Welding is one of the most critical skills for anyone to learn. Whether you’re building a house, repairing your car, or doing any metalwork, welding will be a part of that project. Welding has been around since the beginning of time and hasn’t changed much over time. There are only four steps involved in the process:
- Preparing the work area (cleanliness is essential)
- Selecting equipment appropriate for the job at hand (example: wire size needed)
- Positioning metal parts together correctly so they will weld easily (even out all ridges & valleys first before applying heat)
- Applying heat/electric current until desired results are achieved (ensure all parts touching each other stay motionless during the entire process).”
In welding, you are essentially melting the base metal and adding another piece of metal
In welding, you are essentially melting the base metal and adding another piece of metal. Most welds will use filler metal, which is a different type of metal than your base material, but sometimes it can work with two parts of the same metal.
When this happens, you end up with what’s known as a butt joint (where two ends meet). In addition, the filler material must be melted to join with your base material adequately; if you try to place some cold filler over hot molten steel, it won’t stick.
The most common types of electrodes used in industrial applications are:
- -Stick Electrode (TIG)
- -SMAW or GMAW(Mig) Wire Rod electrode
- -Flux-Cored Wire Electrodes
After you have learned the basics, some other types of welding will come more accessible to you
Once you have learned the basics, some other types of welding will come more accessible to you. You can do more advanced welding techniques and weld more materials. You will be able to weld in more situations and weld faster and do it more accurately and efficiently. See also: Harbor Freight Welders for Beginners, MIG Welders with Spool Gun, Wire Feed Welders
There are five main types of welding techniques
Welding is not a difficult task to master. However, there are numerous types of welding processes that can make it confusing for beginners. There are five main types of welding techniques used:
- Shielded metal arc welding (SMAW, or stick)
- Gas metal arc welding (GMAW, or MIG)
- Gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW, or TIG)
- Submerged-arc welding
- Electron beam welding
To begin learning how to weld, you should start with the basics of SMAW (shielded metal arc welding). This process uses an electric current to generate heat to melt both pieces together as well as a filler rod made from rods made from tungsten carbide or similar materials depending on the type of metal being joined together at the time being welded by hand power tools such as grinders soldered onto the end cap then inserted into ground wire before connecting them into an electrical circuit using an adapter clamp attaching those two terminals using clamps held tightly around each airport tightly enough but not so tight they crush anything inside their grip while clamping them down firmly enough, so they don’t fall off when finished using them.”
Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW, or Stick)
SMAW is an arc welding process using a constant current power supply and an electrode wire to weld the base materials. The electrode is made of pure tungsten or some combination of carbon and tungsten and is inserted into the end of a hollow rod called a “stick.”
Stick electrodes are available in many different sizes, shapes, and diameters. The most common type has been designated as “AWS E71T-P,” which means it’s made from E71 (a grade of low alloys) steel alloy with P (for plain) mechanical properties. The P designation indicates that this stick electrode won’t rust quickly when exposed to high humidity environments as you would find inside a shipyard or at sea
Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW, or MIG)
The most common type of welding is Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW), also known as Metal Inert Gas. GMAW is a process used to join metal pieces by melting the base metals with an electric arc. This arc can be created using a solid or bare wire electrode, referred to as “stick” electrodes. Although it may sound complicated, GMAW is the most accessible type of welding to learn and use because there aren’t many variables that you need to worry about when setting up your equipment for this method:
- Stick electrodes come in two varieties: solid and coated wire
- You will need a machine called an inverter or gun that produces an electric arc from the stick electrode on one end of your tool.
- The machine must be plugged into a power source such as a generator or electricity grid.
Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW, or TIG)
Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW, or TIG) is a type of welding that uses a non-consumable tungsten electrode to make the weld. The filler metal used in this process may be either an alloy or pure metal. If you’ve ever seen someone welding in real life and had three rods sticking out of their machine that looked like a triangle, then you were watching GTAW!
The process starts with setting up your equipment:
- The first step is to prepare your work area by laying down some ground cloths or towels on top of your work table so that you don’t scratch up any surfaces when moving around parts. You should also cover the floor with some cardboard if you think it would be helpful (this will help absorb moisture).
Flux Cored Arc Welding (FCAW)
Flux Cored Arc Welding (FCAW) is a process that uses a wire electrode covered in flux. The wire is fed through the gun and then into the weld, where it melts and coats itself with molten metal for fusion.
The flux melts during the welding process, creating a protective shield around the arc and preventing contaminants from entering your weld. It also helps increase penetration by deoxidizing steel surfaces and preventing hydrogen from forming around them, which can reduce the overall strength of the joint.
FCAW produces good quality welds, but they aren’t as strong as other methods because it doesn’t transfer as much heat to your workpiece as other processes do; however, it does produce very little spatter, which makes this method great for beginners who are still learning how to control their torches properly, so you don’t risk burning yourself!
Submerged Arc Welding (SAW)
Submerged Arc Welding (SAW) is the most common type of welding, so it’s a great place to start if you’re new to welding.
This type of welding requires a constant source of electricity, which means that you can either plug the wire directly into an outlet or use an arc welder. An arc welder is used only for this particular metal and involves attaching two pieces with one piece of metal constantly passing through them. At the same time, they’re being heated up by an electric current.
The most significant benefit to learning how to SAW is that it’s easy to understand and will help prepare you for other types of welding later on down the road—though it won’t teach you everything about welding. The main drawback is that SAW isn’t ideal for thicker metals because the electrodes are thinner than those needed for other types like MIG/TIG (which we’ll cover next).
Just remember that you will get better with practice
Just remember that you will get better with practice. The more you do it, the more comfortable and confident you’ll be. You’ll learn to use different types of welding and become skilled at them quickly. If you’re looking for an easy way to weld for beginners, consider taking a class or buying some books from Amazon.
Welding is a skill that can be picked up in a matter of weeks, but to become a great welder takes years. Therefore, you must practice constantly and learn from your mistakes to improve your skills. The more you practice, the better you will get at welding, which will help you succeed in any welding project!
Walton M. Edwards was born in 1994 in a coal mining town, he has worked as a welder, a hardware salesman, and as a pipe fitter and has been employed as a laborer for about fifty years. Walton is a native of Wabash County in Indiana, but he now resides in Bloomington, Indiana.