A lot of engineering marvels we see today, from the cars we drive to the gadgets we use on a daily basis, use welding in one way or another. Welding and the technology behind it have come a long way over the years. Skilled welders can now work with materials like aluminum and titanium, have more tools to simplify their workflow, and even deal with welding challenges that used to be impossible to tackle.
Better Safety Gear
We are going to start with the way technology has improved the safety gear used by welders across the nation. In the old days, welding masks were big and heavy, made of thick metal and used a thick, almost entirely black glass for maximum protection.
Today, however, welding safety gear is sleek and very light. Take a look at some of the welding masks available at WeldingOutfitter.com and you’ll see how much welding gear has changed over the years.
The same goes for gloves and other protective gear. Welding gloves are now very comfortable to wear. They are no thicker than the usual heavy-duty gloves available on the market, yet they provide an excellent level of heat protection and safety.
More Welding Options
In an attempt to work with more materials, welding machines and the technology behind them have really grown these past few years. TIG machines, for instance, use tungsten inert gas to produce extreme heat. It is one of the best types of welding to use today, especially when a beautiful finish and a clean joint are needed.
Arc welding is still very popular too. This is perhaps the easiest type of welding to master, but a lot of finishing work is still needed for a cleaner look. Also known as stick welding, arc welding is suitable for thicker materials of 4 millimeters or thicker. It offers immense strength and can be layered to improve structural integrity.
MIG welding, on the other hand, combines the best of both worlds. It is the most commonly used type of welding machine due to its versatility. It also works great with steel and aluminum.
In larger manufacturing processes and factories, experienced welders are no longer doing most of the work. In fact, craftsmen are usually reserved for trickier work that needs immense attention to detail. In a car assembly line, for instance, most of the work is now done by robots.
Welding robots have really come a long way. It is now possible to program the robotic welding arms in 4D space, which means they can handle more complicated tasks. More importantly, welding robots can produce consistent results even when put under heavy load.
We’re seeing the shift towards robotics in smaller shops too, although not in as big of a scale as the larger manufacturers. The latest welding machines, for instance, are now equipped with sensors and additional tools that will help welders produce consistent results and beautiful finishes. With so many developments these past few years, it will be interesting to see how far technology will influence the welding industry in the future.