Ask anyone in the trade business and they all know how difficult it is to weld stainless steel. Taking such a powerful, immobile product and trying to mold and bend it, you can see why. Any kind of in-house or mobile welding project will still retain some of those pesky nuances that takes time to learn and nail down. But there’s so much more to welding stainless steel; it is a fine art. The more you understand the basics of stainless steel and how to make it more malleable will go a long way in your projects and work. Read on to find out some tips and tricks and in Ocala, where to go to get your welding projects done.
First of all, for any great welding project to go well, you will need the proper equipment and the right technique. It can take time to nail down exactly how you want your welded steel to look, but practice makes perfect! Make sure your protective clothing and welding mask are free from any holes or wear and tear before using them. The shielding gas you use while welding also has to be on point in order for your welding to go smoothly. You will want to choose an argon-carbon dioxide gas specific to your project, but the best mix is usually at 98% argon and 2% carbon dioxide. If you don’t have the proper equipment to get the job done safely and efficiently, you may want to consider mobile welding near you as well.
Welding Stainless Steel
Now that you have yourself set, it’s time to pick the right piece of stainless steel. You will want to identify the stainless steel that you have by looking for the 3-digit code printed right onto the steel. If the number is in the 300s, the steel you have is austenitic, non-magnetic and has a higher level of chromium in it. If your number is 410, 420, or 440A then your steel is martensitic, which is magnetic and wear resistant. And if your number is 409 or 439, your steel is ferritic, which is magnetic and has a high carbon content.
You will want to clean your steel using a wire brush and acetone before welding, to make sure there are no leftover impurities. Next, pick a filler stainless steel to match the kind you’re working with to give you the best blend. If it’s not exact, at least make sure it’s a similar kind. Pick which joint you want to use for your welding project, which will vary depending on how you want the pieces of metal to join.
Lastly, secure the metal to your work surface, arranging the pieces into place and securing them with the proper fixtures and jigs. Your stainless steel can become weakened if it slips at all during this process, so ensuring they are properly secured will help you get a balanced and solid weld.
Steel retains heat almost too efficiently, which leads to most welding mistakes. With too much heat, stainless steel can warp either during the heating or cooling process. Stainless steel can show those blemishes and scratches a lot easier, too, leaving every little imperfection highly visible.
If you feel like your welding project is too much to handle yourself or want guidance and the equipment necessary, give Alien Engineered Products a call today! They have been servicing and welding stainless steel in the Ocala area for decades, giving customers their individual projects all the time they need, while also completing quickly and efficiently. From proto-type stage to production, Alien Engineered Products has the AWS and ASME certified welders you need to get your large or mobile welding project done!