Know Your Choices Before Selecting a Welding Gun

Welding gun manufacturers usually offer two main types of welding equipment – the Spot and MIG types. While these are both very popular types of welders, there are differences between each that can make some aspects more suitable than others for certain uses. The following describes the various types and what they are best used for.

Spot Welding Guns – generally designed for low throughput or high-volume manufacturing operations where fast setup and low downtime are required. They are a bit of a hybrid between a MIG and a Cylinder. A C-style gun is where the working electrode is directly attached to the stationary electrode, while the “X” type (sometimes called “scissors” or “pinch”) which is similar but where the working electrode is remote from the stationary electrode. These types of welders are commonly found in welding shops. They have high demands because they do not require a dedicated electrical source and use a lot of power for their operation.

Magnetic Drive Welders – operates by compressing a flywheel via an electric motor. The flywheel spins in a magnetic field, allowing the wire to be drawn through the weld without direct contact with any welding fluid or the welding gun. The electrical current produced by the motor causes the current on the wire to change, causing the wire to become a conductive one. This type of gun produces lower pulse rates and higher weld times. However, it has less accuracy than either spot welding guns or a C-style gun.

MIG Welding Guns – operate by injecting gas (either argon or nitrogen) into the boreshell, which then creates a gas stream and injects that into the tungsten gas carrier. The tungsten flows through the bombshell creating a weld on the surface of the carrier and the filler metal is welded into the weld. This type of gun is accurate but creates more heat than the other types and requires more manual labor. MIG welders also create more pollution. They tend to have lower cycle times but produce a good weld when using quality electrodes. MIG welders are generally used on thinner sheet metals.

Robotic Welding Guns – operate using a computer to program the plasma torches into the tungsten electrode for an exact fit and constant temperature. They work well for higher needs because of their accuracy, but may not be efficient for the lower cycles. They are also ideal for MIG welding guns. They create less dust and have a high demand because of their ability to weld at faster speeds and with a lot of arc energy. However, they are often used in MIG welding guns because they are cheaper to build and maintain. They also can not be used on thinner metals.

Portable Welding Machines – the portable type can work on both the above types of metals and more, but only works best on thinner materials. There are different sizes of portable welders available in the market, however they all use plasma torches to heat the workpiece in a precise manner, which is very important while working on complex projects like bridges and other high demand workpieces. Since portable welders use plasma torches to melt the metals in question, they are the best choice for creating safe and accurate welds on the workpieces.