Pirate 4x4 banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
"All Weeee Drive!"
Joined
·
12,036 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was reading the other Welding Thread, which I found very informative, but I have a different question.

I'm interested in learning more about welding, but not making it a career.
I'm working on an axle swap, & a bunch of my friends (who weld) have been helping me. They've been great, but they're also really busy working on their own junk. So the welding work on my rig has been slow.

I thought of taking some classes at a few Community Colleges in the East Bay, but all of them seem to be set up as a "Program". IE, you don't get to the good stuff til the 2nd or 3rd semester.
I also found a place in Berkeley/Oakland that offers a 8 or 10 week single class, but it's like $400.

Anyone know any good/affordable alternatives?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,521 Posts
Pony up the money and buy a welder.

Thats how I learned.

Look for a used welder and buy it.
I started with a good old Lincoln Buzzbox
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,609 Posts
I'd be interested in this too, but around the Sac/Placer area. :idea: Maybe an experienced welder in the area would want to do some kind of a private class and charge accordingly? I could easily see spend a couple hundred $$$ to have someone teach a class like that. With that, everyone would know going in that it was just a teaching you how to do it kind of thing and not a certification or official kind of class :skull:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,207 Posts
When I decided that I needed to learn to weld I asked a professional welder to help me decide what type of welder to buy. We ended up getting a MIG. There is a chart on the inside of the box that shows how much wire speed and temperature are needed, and I try to follow these guidelines. Basically practice on some scrap metal and you will get better, there is not much need, if any, for formal lessons.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,521 Posts
Get a welder read a little then try to weld.
Get some scraps from the local steel yard.

Make it stick together then mess with the settings and your motion to get the results you want.

Post pictures of your welds here and you will get peoplel telling you exactly what you need to do to improve your weld.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
475 Posts
Take the local JC begining welding class. Its cheep and they'll take the time to teach some metalurgy and safety stuff too which you won't get from most do-it-yourselfers. Then you can move up to the more specific classes as you see fit. I think its money well spent.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,989 Posts
I'ld agree that the JC route is going to give you the most data and knowledge.

The short cut way is like everyone says, just buy a welder and do it. I would suggest however, picking up a book or two. It'll give you a better understanding of the fundamentals behind what's going on and you'll be able to start putting down better beads quicker than just figuring it out on your own. The simple little book I have even gives the details of how to put it in the vice and beat the crap out of it so you can inspect the joint and what to look for. Sorry, I don't have the info on the book I have in front of me.
 

·
"All Weeee Drive!"
Joined
·
12,036 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Monkeyboy said:
Pony up the money and buy a welder.
I've got access to several welders, so that's not a big issue. I've messed around & made some really crappy beads over the last couple of weeks.

Like I would post a pic of a crappy bead here Todd....

I was just hoping there was some "too good to be true" class around that I could 10-20 hours in for little money...:D

I like the book idea.....

Change the thread:

"What (Intro) Books on Welding should I get?"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,521 Posts
Mike If you post a picture here you will hear exactly what yo uneed to work on.

You will get advice like turn the amps up just a bit slow your hand down and move the electrode in a wider path along the steel.

Alot of time this is what you need to point out what yo uneed to do to improve.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,797 Posts
1. Home Depot sells a good little starter book. Read it, so you can learn what the processes are etc.

2. Head over the Contra Costa Welding Supply and ask over there.

3. Next, practice
4. Next, practice
5. Next, practice
6. Next, practice
7. Next, practice
8. Next, practice
9. Next, practice
10. Next, practice
11. Next, practice
12. Next, practice

I had two years of Metal shop in high school. Spent the first three months welding sheet metal with gas. Then learned stick. Was not until my second year that I learned Mig and Tig. Then I stopped welding for a long time. I'm just starting to melt steel again.

Joe
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,414 Posts
Look for an Adult Ed class. I signed up for one at night. Immediately realized the welder I had was crap, so I sold it and bought a Hobart 175. Spent a month learning to weld plate in all positions, then tube in all positions (I still suck at vertical up). Then the instructor asked what I wanted to do next. My first project was cage-mounting my seats. Next will be reinforcing the cage some more, learning to use the bender. Then probably will tie the cage to the frame. Then a better anti-wrap bar. Not a bad deal for $175 for four months, plus materials.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,729 Posts
I don't know if it has changed, but when I took the course at Sacratomato City College 20 years ago, once you passed the safety stuff, you learn pretty much anything you wanted to and show up (or not) any time. Sure, they have a certification program, but they seemed damned happy just to have another warm body in the program. Call the instructor up and talk to him. We spent about as much time testing our welds as actually doing them. Learning how to tell a good weld from a bad one is something that is hard to learn by yourself and you don't want to learn this the hard way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,489 Posts
I've been welding for about 4-5 years but I want to be better. and learn to TIG and just generally weld better. Tonight I start a class at a local continuing education school kinda place. $100 for 13 weeks of 3hrs one night a week. not bad IMO ... their electricity, their welders, their consumables, their steel and only about 10 students per class. so it's pretty one on one ....

oh yeah, I started out with the get a welder/learn to weld plan. read some books - got a tip here/there. I'm a decent welder. but like I said I want to be better.

- jack
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,532 Posts
I just took a intro to wleding class through the com col and it was great...we covered OXY/Acet, SMAW, OXY cutting, brazing, and then each wekk the teach would show a more advanced technique like submerged ARC and TIG and other things like that...I learned the basics like heat settings the meanings of 6011 vs. 6010 vs. 7018 vs. etc...I highly recommend doing this
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
19,797 Posts
Las Po, has cheap ass classes, like 8-10 bucks a unit, but i bileve the welding is only offerend in the summer months
 

·
"All Weeee Drive!"
Joined
·
12,036 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
welndmn said:
Las Po, has cheap ass classes, like 8-10 bucks a unit, but i bileve the welding is only offerend in the summer months
That might work for me...

I checked Laney College (Oakland) & Los Medanos in (Pittsburgh).
They both have cool classes, but the started 3 weeks ago...:(
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
897 Posts
why the heck do you need classes? go buy a welder and just do it. for starters, get an arc welder, get 6011 electrodes most universal and good to learn on. as said before practice practice practice.

tips

good penetration- not too much it will weaken the metal

focus on consistancy

unless you want a certificate don"t wast your money and do it yourself.

LOL:D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
215 Posts
The class I enrolled in is one night a week from 1830 to 2100. The first week the teacher showed us all the different processes...oxy, stick, mig, tig. Ever since then we've been welding. I see the teacher twice during class, once at the beginning and once around 2000 for ten minutes or so. He basically just put us in the bay, showed us the deal and said play with it. The course was about $125 but I'm sure when it gets out in mid-April, I'll have used that much in steel and consumables. Its the second week I have been welding and at the end of the class I took a 90 degree corner weld I did and was able to put in in the vice and smoosh the pieces together without the weld breaking...pretty kewl feeling knowing that it actually held up like that.

The only thing that sucks about the class is the helmet and gloves. The welders are awesome and pretty new but the gloves are all hard in the fingers and the helmets are the cheap ones and scratched to hell.

I would suggest that if you go take a class to get your own helmet and gloves. Got my Speedglass 9000x today and the Tillman elkskin gloves are in the mail....can't wait to try them out.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top