Advantages and Disadvantages of Laser Welding Vs. MIG/MAG/GTAW Arc Welding
Welding often is the most critical process in a fab shop as it is usually one of the last steps in fabricating components. Parts have spent hours being cut into precise shapes and likely formed into various shapes prior to welding. Significant material costs, time and labor have been added making these valuable components now being presented to the welding stations. But which is the right welding application to use? Should the tried and trusted MIG/TIG welding approach be best or should the much newer process of Laser Welding be implemented? What factors need to be considered when deciding? Below we answer these questions and open an insight into the differences between these important welding processes.
Simple to use laser welding machines, also called beam welders, are very quick and easy to use. The laser spot welding machine has the advantages of simple operation and fast welding speed but has difficulty gaining penetration into thicker materials. These operations of non MIG welding systems is relatively difficult, and specialized, although the welding speed is relatively fast, the welding speed of an automatic laser welding machine and automatic MIG welding is not very different. Because MIG welding still needs molten wire, the welding speed will be slightly slower than that of automatic laser welding machine and is only hampered by the wire feeding speed.
Under the right conditions, the operation of laser welding is much less difficult than that of non melting electrode argon arc welding. In fact, argon arc welding needs accurate consumables manufactured with high precision machinery and is prone to component failure, but laser welding is much better and easy to operate under the right conditions. Even if there are errors in laser welding typically the problem is not big and can be easily corrected.
Laser welding machine is better for welding thin-walled materials whose shape maintains a consistent structure such as stamped parts. For welding thick materials, if there are no high requirements for welding speed and welding accuracy, it can be more cost-effective to use argon arc welding machine.