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Beginners Guide to Welding Like a Pro
by Derek Crowden on Aug 3, 2016
No matter where you turn in life, something around you has probably been welded. It can be a lucrative career and one that you can study for or learn on the job under a Master Welder, but not usually something you can just pick up and do without some very serious information under your belt. Whether you are looking to make welding a career or are simply looking to learn a bit to do a few DIY projects at home, there are some steps you need to take prior to welding your very first joint.
Begin with Welding Safety Procedures and Gear
Although you can learn beginning welding techniques quite quickly, there is one thing you need to give careful attention to and that is welding safety. Not only do you need to study safe handling of welding equipment and materials but you need to understand why your body is going to be covered in safety gear. You can get a basic idea of the types of safety gear you’ll need on the Foster Industrial website, but before ordering things, make sure you have the best protection money can buy, such as professional standard welding helmets. This is no joke. Welding is a very dangerous endeavour.
Study the Terminology
Most people who set out to learn about welding are totally in the dark about the basic terminology welders use on a daily basis. Do you know the difference between MIG, TIG and ARC welding? Have you even heard those terms before? As in any trade, there is likely to be a great deal of jargon and words that are specific to the industry and so beginner welders would be well advised to learn those terms. It’s hard to learn something if you can’t understand the instructions!
Read, Read Some More and When All Else Fails, There’s YouTube
It cannot be overemphasised the need to fully understand what you are doing before you ever light that first welder the very first time. Most classroom instructors will have students spend weeks or months reading anything and everything ever written on welding before taking them to the practicum workshop. You have heard the old cliché that a little learning goes a long way. Well, for welders a little learning is probably going to be insufficient. The best advice anyone can give a beginner welder is to read, read some more and if all else fails, there’s always YouTube for a visual demonstration of what you have been learning on paper.
You may be learning on your own but you should really try to find a Master Welder who is willing to walk you through the steps as you get ready to do your very first weld. The Master Welder will most likely make the first weld for you, show you how to make that bead and then talk to you about what it is he or she just did before letting you try it on your own. At this time if something isn’t perfectly clear, make sure to ask any questions you need answered. You may be a hobbyist but you want clean welds and above all to stay safe in the process. This is just the tip of the iceberg but enough to let you know that there is so much more to learn. In the meantime, happy welding!
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