If you’ve ever wondered how to weld copper then this article is for you. Welding copper gives the metal even more versatility and strength.
This article will discuss not only the different types of welding processes you can use, but we’ll also walk you step by step through welding copper and add some tips at the end.
Table of Contents
The Different Methods for Welding Copper
There are three types of welding processes that are used for welding copper:
Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW)
This is a rapid, automatic welding process that produces good quality welds. GMAW welds are strong and have good heat resistance, and the process also has less slag. GMAW is a great way to make sure that you are getting a really tight weld.
Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW)
This welding process involves using electricity between a tungsten electrode and the workpiece. Welds are often very smooth and easier to clean than those made with other processes.
Manual Metal Arc Welding (MMAW)
MMAW is an arc welding method that is performed manually utilizing a wire feeder. It does not require any external power and hence, is very simple to use.
Step by Step Guide on How To Weld a Copper
1. Safety Precautions
NOTE: The risks associated with welding can be death, fire, blindness, and burns. Always strive to maintain the right balance between speed and safety. Speed can lead to accidents but so can going too slow.
2. Preparing Your Surface
Prepare the copper for welding by wiping or grinding away any corrosion or paint and remove any oil, grease, or other contaminants. This is perhaps the most important step you need to take before welding.
- Preheat the copper to a temperature of 500 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 10 minutes. Make sure your rod tip is clean
- Use an electric hand torch to heat up the other end until it is hot enough to melt metal (1400 degrees Fahrenheit).
- Move flame across the length of the heated end, slowly heating the entire length until the entire piece is hot enough to melt metal.
4. Determine the Joint Design
The design of joints is a very important process in welding because it affects how efficiently the weld is heated and cooled. Choosing the correct joint design will make it easier for welders to finish their projects while using less energy.
5. Adjusting Your Flame
Welding is not an easy task and should be done with caution. It is important to make sure that the flame is adjusted properly. Do this by setting the flame to more or less a neutral burn. You want an even mix of acetylene and oxygen.
6. Remove Any Flux
Clean off the flux (a substance used to protect metal from oxidation and impurities) with an alcohol-soaked rag or wire brush. Flux prevents molten metal from sticking to the surface and will leave unwanted deposits on your weld.
7. Decide on the Filler Material
No matter which welding method you want to use, please ensure that your filler contains either manganese, silicone or both. It all depends on what your welding job is all about.
8. Make Sure You Use the Right Shielding Gas for the Task
The first thing you need to do is to choose the appropriate shielding gas. There are many different types of shielding gases. All are classified as either neutral or active. Neutral gases include argon, helium, and hydrogen. Active gases include carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and pure oxygen.
9. What Welding Technique Will You Use?
To weld copper pipes, you will need to choose a welding technique. It really depends on only a few factors such as what you are making, what sort of filler you are using and which methods you are comfortable with.
10. The Welding Position Is Very Important
Make sure that the area is appropriate for you. We recommend a horizontal seam (press the hand down) position as even novice welders will be comfortable doing this.
Use These Tips for Welding Copper
Don’t Forget To Use Helium
In order to weld copper, you must have the right kind of gas and supply it to the welding torch. Helium is the best gas for this process because it will give you a much brighter light than other gases and the flame will last longer.
Also Read: How to Tee off an Existing Gas Line?
Make Sure Your Feet Are Covered
Protecting your feet is very important. Insulated shoes or safety boots will help protect you from injury.
Keep it Dry
Welding rods do NOT like any moisture on them. Keep you welding rods dry. A great way to do this is to store them in a. Air and moisture resistance storage container.
Always Insulate Copper
Proper insulation for copper is extremely important to protect against varying weather conditions, moisture and electrical components. Fiberglass blankets are excellent for this application.
And there you have it. We hope you enjoyed this article on how to weld copper. We discussed the types of welding, steps to do copper welds and provided tips on welding. You should now have the confidence and knowledge to start your own copper creation project. Best of luck and Happy Welding!