Best Arc Welding Machines – Reviews & Buyers Guide
Arc welding is a type of welding which uses electricity for creating a weld between two different metals. In this process, an electric arc is formed between the electrode and the grounded metal which causes the metal to melt and fuse to form a weld. The electric power used can be either DC or AC power, and the process can be manual or automated.
The welding region in arc welding is protected by some inert material to prevent contamination. Contamination may result in weak joints which can interfere with the integrity of the welds. Today we discuss in brief how to select the right welding machine based on usage as well as some tips and how-to’s for arc welding.
Things to look out for while buying a arc welding machine-
With the huge variety of arc welding materials available, it becomes very confusing to choose the right product based on the need. Hence, today we look at some prerequisites as well as different options available in the market for arc welding nowadays. Some factors to consider while purchasing an arc welding machine are:
- Power of the machine– It is very important to know what type of arc welding one is going to do- whether he/she wants to weld small things for a short time or do large scale welding for a longer period of time. Thus, depending on the usage, an appropriate powered welding machine is selected. Power of arc welding machines typically range from 100A to 300A. It is very important to choose a proper powered welding machine, as underpowered machines lead to bad welds as well as longer times for completing the same amount of work.
- Duty Cycle– A very important factor while selecting a welding machine, but is often overlooked. Duty cycle refers to the uninterrupted operation that can be done by a welding machine safely without overheating in unit time. It is often given in percentage form with higher being the percentage, higher the time will the machine be able to work.
- Size and Features– Another important factor to consider, especially if one wants to weld for a longer period of time. A machine which is lighter as well as ergonomic will be a lot better for welders in enhancing their productivity and saving money and time in the longer run. Also, more features equals better usability as well as greater value for money.
- Work Area and Ancillary Equipment– It is very important to have a large as well as a well ventilated area for welding, as it is a hazardous process. Also, there needs to be proper amount of equipment like clamps and holders for proper hassle-free welding.
- Safety– In my opinion, the most important point for any machine to perform well is its ability to ensure 100% safe operation at full load. A safer machine will give peace-of-mind to the welder as well as lead to lower costs and good ratings from agencies.
- Cost and Depreciation– We need to keep in mind the costs accrued not only at the buying cycle of the new machine, but also along its lifetime in the form of service and spares. Also, as every other thing, even welding machines have a depreciation rate, so we need to buy the machine which is suitable for our usage so that it doesn’t feel overpriced in the long run. We also need to check warranties and labour costs, as these things consume a lot of money in the long time.
Although there are machines made by several different companies, it is better to stick with a brand that provides all of the above features in a small and convenient package. It is also very important to check user reviews from different sources, as they paint a nice picture about the product and how are consumers feeling about the product over a longer period of time.
Watching videos describing the product are a huge plus too, as one can see what the machine looks like in real life. Price is also an important factor, and one should not hesitate to find the best prices both online and offline for the best deal on the machine