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10 Tips to Improve your Mig Welding

Wednesday, 18th March 2020
Graham (Tech Advisor)
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Mig Welding is not a difficult process to master, but unless you get the basics right, it can be torturously frustrating! These 10 Tips to improve your Mig Welding help.

  1. Ensure your Mig Welder is in good working order; by that I mean making sure the Torch and Work Return (Earth), lead connections are clean and good. Make sure the Torch end parts are in good condition. Also check the Work Return (Earth) clamp is in good clean condition.
  2. Check your Welding Wire is in good condition, if it’s rusty or dirty you should pull off the imperfect wire and discard it, because poor quality wire will lead to poor quality welds!
  3. Check your Welding Wire Spool turns easily on the Spool Holder. It should have a little friction so it doesn’t overrun when the motor stops pulling the wire, but it shouldn’t be stiff to turn. Some spool Holders are adjustable, some are not. All can get dirty and cause jamming, so make sure the Holder is clean so the Spool turns smoothly.
  4. Check you Wire Feed Rollers are clean and in good condition, because Rollers in poor condition will lead to erratic wire feeding and therefore poor quality welds. The Tension of the Rollers is VERY important. I’ve written a separate article on How to Adjust Mig Welder Wire Feed Roller Tension and produced a Video (bottom of linked page), do please check these out.
  5. Ensure you have the correct gas and gas flow rate. I’ve written blog articles on Mig Welding Gas and Gas Flow Rate for Mig
  6. Place your Work Return (Earth) Clamp onto one of the pieces of metal you will be welding. Ensure the Clamp faces are clean and the metal you’re clamping onto is clean, because this is an electrical connection that is part of the welding circuit, so a good, clean connection is important!
  7. Ensure the weld area of the parts to be welded are clean and free of surface contaminants, including rust, because if you weld over contaminants, they will end up in the weld!
  8. Angle your Torch at approximately 70⁰, pointing in the direction you are going to move. In other words, you need to Push the torch, NOT Drag it!
  9. Initially “Tack” the metal together with a short burst of welding, a tack every 50-75mm should be sufficient in most cases.
  10. When running the weld, move as smoothly as possible, I find either resting my torch arm on my other arm, or putting down a finger for steadying is a BIG help.

I hope you found this blog article useful, if things work out well for you, please feel free to post some pictures of your achievements on our Facebook Page

Please let me know what you thought of this article by leaving a comment.  Don’t worry, your email address won’t be added to a database or shared and you won’t receive any unsolicited email.



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14 responses to “10 Tips to Improve your Mig Welding”

  1. James Lambert says:

    Great tips! Agreed, proper maintenace of the MIG welder components is super important for performance. Thank you for the article!

  2. Paul says:

    I am studying MIG welding for a couple of days now and I am grateful that I have found some great tips here. Thanks a lot!

  3. Murray says:

    Tech question Graham… I’m using a Cigweld 135 setup, and just wondering why the requirement to change polarity when changing from flux core wire to solid wire/shielding gas?

    • Graham says:

      Hi Murray
      Two Thirds of the heat developed by a DC Arc is generated on the Positive Side and one Third on the Negative side. Self Shielding Flux Cored wire would overheat if run DC+.
      Hope this helps.

  4. Murray Benefield says:

    G’day Graham,
    Came across your site whilst searching for advice on gas V “gas less” mig welding. By far the best info I found on that subject and welding in general.
    Great stuff, much appreciated!

    • Graham says:

      Hi Murray
      Many Thanks for your generous comments. Everyone here works hard to offer the best possible Service & Support for both our customers, and the wider welding community, so it’s nice to know it’s appreciated.
      A copy of your comments has been circulated to all relevant staff.
      Best Regards

  5. David Bonar says:

    Excellent guide thanks

  6. Jeremy Cogman says:

    Graham – Is that 70 degrees to the work or to the vertical (the work I think but I’d like it confirmed).

    • Graham says:

      Hi Jeremy
      Apologies for the confusion, 70⁰ from the work surface, or in other words, 20⁰ from Vertical.
      Hope this clears it up for you. I will see if I can find a picture to insert!

  7. Jason russell says:

    Good tips helpful for the beginner

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