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BASIC WELDING FILLER METAL TECHNOLOGY

A Correspondence Course

LESSON I THE BASICS OF ARC WELDING


An Introduction to Metals Electricity for Welding

ESAB

ESAB Welding & Cutting Products

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TABLE OF CONTENTS LESSON I THE BASICS OF ARC WELDING

PART A. Section Nr. 1.1 1.1.1 1.1.2 1.1.3 1.1.4 1.1.5 1.2 1.2.1 1.2.2 1.2.3 1.3 1.4 1.4.1 1.5 1.5.1 1.5.2 1.5.3 1.5.4 1.5.5 1.5.6 1.5.7 1.6 1.6.1 1.6.2 1.6.3 1.6.4

AN INTRODUCTION TO METALS Section Title Source and Manufacturing............................................................. Rimmed Steel ................................................................................... Capped Steel .................................................................................... Killed Steel ........................................................................................ Semi-Killed Steel............................................................................... Vacuum Deoxidized Steel ................................................................. Classification of Steels................................................................... Carbon Steel ..................................................................................... Low Alloy Steel.................................................................................. High Alloy Steel ................................................................................. Specifications ................................................................................. Crystalline Structure of Metals ...................................................... Grains and Grain Boundaries ........................................................... Heat Treatment ................................................................................ Preheat ............................................................................................. Stress Relieving ................................................................................ Hardening ......................................................................................... Tempering ......................................................................................... Annealing .......................................................................................... Normalizing ....................................................................................... Heat Treatment Trade-Off ................................................................. Properties of Metals........................................................................ Tensile Strength ................................................................................ Yield Strength.................................................................................... Ultimate Tensile Strength .................................................................. Percentage of Elongation ................................................................. Page 1 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 5 6 7 8 8 9 9 9 9 10 10 10 10 11 11 11

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TABLE OF CONTENTS LESSON I - Con't.


Section Nr. Section Title Page

1.6.5 1.6.6 1.6.7 1.6.8 1.6.9 1.6.10 1.6.11 1.6.12 1.7 1.7.1 1.7.2 1.7.3 1.7.4 1.7.5 1.7.6 1.7.7 1.7.8 1.7.9 1.7.10 1.7.11 1.7.12 1.7.13 1.7.14 1.7.15 PART B. Section Nr. 1.8 1.8.1 1.8.2 1.8.3 1.8.4

Reduction of Area ............................................................................. Charpy Impacts ................................................................................. Fatigue Strength ............................................................................... Creep Strength.................................................................................. Oxidation Resistance ........................................................................ Hardness Test ................................................................................... Coefficient of Expansion ................................................................... Thermal Conductivity ........................................................................ Effects of Alloying Elements .......................................................... Carbon .............................................................................................. Sulphur ............................................................................................. Manganese ....................................................................................... Chromium ......................................................................................... Nickel ................................................................................................ Molybdenum ..................................................................................... Silicon ............................................................................................... Phosphorus....................................................................................... Aluminum .......................................................................................... Copper .............................................................................................. Columbium........................................................................................ Tungsten ........................................................................................... Vanadium .......................................................................................... Nitrogen ............................................................................................ Alloying Elements summary ............................................................. ELECTRICITY FOR WELDING Section Title Electricity for Welding ....................................................................... Principles of Electricity ...................................................................... Ohms Law ........................................................................................ Electrical Power ................................................................................ Power Generation .............................................................................

11 11 12 13 13 13 14 14 14 14 14 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 16 16 16 16 16

Page 17 17 18 19 20

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TABLE OF CONTENTS LESSON I - Con't.


Section Nr. Section Title Page

1.8.5 1.8.6 1.8.7 1.9 1.9.1 1.9.2 1.9.3 1.9.4 Appendix A

Transformers .................................................................................... Power Requirements ........................................................................ Rectifying AC to DC .......................................................................... Constant Current or Constant Voltage .............................................. Constant Current Characteristics ...................................................... Constant Voltage Characteristics ...................................................... Types of Welding Power Sources ..................................................... Power Source Controls ..................................................................... Glossary of Terms .............................................................................

22 24 25 26 26 26 27 28 29

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LESSON I, PART A

AN INTRODUCTION TO METALS
1.1 SOURCE AND MANUFACTURING

Metals come from natural deposits of ore in the earths crust. Most ores are contaminated with impurities that must be removed by mechanical and chemical means. Metal extracted from the purified ore is known as primary or virgin metal, and metal that comes from scrap is called secondary metal. Most mining of metal bearing ores is done by either open pit or underground methods. The two methods of mining employed are known as selective in which small veins or beds of high grade ore are worked, and bulk in which large quantities of low grade ore are mined to extract a high grade portion. 1.1.0.1 There are two types of ores, ferrous and nonferrous. The term ferrous comes

from the Latin word ferrum meaning iron, and a ferrous metal is one that has a high iron content. Nonferrous metals, such as copper and aluminum, are those that contain little or no iron. There is approximately 20 times the tonnage of iron in the earths crust compared to all other nonferrous products combined; therefore, it is the most important and widely used metal. 1.1.0.2 Aluminum, because of its attractive appearance, light weight and strength, is the

next most widely used metal. Commercial aluminum ore, known as bauxite, is a residual deposit formed at or near the earths surface. 1.1.0.3 Some of the chemical processes that occur during steel making are repeated

during the welding operation and an understanding of welding metallurgy can be gained by imagining the welding arc as a miniature steel mill. 1.1.0.4 The largest percentage of commercially produced iron comes from the blast

furnace process. A typical blast furnace is a circular shaft approximately 90 to 100 feet in height with an internal diameter of approximately 28 feet. The steel shell of the furnace is lined with a refractory material, usually a hard, dense clay firebrick. 1.1.0.5 The iron blast furnace utilizes the chemical reaction between a solid fuel charge

and the resulting rising column of gas in the furnace. The three different materials used for the charge are ore, flux and coke. The ore consists of iron oxide about four inches in diameter. The flux is limestone that decomposes into calcium oxide and carbon dioxide. The lime reacts with impurities in the ore and floats them to the surface in the form of a slag. Coke, which is primarily carbon, is the ideal fuel for blast furnaces because it produces carbon monoxide gas, the main agent for reducing iron ore into iron metal.

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1.1.0.6

The basic operation of the blast furnace is to reduce iron oxide to iron metal and

to remove impurities from the metal. Reduced elements pass into the iron and oxidized elements dissolve into the slag. The metal that comes from the blast furnace is called pig iron and is used as a starting material for further purification processes. 1.1.0.7 Pig iron contains excessive amounts of elements that must be reduced before

steel can be produced. Different types of furnaces, most notably the open hearth, electric and basic oxygen, are used to continue this refining process. Each furnace performs the task of removing or reducing elements such as carbon, silicon, phosphorus, sulfur and nitrogen by saturating the molten metal with oxygen and slag forming ingredients. The oxygen reduces elements by forming gases that are blown away and the slag attracts impurities as it separates from the molten metal. 1.1.0.8 Depending upon the type of slag that is used, refining furnaces are classed as

either acid or basic. Large amounts of lime are contained in basic slags and high quantities of silica are present in acid slags. This differential between acid and basic slags is also present in welding electrodes for much of the same refining process occurs in the welding operation. 1.1.0.9 After passing through the refining furnace, the metal is poured into cast iron ingot

molds. The ingot produced is a rather large square column of steel. At this point, the metal is saturated with oxygen. To avoid the formation of large gas pockets in the cast metal, a substantial portion of the oxygen must be removed. This process is known as deoxidation, and it is accomplished through additives that tie up the oxygen either through gases or in slag. There are various degrees of oxidation, and the common ingots resulting from each are as follows: 1.1.1 Rimmed Steel - The making of rimmed steels involves the least deoxidation. As

the ingots solidify, a layer of nearly pure iron is formed on the walls and bottom of the mold, and practically all the carbon, phosphorus, and sulfur segregate to the central core. The oxygen forms carbon monoxide gas and it is trapped in the solidifying metal as blow holes that disappear in the hot rolling process. The chief advantage of rimmed steel is the excellent defect-free surface that can be produced with the aide of the pure iron skin. Most rimmed steels are low carbon steels containing less than .1% carbon. 1.1.2 Capped Steel - Capped steel regulates the amount of oxygen in the molten

metal through the use of a heavy cap that is locked on top of the mold after the metal is allowed to reach a slight level of rimming. Capped steels contain a more uniform core composition than the rimmed steels. Capped steels are, therefore, used in applications

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LESSON I, PART A

that require excellent surfaces, a more homogenous composition, and better mechanical properties than rimmed steel.
1.1.3 Killed Steel - Unlike rimmed or capped steel, killed steel is made by completely

removing or tying up the oxygen before the ingot solidifies to prevent the rimming action. This removal is accomplished by adding a ferro-silicon alloy that combines with oxygen to form a slag, leaving a dense and homogenous metal.
1.1.4 Semi-killed Steel - Semi-killed steel is a compromise between rimmed and killed

steel. A small amount of deoxidizing agent, generally ferro-silicon or aluminum, is added. The amount is just sufficient to kill any rimming action, leaving some dissolved oxygen.
1.1.5 Vacuum Deoxidized Steel - The object of vacuum deoxidation is to remove

oxygen from the molten steel without adding an element that forms nonmetallic inclusions. This is done by increasing the carbon content of the steel and then subjecting the molten metal to vacuum pouring or steam degassing. The carbon reacts with the oxygen to form carbon monoxide, and as a result, the carbon and oxygen levels fall within specified limits. Because no deoxidizing elements that form solid oxides are used, the steel produced by this process is quite clean.

1.2

CLASSIFICATIONS OF STEEL

The three commonly used classifications for steel are: carbon, low alloy, and high alloy. These are referred to as the type of steel.
1.2.1 Carbon Steel - Steel is basically an alloy of iron and carbon, and it attains its

strength and hardness levels primarily through the addition of carbon. Carbon steels are classed into four groups, depending on their carbon levels. Low Carbon Mild Carbon Steels Up to 0.15% carbon .15% to 0.29% carbon

Medium Carbon Steels .30% to 0.59% carbon High Carbon Steels 1.2.1.1 be welded.
1.2.2 Low Alloy Steel - Low alloy steel, as the name implies, contains small amounts

.60% to 1.70% carbon

The largest tonnage of steel produced falls into the low and mild carbon steel

groups. They are popular because of their relative strength and ease with which they can

of alloying elements that produce remarkable improvements in their properties. Alloying

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elements are added to improve strength and toughness, to decrease or increase the response to heat treatment, and to retard rusting and corrosion. Low alloy steel is generally defined as having a 1.5% to 5% total alloy content. Common alloying elements are manganese, silicon, chromium, nickel, molybdenum, and vanadium. Low alloy steels may contain as many as four or five of these alloys in varying amounts. 1.2.2.1 Low alloy steels have higher tensile and yield strengths than mild steel or carbon

structural steel. Since they have high strength-to-weight ratios, they reduce dead weight in railroad cars, truck frames, heavy equipment, etc. 1.2.2.2 Ordinary carbon steels, that exhibit brittleness at low temperatures, are unreliable

in critical applications. Therefore, low alloy steels with nickel additions are often used for low temperature situations. 1.2.2.3 added. 1.2.3 High Alloy Steel - This group of expensive and specialized steels contain alloy Steels lose much of their strength at high temperatures. To provide for this loss

of strength at elevated temperatures, small amounts of chromium or molybdenum are

levels in excess of 10%, giving them outstanding properties. 1.2.3.1 Austenitic manganese steel contains high carbon and manganese levels, that

give it two exceptional qualities, the ability to harden while undergoing cold work and great toughness. The term austenitic refers to the crystalline structure of these steels. 1.2.3.2 Stainless steels are high alloy steels that have the ability to resist corrosion. This

characteristic is mainly due to the high chromium content, i.e., 10% or greater. Nickel is also used in substantial quantities in some stainless steels. 1.2.3.3 Tool steels are used for cutting and forming operations. They are high quality

steels used in making tools, punches, forming dies, extruding dies, forgings and so forth. Depending upon their properties and usage, they are sometimes referred to as water hardening, shock resisting, oil hardening, air hardening, and hot work tool steel. 1.2.3.4 Because of the high levels of alloying elements, special care and practices are

required when welding high alloy steels.

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LESSON I, PART A

1.3

SPECIFICATIONS

Many steel producers have developed steels that they market under a trade name such as Cor-Ten, HY-80, T-1, NA-XTRA, or SS-100, but usually a type of steel is referred to by its specification. A variety of technical, governmental and industrial associations issue specifications for the purpose of classifying materials by their chemical composition, properties or usage. The specification agencies most closely related to the steel industry are the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI), Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). 1.3.0.1 The American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) and the Society of Automobile

Engineers (SAE) have collaborated in providing identical numerical designations for their specifications. The first two digits of a four digit index number refer to a series of steels classified by their composition or alloy combination. While the last two digits, which can change within the same series, give an approximate average of the carbon range. For example, the first two digits of a type 1010 or 1020 steel indicate a 10 series that has carbon as its main alloy. The last two digits indicate an approximate average content of .10% or .20% carbon, respectively. Likewise, the 41 of a 4130 type steel refers to a group that has chromium and molybdenum as their main alloy combination with approximately .30% carbon content. 1.3.0.2 The AISI classifications for certain alloys, such as stainless steel, are somewhat

different. They follow a three digit classification with the first digit designating the main alloy composition or series. The last two digits will change within a series, but are of an arbitrary nature being agreed upon by industry as a designation for certain compositions within the series. For example, the 3 in a 300 series of stainless steel indicates chromium and nickel as the main alloys, but a 308 stainless has a different overall composition than a 347 type. The 4 of a 400 series indicates the main alloy as chromium, but there are different types such as 410, 420, 430, and so forth within the series. 1.3.0.3 The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) is the largest

organization of its kind in the world. It has compiled some 48 volumes of standards for materials, specifications, testing methods and recommended practices for a variety of materials ranging from textiles and plastics to concrete and metals. 1.3.0.4 Two ASTM designated steels commonly specified for construction are A36-77

and A242-79. The prefix letter indicates the class of a material. In this case, the letter A indicates a ferrous metal, the class of widest interest in welding. The numbers 36 and 242

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are index numbers. The 77 and 79 refer to the year that the standards for these steels were originally adopted or the date of their latest revision. 1.3.0.5 The ASTM designation may be further subdivided into Grades or Classes. Since

many standards for ferrous metals are written to cover forms of steel (i.e., sheet, bar, plate, etc.) or particular products fabricated from steel (i.e., steel rail, pipe, chain, etc.), the user may select from a number of different types of steel under the same classification. The different types are than placed under grades or classes as a way of indicating the differences in such things as chemistries, properties, heat treatment, etc. An example of a full designation is A285-78 Grade A or A485-79 Class 70. 1.3.0.6 The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) maintains a widely used

ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code. The material specification as adopted by the ASME is identified with a prefix letter S, while the remainder is identical with ASTM with the exception that the date of adoption or revision by ASTM is not shown. Therefore, a common example of an ASME classification is SA 387 Grade 11, Class 1.

1.4

CRYSTALLINE STRUCTURE OF METALS

When a liquid metal is cooled, its atoms will assemble into a regular crystal pattern and we say the liquid has solidified or crystallized. All metals solidify as a crystalline material. In a crystal the atoms or molecules are held in a fixed position and are not free to move about as are the molecules of a liquid or gas. This fixed position is called a crystal lattice. As the temperature of a crystal is raised, more thermal energy is absorbed by the atoms or molecules and their movement increases. As the distance
4000

between the atoms increases, the lattice breaks down and the crystal melts. If a lattice contains only one type of atom,
LIQUID

as in pure iron, the conditions are the same at all points throughout the lattice, and the crystal melts at a single temperature (see Figure 1).

3000 2795F

2000

1000

SOLID TIME SOLID-LIQUID TRANSFORMATION, PURE IRON

FIGURE 1

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LESSON I, PART A
1.4.0.1 However, if the lattice contains two

or more types of atoms, as in any alloy-steel, it may start to melt at one temperature but not be completely molten until it has been heated to a higher temperature (See Figure 2). This creates a situation where there is a combination of liquids and solids within a range of temperatures.

Liquid

Liquid and Solid

Solid

1.4.0.2

Each metal has a characteristic

crystal structure that forms during solidification and often remains the permanent form of the material as long as it remains at room temperature. However, some metals may undergo an alteration in the crystalline form as the temperature is changed. This is known as phase transformation. For example, pure iron solidifies at 2795F, the delta structure transforms into a structure referred to as gamma iron. Gamma iron is commonly known as austenite and is a nonmagnetic structure. At a temperature of 1670F., the pure iron structure transforms back to the delta iron form, but at this temperature, the metal is known as alpha iron. These two phases are given different names to differentiate between the high temperature phase (delta) and the low temperature phase (alpha). The capability of the atoms of a material to transform into two or more crystalline structures at different temperatures is defined as allotropic. Steels and iron are allotropic metals.
TIME

Solid-Liquid Transformation, Alloy Metal


FIGURE 2

1.4.1

Grains and Grain Boundaries - As the metal is cooled to its freezing point, a

small group of atoms begin to assemble into crystalline form (refer to Figure 3). These small crystals scattered throughout the body of the liquid are oriented in all directions and as solidification continues, more crystals are formed from the surrounding liquid. Often, they take the form of dendrites, or a treelike structure. As crystallization continues, the crystals begin to touch one another, their free growth hampered, and the remaining liquid freezes to the adjacent crystals until solidification is complete. The solid is now composed of individual crystals that usually meet at different orientations. Where these crystals meet is called a grain boundary. 1.4.1.2 A number of conditions influence the initial grain size. It is important to know that

cooling rate and temperature has an important influence on the newly solidified grain structure and grain size. To illustrate differences in grain formation, let's look at the cooling phases in a weld.

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LESSON I, PART A

GRAIN BOUNDARIES

BASE METAL DENDRITE FORMATION INITIAL CRYSTAL FORMATION FIGURE 3 COMPLETE SOLIDIFICATION

1.4.1.3

Initial crystal formation begins at the coolest spot in the weld. That spot is at the

point where the molten metal and the unmelted base metal meet. As the metal continues to solidify, you will note that the grains in the center are smaller and finer in texture than the grains at the outer boundaries of the weld deposit. This is explained by the fact that as the weld metal cools, the heat from the center of the weld deposit will dissipate into the base metal through the outer grains that solidified first. Consequently, the grains that solidified first were at high temperatures for a longer time while in the solid state and this is a situation that encourages grain growth. Grain size can have an effect on the soundness of the weld. The smaller grains are stronger and more ductile than the larger grains. If a crack occurs, the tendency is for it to start in the area where the grains are largest. 1.4.1.4 To summarize this section, it should be understood that all metals are composed

of crystals of grains. The shape and characteristics of crystals are determined by the arrangement of their atoms. The atomic pattern of a single element can change its arrangement at different temperatures, and that this atomic pattern or microstructure determines the properties of the metals.

1.5

HEAT TREATMENT

The temperature that metal is heated, the length of time it is held at that temperature, and the rate that it is cooled, all have an effect on a metal's crystalline structure. This crystalline structure, commonly referred to as "microstructure," determines the specific properties of metals. There are various ways of manipulating the microstructure, either at the steel mill or in the welding procedure. Some of the more common ways are as follows: 1.5.1 Preheat - Most metals are rather good conductors of heat. As a result, the heat

in the weld area is rapidly dispersed through the whole weldment to all surfaces where it is radiated to the atmosphere causing comparatively rapid cooling. In some metals, this rapid cooling may contribute to the formation of microstructures in the weld zone that are detrimental. Preheating the weldment before it is welded is a method of slowing the cooling

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rate of the metal. The preheat temperature may vary from 150F to 1000F, but more commonly it is held in the 300F to 400F range. The thicker the weld metal, the more likely will it be necessary to preheat, because the heat will be conducted away from the weld zone more rapidly as the mass increases.
1.5.2 Stress Relieving - Metals expand when heated and contract when cooled. The

amount of expansion is directly proportional to the amount of heat applied. In a weldment, the metal closest to the weld is subjected to the highest temperature, and as the distance from the weld zone increases, the maximum temperature reached decreases. This nonuniform heating causes nonuniform expansion and contraction and can cause distortion and internal stresses within the weldment. Depending on its composition and usage, the metal may not be able to resist these stresses and cracking or early failure of the part may occur. One way to minimize these stresses or to relieve them is by uniformly heating the structure after it has been welded. The metal is heated to temperatures just below the point where a microstructure change would occur and then it is cooled at a slow rate.
1.5.3 Hardening - The hardness of steel may be increased by heating it to 50F to

100F above the temperature that a microstructure change occurs, and then placing the metal in a liquid solution that rapidly cools it. This rapid cooling, known as "quenching," locks in place microstructures known as "martensite" that contribute to a metal's hardness characteristic. The quenching solutions used in this process are rated according to the speed that they cool the metal, i.e., Oil (fast), Water (faster), Salt Brine (fastest).
1.5.4 Tempering - After a metal is quenches, it is then usually tempered. Tempering is

a process where the metal is reheated to somewhere below 1335F, held at that temperature for a length of time, and then cooled to room temperature. Tempering reduces the brittleness that is characteristic in hardened steels, thereby producing a good balance between high strength and toughness. The term toughness, as it applies to metals, usually refers to resistance to brittle fracture or notch toughness under certain environmental conditions. More information on these properties will be covered later in this lesson and in subsequent lessons. Steels that respond to this type of treatment are known as "quenched and tempered steels."
1.5.5 Annealing - A metal that is annealed is heated to a temperature 50 to 100

above where a microstructure change occurs, held at that temperature for a sufficient time for a uniform change to take place, and then cooled at a very slow rate, usually in a furnace. The principal reason for annealing is to soften steel and create a uniform fine grain structure. Welded parts are seldom annealed for the high temperatures would cause distortion.

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1.5.6

Normalizing - The main difference between normalizing and annealing is the

method of cooling. Normalized steel is heated to a temperature approximately 100 above where the microstructure transforms and then cooled in still air rather than in a furnace.
1.5.7 Heat Treatment Trade-Off - It must be noted that these various ways of control-

ling the heating and cooling of metals can produce a desired property, but sometimes at the expense of another desirable property. An example of this trade-off is evident in the fact that certain heat treatments can increase the strength or hardness of metal, but the same treatments will also make the metal less ductile or more brittle, and therefore, susceptible to welding problems.

1.6

PROPERTIES OF METALS

The usefulness of a particular metal is determined by the climate and conditions in which it will be used. A metal that is stamped into an automobile fender must be softer and more pliable than armor plate that must withstand an explosive force, or the material used for an oil rig on the Alaska North Slope must perform in a quite different climate than a steam boiler. It becomes obvious that before a material is recommended for a specific use, the physical and mechanical properties of that metal and the weld metal designed to join it must be evaluated. Some of the more important properties of metals and the means of evaluation are as follows:
1.6.1 Tensile Strength - Tensile strength is one of the most important determining

factors in selecting a metal, especially if it is to be a structural member, part of a machine, or part of a pressure vessel. 1.6.1.1 The tensile test is performed as shown in Figure 4. The test specimen is

machined to exact standard dimensions and clamped into the testing apparatus at both ends. The specimen is then pulled to the point of fracture and the data recorded. 1.6.1.2 The tensile strength
TEST SPECIMEN RECORDING DIAL

test gives us 4 primary pieces of information: (1) Yield Strength, (2) Ultimate Tensile Strength, (3) Elongation, and (4) Reduction in Area.
TENSILE TESTING APPARATUS FORCE

FIGURE 4

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1.6.2

Yield Strength - When a metal is placed in tension, it acts somewhat like a

rubberband. When a load of limited magnitude is applied, the metal stretches, and when the load is released, the metal returns to its original shape. This is the elastic characteristic of metal and is represented by letter A in Figure 5. As a greater load is applied, the metal will reach a point where it will no longer return to its original shape but will continue to stretch. Yield strength is the point where the metal reaches the limit of its elastic characteristic and will no longer return to its original shape.
1.6.3 Ultimate Tensile Strength - Once a metal has exceeded its yield point, it will

continue to stretch or deform, and if the load is suddenly released, the metal will not return to its original shape, but will remain in its elongated form. This is called the plastic region of the metal and is represented by the letter B in Figure 5. As this plastic deformation increases, the metal strains against further elongation, and
Ultimate Strength Elongation Reduction of Area Yield Strength Fracture

an increased load must be applied to stretch the metal. As the load is increased, the metal will finally reach a point where it

STRAIN - INCHES

no longer resists and any further load applied will rapidly cause the metal to break. That point at which the metal has

NOMINAL STRESS - STRAIN CURVE

FIGURE 5

withstood or resisted the maximum applied load is its ultimate tensile strength. This information is usually recorded in pounds per square inch (psi).
1.6.4 Percentage of Elongation - Before a tensile specimen is placed in the tensile

tester, two marks at a measured distance are placed on the opposing ends of the circular shaft. After the specimen is fractured, the distance between the marks is measured and recorded as a percentage of the original distance. See Figure 5. This is the percentage of elongation and it gives an indication of the ductility of the metal at room temperature.
1.6.5 Reduction of Area - A tensile specimen is machined to exact dimensions. The

area of its midpoint cross-section is a known figure. As the specimen is loaded to the point of fracture, the area where it breaks is reduced in size. See Figure 5. This reduced area is calculated and recorded as a percentage of the original cross-sectional area. This information reflects the relative ductility or brittleness of the metal.
1.6.6 Charpy Impacts - Metal that is normally strong and ductile at room temperature

may become very brittle at much lower temperatures, and thus, is susceptible to fracture if

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LESSON I, PART A
a sharp abrupt load is applied to it. An impact tester measures the degree of susceptibility to what is called brittle fracture. 1.6.6.1 The impact specimen is machined to exact dimensions (Figure 6) and then

notched on one side. Quite often, the notch is in the form of a "V" and the test in this case is referred to as a Charpy V-Notch Impact Test. The specimen is cooled to a predetermined temperature and then placed in a stationary clamp at the base of the testing machine. The specimen is in the direct path of a weighted hammer attached to a pendulum (Figure 6).

ENERGY IN FT/LBS

FRACTURES

CRACKS

DEFORMS

CHARPY V-NOTCH SPECIMEN

CHARPY IMPACT TEST MACHINE

CHARPY V-NOTCH IMPACT TEST

FIGURE 6

1.6.6.2

The hammer is released from a fixed height and the energy required to fracture

the specimen is recorded in ft-lbs. A specimen that is cooled to -60F and absorbs 40 ft-lbs of energy is more ductile, and therefore, more suitable for low temperature service than a specimen that withstands only 10 ft-lbs at the same temperature. The specimen that withstood 40 ft-lbs energy is said to have better toughness or notch toughness.

1.6.7

Fatigue Strength - A metal will withstand a load less than its ultimate tensile

strength but may break if that load is removed and then reapplied several times. For example, if a thin wire is bent once, but if it is bent back and forth repeatedly, it will eventually fracture and it is said to have exceeded its fatigue strength. A common test for this strength is to place a specimen in a machine that repeatedly applies the same load first in tension and then in compression. The fatigue strength is calculated from the number of cycles the metal withstands before the point of failure is reached.

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1.6.8

Creep Strength - If a load below a metal's tensile strength is applied at room

temperature (72F), it will cause some initial elongation, but there will be no further measurable elongation if the load is kept at a constant level. If that same load were applied to a metal heated to a high temperature, the situation would change. Although the load is held at a constant level, the metal will gradually continue to elongate. This characteristic is called creep. Eventually, the material may rupture depending on the temperature of the metal, the degree of load applied and the length of time that it is applied. All three of these factors determine a metal's ability to resist creep, and therefore, its creep strength.
1.6.9 Oxidation Resistance - The atoms of metal have a tendency to unite with oxy-

gen in the air to form oxide compounds, the most visible being rust and scale. In some metals, these oxides will adhere very tightly to the skin of the metal and effectively seal it from further oxidation as is evident in stainless steel. These materials have high oxidation resistance. In other metals, the bond is very loose, creating a situation where the oxides will flake off, and the metal gradually deteriorates as the time of exposure is extended.
1.6.10 Hardness Test - The resistance of a metal to indentation is a measure of its

hardness and an indication of the materials's strength. To test for hardness, a fixed load forces an indenter into the test material (Figure 7). The depth of the penetration or the size of the impression is measured. The measurement is converted into a hardness number through the use of a variety of established tables. The most common tables are the Brinell, Vickers, Knoop and Rockwell. The Rockwell is further divided into different scales, and
HARDNESS TEST ROCKWELL A C D B F G E INDENTER DESCRIPTION

SHAPE OF INDENTER

} }

Diamond Cone 1/16 in. Diameter Steel Sphere 1/8 in. Diameter Steel Sphere 10 mm Sphere of Steel or Tungsten Carbide

BRINNELL

VICKERS

Diamond Pyramid

KNOOP

Diamond Pyramid

Types of Indenters - Hardness Tests


FIGURE 7

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LESSON I, PART A

depending on the material being tested, the shape of the indenter and the load applied, the conversion tables may differ. For example, a material listed as having a hardness of Rb or Rc means its hardness has been determined from the Rockwell "B" scale or the Rockwell "C" scale. 1.6.11 Coefficient of Expansion - All metals expand when heated and contract when

cooled. This dimensional change is related to the crystalline structure and will vary with different materials. The different expansion and contraction rates are expressed numerically by a coefficient of thermal expansion. When two different metals are heated to the same temperature and cooled at the same rate, the one with the higher numerical coefficient will expand and contract more than the one with the lesser coefficient. 1.6.12 Thermal Conductivity - Some metals will absorb and transmit heat more readily

than others. They are categorized as having high thermal conductivity. This characteristic contributes to the fact that some metals will melt or undergo transformations at much lower temperatures than others.

1.7

EFFECTS OF THE ALLOYING ELEMENTS

Alloying is the process of adding a metal or a nonmetal to pure metals such as copper, aluminum or iron. From the time it was discovered that the properties of pure metals could be improved by adding other elements, alloy steel has increased by popularity. In fact, metals that are welded are rarely in their pure state. The major properties that can be improved by adding small amounts of alloying elements are hardness, tensile strength, ductility and corrosion resistance. Common alloying elements and their effect on the properties of metals are as follows: 1.7.1 Carbon - Carbon is the most effective, most widely used and lowest in cost

alloying element available for increasing the hardness and strength of metal. An alloy containing up to 1.7% carbon in combination with iron is known as steel, whereas the combination above 1.7% carbon is known as cast iron. Although carbon is a desirable alloying element, high levels of it can cause problems; therefore, special care is required when welding high carbon steels and cast iron. 1.7.2 Sulphur - Sulphur is normally an undesirable element in steel because it causes

brittleness. It may be deliberately added to improve the machinability of the steel. The sulphur causes the machine chips to break rather than form long curls and clog the machine. Normally, every effort is made to reduce the sulphur content to the lowest possible level because it can

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LESSON I, PART A

create welding difficulties. 1.7.3 Manganese - Manganese in contents up to 1% is usually present in all low alloy

steels as a deoxidizer and desulphurizer. That is to say, it readily combines with oxygen and sulphur to help negate the undesirable effect these elements have when in their natural state. Manganese also increases the tensile strength and hardenability of steel. 1.7.4 Chromium - Chromium, in combination with carbon, is a powerful hardening

alloying element. In addition to its hardening properties, chromium increases corrosion resistance and the strength of steel at high temperatures. Chromium is the primary alloying element in stainless steel. 1.7.5 Nickel - The greatest single property of steel that is improved by the presence of

nickel is its ductility or notch toughness. In this respect, it is the most effective of all alloying elements in improving a steel's resistance to impact at low temperatures. Electrodes with high nickel content are used to weld cast iron materials. Nickel is also used in combination with chromium to form a group known as austenitic stainless steel. 1.7.6 Molybdenum - Molybdenum strongly increases the depth of the hardening

characteristic of steel. It is quite often used in combination with chromium to improve the strength of the steel at high temperatures. This group of steels is usually referred to as chrome-moly steels. 1.7.7 Silicon - Silicon is usually contained in steel as a deoxidizer. Silicon will add

strength to steel but excessive amounts can reduce the ductility. Additional amounts of silicon are sometimes added to welding electrodes to increase the fluid flow of weld metal. 1.7.8 Phosphorus - Phosphorus is considered a harmful residual element in steel

because it greatly reduces ductility and toughness. Efforts are made to reduce it to its very lowest levels; however, phosphorus is added in very small amounts to some steels to increase strength. 1.7.9 Aluminum - Aluminum is primarily used as a deoxidizer in steel. It may also be

used in very small amounts to control the size of the grains. 1.7.10 Copper - Copper contributes greatly to the corrosion resistance of carbon steel

by retarding the rate of rusting at room temperature, but high levels of copper can cause welding difficulties.

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LESSON I, PART A 1.7.11 Columbium - Columbium is used in austenitic stainless steel to act as a stabi-

lizer. Since the carbon in the stainless steel decreases the corrosion resistance, a means of making carbon ineffective must be found. Columbium has a greater affinity for carbon than chromium, leaving the chromium free for corrosion protection. 1.7.12 Tungsten - Tungsten is used in steel to given strength at high temperatures.

Tungsten also joins with carbon to form carbides that are exceptionally hard, and therefore have exceptional resistance to wear. 1.7.13 Vanadium - Vanadium helps keep steel in the desirable fine grain condition after

heat treatment. It also helps increase the depth of hardening and resists softening of the steel during tempering treatments. 1.7.14 Nitrogen - Usually, efforts are made to eliminate hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen

from steel because their presence can cause brittleness. Nitrogen has the ability to form austenitic structures; therefore, it is sometimes added to austenitic stainless steel to reduce the amount of nickel needed, and therefore, the production costs of that steel. 1.7.15 Alloying Elements Summary - It should be understood that the addition of

elements to a pure metal may influence the crystalline form of the resultant alloy. If a pure metal has allotropic characteristics (the ability of a metal to change its crystal structure) at a specific temperature, then that characteristic will occur over a range of temperatures with the alloyed metal. The range in which the change takes place may be wide or narrow, depending on the alloys and the quantities in which they are added. The alloying element may also effect the crystalline changes by either suppressing the appearance of certain crystalline forms or even by creating entirely new forms. All these transformations induced by alloying elements are dependent on heat input and cooling rates. These factors are closely controlled at the steel mill, but since the welding operation involves a nonuniform heating and cooling of metal, special care is often needed in the welding of low and high alloy steel.

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LESSON I, PART B

1.8
1.8.1

ELECTRICITY FOR WELDING


Principles of Electricity - Arc welding is a method of joining metals accom-

plished by applying sufficient electrical pressure to an electrode to maintain a current path (arc) between the electrode and the work piece. In this process, electrical energy is changed into heat energy, bringing the metals to a molten state; whereby they are joined. The electrode (conductor) is either melted and added to the base metal or remains in its solid state. All arc welding utilizes the transfer of electrical energy to heat energy, and to understand this principle, a basic knowledge of electricity and welding power sources is necessary. 1.8.1.1 The three basis principles of static electricity are as follows: 1. There are two kinds of electrical charges in existence - negative and positive. 2. Unlike charges attract and like charges repel. 3. Charges can be transferred from one place to another. 1.8.1.2 Science has established that all matter is made up of atoms and each atom

contains fundamental particles. One of these particles is the electron, which has the ability to move from one place to another. The electron is classified as a negative electrical charge. Another particle, about 1800 times as heavy as the electron, is the proton and under normal conditions the proton will remain stationary. 1.8.1.3 Material is said to be in an electrically uncharged state when its atoms contain an

equal number of positive charges (protons) and negative charges (electrons). This balance is upset when pressure forces the electrons to move from atom to atom. This pressure, sometimes referred to as electromotive force, is commonly known as voltage. It should be noted that voltage that does not move through a conductor, but without voltage, there would be no current flow. For our purposes, it is easiest to think of voltage as the electrical pressure that forces the electrons to move. 1.8.1.4 Since we know that like charges repel and unlike charges attract, the tendency is

for the electrons to move from a position of over-supply (negative charge) to an atom that lacks electrons (positive charge). This tendency becomes reality when a suitable path is provided for the movement of the electrons. The transfer of electrons from a negative to a positive charge throughout the length of a conductor constitutes an electrical current. The rate that current flows through a conductor is measured in amperes and the word ampere is often used synonymously with the term current. To give an idea of the quantities of electrons that flow through a circuit, it has been theoretically established that one ampere equals 6.3 quintillion (6,300,000,000,000,000,000) electrons flowing past a fixed point in a conductor every second.

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LESSON I, PART B

1.8.1.5

Different materials vary in their ability to transfer electrons. Substances, such as

wood and rubber, have what is called a tight electron bond and their atoms greatly resist the free movement of electrons. Such materials are considered poor electrical conductors. Metals, on the other hand, have large amounts of electrons that transfer freely. Their comparatively low electrical resistance classifies them as good electrical conductors. 1.8.1.6 Electrical resistance is primarily due to the reluctance of atoms to give up their

electron particles. It may also be thought of as the resistance to current flow. 1.8.1.7 To better understand the electrical terms discussed above, we might compare

the closed water system with the electrical diagram shown in Figure 8. You can see that as the pump is running, the water will move in the direction of the arrows. It moves because pressure has been produced and that pressure can be likened to voltage in an electrical circuit. The pump can be compared to a battery or a DC generator. The water flows
VALVE SWITCH

LARGE PIPE

RESISTOR 10 OHM PUMP SMALL PIPE BATTERY 12 VOLT CLOSED WATER SYSTEM ELECTRICAL DIAGRAM

FIGURE 8

through the system at a certain rate. This flow rate in an electrical circuit is a unit of measure known as the ampere. The small pipe in the fluid circuit restricts the flow rate and can be likened to a resistor. This unit resistance is known as the ohm. If we close the valve in the fluid circuit, we stop the flow, and this can be compared to opening a switch in an electrical circuit. 1.8.2 Ohm's Law - Resistance is basic to electrical theory and to understand this

principle, we must know the Ohm's Law, which is stated as follows: In any electrical circuit, the current flow in amperes is directly proportional to the circuit voltage applied and inversely proportional to the circuit resistance. Directly proportional means that even though the voltage and amperage may change, the ratio of their relationship will not. For example, if we have a circuit of one volt and three amps, we say the ratio is one to three. Now if we increase the volts to three, our amperage will increase proportionately to nine amps. As can be seen, even though the voltage and amperage changed in numerical value, their ratio did not. The term "inversely proportional" simply means that if the resistance is

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LESSON I, PART B

doubled, the current will be reduced to one-half. Ohm's Law can be stated mathematically with this equation: I=ER or E=IR or R=EI

(E = Volts, I = Amperes, R = Resistance (Ohms))

1.8.2.1 1)

The equation is easy to use as seen in the following problems: A 12 volt battery has a built-in resistance of 10 ohms. What is the amperage? 12 10 = 1.2 amps

2)

What voltage is required to pass 15 amps through a resistor of 5 ohms? 15 5 = 75 volts

3)

When the voltage is 80 and the circuit is limited to 250 amps, what is the value of the resistor? 80 250 = .32 ohms

1.8.2.2

The theory of electrical resistance is of great importance in the arc welding

process for it is this resistance in the air space between the electrode and the base metal that contributes to the transfer of electrical energy to heat energy. As voltage forces the electrons to move faster, the energy they generate is partially used to overcome the resistance created by the arc gap. This energy becomes evident as heat. In the welding process, the temperature increases to the point where it brings metals to a molten state.
1.8.3 Electrical Power - The word

"watt" is another term frequently encountered in

electrical terminology. When we pay our electrical bills, we are actually paying for the power to run our electrical appliances, and the watt is a unit of power. It is defined as the amount of power required to maintain a current of one ampere at a pressure of one volt. The circuit voltage that comes into your home is a constant factor, but the amperage drawn from the utility company depends on the number of watts required to run the electrical appliance. The watt is figured as a product of volts times amperes and is stated mathematically with the following equation: W =E I E =WI I =WE

(W = Watts, E = Volts, I = Amperes) 1.8.3.1 The amperage used by an electrical device can be calculated by dividing the

watts rating of the device by the primary voltage for which it is designed.

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LESSON I, PART B

1.8.3.2

For example, if an appliance is designed for the common household primary

voltage of 115 and the wattage stamped on the appliance faceplate is 5, then the amperage drawn by the appliance when in operation is determined as shown: 5 115 = .04 amperes 1.8.3.3 Kilowatt is another term common in electrical usage. The preface "kilo" is a

metric designation that means 1,000 units of something; therefore, one kilowatt is 1,000 watts of power. 1.8.4 Power Generation - Electrical energy is supplied either as direct current (DC) or

alternating current (AC). With direct current, the electron movement within the conductor is in one direction only. With alternating current, the electron flow reverses periodically. Although some types of electrical generators will produce current directly (such as batteries, dry cells, or DC generators), most direct current is developed from alternating current. 1.8.4.1 Through experimentation, it was discovered that when a wire is moved through a

magnetic field, an electrical current is induced into the wire, and the current is at its maximum when the motion of the conductor is at right angles to the magnetic lines of force. The sketch in Figure 9 will help to illustrate this principle. 1.8.4.2 If the conductor is moved upwards in
GALVANOMETER

the magnetic field between the N and S poles, the galvanometer needle will deflect plus (+). Likewise, if the conductor is moved downwards the needle will deflect minus (-). With this principle of converting mechanical energy into electrical energy understood, we can apply it to the workings of an AC generator. 1.8.4.3 Figure 10 is a simplified sketch of an AC
FIGURE 9
ELECTRO-MAGNETIC INDUCTION

generator. Starting at 0 rotation, the coil wire is moving parallel to the magnetic lines of force and cutting none of them. Therefore, no current is being induced into the winding. 1.8.4.4 From 0 to 90 rotation, the coil wire cuts an increasing number of magnetic lines

of force and reaches the maximum number at 90 rotation. The current increases to the maximum because the wire is now at right angles to the lines of force.

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LESSON I, PART B
ROTATING COIL OR ARMATURE N 0 90

N
180 270

CONTACTS

PERMANENT MAGNETS OR FIELD COILS BASIC AC POWER GENERATION

FIGURE 10

1.8.4.5

From 90 to 180 rotation, the coil wire cuts a diminishing number of lines of

force and at 180 again reaches zero. 1.8.4.6 From 180 to 270, the current begins to rise again but in the opposite direction

because now the wire is in closer proximity to the opposite pole. 1.8.4.7 One cycle is completed as the coil wire moves from 270 to 0 and the current

again drops to zero. 1.8.4.8 With the aid of a graph, we can visualize the rate at which the lines of force are

cut throughout the cycle. If we plot the current versus degree of rotation, we get the familiar sine wave as seen in Figure 11. 1.8.4.9 With this sine wave, we can
(+) MAXIMUM (+)

see that one complete cycle of alternating current comprises one positive and one negative wave (negative and positive meaning electron flow in opposing directions). The frequency of alternating current is the number of such complete cycles per second. For most power applications, 60 cycles per second (60 Hertz) is the standard frequency in North America.

MAXIMUM () ()
0 START 90 1/4 TURN 180 1/2 TURN 270 3/4 TURN 360 FULL TURN

ONE CYCLE - ALTERNATING CURRENT

FIGURE 11

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LESSON I, PART B

1.8.4.10

Some welders use a three-phase AC supply. Three-phase is simply three

sources of AC power as identical voltages brought in by three wires, the three voltages or phases being separated by 120 electrical degrees. If the sine wave for the three phases are plotted on one line, they will appear as shown in Figure 12. 1.8.4.11 This illustrates that three-phase power is
1 CYCLE THREE PHASE AC 0 120 240

smoother than single-phase because the overlapping three phases prevent the current and voltage from falling to zero 120 times a second, thereby producing a smoother welding arc. 1.8.4.12

FIGURE 12

Since all shops do not have three-phase power, welding machines for both

single-phase and three-phase power are available.


1.8.5 Transformers - The function of a transformer is to increase or decrease voltage

to a safe value as the conditions demand. Common household voltage is usually 115 or 230 volts, whereas industrial power requirements may be 208, 230, 380, or 460 volts. Transmitting such relatively low voltages over long distances would require a conductor of enormous and impractical size. Therefore, power transmitted from a power plant must be stepped up for long distance transmission and then stepped down for final use 1.8.5.1 As can be seen in Figure 13, the voltage is generated at the power plant at

13,800 volts. It is increased, transmitted over long distances, and then reduced in steps for the end user. If power supplied to a transformer circuit is held steady, then secondary current (amperes) decreases as the primary voltage increases, and conversely, secondary current increases as primary voltage decreases. Since the current flow (amperes) determines the wire or conductor size, the high voltage line may be of a relatively small diameter.

HIGH VOLTAGE 34,000 V 13,800 V POWER PLANT 287,000 V STEP UP 300 MILES POWER TRANSMISSION 132,000 V STEP DOWN

4,600 V 208V 230V 460V FINAL USE

FIGURE 13

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LESSON I, PART B
1.8.5.2 The transformer in a welding machine performs much the same as a large power

plant transformer. The primary voltage coming into the machine is too high for safe welding. Therefore, it is stepped down to a useable voltage. This is best illustrated with an explanation of how a single transformer works. 1.8.5.3 In the preceding paragraphs, we have found than an electrical current can be

induced into a conductor when that conductor is moved through a magnetic field to produce alternating current. If this alternating current is passed through a conductor, a pulsating magnetic field will surround the exterior of that conductor, that is the magnetic field will build in intensity through the first 90 electrical degrees, or the first cycle. From that point, the magnetic field will decay during the next quarter cycle until the voltage or current reaches zero at 180 electrical degrees. Immediately, the current direction reverses and the magnetic field will begin to build again until it reaches a maximum at 270 electrical degrees in the cycle. From that point the current and the magnetic field again begin to decay until they reach zero at 360 electrical degrees, where the cycle begins again. 1.8.5.4 If that conductor is wound around a material with high magnetic permeability

(magnetic permeability is the ability to accept large amounts of magnetic lines of force) such as steel, the magnetic field permeates that core. See Figure 14. This conductor is called the primary coil, and if voltage is applied to one of its terminals and the circuit is completed, current will flow. When a second coil is wound around that same steel core, the energy that is stored in this fluctuating magnetic field in the core is induced into this secondary coil.
BASIC TRANSFORMER 460 TURNS PRIMARY COIL 460 V STEEL CORE SECONDARY COIL 80 V 80 TURNS

1.8.5.5

It is the build-up and collapse of this magnetic


FIGURE 14

field that excite the electrons in the secondary coil of the

transformer. This causes an electrical current of the same frequency as the primary coil to flow when the secondary circuit is completed by striking the welding arc. Remember that all transformers operate only on alternating current. 1.8.5.6 A simplified version of a welding transformer is schematically shown in Figure 15.

This welder would operate on 230 volts input power and the primary winding has 230 turns of wire on the core. We need 80 volts for initiating the arc in the secondary or welding circuit, thus we have 80 turns of wire in the secondary winding of the core. Before the arc is struck, the voltage between the electrode and the work piece is 80 volts. Remember that no current (amperage) flows until the welding circuit is completed by striking the arc.

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LESSON I, PART B

1.8.5.7

Since the 80 volts


41.74 AMPS

9600 WATTS 230 TURNS


230 VOLTS

9600 WATTS 80 TURNS SECONDARY OCV


80

necessary for initiating the arc is too high for practical welding, some means must be used to lower this voltage to a suitable level. Theoretically, a variable resistor of the proper value could be used as an output control since voltage is inversely proportional to

32 VOLTS 300 AMPS

PRIMARY

OUTPUT CONTROL SIMPLIFIED WELDING TRANSFORMER FIGURE 15

resistance as we saw when studying Ohm's Law. Ohm's Law also stated that the amperage is directly proportional to the voltage. This being so, you can see that adjusting the output control will also adjust the amperage or welding current. 1.8.5.8 After the arc is initiated and current begins to flow through the secondary or

welding circuit, the voltage in that circuit will be 32 volts because it is then being controlled by the output control.
1.8.6 Power Requirements - We can make another calculation by looking back at

Figure 15, and that is power consumption. Earlier, we explained that the watt was the unit of electrical power and can be calculated by the formula: Watts = Volts Amperes 1.8.6.1 circuit is: Watts = 32 300 Watts = 9600 Watts 1.8.6.2 The primary side of our transformer must be capable of supplying 9600 watts From Figure 15, we can see that the instantaneous power in the secondary

also (disregarding losses due to heating, power factor, etc.), so by rearranging the formula, we can calculate the required supply line current or amperage: Amperage = Watts Volts A = 9600 230 = 41.74 Amps 1.8.6.3 This information establishes the approximate power requirements for the welder,

and helps to determine the input cable and fuse size necessary.

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LESSON I, PART B 1.8.7 Rectifying AC to DC - Although much welding is accomplished with AC welding

power sources, the majority of industrial welding is done with machines that produce a direct current arc. The commercially produced AC power that operates the welding machine must then be changed (rectified) to direct current for the DC arc. This is accomplished with a device called a rectifier. Two types of rectifiers have been used extensively in welding machines, the old selenium rectifiers and the more modern silicon rectifiers, often referred to as diodes. See Figure 16. 1.8.7.1 The function of a rectifier in the
SILICON RECTIFIER SELENIUM RECTIFIER FIGURE 16

circuit can best be shown by the use of the AC sine wave. With one diode in the circuit, half-wave rectification takes place as shown in Figure 17. 1.8.7.2
SINGLE PHASE HALF WAVE RECTIFICATION FIGURE 17

The negative half-wave is simply cut off and a pulsating DC is produced. During

the positive half-cycle, current is allowed to flow through the rectifier. During the negative half-cycle, the current is blocked. This produces a DC composed of 60 positive pulses per second. 1.8.7.3 By using four rectifiers connected in a

certain manner, a bridge rectifier is created, producing full wave rectification. The bridge rectifier results in 120 positive half-cycles per second, producing a considerably smoother direct current than half-wave rectification. See Figure 18. 1.8.7.4 Three-phase AC can be rectified to
1 CYCLE SINGLE PHASE FULL WAVE RECTIFICATION FIGURE 18

produce an even smoother DC than single-phase AC. Since three-phase AC power produces three times as many half-cycles per second as singlephase power, a relatively smooth DC voltage results as shown in Figure 19.
3 PHASE FULL WAVE RECTIFICATION FIGURE 19

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LESSON I, PART B

1.9

CONSTANT CURRENT OR CONSTANT VOLTAGE

Welding power sources are designed in many sizes and shapes. They may supply either AC or DC, or both, and they may have various means of controlling their voltage and amperage output. The reasons for this is that the power source must be capable of producing the proper arc characteristics for the welding process being used. A power source that produces a satisfactory arc when welding with coated electrodes will be less than satisfactory for welding with solid and flux cored wires. 1.9.1 Constant Current Characteristics - Constant current power sources are used

primarily with coated electrodes. This type of power source has a relatively small change in amperage and arc power for a corresponding relatively large change in arc voltage or arc length, thus the name constant current. The characteristics of this power source are best illustrated by observing a graph that plots the voltampere curve. As can be seen in Figure 20, the curve of a constant current machine drops downward rather sharply and for this reason, this type of machine is often called a "drooper."
V 70 60 50 40 30 30V - 308 A 20 10 80 VOLT / AMPERE CURVE CONSTANT CURRENT

1.9.1.1

In welding with coated electrodes, the

output current or amperage is set by the operator while the voltage is designed into the unit. The operator can vary the arc voltage somewhat by increasing or decreasing the arc length. A slight increase in arc length will cause an increase in arc voltage and a slight decrease in amperage. A slight decrease in arc length will cause a decrease in arc voltage and a slight increase in amperage. 1.9.2

O L T S

34V - 290 A 32V - 300 A

100

200

300

AMPERES CONSTANT CURRENT VOLT / AMPERE CURVE

FIGURE 20

Constant Voltage Characteristics - Constant voltage power sources, also

known as constant potential, are used in welding with solid and flux cored electrodes, and as the name implies, the voltage output remains relatively constant. On this type of power source, the voltage is set at the machine and amperage is determined by the speed that the wire is fed to the welding gun. Increasing the wire feed speed increases the amperage. Decreasing the wire feed speed decreases the amperage. 1.9.2.1 Arc length plays an important part in welding with solid and flux cored electrodes,

just as it does in welding with a coated electrode. However, when using a constant voltage power source and a wire feeder that delivers the wire at a constant speed, arc length caused by operator error, plate irregularities, and puddle movement are automatically

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LESSON I, PART B

compensated for by the characteristics of this process. To understand this, keep in mind that with the proper voltage setting, amperage setting, and arc length, the rate that the wire melts is dependent upon the amperage. If the amperage decreases, this melt-off rate decreases and if the amperage increases, so does the melt-off rate. 1.9.2.2 In Figure 21, we see that condition #2 produces the desired arc length, voltage,

and amperage. If the arc length is increased as in #1, the voltage increases slightly; the amperage decreases considerably, and therefore, the melt-off rate of the wire decreases. The wire is now feeding faster than it is melting off. This condition will advance the end of the wire towards the work piece until the proper arc length is reached where again, the melt-off rate equals the feeding rate. If the arc length is decreased as in #3, the voltage drops off slightly, the amperage is increased considerably, and the melt-off rate of the wire increases. Since the wire is now melting off faster than it is being fed, it melts back to the proper arc length where the melt-off rate equals the feeding rate. This is often referred to as a self-adjusting arc. These automatic corrections take place in fractions of a second, and usually without the operator being aware of them. 1.9.2.3 There are a variety of different welding machines, each with its own unique
100 200 300 AMPERES 400 30 V O L T S 40 1 2 3

20

10

VOLT / AMPERE CURVE - CONSTANT VOLTAGE FIGURE 21

internal design. Our purpose is not to detail the function of each part of the machine, but to emphasize that their main difference is in the way they control the voltage and amperage output.
1.9.3 Types of Welding Power Sources - A great variety of welding power sources

are being built today for electric arc welding and we shall mention some of the major types briefly. Welding power sources can be divided into two main categories: static types and rotating types.
1.9.3.1 Static Types - Static type power sources are all of those that use commercially

generated electrical power to energize a transformer that, in turn, steps the line voltage down to useable welding voltages. The two major categories of static power sources are the transformer type and the rectifier type.

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LESSON I, PART B

1.9.3.1.1 The transformer type produce only alternating current. They are commonly called "Welding Transformers." All AC types utilize single-phase primary power and are of the constant current type. 1.9.3.1.2 The rectifier types are commonly called "Welding Rectifiers" and produce DC or, AC and DC welding current. They may utilize either single phase or three phase input power. They contain a transformer, but rectify the AC or DC by the use of selenium rectifiers, silicon diodes or silicon controlled rectifiers. Available in either the constant current or the constant voltage type, some manufacturers offer units that are a combination of both and can be used for coated electrode welding, non-consumable electrode welding and for welding with solid or flux cored wires.
1.9.3.2 Rotating Types - Rotating type power sources may be divided into two classifi-

cations: 1. 2. Motor-Generators Engine Driven

1.9.3.2.1 Motor-generator types consist of an electric motor coupled to a generator or alternator that produces the desired welding power. These machines produced excellent welds, but due to the moving parts, required considerable maintenance. Few, if any, are being built today. 1.9.3.2.2 Engine driven types consist of a gasoline or diesel engine coupled to a generator or alternator that produces the desired welding power. They are used extensively on jobs beyond commercial power lines and also as mobile repair units. Both rotating types can deliver either AC or DC welding power, or a combination of both. Both types are available as constant current or constant voltage models.
1.9.4 Power Source Controls - Welding power sources differ also in the method of

controlling the output current or voltage. Output may be controlled mechanically as in machines having a tapped reactor, a moveable shunt or diverter, or a moveable coil. Electrical types of controls, such as magnetic amplifiers or saturable reactors, are also utilized and the most modern types, containing silicon controlled rectifiers, give precise electronic control. 1.9.4.1 A detailed discussion of the many types of welding power sources on the market

today is much too lengthy a subject for this course, although additional information on the type of power sources for the various welding processes will be covered in Lesson II. 1.9.4.2 Excellent literature is available from power source manufacturers, however, and

should be consulted for further reference.

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LESSON I, GLOSSARY

APPENDIX A LESSON I - GLOSSARY OF TERMS

AISI

American Iron and Steel Institute A material in which the atoms are capable of transforming into two or more crystalline structures at different temperatures.

Allotropic

Alternating Current

An electrical current which alternately travels in either direction in a conductor. In 60 cycles per second (60 Hz) AC, the frequency used in the U.S.A., the current direction reverses 120 times every second.

Ampere

Unit of electrical rate of flow. Amperage is commonly referred to as the current in an electrical circuit.

ASME ASTM Atom

American Society of Mechanical Engineers American Society for Testing and Materials The smallest particle of an element that posses all of the characteristics of that element. It consists of protons, neutrons, and electrons.

Carbon Steel

(Sometimes referred to as mild steel.) An alloy of iron and carbon. Carbon content is usually below 0.3%.

Conductor

A material which has a relatively large number of loosely bonded electrons which may move freely when voltage (electrical pressure) is applied. Metals are good conductors.

Constant Current

(As applied to welding machines.) A welding power source which will produce a relatively small change in amperage despite changes in voltage caused by a varying arc length. Used mostly for welding with coated electrodes.

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LESSON I, GLOSSARY
Constant Voltage (As applied to welding machines.) A welding power source which will produce a relatively small change in voltage when the amperage is changed substantially. Used mostly for welding with solid or flux cored electrodes. Direct Current An electrical current which flows in only one direction in a conductor. Direction of current is dependent upon the electrical connections to the battery or other DC power source. Terminals on all DC devices are usually marked (+) or (-). Reversing the leads will reverse the direction of current flow. Electron Negatively charged particles that revolve around the positively charged nucleus in an atom. Ferrous Containing iron. Example: carbon steel, low alloy steels, stainless steel. Hertz Hertz (Hz) is the symbol which has replaced the term cycles per second. Today, rather than saying 60 cycles per second or simply 60 cycles, we say 60 Hertz or 60 Hz. High Alloy Steels Steels containing in excess of 10% alloy content. Stainless steel is considered a high alloy because it contains in excess of 10% chromium. Induced Current or Induction The phenomena of causing an electrical current to flow through a conductor when that conductor is subjected to a varying magnetic field. Ingot Casting of steel (weighing up to 200 tons) formed at mill from melt of ore, scrap limestone, coke, etc. Insulator A material which has a tight electron bond, that is, relatively few electrons which will move when voltage (electrical pressure) is applied. Wood, glass, ceramics and most plastics are good insulators.

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LESSON I, GLOSSARY
Kilowatt Low Alloy Steels 1,000 watts Steels containing small amounts of alloying elements (usually 1% to 5% total alloy content) which drastically improves their properties. Non-Ferrous Containing no iron. Example: Aluminum, copper, copper alloys.

Ohm Phase Transformation

Unit of electrical resistance to current flow.

The changes in the crystalline structure of metals caused by temperature and time.

Proton Rectifier

Positively charged particles which are part of the nucleus of atoms. An electrical device used to change alternating current to direct current.

SAE Transformer

Society of Automotive Engineers An electrical device used to raise or lower the voltage and inversely change the amperage.

Volt

Unit of electromotive force, or electrical pressure which causes current to flow in an electrical circuit.

Watt

A unit of electrical power. Watts = Volts x Amperes

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