Aluminium Welding Wire Feed-ability Issue.
Feeding issues with Aluminium welding wire are well known within the welding industry, and are often a hot topic of discussion. Companies spend time and money to try and combat the lack of rigidity and high softness of aluminium consumables, buying expensive Push-Pull torches, using increased diameter Teflon liners, trialing different configurations of contact-tips, trying to keep the welding torch cable straight... these are all common methods used, often causing product costs to inflate without necessarily having a substantial impact.
Manufacturers using MIG processes often blame all the above methods, whilst overlooking the quality of the Aluminium welding consumables themselves.
MSMK training recently performed surface macro-examination checks on 3 different welding wires ER 5356 A1Mg5 grade from different manufacturers who stated their wires were triple shaved using diamond die.
Wire N1 This sample showed cracks and micro fissures along the randomly selected areas tested. As a result, high friction and spalling occurred which in turn blocked the Teflon liner with small particles and prevented welding wire from feeding through correctly.
Wire N2 Our testing of this consumable found unacceptable surface roughness with no micro fissures along the randomly selected areas. As a result, high friction occurred which in turn blocked the Teflon liner with small aluminium shaving particles, preventing efficient wire feed.
Wire N3 Examination of this sample found minimal surface roughness, unidirectional shaving lines and no significant scratches. Closer inspection also found a total absence of cracks and micro fissures on the observed wire segments. As a result, this welding wire consistently showed excellent feed ability in typical day to day use in welding torches. In this case, MSMK training recommended a change in consumable supplier for our client.
For more information about training, procurement concerns or issues with Aluminium welding please contact us and we will be happy to help you.