The next time you plan to do a bit of welding, take a little time to think about the history and where it all began. In order to have an idea of where it all started, allow your mind to take you back in time to the Iron Age when people had discovered how to extract the metal from rocks. If you look at artifacts found in the regions around the Middle East from that time, you will see that the metalwork is very decorative and intricate. They created metal boxes which they decorated with other pieces of metal and all before welding had been discovered.
During the 19th century, Edmund Davy discovered acetylene and how to use it to weld metals together. The discovery of arc lighting made the process of welding easier than ever before. This made it easier to use welding to join pieces of metal together. Carbon welding was the next innovation and this was invented by Frenchman Auguste De Meritens. Welding became more popular during the early 20th century and further improvements in the accuracy of the arc were perfected during this time. In 1914 the first stick electrode was used and this allowed the process of welding to become more precise and for finer work to be done. The stick electrode also allowed for projection and seam welding to take place and this was a huge breakthrough. Further advancements were made and as the quality of the gas improved, so too did the quality of the welding.
Welding businesses expanded and became more prevalent around the time of the First World War. As a result, countries began competing with each other in all types of technology to try and get the edge on everyone else and welding was one of those technologies. The countries which were at war were all trying produce more powerful ships by using welding and other metallurgy technology because the country that ruled the oceans was able to control the supply routes. There was a bit of a welding revolution around this time and the Europeans used arc welding in ship building whereas in the United States of America, arc welding was used for repairing ships. The 2 different uses have allowed welding to be successfully developed for many different purposes. It is not only shipping that has benefited from welding, aircraft have also seen the use of welding technology. Early aircraft had many of their metal components put together by welding.
Most of us agree that professional welding really involves skill, experience and expertise. In essence, to become a welding expert, you need to have substantial knowledge and experience. Similarly, you need many years of exposure and skill to master the art of welding. However, it’s essential for anyone to learn the basics and build on that to learn more complex skills.
First, one has to take adequate safety precautions when carrying out welding. Otherwise, you are at high risk of harming yourself due to unforeseen circumstances. For example, damaging to the eyes is a high possibility due to intense light rays generated from the welding. Similarly, you might be at a risk of electrocuting yourself as high voltage electricity is used in certain cases of welding. Hence, before starting any welding job, its essential to wear a helmet with a shield or googles protecting your eyes, hair, head & face. Similarly, wearing protective thick gloves, long sleeved, clothing, thick boots and gas mask is necessary in welding
The method for welding is to heat two distinctly different metal objects at a certain point. This point is then used to fuse the metals to form one metal object. The fuse point is inherently strong due to the type of welding. There are two types of charges used to obtain two different results. The positive charge provides a robust charge perfect for melting thick objects and materials. While the negative charge provides a shallower heat which is ideal for thin objects. A special metal wire or rod is inserted as an electrode. This rod passes the current onto the metal which heats the solder point depending on the type of charge being used.
Arc welding is the most common welding method used by many. In arc welding, a high voltage electricity is used instead of a gas torch. I think it is pretty cool when you can automate the process with a robotic welding service. The welding process of arc welding involves a spark or an arc that melts the metal peaces to form a weld. This process is accurate and creates a cleaner and a stronger weld. There are many categories of arc welding. For example, there are seven different methods to be chosen from. For example:
Shielded metal arc welding: This is the most suitable method for large welds or metal welding that do not have normal angles and positions. This type of welding method, high voltage electricity is sent through an electrode creating an arc which metals can be melted to form a weld.
MIG welding (Metal Inert Gas welding): This is useful in welding projects that require speed. In this method, a welder or a welding machine is used that passes current through a metal tip, while a separate wire is fed continuously to the tip which forms the weld.
Tungsten inert gas welding(TIG): This is almost similar to MIG welding. However, it is mainly used to weld thin materials that require high-quality welds and where speed is not an issue.
Besides above, there are other techniques of arc welding namely Flux-Cored arc welding (FCAW), submerged arc welding (SAW), plasma welding, etc.
Aluminum is the most difficult metal to weld. First, aluminum oxide has to be cleaned from the aluminum metal surface. Also note that heat treatable aluminum alloys derive its strength through the process of aging. Aluminum alloys tend to decrease its tensile strength owing to over-aging. Aluminum alloys can be categorized into nine groups, such as:
1. Unalloyed (pure) >99% Al 2. Copper is the major alloying element in the Aluminum alloy. 3. Manganese is the major alloying element in the Aluminum alloy 4. Silicon is the major alloying element in the Aluminum alloy 5. Magnesium is the major alloying element in the Aluminum alloy 6. Magnesium & Silicon are major alloying elements. 7. Zinc is the major alloying element in Aluminum alloy 8. Other elements (including Tin, some Lithium compositions) 9. Reserved for future use
The undermentioned factors associated with aluminum alloys greatly affect the aluminum welding process:
Aluminum Oxide coating. Thermal Conductivity. Thermal Expansion Coefficient. Melting characteristics.
Other welding techniques:
Along with above welding methods, there are several other welding techniques used in industrial applications as well as for large scale and specific requirements.
In going through the above welding methods, you only have to remember few basic methods. To become an expert on particular welding method or methods, one has to have the basic knowledge as well as experience in welding. If anyone intends to become an expert on welding, he has to have patience, commitment, dedication and be prepared to learn from his mistakes.
The type of welding you will use depends on many factors. The important thing is for the weld to be amazingly strong. Factors to consider include the amount of heat needed to get the materials hot enough, the design of the material, and the design of the joint. It is important to test the strength of the weld. Not all metals hold a weld very well. Steel and sheet metal work best.
Welding can be a dangerous process. Metal stamping can also be closely related and many of the same local services provide this service (finelineproduction.com) . Therefore it is vital to exercise extreme caution. The machinery use to weld forms a dangerous circuit which can harm the welder. The live current passing through the machinery poses a dangerous threat to inexperienced handlers. Therefore items such as ground clamps are used to reduce the threat. The circuit is generally formed via the welding machine, welding gun and the metal.
Safety is a vital point during welding. It is important to know that the metal object will become an electrical circuit which can be harmful. To avoid this danger ground clamps are used. The circuit is created via the welding machine, welding gun and the material that is being welded.