Person with a welding mask bent over a metal shop work station holding a torch to a metal piece sparking significantly.

Electric Welding Steel


Start Date





Collins Collins Basement (G-1)

End Date


Meeting Day




 The extremely high heat of the electric arc makes it by far the most effective way to selectively melt steel for welding. In this class we will be ‘jumping into the ‘deep end’, so to speak, by beginning with TIG welding (Tungsten Inert Gas welding), a process that gives the welder the most complete control of the arc of any manual welding process. Make sure you are dressed in 100% cotton and wearing leather ankle-high boots for the first class meeting (no synthetic fabrics, they ignite easily!) so that we can start welding right away. Then we move on to MIG, (Metal Inert Gas welding) the so-called ‘hot glue gun for steel’ due to its simple ‘point and shoot’ technique. Finally, we will investigate Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW) better known as “stick welding”, a familiar arc welding process which can be used effectively outdoors. 

To successfully complete this class, the student must conceive of and execute at least one personal welding project, using the welding process of your choice. The goal may be to create a sculptural object, or perhaps a piece of steel furniture or a section of architectural metalwork, or even a purely practical object like a steel toolbox. Any type of proposal is acceptable as long as your concept has a strong aesthetic dimension. 

We urge you, if you are able, to be fully up-to-date on vaccinations, including boosters. Available vaccination sites can be found here.

This class has already begun.

Reid Drum is Studio Manager for sculpture at MassArt, where he earned his MFA. He also holds a BFA from University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.