You are on page 1of 2

New welding gas innovation

How to signicantly reduce your welding costs while


GAS CONTROLLER INNOVATION

improving weld quality and reducing your carbon footprint


Over the years, electric arc welding has developed from the relatively Bulk Pack and Ring Main Gas
simple electrode welder, to ever more complex processes, such as Source Systems
MIG and TIG welding, meeting precise engineering requirements High ow regulator on the pack
whilst maintaining a high level of operator safety. There are ongoing with no other gas ow control
demands for reduced production costs and in recent times pressure
This system operates on the premise that
has also been exerted on industry to help protect the environment various sized orifices in the main will
from carbon emissions. deliver accurate gas flow. Unfortunately
this is far from the facts. It tends to deliver
To enable the welding industry to meet what is necessary to adequately shield
wild flow fluctuations. The level of gas
these demands, equipment suppliers and the weld pool.
flow is largely determined by where the
manufacturers have had to develop inno- Generally, gas delivery systems fall
welding machine is positioned on the main
vative processes and solutions. Steady into two basic categories; individually
mounted gas cylinders and ring main or and fluctuations occur as the other welding
progress has been made including the
manifold systems with one central gas operators start and stop. This type of sup-
introduction of a.c. power sources with
pack source. posed gas control system cannot possibly
pulse frequency control, soft start, crater
deliver any level of accuracy or consistency
fill and TIG technologies including up
slope and down slope. Various types of
Individual Gas Cylinder and results in excessive gas usage and
cutting, laser etc. and new and exotic gas Systems in most cases inconsistent weld quality.
mixtures for difficult-to-weld materials Flow rate creep High ow regulator on the pack
have also been developed.
Loxton identified a phenomenon they
with inline ow meters
However, one area that Loxton Indus- coined flow-rate creep which occurs Most operators believe that the shielding
tries felt had not been researched and when regulators increase the flow rate as gas is being regulated by the flow meters
addressed conclusively was the ineffi- the gas pressure in the cylinder decreases. on their ring main but unfortunately this
ciency and cost blowout resulting from This can amount to a factor of up to three is not so as the meters do not regulate the
incorrect control of shielding gases used in times over the life of the cylinder, e.g. If the gas. They will not work correctly with
the gas metal arc welding process. Loxton regulator is not readjusted, an initial setting multiple users on a ring main system. As
Industries decided to investigate the issues of 15 L/min could easily end up 45 L/min other welding operators start welding, the
affected by gas flow levels. Some of the by the time the cylinder is empty! gas flow decreases, only to increase again
findings were as follows. when they stop. To compensate for the
Gas surge downward fluctuation and to ensure that
Welding operators To a varying degree, gas surge is present the flow of shielding gas does not get below
in almost all MIG and TIG welding gas the minimum flow necessary to shield the
After visiting a large number of welding systems and for many years has been virtu- welding pool, all flow meters on the main
workshops Loxton found that the majority ally ignored, even though excessive surge must be set well above what is required.
of welding operators seem to be under the can create porosity and poor penetration. This type of attempted gas control cannot
impression that more is better, increas- To make matters worse, these problems are deliver consistent non-fluctuating gas flow
ing their gas regulator pressures and flow compounded when flow rates are increased and will result in excessive gas usage and,
meters to levels that are well in excess of beyond what is necessary. once again, inconsistent weld quality.

Typical gas flow using individual cylinders Typical gas flow from a ring main system

50 l/m
Excess gas surge Excess gas surge
30 l/m
Gas flow without Flow-rite Gas flow without Flow-rite
Flow rate
Flow rate

30 l/m
20 l/m
Excess gas
Excess gas

10 l/m
With Flow-rite gas 10 l/m With Flow-rite gas
controller installed controller installed

Welding time Welding time

10 EXTRACT FROM AUSTRALASIAN WELDING JOURNAL VOLUME 55, FIRST QUARTER 2010
Save thousands off your
welding costs using Flow-rite
Improve Weld Quality Free Gas
The Flow-rite improves weld quality due to its unique ow controlling characteristics. The
Flow-rite gives a constant, steady ow from the rst pull of the trigger. This consistent, even
Analysis
roblems.
ow helps overcome porosity, excessive heat affected zone, heavy spatter and other problems.
Save Time
Down time is also greatly reduced due to the decrease in gas being used. Less frequent
nt
oving
changeover of gas packs or cylinders is required, reducing manual handling and improving
sive
OH&S. Also, better quality welds means lower reject rates are experienced and expensive
rework unnecessary.
Save Money
Not only is the Flow-rite proven to save up to 25-50% of total gas used, but cylinder inventories
ories may
be reduced, saving on expensive rental.
Help the Environment
The Flow-rite delivers only the gas you need for your process and no more. This reduction
ction
in waste lessens the energy required for gas production and transportation, thus
reducing carbon emissions.
Aussie Made
Loxton Industries Pty Ltd has proudly produced Australian made products like
the Flow-rite since 1984. Flow-rite complies under: AS 4267 & EN BS ISO 2503

To receive your FREE gas analysis, contact Loxton Industries on


Phone: (03) 9744 3030 E: info@loxtonindustries.com.au
Fax: (03) 9740 3035 W: www.loxtonindustries.com.au

High ow regulator on the pack troller that they called the Flow-rite. There are a growing number of com-
with inline regulators The Flow-rite has a unique proprietary panies which have taken advantage of the
control mechanism that is at the cutting improved efficiency that total welding
This system delivers shielding gas more
edge of gas control technology. This con- gas control offers and are very satisfied
efficiently and accurately than the two
trol mechanism monitors the amount of with the improved weld quality and the
systems above, however complete gas
shielding gas being used throughout the shielding gas savings they are achieving.
control is still inadequate. The excessive
welding process from the start to the finish, However gas savings and improved weld
gas surge that occurs when the welding
maintaining the set flow levels regardless quality are not all; other benefits that may
operator commences welding cannot be
of any supply fluctuations. The Flow-rite be gained from total gas control are:
eliminated, even with inline regulators
does not replace the existing regulator and Lower reject rate and less rework
and will result in excessive gas usage,
works in conjunction with it, operating Reduced downtime due to lower
possibly creating turbulence and defective
efficiently at low flow rates and creating turnover of cylinders or bulk packs
weld quality.
only a very small surge. It also comes with Reduced inventory of cylinders
As a result of their research, Loxton a tamper resistant security key, allowing required which equates to less rental
found that regulators and flow meters, management to keep control of the gas Improved OH&S issues due to less
even operating together, cannot accurately flow rate settings. It is already saving some handling
control welding gas flows. Weld quality is Australian businesses thousands of dollars Lower carbon emissions due to reduced
often unwittingly compromised, resulting in welding costs per annum. gas usage
in high reject rates and costly corrective Increased bottom line as a result of all
measures. Porosity, poor penetration, The Flow-rite is designed to accurately of the above
excessive heat affected zone (HAZ) and deliver the set litres per minute regard- The graphs shown on page 10 illus-
high spatter deposition are some of the less of all other supply factors and is a trate the difference between gas flows
problems that are affected by inconsist- set and forget controller that takes the often found at the welding torch and the
ent and/or excessive gas flow. Excessive guess-work out of shielding gas flows. complete flow control possible using the
gas use is also an unnecessary cost to Loxton Industries recommends that, to Flow-rite.
the business operator that can amount to obtain the best possible results from their For further information on Flow-rite gas
thousands of dollars per year. new technology, the gas flow rate setting controllers please contact Loxton Indus-
in litres per minute should be no more tries Pty Ltd Tel. (03) 9744 3030 Email
Innovative Technology than 10 to 12 times the wire thickness in info@loxtonindustries.com.au or visit
To resolve all of these deficiencies, millimetres. Example: 12 x 0.9 mm wire their website at www.loxtonindustries.
Loxton developed a specialised gas con- = 10.8 litres per minute. com.au
EXTRACT FROM AUSTRALASIAN WELDING JOURNAL VOLUME 55, FIRST QUARTER 2010 11