Selecting the right electrode and settings for the job
By: Alex Carlson
Weldstar is often asked these two questions:
- What size electrode should I use for a specific job?
- What should I set my machine at for amperage?
Let’s tackle these questions on their own.
What size electrode should I use?
While there are a lot of factors to consider when answering this question, the first thing customer service will ask is, “what is the material type, thickness, and position? The easiest thing to do is pull out your welding pocket guides to answer all of your questions. Most manufactures have these paper pocket guides for sale, as well as available through a free app for iPhone and Android devices. The most popular reference is Miller Electric’s Weld Settings Calculator and pocket guide. The calculators is also available online by clicking here.
If you do not have access to either of those, just remember that as the size of the electrode gets bigger, so does the size of the weld. Therefore you will need more amps/heat to burn the larger electrode.
What do I set my welder at?
Once again, I am going to point back to the pocket guides that are out there along with those cell phone apps. They’ll get you to a good starting point.
Here is a quick “rule of thumb”: For an E7018 1/8 electrode, you simply convert the electrode diameter to decimal form .125. This would be the recommended starting point for a 1/8 electrode – 125 amps. Let me point out that this is simply a starting point. No two welders weld exactly the same. Also, don’t forget to read the fine-print on the packaging the electrodes came in. Most, if not all, give you a recommended setting range to start with.
Please feel free to reach out to Weldstar for any of your questions or needs. We have some of the best experts in the welding industry working at Weldstar. From welding engineers to certified welding inspectors; If we don’t have the answer, we will find it for you!
Let Weldstar work for you.
Written by: Alex Carlson
Alex served our country in the Marines and is currently serving as our sales support specialist at our Aurora, Illinois office. Alex has been an excellent addition to our team and has over 6 years of experience in the welding and safety industry. He has completed the rigorous Miller Masters training program, as well as programs through Lincoln Electric, Pferd, Calumet Welding Center and Weldstar’s own training program.
You can reach Alex by calling our Aurora office at 630-859-3100