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Hints and Tips on Buying Welders for Manufacturing

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Hints and Tips on Buying Welders for Manufacturing
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Hints and Tips on Buying Welders for Manufacturing

Welding is the joining of two metal or thermoplastic parts through melting and fusing to form a strong bond. Because the bond formed is as strong as or stronger than the sum of the two parts, some welded parts can and do last longer than some marriages. Homebuilders, hot rod enthusiasts, and garage mechanics are not the only ones who use welders.. The manufacturing industries rely heavily on welders to perform key processes such as metal fabrication, assembling metal structures, and plating industrial boilers and heat exchangers, or to build ships, manufacture cars, or beams for bridges and pipes for refineries as well as for repairing their equipment.

With so many welder types and constructions in brick and mortar and online stores, a befuddled shopper might find it hard to settle on the right one for his or her needs. With a helpful guide to clarify the confusing aspects of welder shopping and to offer useful tips for selecting and buying the ideal one on eBay,, where some sellers offer free and fast shipping, the buyer is ready to go.

Welding Laid Bare

Welding is the easiest and most popular method of joining two metal or plastic parts together, whether at home, in the garage, at the factory, or even in space or underwater. The most common types of metal welded are aluminium, steel, and brass, although modern welding methods have incorporated thermoplastics. The process melts the two parts into a weld pool, and then adds molten filler. After that, pressure, heat, or simple cooling forms a tough joint. The difference between soldering and welding is that while soldering uses a metal with a low melting point, welding melts all the materials using extremely high heat.

Research

A little research always goes a long way, and the Internet is a great tool for this. Shoppers should ask knowledgeable people for advice on welders in welding forums and sites as well as visit manufacturer website for more information on their welders of interest. Research not only increases a consumer's knowledge about the welder but also allows them to know what they want so they do not settle for less when shopping.

Types of Welders

There are five different types of welders, the Arc, Metal Inert Gas (MIG), Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG), Flux, and Spot Welders. While all are good for outdoor work and can work well in windy conditions, each welding style is distinctive when it comes to the welding process, the type of material it works with, the thickness of the material, and the scale of the task.

Arc Welders

Arc welders use either Alternating Current (AC) or Direct Current (DC) to create an electric arc between an electrode and a foundation material that melts the two parts for joining. They usually use shielding gas to protect the weld pool and are popular and widely used across many industries but especially so in the car manufacture, metal fabrication, agriculture industry and for maintenance and repair of pipelines. Arc welders typically work quickly and well with aluminium metals, but the welding process is not neat so and results in a lot of metal spatter. They do not require as much skill as the TIG welders.

MIG Welders

Metal Inert Gas welders use an automatic wire feed process for welding. They are straightforward for beginners and intermediate operators to work with because of their lower welding times, simpler techniques, and easier control options when compared to the other types; however, they do require an external shielding gas to protect the weld. They are highly productive, thus ideal for industrial fabrication processes or car restoration. MIG welders weld steel, cast iron, copper, brass, and stainless steel, and produce cleaner welds with less slag, that sooty coating from some welders. Another common name for this type of welding process is Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW).

TIG Welders

Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) welders use a tungsten electrode and high-frequency generator in their welding process. They are relatively refined and complicated with a very precise process that only skilled operators can follow. Though they cost a pretty penny, the result is strong, aesthetic, quality welding, good enough for aircrafts and submarines. They mostly weld aluminium, which cannot be welded with regular wire feed welders, as well as steel, copper, titanium, brass, and magnesium, at low speeds and with little slag and metal spatter. Another name for this process is Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW).

Flux Welders

Flux welders use a hollow electrode full of flux material in their semi-automatic wire feed process that requires a constant power supply. Flux welders are good with or without shielding gas and do not produce much slag. They are ideal for steel and stainless steel welding on construction sites and automotive manufacture because of their high speed and therefore increased productivity. While they do not require as much skill as the TIG welders and work well with dirty or rusty material, their equipment is rather costly and produces a lot more smoke than any other type of welder.

Spot Welders

Spot welders pass a current between the two parts that need joining and the metals' resistance fuses the joint. They are ideal for light industrial applications, such as welding car body panels using steel or stainless steel, because they pass a lot of electric current in very little time. Unfortunately, this causes many molten sparks to fly all over. Many spot welding processes in the manufacturing industry use robots to operate the welders, calling this robot welding. Another name for spot welding is Resistance Spot Welding (RSW). The following table shows the five most common types of welders along with their features and uses.

Type of Welder

Distinctive Features

Uses

Arc Welder

Uses an electric arc with either AC or DC power

Time saving, easy

Requires shielding gas

Metal spatter common

Car manufacture

Metal fabrication

Pipeline maintenance and repair

Works mostly with aluminium metals

MIG Welder

Automatic wire feed process

High welding speeds, easy

Requires external shielding gas

Clean, little slag

Industrial fabrication

Car restoration

Steel, cast iron, copper, brass

TIG Welder

Uses high-frequency generator

Low welding speeds, difficult

Requires shielding gas

Little slag, metal spatter

Industrial, aviation, and naval applications

All types of metal from steel, copper, titanium, brass to magnesium

Flux Welder

Uses hollow electrode full of flux

High welding speeds, easy

With or without shielding gas

Little slag but a lot of smoke

Construction and Automotive industry

Steel and stainless steel

Spot Welder

Uses resistance to fuse parts together

Mostly done by robots in assembly lines, easy

Sometimes sprays molten sparks

Car manufacture

Light industrial applications

Steel and stainless steel

As the above table shows, the use of different types of welders gives varying benefits to the operator. Shoppers should select a welder that can meet the needs of the task they have in mind, as well as one that is versatile enough to use for other welding jobs.

Factors to Consider when Shopping for Welders for Manufacturing

To shop wisely for welders and get great deals, consumers need to consider a number of factors, including the welder's duty cycle, compatibility with their existing equipment, the type of power source, and the thickness of the metal parts they want to join. They should also factor in the condition of the welder, as it affects the price and their budget.

Metal Thickness

The thickness of the type of metal parts that require welding is important, as different types of welders vary by degrees with regard to the metal thicknesses that are most optimal for them. Welders with a high power output are the only ones that can work with deep metals. For example, the flux welder is perfect for thick metals, while MIG and TIG welders are right for thin sheets of metal, no more than 12 mm thick, or they heat up the parts and make them too hot. Miscalculating and using a thick metal in place of a thin one on the welder can result in damage.

Duty Cycle

Duty cycle is the number of minutes or percentage of a 10-minute period that a welder can operate at maximum output. For example, if the duty cycle is 20 per cent, then the welder can run at maximum output for two minutes and then cool with the fan for the remaining eight in the 10-minute cycle. Ergo, an 80-per cent cycle means running for eight minutes and cooling for two in every ten minutes. Duty cycles help users eliminate heat damage to the welder; thus, thicker metals and larger tasks require welders with a higher duty cycle.

Power

In the manufacturing industry, power is a key factor and performance depends on the type of power source. While electric sources are mostly for indoor use, gas offers a readily available option for the outdoors with portable welders. The amount of power the welder requires is another consideration and is dependent on the size of the job at hand and how often the owner plans to use it. While consumers think of the overall costs and overheads, they should also consider energy efficiency since the welder does not always use up all that energy. Most welders have an efficiency rating of 70 per cent, although use of an inverter increases energy efficiency to 80 per cent, thereby reducing electric costs.

Condition

A consumer's requirements and budget usually determine the condition of the welder they purchase. New or premium-quality welders always cost more than the used ones in good working condition. Many of the welders for sale are in new, used, manufacturer refurbished,, or seller refurbished conditions. A used welder in excellent working condition is easy on the pocketbook, at a fraction of what a new one would cost. Refurbished welders are not too bad either, because the seller or manufacturer replaced all their faulty parts so they are almost as good as new.

Compatibility

A handy tip for shoppers is to check that the welders they are considering are compatible with their existing equipment, hardware, and power supply, which will save them from frustration, damage to the machines, and costly replacement. Some industrial welders work with specific types of metals and not with others: for example, the MIG welder can cause damage if used on aluminium, which is better welded with a TIG one. The material must be weldable in the first place, and this includes thermoplastics, which are relatively new on the market.

Tips for Buying Welders for Manufacturing on eBay

A handy tip for shopping on eBay is to search with a simple keyword, such as 'welders&', using the search bar that is conveniently placed on every page, even the home page. The results are in the thousands to accommodate every consumer's requirements. Do not fret, though: you can filter through to a more manageable number using price, condition, location, and even distance to the nearest few kilometres.

Go through the descriptions and photos of the listings, checking for condition, compatibility, and the right specifications. Choosing items from top-rated sellers could pleasantly surprise you. Credible eBay sellers take time to answer your questions about their listings, so ask away. With local sellers, you can ask for a quick demonstration of the welder when picking it up yourself. Once it arrives, do let the seller know and leave them feedback. Check to ensure that you have the proper safety equipment, then get some sparks flying.

Hints for Safe Welding

Safety is paramount when welding. Lack of proper personal protective equipment and failure to adhere to all safety measures is hazardous to both the operator and others, as it may cause burns, fires, eye injury, toxic gas poisoning, explosions, electric shock, and, in some cases, death.

When buying welders, consumers should consider also shopping for appropriate welding masks, gloves, sleeves, blankets, and auto darkening helmets as well, if they do not already own these. The extreme temperatures in the welding environment, the molten metal, and the UV light the welding produces brook no substitutes for safety. It is also important that operators position the welder in a well-ventilated location away from combustible materials.

Conclusion

Welders are the backbone of the manufacturing industry, as many stages of the manufacturing process need welding, such as in metal fabrication or in boiler-plating massive structures, usually done by robots for safety. There are many reasons consumers look for welders. They might want to save money on replacing broken equipment by investing in a new welder, or they may wish to upgrade their old welder to an improved one with more features.

Whether they opt to buy online or in brick and mortar stores, time spent on research is time well spent because it rewards the buyer with familiarity and confidence when shopping for their welder. For instance, when given a choice between a MIG and a TIG welder, they know what works best for their needs. When they also consider the factors outlined above while purchasing, like the duty cycle, condition, and compatibility features of welders, then they are sure to get good value for their money.

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