Avoiding Some Common Issues in Pipe Welding

Piping can serve many purposes depending on the facility it is installed in especially in industrial construction. The pipes may transport processed food, beverages, fuel and oil, high-pressure, water, or chemicals. However, if the pipe is not properly installed and welded together, chances are the pipe will experience a number of problems like cracking, loss of integrity, breaking down, and other similar problems. The cause of these problems can vary, be it using MIG guns with low amperage, shielding gas wasn’t used properly, and a whole other mistakes. Here are some issues workers usually experience and how to get through them.

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pipe bending

1.) Materials like aluminum and stainless steel are prone to become distorted and affected by high temperatures and when welders working with materials like these, making a poor cut will result in it having a poor fit up and there may be unnecessary gaps developing. In an attempt to compensate for this, welders heat and put in metal to fill the joint. Because of the heat, the joint will be more likely to distort and the corrosion –resistant qualities get reduced.

To make sure that the cut is clean and very accurate, an orbital pipe cutting equipment should be used. The cut is so precise that the measurement is only thousandths of an inch different compared to the set dimension. Some skillful pipe fabricators can do this, as well.

2.) Using flow regulators to mix gas can be problematic. There are a number of shops that have separate tanks for argon and helium and make use of a flow regulator so that the right amount of gasses mix. In reality, the mix might become contaminated with other atmospheric gases thus badly affecting the weld, so if you need to use mixed gas, go buy a tank from a reliable store that already has the gases mixed inside.

3.) Using too much shielding gas is a mistake. This is a common misconception among welders, they think that using more shielding gas will make it better which influences then to open up the gas widely. What they think here is that they are increasing the protecting to the area while welding. But this method gives way to some problems which include: shielding gas being wasted (increasing costs), the weld puddle experiences unnecessary agitation, the method induces a convection effect which in turn sucks in oxygen gas to the area which will result in the weld being porous. It is recommended that the welding stations have a flow meter and that the welders have clear knowledge on using just the right flow rate.

4.) After the plasma cutting, the welders forget to grind the joint. When the joint is being cut using a plasma cutter, it leaves a layer of oxidation over the edge that was cut. Before welding, that oxide layer should be removed by grinding. If the layer is not, chances are the weld will become porous, have inclusions, be lacking in fusion and other problems. Welders should understand that they need to grind the cut edge so that the oxidation layer will be removed and take out the risk brought by it.

In industrial constructions, it is best to take note of these vulnerabilities as some pipe failures can be catastrophic.


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