Learn proper use of welding equipment, including tips for arc, tig and mig welding from an expert in arc, tig and mig welding in this free DIY video.
Now the use of the MIG welding equipment is really very simple. It is an easy process to operate. One of the most difficult aspects of it is, however, setting the right wire speed and voltage. Think of it this way, you have an infinitely variable wire speed, and an infinitely variable voltage that sets the amount of heat in the arc. To obtain the proper settings you have to balance the infinitely variable wire speed and the infinitely variable voltage until they are exactly opposed to one another. Now I have seen a lot of good welders become extremely frustrated because they just cannot get the machine to operate properly and they always blame the machine. Very often, it is just the technique that they use to find the proper settings. It only stands to reason, that if you increase the voltage, you have to increase the wire speed. It is a common sense. It is not difficult. But how much? If you increase the wire speed set the new wire speed at incrementally. Do not set it in large amounts, you will just go past the spot where you want to go. Set it slowly. If you increase the voltage, increase the wire speed incrementally. Try a small practice weld. If it is not adequate, increase it again, increase it again, try another a small practice weld until you get exactly the right characteristic of arc that you are looking for. In reverse if you decrease the voltage, slowly incrementally start decreasing the wire speed to match it. Not in large steps but small incremental steps. A small practice weld, a small practice weld, a small practice weld until you have got it. Every machine runs differently, so getting used to doing this on your machine that you are using is really important. If you welding half inch plate and then you go to welding 10 gauge plate there is a huge difference in the heat required and wire speed required. Going at this haphazardly just is going to be a frustrating experience. So as I say, increase or decrease your voltage and then incrementally increase or decrease your wire speed until you find exactly the right spot on the wire.