Micro welding is a skill that has gained new respect in the past few years.
At one time mold makers, when making new molds has “no weld” policies, but these days the largest and best known mold manufacturers are utilizing micro welding as a major method of mold production. Reasons are many. Micro welding can save time and money. Micro welding can also produce a stronger, better method of production and engineering.
In fact, a micro welding revolution is taking place in industry today. Very tine, even microscoping wedding beads are placed in hard to reach areas. This micro welding process is known as micro dimensional welding and is only done by the best micro welding technicians. Engineers, in design of molds are beginning to anticipate the use of micro welding, and have welcomed it as another tool for quality design and production. This previously underutilized process provides high quality and saves money over machining processes previously used.
A micro dimensional welding technician is usually someone with experience in moldmaking and mold design, and a good understanding of metallurgy. Abstract thinking is required because the technician must be able t accurately envision three dimensional features using micro welding, and must be able to monitor and measure the weld to ensure that all parts are sufficiently covered. The micro dimensional welding technician must be able to understand what the mold maker needs and communicate intelligently about the requirements to develop a plan for providing the best solution possible for a project. Cost is, of course, a factor, as is being able to utilize various techniques and flexibility, since damage areas to be repaired are unpredictable.
Micro welding is also used in the production of inserts, typically created through machining of a bar. Use of micro welding greatly increases the speed and accuracy of making inserts and lowers cost. Using micro welding in this process also eliminates much of the room for error.
Micro welding is also being used in the design of cores and cavities where high wear or abrasive material. High wear resistance material that would be able to last would often be a factor in dictating material to be used to manufacture the core, or cavity. However, this is not always practical. Stainless steel for instance has finished requirements not compatible with the process. New micro welding filler metals have proven to be crack resistance, tough and able to be applied to most common steels used in tooling. This process was also more versatility and provides wear resistance.
Micro welding has come of age, with the ability of a weld to surpass the original metal in hardness and durability. For this reason skilled micro welding technicians have operated on high overhead and commanded premium prices for their skills. An increase in talented micro welders however, has led some to reduce overhead. The small size and amount of the equipment needed for micro welding has even led some micro welders to operate businesses from their home. The future for micro welding and industry looks very good, and will continue.