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Flux-Cored Welding Wire: Your Passport to Convenient, Self-Shielded Welding


Flux-core welding wire is a versatile and convenient choice for many types of welding projects. It is favored by both professionals and amateurs. It is especially popular for outdoor welding because it doesn’t require shielding gas, which can be a problem in windy conditions. It is also a good choice when welding with a gas cylinder just isn’t possible. This guide contains everything you will need to know to use flux-cored wire for clean, strong welds. Whether you are a total newbie or a seasoned pro, you will find plenty of helpful information here to assist you in achieving the best welds of your life.

What is Flux-Cored Welding Wire?

A flux-cored welding wire is a type of tubular metal electrode that contains a core of flux material. The electric arc formed between the workpiece and the wire (or between two wires, in some cases) melts both the wire and the flux core, producing the molten metal that forms the weld pool. At the same time, the flux decomposes to produce a “cover gas” (or, in the case of gasless wires, a combination of vapor and alloying elements) that performs essentially the same function as the inert gasses used in GTAW and GMAW.

Benefits of Flux-Cored Welding Wire

Portability is one great advantage of flux-cored welding. Because it does not require a portly gas cylinder, this type is better than most others when it comes to taking the welding action out of the shop and to the very place where the worksite demands it. Think of construction workers and their ability to be mobile while still maintaining the high-quality welds their job site requires. These workers need a process that is easily transportable yet still reliable. Flux-cored welding answers that call in a big way because it comes in a small package but delivers a punch that can be felt in field-applied welds. It is seen as an arc action that many can ease into and soon master, regardless of whether or not that welder has been around for ages.

Types of Flux-Cored Welding Wire

  • Two main types of flux-cored welding wire exist. The first is gas-shielded, which requires an external group:I6—shielding gas and is typically used as a carbon dioxide or argon-carbon dioxide mixture. It stabilizes arcs very well, which allows it to achieve low hydrogen weld metals and good appearances at high speeds. Also, it creates minimal spatter. Like the SAW process, this gas-shielded type of FCAW is good for high deposition rates and for when welds need to provide reliable service in a corrosive environment.
  • The second type (U.S. Department of Defense 1992) is classified as self-shielded, and it comes in two kinds:I9 efficiency. They produce more hydrogen in the weld, so they’re not recommended for base pressures below 16 psi, but they are good for use in outdoor conditions and in situations where you don’t have access to a closed space and can’t use gas cylinders.

Choosing the Right Flux-Cored Welding Wire

  • Choosing the right flux-cored welding wire involves considering a few important factors:
  • The first thing to look at is the base material. What kind of metal are you welding? You want to use a wire that is made to go with the specific metal you are using. The composition of the wire should correspond to that of the base metal. This will give you the best weld properties.
  • Next, you want to think about the thickness of the material you are welding. Thin wires are going to have to try hard to penetrate well. A wire that’s too thick will have a hard time making a good starting arc, and it may affect the integrity of the weld.
  • Different position requirements are another important consideration. Whether you are in a shop environment or making a field repair, or are making a root pass or the final cap weld, the wire you choose must flow well and give you the least amount of spatter.

Tips for Using Flux-Cored Welding Wire

  • Storing Flux-Cored Wire: Keep flux-cored wire in a place with low humidity. Moisture can be very bad for this product.
  • Maintaining Base Metal Cleanliness: Always work with a base metal (the two parts you are welding together) that is clean and free from any sort of contamination. Contamination is a very serious matter in welding.
  • Working with the Right Parameters: Adjust the control knobs on your welding machine to the recommended settings for the flux-cored wire you are using, and the thickness of the base metals.
  • Maintaining a Proper Technique for Flux-Cored Welding: Use a motion with your welding gun called the drag technique. You don’t push the gun away from you. Instead, you pull the gun back in the direction you are traveling.


Welding with flux-cored wire is hard to beat for those who demand a welding process that is simple, efficient, and reliable. Understanding the makeup of the wires themselves, the advantages of each type, and the proper application will ensure that your welding process yields a strong, dependable, and cosmetically appealing result. Whether you are welding at a professional level or you are an at home, do-it-yourselfer, the best part of flux-cored wire is that you can make it work for you.

Find more information about welding wire and welding techniques at  UDO website –

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