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What Color Tungsten for Stainless Steel?

What Color Tungsten for Stainless Steel?

When it comes to welding stainless steel, choosing the right type of tungsten can make all the difference in the quality of your work. But with an array of colors available, it can be hard to know which tungsten electrode will best suit your needs. Let’s take a look at why color matters and which one is best for welding stainless steel.

Why Color Matters

The color of a tungsten electrode is indicative of its chemical composition and characteristics. For example, red tungsten electrodes are made from pure thorium oxide and have a low current capacity—making them best suited for AC welding operations. On the other hand, green tungsten electrodes contain created oxides and provide higher current capacity—ideal for DC welding operations.

Which Tungsten is best for Stainless Steel?

When it comes to stainless steel specifically, the most suitable tungsten color is grey or silver. Grey or silver tungstens are made from a mix of lanthanide oxides, giving them superior arc stability, long life, and greater strength than other colors, such as red or gold. While they may be slightly more expensive than other colors, their superior quality makes them well worth the investment if you’re planning on welding stainless steel regularly.


There are many different colors when it comes to choosing a tungsten electrode, but when it comes to stainless steel specifically, grey or silver is often considered the best option due to its superior arc stability and longevity compared to other colors like red or gold. If you plan on doing regular stainless steel welding jobs in your shop, investing in grey or silver tungsten will be well worth the cost due to its superior performance over time.

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