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Old 04-08-2010, 06:56 AM
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Default 7018-ac

Has anyone used any of the 7018-AC that has actually worked anywhere near as good as regular 7018. The reason I ask is because I had a drum rack to weld up, and I needed to have it finished today. So, yesterday it was raining so I decided to weld the pre-cut pieces together in the shop, and wanted to stick weld it to be sure of proper penetration. I opened a fresh container (10 pound) of Esab Atom Arc 7018-AC because the Lincoln buzz box is the only stick choice I have inside. Well, that stuff welded like crap, just as if it had absorbed a lot of moisture. Because I needed to get it done I wheeled the Trailblazer over by the shop and ran the cables inside, and used some regular 7018. Just for kicks before I had completed all the welds, I used one of the new Esab 7018-AC and it performed just fine on DC. This is about the 3rd time I have tried the AC version, and only once did it seem to work ok, but not great.
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Old 04-08-2010, 02:08 PM
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My experience with other brands of 7018AC are similar. I found that the local to me Liquid Air rod needs more current on AC than I would expect. At the current levels Ineed to use for the 7018AC, I can do almost as well with the regular 7018 idf I don't have to restrike. Still, the 7018AC a nasty rod that doesn't live up to the hype.

I find myself using a lot of regular 7018 in 3/32" and 1/8" lately. Works good on my Century on DC rev, if the welder and weldor don't have issues... About 85 amps for the 3/32" and 125 for the 1/8" depending on material thickness, supply voltage fluctuations (the joys of a rural service), etc.
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Old 04-08-2010, 03:41 PM
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ive had good results with 7018 ac rods i mostly use the 1/8 size as my mig was bought with body work in mind . 1/4 inch is its limit , i/ll check the kind i use in a bit and post the brand name ( i have a great memory its just a little short ) the rods are Lincoln same as the welder 225 Lincoln . i think that was the first thing i bought after i built my shop ,,, and they are crap if they get any mositure in them

Last edited by slopdog; 04-08-2010 at 06:13 PM.
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Old 04-08-2010, 04:16 PM
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I have found that (haven't used any for years) I always had trouble with pinholes at the start of the weld but it was OK after that. The way you describe it it sounds like a moisture issue.
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Old 04-08-2010, 06:38 PM
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by the way i was just wondering what a box of rod,s are worth there , i paid 46,99 plus tax , came to $ 54,32 11 lb.s
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Old 04-08-2010, 06:56 PM
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I used the hobart 7018AC when I replaced a cutting edge on a bucket. I had trouble with them to start and got advised to run them hotter by several members here. By the end of the 1st 10 lbs of them I was fairly happy with them, but I was running them HOT. I don't remember for sure, but I think I had it at 150 amps for 1/8" rod, and still found the slag to be rather hard.

I finished the leftovers from the 2nd box of them on my headache rack for my truck and I regret doing it. They don't work for shit in tight joints or odd angles. Porosity was an issue on a few welds that I had to gouge out and redo, but the real problem was getting that damn slag off. I chipped, brushed and sandblasted and in the end, I still had paint pop off a few joints where there was slag hiding.

I'd reserve them for caps on clean steel now, or projects that require 7018 specifically. Not for general fabrication/welding.
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Old 04-08-2010, 09:44 PM
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I was on an xray job a year ago, (gas piping) and all the contractor bought was some house brand low hi AC/DC. It welded fine. We kept it heated in a piece of 24 inch pipe covering and a drop light. All the xrays passed. I always prefer and specify atom arc low hi and that is what I buy for myself, but like the old piano players in the wild west , we use what is available.
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Old 04-09-2010, 10:23 AM
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Pat, just for fun you might try baking a handful of the 7018ACs in your wife's oven at low temp for an hour and then try to weld something with them.
Even though you just opened the package, the rods might have been moisture contaminated.

DrBob
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Old 04-09-2010, 02:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by digr View Post
I have found that (haven't used any for years) I always had trouble with pinholes at the start of the weld but it was OK after that. The way you describe it it sounds like a moisture issue.
On some brands of LH electrodes there is a black oxide starter material deposited on the electrode end with the specific intention of allowing a decent first time strike on a new electrode. These electrodes need to be used in conjunction with a strike plate to avoid this defect.

I have facilitated literally hundreds of weld tests and found this to be very common.

Oz
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Old 04-22-2010, 10:36 PM
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To avoid porosity with any lo hi electrode, I don't remove the flux from the previous bead, I light up ahead of the bead and drag it back to the stop of the last bead. I get into that solidified flux and establish the puddle, the tie in's look good and it eliminates the porosity on the starts. This has worked for me for years on x ray tests and field joints.
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