Electronics > Mechanical & Automation Engineering

testing tig without torch?


Stupid question, treez style

Can you test a TIG welder to see if it will strike an arc, or at leave have any kind of electrical output under load, without the actual torch and cables?

Lets say you are already under water with a stupid project you almost abandoned 15 times.

If I set it to a lower current level, then say.. connect a cable to the output (bypassing the front panel connectors) that is connected to say a stainless rod, would it be safe for the welder?

I don't mean something stupid with jumper cables, I mean to bolt on cables with lugs that can handle the ampacity. I just wanna see if this thing is capable of making an arc. I assume the problem might be if someone jams something into the connectors and it starts arcing in the connector and destroys it.

Does the tungsten provide some kind of small resistive current limiting that protects the power source in some way? Just so I don't get stuck with more unusable stuff. Or better yet, can I see if it produces an arc with a carbon rod at the end of a cable? ( i have one already). I figure the carbon rod would limit the current to levels similar or much more so then a regular tig cable. I don't see a problem with it, but its quite a complicated machine.

The welder does the current limiting. a basic tig welder is the same as a stick welder, just with the cables swapped to to the right polarity

alright I guess I am asking if there is no minimum impedance that makes them go screwy like too short cable, too fat cable, or no tungsten.

I ask because a light bulb tungsten limits current quite a bit, and it does so fast.

I thought it might be a bit like a dim bulb limiter built into the circuit! My research into dim bulb limiters seems to reveal that there is nothing quite like tungsten for preventing electronics from exploding. Granted its alot thicker, but the current is alot higher too.


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