He checked the gas bottle, and it was full. He clicked the trigger and could hear the gas coming out of the welding torch, but the welds looked terrible.
When Kevin took the torch apart, what he found was really quite amazing.
First, though, it might help to know how the torch works. Kevin shows the torch from his Everlast PowerMTS 221STi. He explains how the welding argon gas comes up the torch handle into the head. When you screw your collet body and the collet into the torch, it seats about halfway into the head of the torch.
The hole in the torch body lines up with the end of the collet, which is really important, because once you screw the collet body into the torch, and it seats in the torch body, the argon welding gas can come up between the collet and collet body and come out of the holes in the collet body.
Once your welding torch cup is in place, the gas flows out between the collet body and the cup. Then the welding gas flows out onto your work.
Kevin then shows three different collets. The first one is shiny and new. The second one has been used a little, and the third one is … junk.
The first collet has a uniform slit in it. The second one bulges at the top and is pinched at the bottom. The third collet is even more deformed, with a large bulge at the top. Someone (Kevin) tightened the collet too much when it was hot. Then he didn’t get consistent gas flow, which caused the problems with his welds.
So if you’re TIG welding, regardless of what machine you using, and all of a sudden your welds are getting worse and worse, that’s something to look at.
Kevin is going to go through his collet collection and throw out any that are deformed, but you might want to stick around for one more moment to hear his riddle ….