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How to Set Up a Water-cooled TIG Torch



Kevin is looking at a water-cooled TIG torch for his Everlast MTS 275 Lightning, a MIG / TIG / stick welder. "It's a big monster!" Kevin says. It's great for welding aluminum, where the torch gets so hot because you're running so much amperage. With a water-cooled torch, the torch body stays relatively cool. Now you can weld all day long.

Kevin shows an air-cooled torch, which uses the argon compressed gas on the machine itself to cool the torch. He then shows the water-cooled torch, which looks much, much different.

The air-cooled torch is already assembled. Kevin shows the torch head, the cap on the back, the collet body, and collet. He also shows how the tungsten is just sticking out at the end of the torch. This air-cooled torch has a head that is fixed in one position. He shows a water-cooled torch with a swivel head you can adjust any way you want it to go.

Next Kevin shows all the parts that come with the torch: 3 different sized cups; the collet body; 3 different sized collets; and 2 caps, a long one and a short one. He also shows a tungsten, which doesn't come with the water cooler but which you'll need for TIG welding.

He shows how the collet body goes into the torch end with the white insulation ring and screws it in until it bottoms out. He tightens the collet body about 1/8 of a turn. Next he slips the collet in from the other end and screws on the back cap lightly. Next insert the collet into the other end. Once it's sticking out about 1/8", tighten the back cap. Finally Kevin tightens the swivel to fix the welding torch head the way he wants it angled. Now you're ready to go to work! While there may be some small differences, this assembly is pretty standard across all welding brands.

How do you decide which sized cup to use? A big cup is great for when you want a lot of gas coverage, while a small cup is great for getting into tight areas so you can closer to the metal and get a stronger weld.

Next Kevin shows how to attach the water-cooled welding torch to the welder. First he unhooks his air-cooled torch from the front of the Everlast MTS 275 Lightning by unscrewing the finger control cable, disconnecting the power lead and the gas lead. Now it's time to hook up the water-cooled TIG welding torch. He screws in the power lead and holds up 3 cables. One is red, one blue, one black. The red one goes into the hot line, the blue one into the cold line, and the last one is the gas line.

Otherwise, all 3 look alike, and it's REALLY important to get them hooked up right. If you hook them up wrong you can have coolant running out of your torch along with the electricity, which is not a good thing! When in doubt, simply blow into one of the lines and see if air comes out the torch. If you hear air coming out, that's your gas line.

Kevin explains that he hasn't put a finger control switch on this water-cooled torch because he's going to use a foot pedal. He'll be sitting at the workbench working in a tight area. He doesn't want that extra switch in the way or the extra weight - water-cooled torches have coolant in them so they weigh a little more.

Next he shows the front of the water cooler. There's a reservoir with pink camper / RV antifreeze in it, an on / off switch, and a level indicator as well as the 2 hookups for the hot and cold cables. He leaves the water-cooler switch on because it is hooked to the back of the welder. That way there's no danger of burning up your torch by forgetting to turn on the cooler.

If you're thinking about buying a water-cooled torch for your TIG welder, Kevin hopes this free how-to video points you in the right direction. If you haven't subscribed already, please hit that subscription button on YouTube to be the first to see new videos.

Well, you might want to stick around for another moment to see how smoothly things go during filming ....

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