In our last article, Welding Techniques – Part 1 of 2, we discussed two types of welding: Stick and MIG. These are two of the four most popular welding techniques used today. As promised, here in Welding Techniques – Part 2 of 2 we will talk about the other two techniques: TIG and Flux Core Arc welding.
TIG welding, also known as Gas Tungsten Arc Welding is a form of arc welding that uses a non-consumable tungsten electrode in conjunction with an inert shielding gas. The gas (helium or argon) is used to protect the weld from airborne contaminants. TIG welding was developed in the aircraft industry and patented in 1941. TIG welding is used to weld thin non ferrous metals such as stainless steel, magnesium, and copper. While slower than some of the other types of welding TIG welding produces a stronger weld and gives the user more precise control of their work. Tig welding, being a more precise type of welding, requires practice and patience before it can be mastered.
Flux Core Arc Welding
Flux Core Arc Welding- otherwise known as FCAW or FCA is a semi-automatic or automatic welding technique. Flux core arc welding was developed in the 1950s as an alternative to shielded metal arc welding. FCAW uses a tubular flux filled wire instead of a shielded gas. Added to the flux are chemicals that when heated produce a gas to protect the weld. This type of welding is very similar to MIG welding as it uses a continuous wire feed during welding. The main difference between the two types of welding is that MIG welding uses a shielded gas, and FCAW does not need a shielded gas to protect the weld from contaminants in the air. Flux Core Arc Welding is versatile and fast and can produce up to 5 times more welds per hour than MIG welding. This type of welding was patented in 1959, and to this day is very popular for non-critical welds.
Dolfab’s welders are well versed in the techniques necessary for custom metal fabrication in all manner of applications: t-top construction, fuel tank construction, fuel tank repair, RV repair, yacht refits, and even delicate staircase railings.
Here at Dolfab we pride ourselves on our workmanship and skill. We take on jobs that other companies may turn away. We can do this because we provide a broad range of welding services. From a polished stainless steel handrail to replacing an aluminum hull side in a yacht we know we have the in house expertise. Not all projects will need the same treatment and different techniques can be needed. There are at least four welding techniques that are most common- in this article, we’ll cover two of these.
Stick Welding, aka Shielded Metal Arc Welding, may be responsible to making welding into an art. Widely used to this day, stick welding gained popularity in the 1920’s because of its versatility and ease of use in welding steel. Stick welding uses a consumable welding rod made out of metal with a flux coating. The rod arcs against the part or metal that is being welded. The rod melts and forms a pool of metal which then forms a joint when cooled. Stick welders, being small and mobile, were used everywhere from your local auto repair center to building structures for the construction industry. Chances are you may know someone who has a stick welder in their home garage. As technology got better stick welding took a back seat to the next welding technique…
MIG or Metal Inert Gas welding was introduced in the 1940’s. Mig welding uses high voltage to melt and fuse metals together. Instead of the welding rod used in stick welding, MIG welding uses a welding gun that uses an electrode wire and a shielded gas. When the trigger is pulled the gas and wire pass through the gun. The gas is used to keep the process from being contaminated. While mig welding was designed for welding nonferrous metals such as aluminum, the process adapted to welding steel fairly quickly because of its speed and ease of use.
Welding is a common process which is used in a number of different industries such as chemicals, refining, engineering, metals, and mining. Earlier, conventional methods were used to join or fuse together two metals, however, now we have access to the latest technological advancements including tools and techniques that science has created to make our jobs easier.
A peculiar new technology has come forth which uses the energy of controlled explosions to weld plates together. Explosion Welding Process or Detaclad, is a unique and robust technology that is in great demand these days and has been adopted by a number of different industries due to the advantages that it offers.
Detaclad technology is widely in practice all over the world and is implemented to fuse together two dissimilar metals. Explosion welding process is a step by step procedure that involves six phases such as: –
Plain Material Inspection
Grind Mating Surfaces
Assemble Backer, Cladder & Explosive
Flatten & Cut
Testing ad Inspection
All these steps need to be followed in a sequence, in order to get the desired results. Significant precision is involved in all the stages to avoid errors. Even a small mistake can be significantly costly as all of the raw material will then have to be disposed off. With the help of explosion cladding, one can join unlimited range of compatible ad Non-compatible metals. The Cladding process creates ductile, high strength weld over the entire metal surface. Using Explosive Clad, there are many benefits over roll band and weld overlay. There are many different metals such as Titanium steel, aluminum steel, and aluminum copper which have been created by using explosion cladding technology rather than the conventional welding process.
In nutshell, we can say that Detaclad is a globally tested and proven technology. Products designed with explosive welding procedure have better design options, corrosion resistance and improved service life. Here at Dolfab we are very proud to say that we use this innovative and awesome technology. Check out the Dolfab project gallery to see the work we did on Life of Riley, a 113′ Burger yacht that underwent this process.
When hiring a welder for your vessel, make sure you are dealing with the US Coast Guard… the USCG has specific requirements that have to be met in order to be USCG Certified.
There are a series of tests that include different types of welding and may consist of welding different thickness metals, penetration of the welds and most likely a bend test. If your vessel is being repaired the you may need a “CFR”: Condition-Found Report. This is a report submitted to the Contracting Officer’s Technical Representative, either in written or electronic format, describing the condition(s) found while performing a task specified in the work item, such as an inspection.
After the “CFR” we have “CIR”: Critical Inspection Report. This report is submitted to the COTR within the first 25 percent of the availability contract period, either in written or electronic format, describing the condition(s) found while performing a task specified in the work item, such as an inspection.
When the time comes to make a boat or yacht repair, one may shop price but it’s important to remember you get what you pay for. Quality is everything when it comes to the safety of your crew and family. Dolfab is proud to be a USCG certified welding and fabrication facility. We employ only the finest welder and fabricators in the industry and maintain an experienced team of USCG & ABS certified welders on staff. Their experience with Stainless Steel, Carbon Steel, Aluminum and Cupra-Nickel is unparalleled in the industry. We have the expertise, equipment and facilities to perform all types of welding either on your vessel or in our welding shop.
6800 NW 15th Way,
Fort Lauderdale FL 33309 Telephone: 954-941-5093