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Old 08-31-2004, 10:32 PM
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.035 wire for body work?

My welder has a large spool of .035 wire and lots of extra tips.
It's been great for all around stuff like tubing, angle iron ect.
I know this is not the best for body work but I would like professional results. Is it even worth trying? Or should I get the stuff for smaller wire? What size wire do body guys use?
Thanks!

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Old 08-31-2004, 11:03 PM
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.023 wire with gas


Also, make sure you have infinitely variable wire speed AND heat.
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Old 08-31-2004, 11:59 PM
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A lot of folks say to use .023 wire, but in my humble opinion, it is more of a matter of experience, control and therefore preference.
With .023 wire, you build more resistance which helps many people control heat or settings on their machine. You can artfully put down a nice controllable bead with .035 wire that will do a wonderfull job on most bodywork. I am comfortable getting full penetration and good heat control with .035" wire on 22 guage. A tig welder is the way to go if you want the ultimate in control, low heat and clean weld. One last thing, GAS is key for a mig welder. Some folks use a flux core, but that is similar to a stick welder in a couple of areas. One your welder has a different polarity and the second is the flux is very corrosive. If you use fluxcore, make sure you clean and seal those welds to the max, and don't expect as clean of a job. Again In my humble opinion. I only have about 20 years or so experience, so I am still learning.
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Old 09-01-2004, 12:47 PM
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I agree 100% with Ron M.
I absolutely hate .023 wire for sheetmetal work. I normally use .030 or .035. Like Ron said, TIG is better, but if you don't have it, but are used to using a MIG, go for it.
You might read this article first.
http://www.metalmeet.com/forum/viewt...hin+sheetmetal

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Old 09-01-2004, 01:22 PM
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as mentioned, for bodyworking noobs (like me) the .023 gives a better control of the heat...to me that's mostly what matters, i can get decent penetration with the .023 and not warp panels, which is something i couldn't do with .030.

The welder i used however only had 5 heat settings, but infinately adjustable speed. This might be the reason, as fine tuning heat isn't possible. I can't get penetration on the lowest heat setting with .030, but on the second i burn through, or it concentrates too much heat on the panel. Where as with the .023 i am on the second heat setting and zap, it's beautiful.

I guess i'd try both on scraps and see what your welder is capable of and which you feel most comfortable with.

Good luck.
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Old 09-01-2004, 03:20 PM
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Try going to the Harris web site. they have a wire called 20 gauge, it will weld form 28 ga. sheet metal up to 3/16 plate. It is a flux core wire that you use with gas and still use reverse polarity (used for solid core wire). I just bought a spool and could run a bead on 30 ga. with no blead through or spatter. hard to believe. I have been welding for 30 years and never seen anything like this. I think the website is jwharris.com. good luck.
Roy
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Old 09-01-2004, 08:23 PM
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Thanks guys!
This site has been a huge help to me since I don't know any one else with a hot rod or muscle car!
I feel much better about my .035 now since my welder is very adjustable, I can adjust the spot time and even stitch time!
Just a small tip for those that might be interested, if you set the spot time right it makes a series of tacks EXACTLY the same, if you lay the tacks in a overlapping pattern,PRESTO! your mig weld looks like a tig! I only use this on nonstructural stuff for penetration reasons.
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Old 09-02-2004, 12:15 AM
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One last thought here. If you are having burn through control problems in between settings, say you burn through on one setting and not hot enough on the other try this. Set your welder to the hotter setting and trigger some wire out, give or take an inch out of the hand piece. Try and weld with a longer arc, hand piece (gun) farther away from the piece being welded. By doing this, you are creating more resistance which may help you have less burn through. Varying the length helps some folks.
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Old 09-02-2004, 12:20 AM
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I really like my wire feed on 0.023 wire & gas much better than 0.035 flux core. But then I also have a Lincoln 225 amp buzz box for heavy welding so can use the wire feed on bottom end stuff exclusively.
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Old 09-02-2004, 10:00 PM
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Sorry,
I forgot to mention that my mig is gas.
Thanks for all the advice!
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