Welding Methods: Explained Part 1
When you’re thinking of beginning a career as a welder, it can feel a little overwhelming to know which direction to head in order to find the work that’s right for you. And we get that! There are so many different niche welding techniques and their applications to explore, and knowing which one will suit you isn’t easy. We thought we would tackle this challenge by explaining the basics of four common welding techniques so you can get a head start on choosing the best path to follow to suit your goals as a professional welder!
Stick welding is an extremely approachable type of welding. It’s easy to get started by stopping into your local Sidney Lee Welding Supply store and stocking up on a simple stick welder and some welding rods. Grab some safety gear, and you’re ready to work! All that’s involved in this method is clamping your rod to an electrode holder, attaching the other end of the holder to the metal surface of the table you’re working on, and that completes the circuit allowing for a spark from your electrode! Great for beginners, this type of welding allows you to create clean, simple welds and can assist you as you practice your skills. If you’re looking for work building structures, such as trailers or furniture, this is the right method of welding for you! However, if you’re interested in a career in autobody welding, this isn’t the way to go. Stick welding is best suited on thicker materials, so steer clear of using this technique on metals that are thinner than 1/16th of an inch.
FLUX CORE WELDING
In some ways, this is the improved version of stick welding. As opposed to holding your rod in one hand and moving that hand closer to the weld as your rod runs out, with flux core welding, the electrode comes from inside the welding gun. A spool in your welding machine feeds the flux cord out the tip of your welding gun at a speed of your choosing so you can run your hands along the weld you’re making without needing to get any closer and without the need to pause to get a new rod, like you would when stick welding. This type of welding offers you a wider range of applications than stick welding, allowing you to weld successfully on very thin to very thick materials, and once again, the startup costs are relatively minimal.
Want to continue learning more about different welding methods? Keep up with us on our blog and stay tuned for the next installment of this two-part series on welding techniques! And if you can’t wait to learn more, head to the nearest Sidney Lee Welding Supply store and start a conversation about the best welding supplies for you!