Birdnesting mig wire

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Bamamav

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 29, 2012
Messages
6,182
Location
Berry, Alabama
Any of you guys ever have a problem with the wire birdnesting coming off the spool? Mine has done it twice recently. Lincoln Handy Mig, using genuine Lincoln flux core wire. Gets to a point it won't push the wire through, open the door and it has somehow wrapped itself so it is pulling against itself while the wire birdnests out. Roll is over half full, no way to put more tension on it as it has a spring that sets tension on the spool. Don't know if it's just a badly wound spool or what. I've always used Lincoln wire, never the HF or other cheap stuff, this is the first spool I've had to do this.
 
When you say bird nesting is it happening before the feed rollers or after. If it is happening between the feed rollers and the liner going out to the gun it is a problem with the tip or liner. If it is before the feed roller the spool is freewheeling and the spool is continuing to rotate after the trigger is let go. More tension is needed on the spool. If you have had the latter happen and rolled wire back on to the spool maybe it is bunched up and not coming of the spool properly
 
Bama, I only know of the problems of the birdsnest happening after the feed rolls. Kenny's right, it's the liner or the gun tip or the connection between the liner and the tip, that's the problem. The wire is sticking in there somewhere.
My MIG welder has become so frustrating that I just stick weld everything now.
 
It's before the feed rollers, right on the spool itself. The spool has a little spring that fits on top of the hole, and a quarter turn plastic piece locks the spring between it and the spool, supplying the tension that is supposed to keep it from birdnesting. I just wonder if it was maybe a badly wound spool of wire? Never had a problem with the two or three spools I have ran through it before, just this one has did this twice now.
 
Out of the dozens and dozens of spools I've run through my welder I've had maybe two that exhibited that problem. So it's possible that the spool is the problem. On my Lincoln there is a drive lug that fits into a hole in the spool. It's possible to mount the spool without getting the lug into the hole. See if your welder is the same.
 
Start at the tip and trace it back. Does the wire run smooth through the tip? Also when the tip is hot? Maybe replace it ( for now) with a tip one size bigger. Make sure the liner is clean and free of dust ( rusty wire??) Entrace welder to liner without damage? Roll tension tight enough? Spool tesion tight enough?
If using a metal wire spool, check if the wire can be picked up by sharp parts on the inside.
 
Out of the dozens and dozens of spools I've run through my welder I've had maybe two that exhibited that problem. So it's possible that the spool is the problem. On my Lincoln there is a drive lug that fits into a hole in the spool. It's possible to mount the spool without getting the lug into the hole. See if your welder is the same.

I think you are right Bob. No drive lug on my spool I don’t think, pretty sure it just unwinds as the rollers pull the wire through. The spring in the hold down keeps enough tension on the spool that it doesn’t just spin freely.

This spool of wire is probably about half gone, I’ve used it a while. Never had this problem until now, so I’m thinking it got wound wrong somehow, and when the wire got slack it jumped into a bird nest. First time, I noticed the wire feeding slowly, sort of jump, stop, jump. Then it just quit feeding, I opened the side door and there it was. Next time it just quit feeding, opened the door and the wire was pulling under itself instead of off the top of the spool, and it had sprung out in a partial nest. So far after I cut off about 20 foot, it seems to be wound right on the spool. I guess even the brand name stuff screws up sometimes.
 
I feel like a dummy.:eek: I thought I had about a half a spool of wire, turned out it was nearly empty, just loosely wound on that last little bit.:rolleyes: Was doing some welding Friday and it just quit feeding again, opened the door and it was at the end of the roll.:rolleyes:

Didn't have any more wire, so I drug out the stick welder to finish up. Need to get a bottle anyway so I can start using gas instead of flux.
 

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