Machines and other Welding Equipment

Machines and other Welding Equipment
Details on welding machines and equipment.
SOURCE: Elia E. Levi and

Machines and other Welding Equipment

SOLUTIONS with Effective, Powerful Advice

Welding-machines, Welding equipment, robot-welding, orbital-welding equipment, electron beam-welders, laser-Welding-machines, Welding_arc power supply, Mig-Welding-machines, Tig-Welding-machines, welding links, welding tips, improving welding results, joining questions needing answers: these are some of the items developed in this Site for the benefit of interested readers.

What is in here for me?

The important questions one should ask on Welding-machines are if their productivity justifies the cost of financing, purchasing, maintaining, and operating them. Are there ways to improve Welding-machines or equipment or process, to increase productivity, to save time? Are there other Welding-machines, welding equipment, welding accessories, or details it would pay to research deeper to determine if they can bring in some gain? When equipment is barely competitive, which upgrade would improve operation? Could you save it on time? on consumables? on quality costs?

Welding-machines and Welding equipment are generally designed to perform one or more of the WELDING PROCESSES described elsewhere on this Site. Sometimes, by changing or assembling special accessories, one can implement other related functions like Brazing or Cutting which may be handy to the shop. For information on the processes just click on the underlined titles above.

What is important…

Special considerations to be taken into account when evaluating the purchase of Welding-machines or of some major piece of equipment should make reference to the work at hand (materials, shapes, and thicknesses) and to projected extensions thereof. Also to the fact if the work needs fixed or portable, manual or automatic equipment, and to the floor-space and supplies (electricity, water, gas, compressed air, etc.) needed.

There may be requirements of applicable Codes. One should estimate the production rate obtainable with new Welding-machines, the duty cycle applicable, if for one or more work shifts, the availability of trained workforce (or the need of training, testing, and certifying welders or operators), and amortizing and financing requirements.

But also…

Besides Welding-machines, also accessory equipment should be taken into account, like lifting devices, tables or positioners, turntables, special tools or fixtures, jacks, hold-downs, weld curtains, smoke removal aspirators, post-heating devices, stress-relieving furnaces, etc.

Tip!: If the work seems to be only temporary one should investigate the possibility of leasing Welding-machines, through the services of a financial institution that the equipment supplier might be connected to.
Or to outsource the operation (that is to subcontract it to another shop) if it makes economic sense until the situation clarifies one way or the other, or until the Welding-machines ordered are delivered and ready to be put to work.

Improvements are introduced from time to time in Welding-machines that may address particular problems, like arc striking in certain conditions. Discussing problems with knowledgeable manufacturer’s technicians may bring up available solutions to test and investigate.

Tip!: one of the questions being sometimes asked is how much automation should be included in the Welding-machines. The answer is complex, depending on the cost per part manufacturing with different means of production. But never take automation as a shortcut to make up for lack of skill or experience!
New equipment purchase should come up only after the present capacity or performance of the Welding-machines is already overextended. It could be as much or as little as needed to minimize the cost of production of the individual product. Suppliers can help but they should be asked to practically demonstrate the gains by showing actual results.

Any specific questions up to this point? Just send an e-mail: click here.

What to look at…

Once a first familiarization search of Welding-machines has been made, one should look at the options, at the delivery time, at the cost of spare parts, at the level of maintenance recommended by the manufacturer, if the supplier is going to perform the assembly and how much time will be needed, at the training costs included and at those excluded, (travel, hotel), at the guarantee, at the availability of prompt repair or replacement if needed.

Tip!: one recommendable practice to follow, especially with new operations, is to ask the prospective suppliers to plan on paper and then to perform actual welding operations on prototype elements to be supplied to them, on the actual Welding-machines, proposed: this practice provides the opportunity to practically evaluate the weak points, if any, of the proposed welding procedure, and to better understand what is involved.
If the new purchase is for “more of the same” and if existing and proven Welding-machines or equipment were satisfactory, there is a strong reason to prefer the same manufacturer for interchangeability of spares and for helping maintenance people who are already familiar with the problems of the items involved.

Any specific questions? Just send an e-mail: click here.

Some more details…

… on the different types of Welding-machines and equipment for special processes can be found in the dedicated pages elsewhere in this Site, by clicking on the underlined titles presented hereafter.

FRICTION-welding is performed in specialized Friction Welding equipment like friction-Welding-machines and friction-stir-Welding-machines, built around particular requirements on material, joint shape, and dimensions, and, as already explained somewhere else in the context, most adapted to mass production (see Friction Welding Processes).

Resistance Welding machines, both spot-Welding-machines, and seam-Welding-machines are described in some more detail with essential stress on capabilities and limitations, and with reference to materials, thicknesses, robot welding, and quality.

Gas Welding, the equipment has certainly its niche of application for fine industrial work, like the production of bicycle frames and other small appliances, but it is probably the most easily usable also for Hobby and Home applications, whether for repair or for new creations if limited to small thicknesses. Of the most important Welding-machines, Arc Welding Equipment encompasses a wide collection of quite different implementations, including but not only, MIG-Welding-machines and tig-Welding-machines. The essential characteristics of each type of equipment are briefly presented on the related page with due stress on advantages and limitations, and some indication on important applications.

It appears that amongst the most popular Arc Welding-machines, like tig-Welding-machines and MIG-Welding-machines, at least two manufacturers seem to stand out as well-known brands, devoting major budgets to promotion and support: those are Lincoln Welding-machines and Miller Welding-machines.

That is not to say that other less advertised brands of Welding-machines are less suitable or less capable of performing: one should always research the market.

Finally, High Energy Welding Equipment which covers electron-beam-welders and laser beam welding machines is explained in some more detail with reference to some special niches of repetitive work potentially interesting also to the small welding workshop.