MIG Welding: Exploring the technique of joining metals

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MIG/MAG welding also known as GMWA is an arc welding process using a solid electrode wire, in which the arc and weld pool are shielded from the atmosphere by a gas supplied by an external source.

In this blog we are going to talk about MIG welding to learn a little more about it, we are going to learn what its characteristics, advantages and disadvantages are. If you want to learn about MIG welding, keep reading.

What is MIG welding and what is it used for?

MIG welding or arc welding is known as inert gas welding., hence its name MIG: Metal Inert Gas. The use of inert gases aims to expel oxygen to prevent oxidation of the material supplied in the welding process. In this process the inert gas does not participate in the welding, the gases used are gases without reaction such as: argon, a mixture of argon and oxygen and less frequently helium.

The MIG welder is used to weld non-ferrous materials such as: aluminum, copper, magnesium and titanium.  

Characteristics of MIG welding

As we already know, MIG welding uses inert gases that do not intervene in the welding process and its objective is to avoid oxidation by oxygen of the material used in the welding. Next, we present some characteristics of this type of welding, such as the gases it uses.

  1.   Gases used in MIG welding: The gases used in this process are inert gases, that is, they do not react. It uses two gases, fundamentally argon (it is a noble and inert gas, it has the 0.934% of dry air. It has no smell, taste, or color; it is not flammable and is 30% heavier than air) and helium (it is a noble gas, one of the lightest elements in the periodic table, is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas) and the mixed gases that can come out of the mixture of the main gases mentioned above.
  2.   With this type of welding, the welding area is protected from atmospheric contamination by the use of the inert gases already mentioned, these work as a shield in the welding area.
  3.   With this welding you can work in three ways.
  • Manual, when the person who is going to carry out the welding chooses and manages all the parameters of the welder.
  • Semi Automatic, when the person who is going to weld chooses some parameters and the welder provides others such as voltage and current.
  • Automatic, when the person who is going to weld does not choose any of the parameters and all are chosen by the welder.
  1.   There are three techniques used in MIG welding:
  • short circuit transfer, when the short circuit is concrete there is a change of metals.
  • spray transferThis is produced by small drops of metal that are removed from the tip of the wire and are projected towards the weld.
  • globular transfer, occurs when metal droplets are too large to sink.

Advantages of MIG welding

This type of welding has a wide variety of advantages, below we will mention the 6 most important advantages.

  1. Greater productivity since time is not spent changing the electrodes that are consumed.   
  2. It can be welded in any position.
  3. The MIG welder minimizes times of cutting.
  4. Good finishes due to the reduction of discontinuities in the cord.
  5. The formation of polluting and toxic gases is reduced.
  6. Welds of thicknesses from 0.7 to 6 mm can be made without edge preparation.

Disadvantages of MIG welding

This type of welding has some disadvantages that we will mention below and that we believe you should take into account if you want to start welding with MIG.

1. The MIG welder has a very high cost, it is very easy to weld with it, however, you must have a good budget for this to be able to acquire it.

2. The cooling system is faster than that of other welders and in some cases this can be a problem depending on the work you are doing.

3. It is not recommended to work with this type of welding in remote or difficult to access places.

4. This equipment requires more extensive and specialized maintenance than other machines on the market.

MIG welding is one of the best on the industrial market due to its advantages over the other types of welding that we have seen in the previous point, in Pérez Precision Work you can find your MIG welder And if you have any questions or think it is necessary to have advice, you can request it through the following button.