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How Does A MIG Welder Work?

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mig welder

When you’re keen on making use of a metal inert gas (MIG) welder, there’s a decent amount of stuff you need to know.

But before moving ahead, we would suggest you to make a final decision if you have been planning to join a welding course from a long long time. We would definitely say that It’s Time to Enter the World of Welding as welders are earning quite well and it can really be a rewarding career.

It’s certain you’re intent on being the best DIY MIG welder. If that’s the case, you’ve got to ask – how does a MIG welder work? With correct info in your grasp, you’ll be able to get top-class MIG welds whenever you want to.

And what’s most essential is who’s giving you the info. As you’d have it, I’ve been in the welding industry for several years now! It’s been an exciting time working with a lot of welding machines and learning so much.

So I’ve made it my goal to provide you correct information on how a MIG welder works. With all the facts I’ll give you right here, you’ll make use of your MIG machine just like a pro!

How a MIG Welder Functions

The welder works with the aid of a wire-fed welding gun and a cathode. Heat generation from a short circuit along with a gas speeds up the melting process. When the melting process gets the wire and cathode melted, then cooling is needed.

After cooling, the cathode and wire from the gun forms a solid piece of metal binding both plates together.


Parts of a MIG Welder & How They Work

Now that you’ve got to know how the welder works, you need a lot more info. What’s most crucial is to know how each part functions in getting you the perfect join between two metals;



The welder contains a long wire spool. This spool connects directly to the machine’s welding gun. Inside the MIG welder, this spool aligns and is fed onto your process for a solid weld.

Note that your welded has to be loaded with an appropriate wire spool to provide certain results on some metals.


Gas Container

MIG welders need shielding gases to enable its proper operation. Most MIG welders make use of argon gases in shielding the bonding process. Others make use of a mixture of gases.

With the gas from this welder, the metals’ joining process gets more protection. Also, shielding gases help your welds take better form and shape.

There’re some settings needed for operating your MIG welder with shielding gases, and these settings depend on your preferred wire-fed gun.


Wire-Fed Gun

With this gun, wires from your welder move through it linking with your desired tip. When the welding process gets started, the tip ignites the wire being fed from your gun, creating a strong bond on your metal plates.


Ground Clamp

The metal you need for creating a perfect circuit is the ground clamp. With the clamp fitted on your welder and to-be-welded metal, your gun will produce the right reaction.


Pros of MIG Welding

Better grip

It provides better control for the welder unlike other forms of welding. Since the only unit needed to produce a strong join is the welding gun, more handling ease is also assured.


Minimized spatter

The spatter you experience from a MIG welder is much lower than in most welding forms. Due to the minimal spatter, there’s more safety assured when using a MIG welder.


Comfortable operation

Getting the MIG welder started is much easier than a lot of other welding forms. It’s got very simple procedures for a perfect performance, and that’s why it’s the preferred welder across skill levels.


Versatile Use

MIG welding is versatile and is perfect for welding thin and thick metal plates. Based on the pool it forms, it’s suitable for creating a solid join for your metals.


What You’ve Got to have for a Proper MIG Weld

Auto-darkening helmets

When you’re engaged in a MIG weld, there’s a high chance you’ll be exposed to a lot of light. Without the right eye protection, this bright lighting could have an adverse effect on your sight.

Auto-darkening helmets make correct protection of your eyes possible. It comes with a special lens which darkens automatically, shielding your eyes from any damaging light.



Having the right gloves on is a must if you’re keen on getting total protection when engaging a MIG weld. If any spatter occurs, your gloves will assure no harm comes to your hands.

Apart from these gloves being perfect against spatter, they provide a better grip for handling welding guns more comfortably.


Flame-retardant jacket

Welding could likely get some flames splattered around all of a sudden. For the perfect level of protection, you need a flame-resistant jacket. Putting on this jacket will keep you protected from any unfortunate chest or arm burns.


Covered shoes

To prevent spatter on your legs while using a MIG welder, it’s the best choice to get covered shoes. And not just any shoe is right; you need solid boots or safety shoes.


Proper ventilation

If you’ve got to keep safe, there’s a need to use MIG welders in a properly-ventilated space. If there’s not much air where you’re using a MIG welder, gas poisoning becomes highly likely.


Correct Wire

For your MIG welder to work just fine, it’s got to have the proper wire feeding to your gun. When you’re intent on welding steel, you can use an ER70S-3 wire for proper steel joining. Also, you could go for wiring based on its thickness.

If you need to select thicknesses of welding wire, the first step is to get through your welder’s specifications. If your welder’s up to the task, then there’re lots of choices for you.

A .23” wire is perfect for limiting heat while using your welder. You could also choose a .35” or .45” wire if you’re keen on welding thick metal plates.  



It’s certain that after reading through this, you won’t ask how a MIG welder works anymore! Rather, you’ll be the one spreading relevant info on how to use this welder in creating the perfect joins!



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