Just before the holiday I had my last TIG welding class at 3rd Ward. It was a three week (three hours per week) advanced course. Each week we were taught to weld different types of metal. The first week it was steel, then stainless, finally aluminum. The first week was relatively easy to master, each week after that got progressively more challenging.
Aluminum was last up. Indeed it was the hardest. Unlike other welding it uses an AC current at really high temperature. The problem I had with the aluminum was it felt like it went from a solid to a liquid state without ever passing through the easy to weld molten state.
I had a piece that Michael and I had been working on for his sister’s Christmas gift that needed to be welded in aluminum, let’s just say for a first time out, and at that thin of gauge, I was bound to have some issues. Luckily we were able to come up with a much more desirable alternative.
The big problem with getting proficient at this point is having a 220 TIG set-up. Not something I’m likely to invest in anytime soon. But as Malcolm Gladwell says, it’s hard to get to be pro without about 10,000 hours.