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3 Tips For Preparing Metal Surfaces For Stud Welding

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For your next fabrication project, you may decide to use a stud welding machine to create stronger welds without having to drill or punch holes in your metal. Before you begin welding, however, you will need to properly prepare your metals' surfaces using the three tips below.

Wipe Oil And Grease From The Surface

If there is a film of oil or grease on the surface of your metal, it should be removed first. When these two substances are present during welding, the heat from the gun will heat them up, potentially charring or warping the metal. You will need three soft, clean cloths and a solvent such as turpentine for the removal process.

With the first cloth, wipe the surface of any excess oil or grease. Then, use the second cloth to apply turpentine to the surface. Allow the turpentine to air dry and evaporate completely.

Once the metal is dry, use the third cloth to wipe and buff the metal. This not only removes the oil and grease, but it also wipes up any residual solvent. When you are finished, run your hand across the metal. If you still feel a coating, use a fourth cloth to buff the surface a second time.

Use A Steel Wire Brush And Grinder To Remove Paint

If you are using used, painted metal sheets, the paint needs to be removed before you begin stud welding. If this is not done, the paint will melt into the stud weld, contaminating and weakening it. To remove the paint, you will need a steel wire brush, a whisk broom, an electric grinder and a moist, clean cloth.

Remove any loose paint using the steel wire brush. Use a sawing motion to do this, alternating side-to-side and back-and-forth to ensure you have removed all you are able. Once you have brushed the surface, use the whisk broom to remove the paint chips.

After you have cleaned the surface of paint chips, use an electric grinder to remove any remaining, stuck-on paint. Use a low setting with light pressure to prevent creating gouges in the metal. Once the surface is smooth, use the moist cloth to wipe up the dust.

The above tips should remove common contaminants from your metals' surfaces, allowing for a clean weld. However, if you have any unusual coatings, such as galvanized plating, you may want to speak with a representative from your stud welding machine's manufacturer for recommendations on how to proceed with your prep work.

Contact a company like Northland Fastening Systems for more information.