What Is Oxy Acetylene Welding?
Oxy Acetylene Welding was developed by French Engineers Edmond Fouche and Charles Picard. It uses a combination of oxygen and acetylene to join and cut metals. “Oxy” refers to oxygen, while “acetylene” is an odorless hydrocarbon gas.
Oxy Acetylene, known as Oxy-Fuel or Gas Welding, involves using different flue gases along with Oxygen based on material strength. Despite gas variations, the welding components and process remain consistent.
Parts Or Equipments Of Oxy Acetylene Welding
Following are the main Oxy Acetylene Welding Equipments:
- Gas Cylinders: Store Oxygen and Acetylene under high pressure, released manually during welding.
- Regulator: Fixed to the cylinder, it controls and regulates gas pressure for welding.
- Welding Torch: Central component generating a high-temperature flame for welding or cutting materials.
- Non-Return Valve: Ensures one-way gas flow from the cylinder, through the regulator, to the torch.
Oxy Acetylene Welding Working Principle
This is a straightforward which uses a flame temperature of around 3,500°C. Using oxygen and acetylene, the welding torch generates a high-temperature flame that melts the metal to be welded. A filler material bridges gaps between workpieces, and as it cools, the pieces are joined. The choice of filler depends on the metal being welded; for example, mild steel requires mild steel filler, and aluminum requires aluminum filler.
Oxy Acetylene Welding Advantages and Disadvantages
|Simple construction, no large parts or equipment
|Lower flame temperature compared to arc welding
|Easy to operate, does not require high skill
|Lack of high flux shield over the weld like in arc welding
|Suitable for welding, cutting, and separating
|Not ideal for thick materials, best for thin to medium-thin
|Lower temperature flame compared to arc welding
|Versatile – welds ferrous and non-ferrous metals
|Limited suitability for high-temperature applications
|Adjustable flame intensity with valve
Oxy Acetylene Welding Applications
Oxy Acetylene welding finds essential applications in various industries:
- Metal joining and cutting in industrial settings.
- Repairing damaged parts in automobile repairs.
- Fabrication workshops and industries.
Main Differences Between Oxy-Acetylene Welding and Other Types of Welding
- Oxy-fuel welding and arc welding (SMAW, FCAW, GMAW, GTAW) differ primarily in their heat sources.
- Oxy-fuel welding uses a flame with temperatures reaching up to 6,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Arc welding relies on electricity as a heat source, generating temperatures around 10,000 F.
- Caution is essential when working with either scorching temperature method. – In its early days, oxy-fuel welding was utilized for thick plates; nowadays, it’s mainly for thin metals.
- Certain arc welding processes, such as GTAW, have taken over oxy-fuel welding for thin metal applications.
Safety Precautions For Oxy Acetylene Welding
Safety is crucial in oxy-acetylene welding, and Juan advises aspiring welders to understand proper oxy-fuel setup and system testing procedures before starting welding.
Refer to the manufacturer’s operating instructions and safety recommendations for handling gas cylinders, gas mixing, and the correct use of oxy-fuel torches and tip sizes. Juan emphasizes the importance of understanding the proper use of welding gases such as:
- Methylacetylene-propadiene stabilized gas (MAPP™)
- Natural gas
For safety, Juan recommends adhering to welding safety standards like those outlined by the American Welding Society, ANSI Z49.1:
- Protect eyes, ears, head, hands, torso, and feet from burns.
- Check the area for combustible materials.
- Ensure everyone has proper personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Always be aware of the torch/flame direction.
- Follow proper setup and tear-down procedures.
While all welding types serve to join metal or non-metal parts, certain metals have properties that make them incompatible with specific welding processes. Various welding methods have evolved to address these challenges. Despite the necessity of oxy acetylene in specific applications, it is not universally suitable for joining all metals.