that can get the job down efficiently but not good economy for the begginner that wants to get some practice in.
Now I'm stewing over what to do, get another disposable or bite the bullet and get a big bottle!? I only have a bit of work left to do so the disposable is a good idea but I'm sure I'll need the big bottle when I find my next Swiss Cheese S30. 

Cheers,
Sulio


Flow rates sound about right.  Flowmeters for a TIG have a lower scale on them than ones for a MIG (1-15L scale for TIG, 10-40L for MIG in the Weldmaster range anyway), and I run around 5l/min on my TIG....

As far as the 60L bottles go - I have a D or E size bottle on the TIG, which is 4.8m3.  Apparently that works out to 4800 litres.  Rental is about $14 a month, and the refills are $124.  If i use one bottle a year, it'll cost me 6 cents per litre, while the 60L bottles cost 58 cents per litre if you're paying $35 a bottle.  If I use one bottle in 10 years, it'll cost me 37.5 cents per litre.  Got me convinced.  Not to mention, thats pure Argon I'm using, which is normally more expensive than the CO2 blends used for MIG welding (which the small bottle costing is worked out from).

Obviously, my vote is for the real bottle.  Otherwise switch to gasless wire if the welder can use it?

#4 Toecutter

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 10:13 PM

There is a guy in Sydney who actually sells the bottles on eBay for $300 with Argon mix of your choice - he may deliver. $300 to own your own bottle and not have to pay hire fees is probably a reasonable deal if you do not use it much. Thanks for the info on disposable bottles-I think MIGs usually run at 15L/min so that gives your 4 min!!! Better work quickly :P


Hi Brabham, yep i noticed the fella you mention is selling them on e-bay. He sells D size bottles. From the reading I have done tonight the D (10L, or 1500m3 gas size, the disposable bottles work out to about 0.095m3 gas size if my reading/math is been correct), D size bottle is about 500mm high but apparently not hired out in Vic, only E which is the big 1200mm high type so buying/owning one would be a good idea.

I assume that means you just go down to your local BOC or Supagas and they fill it for you????

I found this interesting comparsion on different gases and how they work on mild steel. Looks like BOC Argoshield would be the stuff to use on the S30.

http://www.mig-weldi...welding-gas.htm

Probably should have started a new thread on the gas sorry to digress.

#5 Toecutter

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 10:18 PM

Flow rates sound about right.  Flowmeters for a TIG have a lower scale on them than ones for a MIG (1-15L scale for TIG, 10-40L for MIG in the Weldmaster range anyway), and I run around 5l/min on my TIG....

As far as the 60L bottles go - I have a D or E size bottle on the TIG, which is 4.8m3.  Apparently that works out to 4800 litres.  Rental is about $14 a month, and the refills are $124.  If i use one bottle a year, it'll cost me 6 cents per litre, while the 60L bottles cost 58 cents per litre if you're paying $35 a bottle.  If I use one bottle in 10 years, it'll cost me 37.5 cents per litre.  Got me convinced.  Not to mention, thats pure Argon I'm using, which is normally more expensive than the CO2 blends used for MIG welding (which the small bottle costing is worked out from).

Obviously, my vote is for the real bottle.  Otherwise switch to gasless wire if the welder can use it?

Hi Ben,

You posted whilst I was typing so just saw your response, yer alot cheaper. You got me a little confused as you mentioned you have both bottles. Do you get D bottles from BOC? How much to rent and fill the D is it's avai;label as a rental?

#6 Zeddophile

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 10:46 PM

Hi Ben,

You posted whilst I was typing so just saw your response, yer alot cheaper. You got me a little confused as you mentioned you have both bottles. Do you get D bottles from BOC? How much to rent and fill the D is it's avai;label as a rental?


I honestly can't remember which it is, but I'm reasonably sure its an E. (too dark out in the garage to see whats stamped on it, but the sticker with 4.8m3 is easy to read!)  I got mine from Supagas, at the time they were cheaper than BOC, and they're 5 mins away from work.  The prices I quoted are off the original invoice from July last year when I got the first bottle, total cost of $292.  That was 12 months bottle rental, and the first fill.  When I need another one, I just dump my old bottle, hand over some cash and bugger off again with a prefilled bottle.

I'd suggest ringing around a few places and see what they quote.  For your use, given it is likely to be low volume, you'd probably rather a low monthly rental with a more expensive refill, whereas I tend to the other way round, due to the amount I use.  Try BOC and Supagas, but also check out your local industrial estate for industrial supplies shops.  I know in Bayswater there are Waughs and AA Industrial Supplies just for a start.  I won't use Waughs due to their $20 minimum charge, but AA are fantastic, and someone recently told me they'd bought gas there for a ridiculously cheap price.  Which reminds me, I need to go investigate that, given that my rental is due soon....

On gas selection:
Argon with about 20-25% carbon dioxide is the best general purpose gas for MIG welding, and pure argon the best for general purpose TIG.  If you are doing some more specialised jobs, you can use (or may need) different blends to do the job, but the above should cover everything the average backyarder will encounter.

#7 Toecutter

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Posted 28 June 2010 - 09:07 PM

Well dropped in to a Supagas outlet today and found they supply a D bottle, 1.5m3, (very convinient as it's only about 600mm tall). All I payed was one month rental at $13.00 and $66.00 for the fill of their mild steel gas for MIG, (Argon 30%, CO2 20% or there abouts I think). They advised they do free next day pick ups and drop off a new bottle if you call them but the D size bottle is eay to transport. The bigger E is only $77 to fill and a couple of bux more rent but the D will do for now. I spent ages welding this arvo when I got home from work and what a difference.

My tip for anyone thinking of using the disposable bottles to practice, don't...for $79.00 you'll get a hell of alot more bang for buck. Now I'll just need to practice more.

Cheers,
Sulio

#8 Zeddophile

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Posted 28 June 2010 - 09:26 PM

Wow - one of three things going on here:
Gas has really dropped in price over the last year,
There is a bigger price difference between pure Argon and MIG blends than I thought,
Or your local Supagas is really cheap on the fills!

Suppose I'll find out when I run out of gas again....

#9 FuzzyDropbear

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 10:03 AM

I think the prices that Sulio was quoted for the E size are roughly about what I've been quoted from my local BOC dealer, so the prices may have come down.

#10 nat0_240_chevZ

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 12:59 PM

i rent a G size bottle @ 19$ per month + GST and refils of straight argon cost 44$+GST,  where my gas mix for argoshield or mild steel whatever cost 48+ gst.

Cheap huh!!!!!

But yes I rent through my work, pure argon is cheaper cause we are on such a big discount as we have FL sizes here (equals about 4 G's per bottle) yay for me, hence I love welding so much, i frown on using wood, concrete fibreglass & Bog.....lol

nat0

#11 MaygZ

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 07:00 PM

Let's move this to a specific 'Welding Gas' topic, please.

MaygZ

#12 nat0_240_chevZ

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 08:00 PM

ioh i dont breath this gas, i use on my WIA cp118 175 amp single phase light workshop unit,capable of single pass 8mm fillet welds, but low end is very crisp also, i find the biggest variance is wirefeed speed control, as most units you do not use more than 10-20% of the adjustable range, ie like driving your car in 1 gear.
I picked this unit up new cheap, but what you need to consider and deciseivly determine,
how much are you willing to spend.....then determine what this will get you new, used or from auction, online or not.

nat0

#13 Toecutter

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 08:07 PM

Let's move this to a specific 'Welding Gas' topic, please.

MaygZ


Done mate, topic split, good idea.

Cheers,
Sulio




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