If you’re new to the metal arts and welding in general, you’ve probably tried to find some instructional information online on basic welding equipment and techniques for DIY artists. While getting this information is easy, finding practical information that you can easily understand can be challenging. Regardless of your needs, interests or motivation, buying the right welding equipment is critical, so you need some help when getting started.
Here’s an informative guide on buying the right welding equipment for your DIY metal crafts.
Understanding the Basics of Welding Processes
If you’re a beginner, familiarizing yourself with the different types of welding processes as well as the capabilities and advantages of each is critical, before you even go ahead to buy any equipment, according to Welding Outfitter, a leading welding equipment supplier. Matching your needs and welding skills with a welding process is vital before moving on to discuss the options available. The most common welding processes include MIG, TIG and stick welding.
- Easiest process to learn
- High welding speeds are possible
- Cleaner welds are possible with no slag to clean
- Provides the highest quality welds
- Allows adjustment of heat input while welding with a foot control
- Highly aesthetic weld beads
- Better suited for outdoor working conditions
- More suited for welding on rusty or dirty metal
- Works well on thinker metals
- Similar to MIG welding
- Works perfectly as stick welding on dirty or rusty metals
- Offers deeper penetration when welding thick metal sections
- Increased welding metal deposition rate
- Out of position welding
What Welding Processes Best Fit Your Needs?
Once you have some basic welding knowledge, it’s time to choose the process that matches your welding needs. Clearly identify the welding projects and metals you’ll be welding regularly. Do you want to create simple metal crafts like tables and chairs? Planning to do simple or complex metal sculptures? Do you want to do some vintage car restoration work in your home garage? Want to do some metal fabrication work?
Take your time to identify the welding projects that will occupy the largest percentage of your welding activities and then determine the specific thickness of metal you’ll be working with most. This will ultimately help you choose the most suitable welding equipment to suit your needs. Keep in mind that there are welding processes for each type of metal you use.
Determine Your Budget
By now, you might already have a budget in mind. The type of welding equipment you plan to buy should be suited for the specific welding functions you require as well as the projects you’ll mostly be working on. Think of your current goals, and ultimately, your future welding needs. While evaluating the power requirements and amperage, also check the duty cycle that’s necessary to achieve the most economical and effective operational results for your projects.
This should guide you on what type of equipment to buy based on your budget. Don’t forget to include the cost of supplies and accessories you’ll need to operate a new welding machine. This includes welding protection like gloves, a jacket and helmet, as well as consumables and gas.
Choose the Right Welding Machine
Now that you have some knowledge on welding processes and which one best fits your project needs, it’s time to do some shopping. Don’t feel rushed to make a purchase right now. Take your time to define your needs and get to know the limitations, benefits and machine operational procedures of different welding equipment brands. Take a look at some expert review guides of top welders for beginners and match a specific model with your hobby, business or task.
Buy welding equipment that suits your needs now in the coming years. You don’t want to invest in a welder and realize that you need a more powerful one a few months down the line. Buy welding equipment with scalability in mind and go ahead and try out these simple welding projects for beginners by Instructables as you refine your welding skills.