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Basic Information on Welding Types and Techniques

Welding Sparks

The term welding refers to a fabrication or sculptural process that will join materials usually thermoplastics or metals by creating fusion. The fusion is caused by lower temperature metal joining techniques. Techniques such as soldering or brazing work to fuse the materials without melting the base metal. Below are two examples of welding known as MIG welding and tig welding, explaining these techniques in simple terms.

Mig Welding

This type of welding is known as metal inert gas. Mig welding was first used to weld aluminum, a non-ferrous metal. Eventually, MIG welding would come to include steel material as well. When compared to other welding types, mig is a quick option. One advantage to this welding type is the speed in which the materials can be fused when welding. Mig can be used to weld several metals including different metal thickness.

With MIG welding, automated options can be used so there is no human element involved. A robotic MIG welder is often used with this welding type in a factory such as an automobile manufacturer. A mig automated option can work on an assembly line, using a wire feed system so that a large amount of filler rod or wire can be utilized.

When MIG welding, you will need the proper materials and safety gear, all of which you can access at the nearest welding supply. Welding equipment suppliers will offer everything you need to get started with this technique. With MIG welding, you will be using a wire feed technique where a wire electrode will be feed from the welding handgun to the weld. The electrode can be found in several coil sizes based on the job at hand. As far as safety gear is concerned, you will need a strong mask for eye and skin protection plus a heavy leather jacket to protect your body. The jacket will need to stay closed for protection. Heavy cotton pants and close-toed shoes should also be worn. Only weld in a properly ventilated area.

Tig Welding

Tungsten inert gas welding or TIG welding gas technique is a form of gas tungsten arc welding. Like gas welding, this type uses the tungsten electrode to create an arc plus heat for the weld. The advantage to this welding type is that you can use this method with most types of metals and alloys. A clean weld will be produced and you won’t have to worry about messy welds or spatter during welding. Grinding will not be needed for cleanup later on.

With tig welding, you are able to create a clean and neat weld. Before you begin with this method, you will need to take proper safety precautions. A quality welding mask will need to be purchased, specific to this welding type. When welding with this method, the light that is produced from the arc will burn your eyes and skin. You want to wear leather gloves and use a leather welding jacket to protect the body. Wear heavy closed toed shoes as well as heavy cotton shirts and pants.

Once you are ready to weld, you will need to be sure that you have the right electrode. When working with different metals, you will need different tungsten electrodes. The electrode will need to be ground down to a nice point and then as you weld, the point will become rounded. The pointed tip helps you to complete a better weld.


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