Welding is the process of joining two or more pieces of material together with the help of heat and pressure combined. Typically used with metals, welding plays a big part in several different industries including metal fabrication, transportation and automotive.
Before the 19th century, there was one main type of weld process – forge welding. After this, arc welding and oxy-fuel welding were introduced. Since then there have been many new types of weld processes introduced and now there are almost 35 advanced welding techniques known worldwide! Here are the most important welding processes and what they are typically used for.
Plastic welding, also known as liquid-solid welding or pressure welding, is used in forge and resistance. Plastic welding is used to combine small parts or pieces of metal. Before combining anything, this technique involves strongly heating the components to create a plastic form. Once the components are heated, they are joined by applying lots of pressure.
Cold welding is commonly known as solid-state welding and it includes no form of heat but lots of external pressure for the diffusion process. The components are joined without atmospheric contamination and is used in friction, ultrasonic and explosive welding.
Types of Gas Welding
- Air Acetylene – this process involves combining a mixture of acetylene and air to create heat. Typically, this process is used with sheets of copper having small thickness or leads having small area of cross sections.
- Oxy-Hydrogen Welding – this type of weld is created by using oxygen and hydrogen for fusing and cutting. The flame produced with this combination is typically a pale blue colour and is roughly 2000 degrees Celsius. This weld process is used for melting expensive metals, polishing acrylic glass surfaces or in general metal manufacturing industries.
- Oxy-Acetylene Welding – discovered in 1903, this process is one of the most important processes of weld and is commonly known as oxy-acetylene or oxy-fuel welding. What’s unique about this technique is that it uses fuel gases such as methane, oxygen and hydrogen to fuse and cut the metal.
Most commonly used in production sites for combing metal sheets, this weld is made by passing a current through this junction to heat and melt the components. This weld can be affected by things such as the electrode size, current and interval of welding time. The benefit of using this weld process is that no filler materials are required.
Arc welding is done by connecting metals end to end with the help of electric supply which creates heat production for the weld itself. The two types of electrodes used in this process are consumable electrodes and non-consumable electrodes.
Typically arc welding is used in repairing large machines and in pipeline welding.
The main types of Arc Welding
- Gas Tungsten Arc Welding or TIG
- Gas Metal Arc Welding or MIG
- Flux Cored Arc Welding
- Submerged Arc Welding
- Plasma Arc Welding
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