Welding is Fun!

After two years I finally got my welder fired up and working. The instructions I got from the welder manufacturer on how to wire up the plug were wrong, wrong, wrong. I had to remove the case of the welder to see where the hot and ground was inside the machine to get it right. I had 110 volts going to the case of the welder. I could have shocked myself or damaged the welder.

My neighbor gave me an old truck hood, so I brought it home and started to practice. The hood was in two parts. I stripped off the underside; the support structure and cut it up to practice on. I had a very hard time welding this material. I couldn't get the weld smooth and I had a hard time judging the amount of current necessary. This material must be too thin.

I thought I had poor technique or didn't know how to weld until I tried a couple of pieces of zinc bar that were laying around the shop. I welded these two pieces of zinc bar and it worked great. The problem wasn't me but the poor material I was using. Maybe the top part of the hood will be thicker and will weld better.

I learned that your material has to be very clean and the two pieces have to mate well. Now I'm wondering if I should use old automotive sheet metal from a junk car or just go buy new sheet metal?