The need for weld repair and surfacingThere are probably more welders employed doing maintenance and repair welding than there are in any other industry grouping. The work done in the primary metal industry is primarily maintenance and repair. This is true also of the utility services category and by combining these with repair services you find that approximately 18% of the welders are engaged in this type of work. In addition, it has prime importance to welding since the earliest use of welding was for repair work. The most famous incident happened at the outbreak of World War I when German ships were interned in New York harbor. Their crews, hoping to make the ships inoperable, sabotaged the engines and machinery. However, by means of welding, repairs were quickly made and the ships were placed in transatlantic service to deliver material from the U.S. to Europe. Repair welding and surfacing are both considered in the field of maintenance welding and are covered together since they are both done by the same welders. Often it is extremely difficult to separate what is considered repair welding from maintenance welding, and surfacing can be included in both situations. The same basic factors apply to both weld repair and surfacing. Parts break and wear out continually. It may be impossible to obtain another part exactly like the one that broke or wore out. This is particularly true of older industrial machinery, construction machinery, agricultural machinery, machine tool parts, and even automobiles. Repaired parts may be more serviceable than the original part, since they can be reinforced and the weaknesses of the original part corrected. It is often more economical to weld repair since the delay in obtaining the replacement part could be excessive and the cost of the new part would normally exceed the cost of repairing the damaged part. Weld repair is commonly used to improve, update, and rework parts so that they equal or exceed the usefulness of the original part. This is normally attained, with the possible exception of weld-repaired cast iron parts that are subjected to heating and cooling. Weld repairs on cast iron parts subjected to repetitive heating and cooling may or may not provide adequate service life. The problem is that cast iron parts subjected to high-temperature heating and cooling, such as machinery brakes, furnace sections, etc., fail originally from this type of service and due to metallurgical changes the weld may fail again without providing adequate service life. Except for emergency situations, it is not wise to repair cast iron parts of this type. The metal that the part to be repaired is made of has a great influence on the service life of the repaired parts. Parts made of low-carbon and low-alloy steels can be repaired without adversely affecting the service life of the part. On the other hand, high-carbon steels may be weld repaired but must be properly heat treated if they are to provide adequate service life. It is absolutely essential that we know the type, specification, or composition of the metal that we are planning to weld. As mentioned above, it may be unwise to weld repair certain metals. But we should not weld on any metal unless we know its composition. The economics of weld repairing are usually very favorable and this applies to the smallest or the largest weld repair job. Some weld repair jobs may take only a few minutes and others may require weeks for proper preparation and welding. Even so, the money involved in a repair job may be less than the cost of a new part. A part made of any metal that can be welded can be repair welded or surfaced. In fact, some of the metals that are not normally welded can be given special surfacing coatings by one process or another. All the arc welding processes are used for repair and maintenance work. In addition the brazing processes, the oxy-fuel gas welding processes, soldering, thermit welding, electro slag welding, electron beam welding, and laser beam welding are also used. The thermal spraying processes are all widely used for surfacing applications. In addition, the various thermal cutting processes are used for preparing parts for repair welding. The selection of the appropriate preparation process and welding process depends on the same factors that are considered in selecting a welding or cutting process for the original manufacturing operation. In the case of repair welding, there are usually limitations, such as the availability of equipment for a one-time job and the necessity of obtaining equipment quickly for emergency repair work. This limits the selection and it is for this reason that the shielded metal arc welding process, the gas metal arc welding process, the gas tungsten arc welding process, and oxyacetylene welding and torch brazing are most commonly used. However, for many routine and continuous types of repair work some of the other welding processes may be the most economical. For example, submerged arc welding is widely used for building up the surface of worn parts. The electro slag process has been used to repair and resurface parts for hammer mills, for construction equipment, and for rebuilding rolls for steel mills. Thus there is a difference in the selection of the welding process for the routine, continuing types of repair and surfacing work versus the one-of-a-type or breakdown emergency repair job.
|The Cladded Pipe which made from Hardfacing Technonlogy|
Analyze and develop rework procedureThe success of a repair or surfacing job depends on the thought and preparation prior to doing any actual work on the project. Many factors must be considered in making a thorough analysis. A thorough analysis as outlined may not be required in many situations. This is due to experience gained by welders and others in analyzing jobs, making repairs, and then checking on the service life of the repaired part. As experience is gained many short cuts can be taken, but it is the intent to provide a detailed method of analyzing jobs so that the repair will be as successful as possible. One of the reasons for such an investigation is to establish the cause of the failure in the case of a broken part or the cause of wear or erosion in the case of a part to be surfaced. The four points outlined are:
- Make a detailed study of the actual parts that failed.
- Learn the background information concerning the specifications and design.
- Make an investigation of the materials used.
- Make a listing of all of the facts so that at the conclusion the reason of failure will be as accurate as possible.