Improve Productivity During the Welding Process
Are you struggling to get to grips with your welding costs? Perhaps you’ve tried to find cheaper suppliers for your consumables, gas and raw materials. Maybe you’ve even tried to be more efficient during the physical welding process. If that’s the case you’ve probably quickly discovered that speeding up your actions during welding can only make a limited difference. The reason for this is that most of your time spent welding, you’re not actually welding. It will probably surprise you to discover that you only actually weld for around eight minutes out of every hour.
So what are you being paid to do during the other 52 minutes?
Prepping the joint
Everything from bevelling the edge to cleaning oil and rust away from the area – a well-prepped weld face will help reduce defects and re-work time.
Before you begin to weld it’s a good idea to bring all your tools and materials to the weld station where they will be easily accessible to you once you begin. Make use of a portable workshop trolley's.
Its vital to properly set your root gap and alignment, and to sensibly place your initial tack-welds to avoid start/stop-points and inclusions. Use a Hi-Lo gauge and taper gauge for spacing.
Changing filler metal/shielding gas
Maybe not every time, but now and then you will need to change these. Ensure you have enough on your spool of wire, and shielding gas in your bottles, before you start, to prevent downtime.
Whether it’s at the end of the day or after you’ve finished with a product, you need to tidy up after yourself. You’ll also need to clean the weld itself, which may involve grinding. An optimised weld saves time lost in post-weld clean-up.
Post weld heat treatment
Though this is not always necessary, when it is, you will need to account for this time. Measure and control cooling with a digital thermometer.
Moving the finished product into place
Welding in close proximity to the welded component’s target location will save handling time and increase efficiency. Have the necessary stillages or dollies ready to receive your finished items.Once you have identified the peripheral activities, it is easier to take steps to optimise and cut down time spent on each.