Welding. That single word can be a scary thought for those not skilled in this essential manufacturing tool, but with the correct approach and using the correct fabrication talent it’s as easy as 1-2-3.

The most common question we’re asked are along the lines of, ‘what sort of welding do I need’, and ‘I’m welding material X or material Y, what should I do?’.

The easiest answer is simple; listen to your fabrication provider. A team with dedicated welding bays and experience providing fabricated solutions are guaranteed to provide a quality service.

Despite this, it’s always important to know exactly what the approach is, especially as the material being welded has such an impact on the results.

If you’re struggling for expertise on welding and need some tips to make sure your welded steel is of the highest quality, then keep on reading.

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Clean The Steel Before Fabrication

One of the most common issues faced when welding is porosity.

When materials such as dirt, dust, paint, grime, oil, or any other number of particles you’ll find in a manufacturing environment, they create a porous environment on the surface. As this is welded, it creates tiny holes like in a sponge, making the weld much weaker.

Instead, to prevent this from happening, and to ensure a strong weld and the highest quality results it’s important to clean the surfaces before welding.

This method also makes for a far more efficient welding process. With a porous weld on steel, additional steps are required to bring it up to the desired standard.

You’ll need to grind down the weld and touch it up to make sure it is no longer porous. These steps take time and money, time and money you can save by cleaning the material in the first place.

Choose The Right Welding For Your Steel Type

MIG and TIG welding are the two heavyweights of the manufacturing sector that are pitted against one another all too frequently.

Despite their ‘rivalry’, they are in fact not competing for the same merits and are suited for different purposes. We’ve discussed the different types of fabrication methods previously, but when it comes to steel, what do you need to consider?

MIG Welding For Thick Steel

Typically, MIG welding is used on thick steel, upwards of 3mm.

This is because the welding wire acts not only as the electrode but as the filler, too. Because of this, it means that larger material and even different types of material can be fused together, without having to heat them up entirely.

Because thick steel parts are typically components that aren’t on show for the final product, it means there is less pressure for an aesthetically pleasing weld. While skilled welders can produce high-quality finishes with a MIG torch, compared like-for-like, TIG is much more attractive.

TIG Welding For Thin Steel

This means that TIG is better for use on thinner steel and those that are going to be on display at all times. If you consider things like bike frames or chairs, the joins are done via TIG welding.

The arc of a TIG weld is much more concentrated than a MIG weld, which means heat distortion won’t happen, especially when working with thinner material.

The result is a weld that takes much longer to cool but is far more pleasing on the eye.

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Use Steel Welding Experts

It’s not always as simple as picking up a welding torch and getting to work. There’s so much more to consider that can have an effect on the overall outcome of the finished product.

Steel is one of the most common materials to be used, so having these top tips to hand means that you’ll know exactly what to expect from your steel fabrication and welding experts.

Not only is cleaning the material critical but so is knowing which welding technique you need to use.

On top of this, the most important thing to think of is whether or not you or your preferred fabrication company are experts.

Choosing a business that knows its way around a welding arc, as well as understanding all the elements, from design to tooling is the difference between steel welding and fabrication success and disaster.

Interested in finding out more, speak to our expert team of steel welders today.