Companies often put significant effort into selecting the right welding equipment, but give little thought to the selection of consumables, not realising the impact using inferior tips and nozzles can have on weld quality.
When it comes to welding tips and nozzles, companies often go with the cheap alternative to reduce welding costs but saving upfront does not always equate to savings in the long-term.
Using inferior quality consumables can result in reduced weld performance, increased operator downtime, higher consumable usage and lower productivity. For companies serious about maximising their productivity, the selection of the right consumable product should warrant careful consideration when purchasing equipment and establishing welding procedures and processes.
Take the example of a major manufacturer that was experiencing poor arc starts and welding characteristics after a significant investment in new welding equipment.
At first, it was assumed that the equipment was at fault, but on closer inspection and with the assistance of external welding advice, it was determined that the problems were a result of the quality of contact tips being used.
The contact tips had excessive clearance which produced a situation where the wire was repeatedly burning back into the tip when an arc was trying to be established.
This issue would have been avoided by using higher quality torch consumables. The range of Centerfire consumables from Welding Industries is worth considering when seeking a high quality solution.
The large diameter tip base and tapered seat provides better electrical conductivity and heat transfer, plus the spatter shield within the nozzle protects the diffuser and gives smoother, less turbulent gas flow.
All this leads to consumables that last up to three times longer than cheaper alternatives. The drop-in tip design with no threads and no tools required to replace the tip or nozzle means a quick change over after burn back, reducing downtime.
Centerfire contact tips can be adapted to any brand of MIG gun meaning only one brand of consumables is required the cost savings are obvious, simplified ordering; less variety of stock carried and reduced wastage from trying the wrong tip.
So spending less upfront on consumables may seem like a valid way to reduce welding costs but in the end the increased frequency with which welding operators need to stop to change tips or nozzles and the rework required because of spatter or ineffective gas coverage causing porosity in the weld far outweighs any initial savings.
The bottom line is quality consumables maximise the weld performance and the production time of welding staff, keeping productivity up and costs down.