Welding is a process of fusing metal or thermoplastics together, and it differs from brazing or soldering, which is done at much lower temperatures and does not involve melting the base metal. Many items we use daily are welded, not to mention vehicles of all types, and if you’ve ever wondered how we managed before the discovery of welding, here is some information about the early days.
There is evidence that some civilisations in the Bronze Age were forge welding in Europe and the Middle East, then in the Middle Ages, welding became more widespread, with blacksmiths hammering heated metal repeatedly until it fused together. Although there were some minor developments, welding generally remained like this until the beginning of the 19th century.
Weapons and Armour
War was commonplace in those times, and the need for swords and armour plating meant that forge welding was extensively used across Europe, with many skilled blacksmiths commissioned by the nobility to craft fine things from metal. Due to the skill of the blacksmiths, swords became harder, and they were also able to craft fine jewellery using welding techniques.
In 1836, an Englishman named Edmund Davy discovered acetylene and this was used in all forms of open flame welding, as it gave a much higher temperature when mixed with oxygen. Oxy-Acetylene welding is perhaps the most popular kind of welding used today.
In 1880, Sir Humphrey Davy invented a battery operated tool that created an arc between carbon electrodes, and this method soon became very popular in all industries. Lime coated metal electrodes were first introduced in 1900, and this formed the basis for the arc welding rods we use today.
This was used in the shipbuilding industry, with the New York Navy Ship Yard being the first place to use stud welding. This system was used in the shipbuilding and construction industries until it was replaced with smothered arc welding, which proved to be stronger and more efficient.
Today’s welders use a variety of methods to fuse together a range of materials, and with gas and oil pipelines, the quality of the welds must be first class. If you live in Western Australia, and are looking for reliable welding in Perth, there are online solutions, with established companies that deal with all types of welding.
An Integral Part of Industry
Heavy industry relies on many forms of welding, and the automobile industry has been using robots to weld vehicles for a few decades now. Automation has become standard on many production lines, with robot welders that can complete a series of complex welds in a very short time. If you are looking for welding in Perth, or any other city, there are online solutions with companies that specialise in certain types of welding.
Modern society is fabricated on the welding industry, and it has provided a strong method to fuse materials together that has developed since we first discovered that applying heat can fuse metals together.