Gas Welding Process Explained

a man welding a metal part

Gas welding is a process of construction that involves the use of gases as well as oxygen to weld metals together. Other names for gas welding are oxyacetylene welding and oxy welding. Developed in 1903, gas welding is used to weld pipes and tubes together while also being an effective way to repair metal.

Benefits of Gas Welding

Many professionals use gas welding as the equipment is versatile. Not only can gas welding techniques be used to weld metals together, but the equipment can be used to create metal art projects. Gas welding equipment can be used for welding metals like steel and iron, but metal heating, brazing, and braze welding are also possible.

Fuels for Gas Welding

As the name suggests, acetylene is one of the preferred fuels in gas welding. Other fuels include gasoline, hydrogen, butane, propylene, and others. These fuels are mixed with oxygen in order to promote heat to melt the metals. Combining the fuel with the oxygen is called oxidation, though many people will also refer to the process as combustion.

Gas Welding Equipment

a man welding a large pipe

The welding equipment has an oxygen source as well as a fuel gas source which helps to begin the welding process. With two hoses and two pressure regulators for each source, the welding apparatus works with the torch to weld the materials. If portability is a concern, torches are made with pressurized liquid fuels to lighten the load of the equipment. A regulator is also involved, controlling the pressure from the tanks to the hoses. The user controls the flow of the fuels with the regulator in both the hose and in the cylinder.

Process of Gas Welding

By using a welding torch, the welder can weld metals together. The metals being welded together are heated to a high enough temperature to melt, but then a filler is added to the melted metal in order to create a strong connection. The oxygen and the fuel is mixed to create a flame which then can be directed along the metal to create the desired effect. The torch is moved by hand to help control the process and final result.

Other Parts of the Welding Process

welding supplies laying on the floor

The non-return valve of the welding apparatus is important for safety. This will keep the gases and the pressure from blowing back into the cylinder, causing the cylinder to explode or for any other parts of the equipment to become damaged. A check valve doesn't provide the same sort of safety measure as the non-return valve, but it does help keep gas flowing in only one direction. Finally, the torch is what is used to control the welding process, focusing heat and flame in one area to weld metals together, reshape them, or bend them.

Gas welding can be dangerous if you're not trained in the proper use of torches and fuel combining. To make sure you are safe, be certain to take a training course in welding before you begin.