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The Unlikely Hobby: Welding

Modern life is much more fast-paced when compared to how the Average Jane or Joe’s life used to be. With the introduction of technology and its exponential growth, we tend to use our gadgets much more than any other possession we have. In fact, one can even say that the smartphone has become one of the most popular prosthetics in the modern age, and it’s right to say so — almost everyone and their parents have smartphones.


Now, smartphone addiction is this generation’s epidemic. It’s so rampant that we, Millennials, have been portrayed as people who are always on their smartphones. And, well, one of the best ways to prevent smartphone addiction, and to also have a more productive lifestyle, is to get real hobbies.

There are a plethora of hobbies that you could adopt and a lot of these hobbies will serve the purpose of preventing smartphone addiction. But here’s a hobby that you probably have never thought of getting into — welding.

There’s a certain sense of achievement when you’re able to create things, and piecing bits of metal together into something that’s either artistic or functional — sometimes even both — is something that not many people can do. What’s even more is that welding is also a great way to earn money.

There are four types of welding and only one of them is beginner-friendly. TIG, MIG, and FCAW welding are best left to these welding experts because of the sheer complexity of the processes involved and the skill and experience that it takes to accomplish these projects properly.

This article is going to focus on Arc welding and the things you need if you decide to give this craft a try.

The Basics

Arc welding is more commonly referred to as “stick welding” and it is also the most basic form of welding. This type of welding makes use of a welding stick that channels an electric current between the metals that you intend to join. Because one of the characteristics of metal is conductivity, the electricity from the welding stick then bounces between both metal pieces, thus forming an arc (hence the name). And when there’s electricity, there’s also a great deal of heat.

The Gear

Here’s a list of things you need to get started with this hobby:

  • Auto-darkening welding helmet
  • Welding gloves
  • Soapstone
  • Welding table
  • Grinder (portable is better for beginners)
  • Wire brush
  • Chipping hammer
  • Metal files (medium to large)
  • AD/DC welding machine (of course!)

Safety Tips

Welding can be dangerous if you don’t have the right protective gear (PPE — Personal Protective Equipment). While a lot of them have been included in the beginner’s list of welding essentials above, it’s important to note that apart from your equipment, you need to make sure that you’re not wearing any type of polyester clothing (for obvious reasons). You also need to make sure that you have ample space for your projects and that the area is free from any flammables.

Now that that’s all out of the way, here are a few welding projects to help you master your newfound craft.

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