Electric Arc (Stick) Welding
Another common welding process is stick welding. Stick welding is a form of electric arc welding that uses high-voltage electricity through an electrode (the stick) that is arced to the part to be welded, which is grounded to the welding machine. The welding sticks are coated with flux, which burns during the welding process, creating a shield of inert gas around the weld. While this method of welding is commonly used for automotive repair, it does have some drawbacks. It's difficult to weld in tight spaces with a stick welder, and welding very thin material like body panels can be a real challenge. A nice feature of stick welders, however, is their simplicity and inexpensive price. If you want to weld and you're on a strict budget, a stick welder may be adequate for your needs.

MIG Welding
MIG welding is the common name for a welding process known as the Gas Metal Arc Welding process. The term MIG stands for Metal Inert Gas, which is a term leftover from the early days of arc welding. The MIG process actually incorporates the automatic feeding of a continuous, consumable wire electrode that is shielded by an externally supplied gas, usually argon or carbon dioxide. These machines are sometimes referred to as "wire feed" welders and are very versatile. Small MIG units work well on steel, are inexpensive, and easy to use producing high-quality welds on materials of various types and thicknesses. Welding with a MIG doesn't produce the slag or splatter common to stick welders, and with a little practice even an amateur welder can weld with a MIG. Small MIG units can easily handle most automotive welding, and most will run on the 110-volt alternating current electricity common to our houses and garages.

TIG Welding
The Gas Tungsten Arc Welding process is commonly referred to as TIG welding. TIG is actually an abbreviation for Tungsten Inert Gas, and this method of welding is especially useful if the material to be welded is made from aluminum, chrome-moly steel, or is very thin. The TIG process utilizes a nonconsumable tungsten electrode, which is connected to the welder by a cable. Unlike wire feed welding, any consumable welding rod must be manually fed into the welding puddle during the TIG process. Like MIG welding, the actual weld is shielded by an inert gas, typically argon, helium, or a mixture of the two. While TIG welding is useful in unique situations and does provide quality welds, the equipment is relatively expensive, and TIG welding is an art that must be practiced to be performed properly. For these reasons, TIG welders are seldom seen in the hobbyist's garage.