Instead of using through-hole procedures to drill fasteners onto a base metal, many welders rely on stud welding machines to fuse fasteners with the metal. Stud welding machines are not only efficient, as it takes less than 0.01 seconds to weld the fasteners to the metal, but also practical, as they reduce operating costs. There are many stud welding machines on the market. Look for these 3 features in order to avoid poor quality work.
Opt for a Machine with Microprocessors
Consistency is key when stud welding. All of the fasteners need to be fused to the base metal in the same way for optimal structure and strength. Microprocessor control relies on an integrated circuit that offers the same functions as a central processing unit found in computers. It gives welders the ability to set and monitor numerous processing variables like the amount of current and voltage being discharged, the time it takes for the machine to fire up and the time it takes for each weld to be completed.
Welders should monitor all processing variables closely. If there are discrepancies present, it may indicate poor assembly work, which affects overall quality and productivity. It may indicate that the stud welding machines are not properly calibrated or there are unaddressed problems in the overall system.
Ability to Run More Than One Weld Gun
More often than not, the product feature requires various sizes and shapes of fasteners to be welded onto the base. Stud welding machines with the ability to run more than one weld gun can significantly improve the productivity of the assembly. It allows for numerous welds to be made with just one machine, which can help reduce setup time.
If the stud welding machine can only handle one stud gun at a time, welders need to let the stud gun cool down before removing it and replacing it with another one. The next stud gun needs time to charge as well. Generally speaking, switching from one stud gun to another takes only several minutes; however, if the product feature requires different fasteners, welders may need to make several switches within the day. This can cause you to lose hours of production every day.
Programs Capable of Automated Welding Controls
While advanced automated welding controls are still on the horizon, there are some stud welding machines capable of performing simple welding functions automatically. The stud welding machines will automatically position the pieces and weld the fasteners in place. This frees up welders for working on some of the more advanced and complicated welds. Most experts recommend implementing quality control measures to ensure that the automated welding work completed meets established requirements and standards.
Although you'll be spending more money on automated welding controls and programs, you'll improve overall productivity, which means that each product will be manufactured and produced within a shorter period of time. In addition, your assembly line will benefit from reduced labor costs. Some stud welding machines can store the programming for several automated welding controls. Welders simply input the type of work they would like, the type of fasteners to be used and dimensions of the product, including where the fasteners are to be welded, into the system.
Stud welding machines can easily improve the quality of the weld and the overall productivity of the assembly line significantly. The machines eliminate the need for through-hole preparation. Familiarize yourself with the type of stud welding machine you are investing in. Use arc stud welding machines on larger diameter fasteners and thicker metal bases and capacitor discharge stud welding machines on smaller diameter fasteners and thinner bases for the best results possible.
For more information, contact a local stud welder supplier or manufacturer like Northland Fastening Systems.