Introduction: Torch and Tungsten
The tungsten will need to be re-sharpened if it's been dipped into the weld puddle.
Step 1: Tungsten Electrode
TIG welding uses a tungsten electrode to aim an electrical arc at the workpiece. Tungstens are available in 3 sizes: 1/16", 3/32" and 1/8". In general, use a larger tungsten for thicker material.
The tungsten must be sharpened on the tungsten grinder before assembling the torch. The grinder has three collets - one for each size tungsten.
Never sharpen the painted end; the paint color identifies the type of tungsten.
- Put on gloves.
- If needed, install the correct collet for the diameter of your tungsten.
- Turn the grinder on and insert the tungsten into the collet and press it against the wheel.
- The position of the vacuum chamber will block the view of the grinding wheel.
- Rotate the tungsten against the grinding wheel, smoothly and with even pressure.
- Grind a point on the end and remove the tungsten from the grinder.
- Rotate the vacuum chamber all the way to the left.
- The grinding wheel will be visible.
- Insert the sharpened tungsten into the correct hole on the top of the grinder and gently press down to blunt the end.
Step 2: Assembling the Torch
- Screw the collet body into the torch body.
- Screw the gas cup onto the torch body.
- Push the tungsten into the collet and then thread the assembly into the collet holder.
- Make sure the tungsten is poking a little ways out of the gas cup.
- While holding onto the tip of the tungsten, screw the back end cap onto the torch.
- Adjust the tungsten so that it sticks outside of the gas cup between 1/8" and 1/4".
- Tighten the back end cap so that the tungsten doesn’t move.