The common person’s impression of how metal can be welded is that you simply fire-up a blow torch and run this along the edge of a metal seam to weld it together. Or they probably think you can just run that same torch throughout any kind of metal and cut by means of it, like in the safe-cracker movies. But the reality is that professional welding actually involves some fairly extensive knowledge, and is somewhat of an talent that takes many years of experience to master. Even so, if you are wanting to learn, you can start with a few simple techniques. Once you have mastered the basics and have a first timers idea, you can then move on to the more difficult skills that take longer to master.
Before you ever start any project, always think about safety safety measures first. Equipment and supplies could be replaced; you cannot be replaced. You may think that getting burned is the worst factor that can happen in a welding incident. However , damage to your eyes can occur from the intense light that comes from the process. Some metal welding techniques utilize high voltage electricity to create a weld, which usually always raises the possibility of electrocution or even death if the you are careless. As you start any welding project, make sure to wear a proper helmet to protect your eyes, head and hair. Also keep in mind protective gloves and clothing. Finally, be sure to read and follow almost all safety precautions written by the manufacturer of the particular metal welding equipment you are using.
Oxy-Acetylene Welding (also referred to as Oxyfuel Welding)
This is the type of welding that the average person is most familiar with, and which is often casually described as a “blow torch”. However , although oxy-acetylene welding is the most commonly-known type, it is actually the least used technique amongst professionals. On the upside, it is much easier and less expensive than other types associated with welding. However , oxy-acetylene is less common nowadays because it is less accurate, doesn’t produce a weld bead as cleanly as other methods and can result in weaker weld joints because of the slower cooling time it involves compared to other welding techniques. Even so, in case you are interested in learning how to weld metal, you might want to practice oxy-acetylene welding in addition to other types of welding. It will be a handy skill to have because it’s the greatest type to use on certain typical welding projects, such as pipes or tubes, and when you have to use welded equipment to do repairing, bending and cutting.
The most common technique used these days is “Arc Welding”. If you’re learning how to weld metal, you will definitely need to practice arc welding. Rather than using a gas torch, arc welding involves using high voltage electricity transferring into the piece of metal. In Arc Welding, a spark (or “arc”) jumping across from one piece of steel to the other causes enough temperature to melt metal and form a weld. This process is more desired in most cases because it is more accurate and produces a cleaner, stronger weld. Within the category of “Arc Welding” there are actually several different methods to choose from, depending on the type of steel welding work you need to do.
Shielded Steel Arc Welding (SMAW) may be best when you have large welds or steel welding in unusual positions, in which a rough weld is acceptable. With this method, the electricity runs through an electrode rod (or “stick”) which usually actually melts, producing the welded joint. On the other hand, MIG Welding, furthermore know as Metal Inert Gasoline Welding, or Gas Metal Arch Welding (GMAW), may be better in case you are involved in a metal welding task that requires more speed. With this welding technique you don’t use rods that you have to keep replacing as they melt. Rather, you use equipment that sends the particular electricity through a metal tip it doesn’t melt, and a separate piece of constant wire is fed to the suggestion which melts and forms the particular weld. TIG (Tungsten Inert Gas) Welding is somewhat similar to MIG welding, but is better when working with thin materials where you need a high-quality weld and speed is not important. While you learn you will also hear of various other methods, such as Flux-Cored Arc Welding (FCAW), Submerged Arc Welding (SAW), Plasma Welding, etc . But don’t worry too much about remembering all the various techniques. Just focus on one strategy at a time and get to the point where you are comfy that you know how to weld with that technique before you learn something new.
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Other Welded Methods
Although you will primarily concern yourself with Arc Welding and Oxy-Acetylene Welding as you learn how to weld, you might hear about other types and wonder what they are, such as Resistance Welding, Energy Ray Welding and Solid-State Welding. Don’t let that overwhelm you right now. Many of those welding methods are primarily useful in large, specialized industrial applications , nor really affect you as you discover ways to weld.