MMA/SMAW/ARC Welding-Basic Techniques and Beginner Mistakes

October 17, 2023

Arc welding is a type of welding process that uses an electric arc to produce heat to melt and fuse metal. The electric arc created between the electrode and the welding material is the result of direct current (DC) or alternating current (AC). (DIFFERENCES IN AC AND DC WELDING)

To master MMA/ARC welding requires more effort because this welding process is very sensitive to position when welding. Let's discuss the basic techniques that you must know, especially for beginner welders.

The following are the initial settings that you can follow to start learning arc welding:

Welding material: 6mm mild steel. Arc welding is more tolerant of rusting metal and iron compared to other electric welding processes. But cleaning the welding material from rust or dirt is better before starting the welding process.

Electrodes: 3.2mm rod 6013. USE GOOD QUALITY ELECTRODES! Many obstacles faced by novice welders stem from errors in choosing electrodes. Why 3.2mm electrode? Because this electrode is easier to learn compared to the 2.5mm electrode rod.

Ampere: 110 amps. (if you want to use 2.5mm rod, reduce the current to about 80 amps). Determining the current when welding will be easier to see from the size of the electrode compared to the thickness of the welding material.

Polarity: DCEP (positive electrode and negative ground) this polarity is the opposite of the polarity used in TIG welding.

The settings above are standard settings (everything depends on your individual needs) that you can use when you are just starting to learn to weld. In this article we will also discuss common mistakes that are often made in arc welding.