Learning that art of welding aluminum requires dedication and skill as aluminum is an elusive metal to weld. Currently, there are three known process that can welding aluminum these are TIG, MIG and gas welding.
How to Perform Gas Welding on Aluminum
Aluminum Gas welding – this process of welding is not commonly done; however, it is used by certain maintenance industries for example, refrigeration repairs. To carry out this type of welding thin sheets of aluminum are joined together using oxy acetylene equipment.
The atomic structure of aluminum causes the metal to have varying melting points. If you try to join two portions of aluminum you may experience a "dropping out", once the metal has been heated to its melting point. Only through practice will a welder become knowledgeable enough to perform the oxy acetylene welding process for welding aluminum.
MIG Machines for Welding Aluminum Alloys
The MIG welding process is the most common method used for welding aluminum. This process is carried out by using a continuous feed of aluminum wire to seal the area that needs joining. It allows welders to work with aluminum that is 1mm thick or more. For thinner pieces of aluminum spot welding is done to prevent a blow through depending on how powerful the MIG machine is. The electrode thickness has a lot to do with the size of the material you are working with. Gauge wire that is smaller and allows you to work with thinner metals.
The MIG welding process is mainly used from sheet welding. The process is used during the construction of aluminum boats, fences and gates as well as architectural and structural works that use thin sheets of metal.
Aluminum that comes in heavy gauges requires welding techniques similar to steel.
The welding cable liner needs to be changed to one made of Teflon this will allow the filler wire to run through smoothly. Because aluminum is not as strong as steel, less friction is created as it passes through the gun and cable. It is best to use pure Argon in steel welding with MIGs.
TIG Welding Aluminum Alloys
The TIG process is difficult to carry out on aluminum because it requires much practice. The process is similar to gas welding where the metal is heated using a TIG welding torch until it reaches its melting point. A filler rod is then introduced at the right moment to form the welding bead. Mastering the TIG welding techniques will allow you to create works of art that you are not able to create by welding on smaller scales.