Before you start any weld joint project, there are a few important steps to follow, especially if you find yourself out in the field. More often than not, you’re going to be working with big pieces of material, or even your own heavy equipment, and the last thing you want to be doing is trying to lug those pieces back to your shop to fix or repair them. Depending on the job, you may even look for a welding company to help, and that’s where Alien Engineered Products in Ocala can help. Read on to find some important steps to getting your welding project back on task, and where to go if you need to bring in the professionals.
Preparing The Joint
Ask any experienced technician about welding broken tools or components in the field, and they’ll most likely tell you it’s not the greatest, but it is doable. The most critical step in getting your joint prepared is using the right filler material. The replacement material will have a direct impact on the durability and longevity of the weld joint, so choose wisely.
The melding of the two materials, the original and the filler, need to be as complementary as possible to ensure maximum adhesion and formation. You will need to know the chemistry and mechanical properties of the parent, or original, material, along with what other material will mold well with it. The filler material should have an equivalent tensile strength to the lowest tensile strength of the parent material, allowing for proper dilution of the materials after the welding process and while the welded joint is formed.
Next Steps In A Weld Joint Job
The second step in preparation is to clean the joint area thoroughly. Having any dirt or debris on the area will result in poor integrity of the weld job, making the joint less durable and strong. Any rust, paint or oils need to be refined and removed prior to doing any welding to the area. Wipe away and clean any loose debris or dirt with a lint-free cloth off of the parent material, and ensure the filler material is clean of any debris as well. The cleaner the surface of the material is, the less porosity will show, like cracking or splitting.
Since you’re out in the field and not inside your welding company building, you’ll want to make sure the temperature of the parent material is warm enough before you start welding. If the steel is too cold, the welding arc won’t successfully work, and will lead to imperfections in the weld. The fastest and easiest way to ensure good heated materials is to preheat the parent material with an oxyfuel torch. The torch will produce a wide enough flame that will optimally heat the material, creating an ideal, malleable surface for welding.
Preheating the parent material will eliminate any oxygen, hydrogen, or other gases that will compromise your welding job. If these gases remain while you weld, then you could potentially see shrinkage stresses, severe cracking or distortion once the weld is completed and cooled.
Completing any weld joint jobs in the field can be tricky, but with experience and proper preparation, the job can get done and you can get back to the real task on hand. If you’re looking for a welding company to help you finish the job faster, turn to Alien Engineered Products. Located in Ocala, we can handle any welding job with ease and skill. Call us today!