A welding machine is a device used to join materials especially different types of metals together. However, it is important to note that with evolution of welding, many different materials can be welded but welding works best with metals. Welding machines produce heat which is used to melt metal parts. When the melted metal cools, the two parts are joined with a fixed and resistant joint.
When it comes to welding, there isn't one size fits all technique. There are different welding techniques used to work on different types of materials and in different industries. These different welding techniques require different welding machines.
There are some machines that benefit only one technique of welding while others are multipurpose machines allowing you to undertake different welding methods. Further, the machines range in use from complex industrial use to simple home use for DIY projects. Here are the three most common types of welding techniques and the welding machines they use.
Arc welding is one of the most popular welding techniques. The Arc welding machine produces and electric arc formed between the metal to be welded and the electrode used. The most common type of Arc welding is shielded metal arc welding (SMAW). The stick or electrode used softens under the electrical arc produced by the machine to combine the work pieces.
The other types of arc welding available include; flux core arc welding, metal arc gas welding, tungsten gas arc welding and submerged arc welding. Arc welding is common for repairs, maintenance, construction, industrial fabrications and underwater pipeline welding.
TIG welding also called gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW) doesn't involve the use of a filler material to weld. However, if you want you can also use a filler material. The lack of a filler material means you obtain a clean and strong weld. This kind of weld has no waste and it is thin and precise.
TIG welding machines are more specialized than all the other types of welding machines. They do not produce any splatter, sparks or fumes. Due to the highly specialized nature of these machines, they are not suitable for fieldwork. They are common for repairing damaged parts on cars and motorcycles. TIG welding machines can handle stainless steel, brass, gold, aluminum, copper, and nickel alloys.
MIG welding is also known as gas metal arc welding (GMAW). In this type of welding and electrode is continuously fed through a welding gun into the weld pool. The electrode which is a solid wire melts under the intense heat and joins the two metal pieces together on solidification. A shielding gas is sent through the welding gun to prevent the weld pool from contamination.
MIG welding can be done on both thick and thin metals. However, to be able to work on both, you need a machine with adjustable power most probably a three phase machine. MIG welding machines can handle a variety of materials including mild steel, stainless steel and aluminum. The machines with the adjustable power can handle even more materials.