Welding galvanized steel in the Automotive industry

9/1/2017
Improved welding solutions/methods to weld hot dip galvanized steel at higher speeds and using cost effective filler materials through advanced GMAW technology. -As published by The Welding Journal, written by Vlad Tudorache.
Welding galvanized steels in the automotive industry
The high demands of the automotive industry today are challenging and an innovative solution must be considered when faced with welding applications on coated steels. The specific challenges of welding zinc coated steels ( ex. 60G60G) are being driven by vehicle manufactures expectations of being cost effective while maintaining all necessary conditions for a quality product.  Many applications are being joined using robotic GMAW in combination with different variations of filler materials, such as cored and solid wires including brazing wires when GMAB is used.  With the cost of these filler materials, when compared with solid wires, ranging from 3X in the case of cored wires and 5X in the case of brazing wires, it is very important to identify new technologies and methods to find better ways of joining coated steels while using cost effective filler materials, such as solid wires, at increased travel speeds.

Technology Based SolutionFor years the main “method’ to robotically weld coated steels with solid wire successfully, was to limit the travel speed at approximately 20-25 ipm.  This slower speed allowed for more time to burn off the galvanized coating at the leading edge of the welding pool while reducing the speed of the solidification and increased time for degassing of the weld pool.  At the same time this reduced travel speed would limit arc disruption enough that spatter would not become uncontrollable during welding.  This production method used GMAW-P technology offered by various welding equipment manufacturers. 

Read the whole story in this month's issue of The Welding Journal