Arc welding as a process uses electricity to create the requisite levels of heat to melt the metal and create the weld. It gets its name from the electric arc that is created by the welding power supply between the electrode and the metal that is being welded (the base object). Both DC and AC current can be used with this method. This type of welding can be also used with consumable electrodes and non-consumable electrodes.
A shielding cover is usually used to protect the welding point with gas slag or vapor. The process can be fully automated, semi-automated or manual.
Arc welding was first developed and used in the late 19th - early 20th century and really took off in the ship building industry during the second world war. It is still widely used today in the fabrication of steel structures and in vehicle manufacturing.Types of materials modified with arc welding.
Where can you find an Arc welding service in London?
Most welders in London would provide Arc welding. Our team of certified mobile welders can also help you with mobile arc welding and blacksmith services for the fabrication of metal elements at your London destenation.
How do you weld with Arc?
The probably most common type of welding with arc is Stick Welding also known as shielded metal arc welding (SMAW) or Manual metal arc welding (MMAW). In this method the welders are using electricity and electrodes, while an electric current is used to generated the heat that melts and connects between the base material and another material using the electrode/stick.
Other methods to weld with Arc includes
- Tig Welding (tungsten/inert-gas) or Gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW), , in which a mixture of gas is used to infuse metals.
- Plasma Arc – in which plasma is used.
- Atomic Hydrogen Welding.
- Elctroslag and Elctrogas welding.
- And more…
Uses of arc welding
Arc welding is used for many types of metals and alloys.
The method is used extensively in the construction industry in steel structures and bridges. It is also used throughout electrical system build outs in things like switches fix fascia panels and instrumentation.
Arc welding is also used in the automotive industry in exhaust systems, hydraulic lines, the chassis and other fixings. You will also find arc welding in farm machinery; from the chassis to the frame and the fender to the brackets, arc welding will have been used. Staying with mechanical applications arc welding is used in HVAC systems, filing cabinets, office furniture and shelving units.
Pros and benefits
- Cost-effective - The equipment used in arc welding is relatively affordable and easy to use. It makes it easy to start welding using arc.
- Mobility - Arc welding equipment is light and easy to move around; it's easy to transport and carry and can be taken to any location.
- No Need for Gas - You don't need auxiliary gas shielding which is a plus.
- Applicable for a wide variety of Metals - It is suitable for use with most metals and alloys making it versatile.
Cons and limitations
- The need to replace the weld electrode frequently.
- Deposition rates are lower than when you use a continuous electrode process.
- The slag will need to be removed from the weld.
- A bright light is produced when welding so you must wear protective equipment.
To summarize, arc welding is a great all-rounder and a cheap alternative to other methods.