TIG Welding Copper
The Voice: Hey, Kev. What are you looking at?
Kevin Caron: I'm looking at some beautiful copper. I got a request the other day for a YouTube video on how to weld copper.
I figured I could do this type of welding with a TIG, I just never had the call for it. I simply tried it one day here in my studio and discovered it welds copper very nicely. Let me show you.
Here I have a little piece of quarter-inch thick copper plate left over from a different contemporary art sculpture that I worked on. I?ve cut off a couple of little pieces and chamfered the edges so we get a nice weld. I thought I'd just put them together then run a little bead.
Usually when you're welding, you go to the welding store and buy the proper rod. But because this is just for fun, this is just a piece of scrap that's going right back in the scrap bucket when I get done.
Here's something that I've found works well with copper: This is actually a piece of Romex electrical wire. I had some left over from the remodeling on the studio. This will work just fine for what we're doing today. Don't go using it on your important projects.
Put your welding safety helmet on and we'll make a spark here. (welding)
Now take your helmet up. See how red it got? That's how much heat there is, because the copper conducts heat so well. That was 200 amps, to get started. I was able to back off on the pedal to about 150 amps to keep the weld going, because that quarter-inch copper was conducting so much heat. You're just sinking it right into the table. I needed that much to get it hot and keep it going.
And that's how you weld copper. Copper's pretty easy, actually, as long as you've got a TIG welder and some decent rod, or whatever you can find.
Make sure you clean it up, nice and clean, just like aluminum. Make sure you've got a good joint.
See you next time.
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