AN INTRODUCTION TO MIG WELDING wws group | [email protected]WARNING:This document contains general information about the topic discussed herein. This document is not an application manual and does not contain a complete statement of all factors pertaining to that topic. The installation, operation and maintenance of arc welding equipment and the employment of procedures described in this document should be conducted only by qualified persons in accordance with applicable codes, safe practices, and manufacturers’ instructions. Always be certain that work areas are clean and safe and that proper ventilation is used. Misuse of equipment, and failure to observe applicable codes and safe practices can result in serious personal injury and property damage.
an introduction to MIG welding page 2 of 16 | [email protected]GeneralMIG (Metal Inert Gas) welding, also known as MAG (Metal Active Gas) and in the USA as GMAW (Gas Metal Arc Welding), is a welding process that is now widely used for welding a variety of materials, ferrous and non ferrous. The essential feature of the process is the small diameter electrode wire, which is fed continuously into the arc from a coil. As a result this process can produce quick and neat welds over a wide range of joints. Equipment●DC output power source ●Wire feed unit ●Torch ●Work return welding lead ●Shielding gas supply, (normally from cylinder) Power SourceMIG welding is carried out on DC electrode (welding wire) positive polarity (DCEP). However DCEN is used (for higher burn off rate) with certain self- shielding and gas shield cored wires. DC output power sources are of a transformer-rectifier design, with a flat characteristic (constant voltage power source). The most common type of power source used for this process is the switched primary transformer rectifier with constant voltage characteristics from both 3-phase 415V and 1-phase 240V input supplies. The output of direct current after full wave rectification from a 3-phase machine is very smooth. To obtain smooth output after full wave rectification with a 1- phase machine, a large capacitor bank across the output is required. Because of the expense of this, many low cost 1-phase machines omit this component and therefore provide a poorer weld characteristic. The switches to the main transformer primary winding provide the output voltage steps at the power source output terminals. Another method of producing different voltages at the power source output terminals is to use a Thyristor or a Transistor rectifier instead of a simple diode rectifier. This system offers continuously variable output voltage, which can be particularly useful on robot installations and the cost of this type of rectifier can be partly offset with no need for primary voltage switch or switches and a single tapped main transformer primary winding.