Welding Different Types of Steel

Or how to weld just about anything. This section summarisess the welding procedures and filler materials you might need for the more commonly available types of steel and iron and was was funded by forum supporters.

Mild Steel

Welding mild steel is straightforward up to 18mm thick. Low hydrogen consumables and preheat might be necessary for thicker sections.

Mild Steel

Engineering Steels

EN19, EN24/EN24T and EN8 are engineering steels specified for their high strength. Consumables and preheating are normally specified to prevent Hydrogen induced cracking.

Engineering Stels

Corten

A weathering steel which turns orange in time, special fillers are required for thicker section so the weld weathers like the plate.

Corten

Cast Iron

Cast iron is not very malliable and can crack with the thermal expansion and contraction of welding. Soft consumables are generally used to weld cast iron.

Cast Iron

Weldox

High strength steels often used in the manufacture of digger buckets and skips. Consumables are chosen to match the strangth of the steel.

Weldox

Cast and Manganese Steels

Casting is purely the means of creating the shape, same as forging and rolling. Therefore it could be any grade from dead mild steel to Stainless.

Cast Steels

Hardox

This high hardness steel is normally found on the edges of digger buckets. Preheating is normally required to prevent cracking.

Hardox

Wrought Iron

Widely used until the late 19th centuary, wrought iron is corrosion resistant and easy to work, but is not really suitable for welding due to slag layers.

Wrought Iron

Stainless Steel

Consumables are chosen to match or exceed the chromium content of the parent metal.

Stainless Steel

Hardfacing

A hard, abrasion resistant bead of weld used on exposed surfaces of digging and quarying machinary.

Hard Facing

Chrome Moly

This corrosion resistant steel is widely used in power stations due to it's creep resistance, and pre and post heat are required for thick sections.

Chrome Moly

Hydrogen Embrittlement

The theory about why welds crack and why low hydrogen filler materials are specified for many thick or high strength steels.

Hydrogen Embrittlement

Credits

This section was written by Alan Mayfield who has 33 years experience (so far) with welding consumable manufacturers working and advising on development, production and use of MMA, MIG, TIG, FCW and Sub Arc products.

Following on from the Harry Brearley story (under stainless steel) My father worked for Brown - Bayley Steels, as did Harry Brearley. The Admiralty started making welding rods in Sheffield in the 1920’s. When war broke out they wanted to increase their output so they asked Harry Brearley for help. He set up a Welding Rod manufacturing section within Brown Bayleys. After the war the welding rod manufacturing division was privatised, still with Brearley as Technical Director, and became Welding Rods Ltd. I joined them in 1977 and some years later they were taken over by Lincoln Electric.

Photos

Thanks to everyone who gave permission to use their photos. I've added credits in the photo captions where possible.