There are over 40 types of welding but only four welding processes are commonly used world wide including:
- SMAW – Shielded Metal Arc Welding also called Arc and Stick welding
- GMAW – Gas Metal Arc Welding also called MIG welding
- FCAW – Flux Cored Arc Welding also called Flux Cored
- GTAW – Gas Tungsten Arc Welding also called TIG and Heliarc
The Four Common Types of Welding Processes
“List of Common Types of Welding Processes”
In this article we will explore all the common types of welding processes and also provide an overview of the less common types of welding.
4) GTAW (GAS Tungsten Arc Welding)
GTAW is also commonly referred to as TIG welding and sometimes Heliarc. It is commonly used to weld alloys, aluminum and plate as well as pipe. TIG/GTAW utilizes a non-consumable tungsten electrode, inert gas and a separate bare wire filler rod. The tungsten produces a very fine, thin and stable arc suitable for almost all types of base metals. As the weld pool is formed by the electrical arc the filler metal is added manually with the other hand.
TIG welding first came into use in the early 1940’s during WWII. It was then referred to as Heliarc welding because the inert shielding gas used then was Helium.
Advantages of (GTAW) TIG welding
- Excels at welding thinner metals
- Has a very small heat affected zone
- Offers precise control and produces very high quality welds in the hands of an experienced welder
- Produces very clean welds with no slag and no spatter
- Excellent for welding exotic and alloy metals
Disadvantages of (GTAW) TIG welding
- Low metal deposition rates
- Requires a highly skilled welder to produce satisfactory weld
- Costly to weld thicker metals
- Requires a shielding gas from an external gas bottle
The 14 Uncommon Types of Welding Processes
“List of Uncommon and Specialized Types of Welding Processes”
1) Explosion Welding (EXW)
Explosion Welding uses a chemical explosive to accelerate one piece of metal into another thus bonding them together. Basicly one piece of metal is thrown so hard against another that it bonds immediately. Explosion welding is often used for cladding metal.
2) Oxy-fuel Welding (OAW)
Oxy-fuel welding, also commonly referred to as torch welding utilizes oxygen gas and a fuel gas like acetylene to produce a flame capable of melting the base metal. When the weld pool is formed a bare wire welding rod/filler metal is manually added with the other hand. The torch that is used is the same type of torch used for cutting but has a specially designed welding tip to produce a fine, high temperature flame.
Other types of oxy-fuel welding include the following:
- Oxyacetylene welding
- Oxygen-Propane welding
- Oxy-hydrogen welding
- Pressure gas welding
3) Submerged Arc Welding (SAW)
Submerged Arc Welding is a wire fed welding process (similar to GMAW/MIG) that is capable of extremely high metal deposition rates. That actual arc is concealed from veiw under a bath of granulated, dry flux.
4) Atomic hydrogen welding
Atomic hydrogen welding utilizes an electrical arc and two tungsten electrodes and a shielding gas of hydrogen. This type of welding produces one of the hottest flames known to man at 6,191.6 degrees fahrenheit and is capable of melting tungsten.
5) Carbon Arc Welding (CAW)
Carbon arc welding is a type of welding that utilizes an electrical arc between the base metal and carbon electrode. The arc reaches temperatures of over 3,000 degrees celsius instantly bonding the metal.
6) Plasma Arc Welding (PAW)
Plasma arc welding is similar to GTAW/TIG but differs in the fact that it produces a much hotter 50,000 degree fahrenheit “plasma arc” in order to melt the base metal. Plasma can be defined simply as a super heated gas.
7) Resistance Spot Welding
Resistance spot welding is often used in factory setting to produce very small welds. Two very small and pinpointed welding electrodes pass an electrical current between them. When the base metal is between the two electrodes it becomes molten and bonds together.
8) Upset Welding (UW)
Upset welding is when you get angry and weld… Ok not really. Upset welding applies a a through two base metals, heats them and then applies pressure to the two base metals. This type of welding is often used to join butt joints.
9) Coextrusion Welding (CEW)
Coextrusion Welding forces two or more metals through a die and the shear force bonds them together.
10) Cold Pressure Welding (CW)
Cold pressure welding is sometimes called Contact Welding, it requires no heat or liquid metal. This welding process uses a large amount of pressure applied to both metals in a vacuum in order to adhere them together. This process is most often used in electronics manufacturing.
11) Forge welding (FOW)
Forge welding is the oldest type of welding known to man. Both sections of metal to be welded are heated to a high temperature and then pounded or forged together with a manual hammer or automated hammer.
12) Friction welding (FRW)
Friction welding is a type of welding that uses heat generated from mechanical friction and pressure. This welding process is common in the aviation and auto manufacturing industry.
13) Hot pressure welding
Hot pressure welding is a welding processes that uses heat and mechanical force is applied to the workpiece in order to bond them.
14) Ultrasonic Welding
Ultrasonic welding is a process where vibrations are used to bond two metals together.