SAfETy IN WELDING

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Safety check list for welding and related processes
Preparation for hot-work onboard should include, without being limited to the points below: Equipment ✓ Check that the power source functions correctly, is correctly connected to mains, and that you are familiar with its operation.
Keep your welding equipment well maintained.

✓ Ensure that gas cylinders are properly secured, in upright position, and fitted with correct and properly functioning regulators for the gas. Acetylene and oxygen regulators shall be fitted with flashback arrestors. Protect cylinders against heat and mechanical damage. ✓ The valve opening of the acetylene cylinder shall point away from other compressed gas cylinders, and a heat resistant mitten shall be available. ✓ Hoses shall be in good condition, without leaks or damage, and with correct colour coding for the gas. (Red for acetylene, blue for oxygen, black for shielding gases and filtered air). Use correct hose connectors and hose clamps. Pieces of pipe and twisted wire must never be used. Never use oil or grease in connection with welding gases and never use copper in connection with acetylene. ✓ Cables shall be of oil resistant type with undamaged insulation and properly mounted cable connectors. Use safety cable connectors where both halves are protected to prevent contact with deck when disconnected.

Never use defective welding cables.

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Work place Tidy up the work place and remove any flammable materials. ✓ Check all gas connectors for leaks. and the ground clamp should be fastened with good electrical contact directly on the work piece.00 ✓ Keep hoses and cables clear of passage ways and protected from sparks. 1. and that personnel familiar with its use is present. Place ground clamp (return clamp) directly on the work piece. electrodes (TIG. including check of blowpipes (AC/ Ox). GMAW. know where the return current goes. hot metal and mechnical damage e. and post a warning sign that welding is in progress. ✓ Both welding and ground clamp cables should be stretched to the work place. ✓ Shield the work place to protect others from sparks and radiation from the arc. in doorways. liquids and gases from workplace and adjacent spaces including spaces above/below decks. etc. ✓ Ensure that sufficient and correct fire fighting equipment is available at the workplace. This is especially important when working on galvanized or coated surfaces which may produce harmful fumes when heated. hatches. 31 . MMAW). Plasma). nozzles (AC/Ox. if necessary with special fume extraction equipment. behind bulkheads and inside pipes or containers. TIG. including torch valves. Plasma). Keep cables and hoses clear of passage ways. Plasma. Ensure that the work place is properly ventilated. and insulation (TIG.SAfETy IN WELDING ✓ Check that torches and electrode holders are in good working order. Cover any openings through which sparks may be led to other areas onboard which have not been prepared for hot work.g. Replace defective gaskets with original gaskets only. Even Argon may be a safety risk if it replaces air in a confined area due to excessive leaks. Flame Spray.

an assistant protected in the same manner as the welder should accompany him. Ensure that filter glasses are unbroken and have the correct shade. Do not wear clothes of highly combustible materials or wet clothes. shield.g. and when necessary also use additional leather clothing for protection against sparks. certificates and permits for hot work have been issued. wear safety shoes and a proper boiler suit with long sleeves. lighters. Operator / assistant protection ✓ When working. ✓ Use head and face protection (helmet. ✓ If work is being done outside the ship’s workshop. ✓ If work has been done inside a confined space the assistant should be placed outside.SAfETy IN WELDING 1. ✓ Welding gloves should always be used. goggles). (Gas quick couplings and an unlocked safety cable connector may act as emergency cut-offs). oily rags. and do not carry combustible material. e. 3 .00 Cover openings! Sparks may travel far! Hot work procedure ✓ Ensure that all relevant check lists. within view of the welder and with possibility to cut off gas and power supply. Ensure proper ventilation. matches. heat and electric shock.

Available from Unitor: ID No. 811053 Rev. • Safety boots with steel toes. ✓ Never use acetylene or oxygen to blow away dust from yourself or the workplace. When hot work is completed the work place shall be inspected at regular interval to ensure that no risk of fire remains. • Face shield w/handle or face shield w/ head band • Welders gloves For work in vertical and overhead position • Working overall • Safety boots with steel toes. rayon and polyester. When work is paused or completed ✓ Always remove coated electrodes from the electrode holder and switch/close off gas and current at the source (welding machine. Avoid synthetic materials.00 For light duty work (200 Amps or lower) • Working overall w/long sleves (flame retardent material). including nylon. gas outlet) also during short breaks for meals etc. 0 A3 Wall Chart “Safety Checklist for Welding and Related Thermal Processes”.SAfETy IN WELDING 1. Preferably without too many pockets that easily catch sparks. cylinder valve. • Face shield w/head band • Welders gloves • Arm protector • Leather spats ✓ Where necessary use a fresh air unit or breathing apparatus to avoid inhaling fumes and dust from the welding process. 33 For heavy duty work (above 200 Amps) • Working overall • Safety boots with steel toes • Face shield w/head band • Welders gloves • Leather jacket • Leather trousers . Always keep dry and keep the workplace dry. ✓ Do not leave the workplace unattended. For same reason avoid zips. especially when arc welding. Only when this has been assured should fire fighting equipment be retumed to its normal storing place. No.

In this chapter the following will be described: • Normal welding/gouging with coated electrodes • Air-Carbon-Arc gouging with copper coated carbon electrodes Each of these areas require their special electrode holder. but it took some years of refining coatings and testing the reliability of welded joints before the process was accepted in the fabrication of steel constructions. 4. Different electrode holders are required depending on the type of welding work. thereby introducing MMA welding as a production process for the maritime market. In 1938. at least for the less demanding electrodes. The electric arc formed between electrode and workpiece has two objectives. most metallic material may be arc welded in any position and in any thickness down to approximately  mm. By selecting the correct electrode. and the only welding equipment required in addition to the power supply is a suitable electrode holder. however. the world’s first wholly welded oceangoing ship was launched in Malmø. The first coated electrode was patented by the Swedish engineer Oskar Kjellsberg in 1905. a process that was first introduced in 1888 in Russia. to melt the edges of the joint forming a melt pool on the workpiece. The popularity of the Manual Metal Arc Welding process is to a large degree based on its versatility in addition to its modest requirements for equipment. based on the electric circuit. Even quite unsophisticated welding machines like a step-down transformer may be used as power supply.01 Arc processes require a complete electric circuit. Initially manual metal arc welding was done with bare metal electrodes without any coating. and to melt the tip of the coated electrode.ELECTRODE WELDING AND GOUGING Introduction The principle of Manual Metal Arc Welding (MMAW) commonly called “stick electrode” welding is. Always remember proper grounding. 336 . as for all arc welding processes. The electrode is consumed and acts as a filler material mixing with the melted base material to fill up the joint.

and 100 or 10 times a second the current will actually be zero. The welding current flows through the entire system and back to the power source. welding cable. being the heat source for the welding or cutting process. moving from the negative pole (-) to the positive pole (+). Practical setup Welding machine Welding cable Return cable Electrode holder Electrode Ground clamp Arc Workpiece 4. as shown in the diagram. consisting of the power source. Proper grounding and return cable is therefore always required to ensure good welding conditions and avoid accidents by unintended welding arcs being established e.01 Welding current The arc properties are dependent on the current supplied to it. electrode. AC is achieved when the power supply switches positive and negative polarity at a frequency which normally is 50 or 60 times per second (50 or 60 Hz). Basically there are two different types of electric current. Note that the workpiece must be a part of the electric circuit in all arc welding processes. an electric circuit is required. ground clamp and return cable. workpiece. The arc. arc. will have a temperature between approximately 6000°C in the arc from a coated electrode and up to 8000°C (8 times the surface temperature of the sun) in the plasma arc used for cutting. electrode holder or torch depending on the process. The electrons will then no longer flow in a steady stream but flow back and forth in the cable. DC is a stream of negatively charged electrons flowing through the cable.ELECTRODE WELDING AND GOUGING To establish an arc for welding and cutting. at a poor ground connection. alternating current (AC) and direct current (DC).g. 337 .

These requirements should be observed when installing welding equipment on board. As the AC actually is zero each time it changes direction only electrodes specially developed for AC will be usable with welding transformers. in onboard repair and maintenance welding the Wire Welding Process Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW) process is an alternative for aluminium welding which offers several advantages. Where burns are the main danger from an electric shock from DC. still delivering AC to the welding arc. as the back and forth flowing electrons serve the purpose of tearing up the unmelted oxide layer that forms on top of an aluminium melt pool. To avoid the dangers the current pulses represent in cases of electric shock. The only welding application that requires AC as welding current is TIG welding of aluminium. However. 4. and is done with DC.01 DC current. It is normally obtained through a welding power source (inverter or rectifier) that rectifies the AC from the mains supply to a DC of correct amperage and voltage for welding. AC current cycling from one direction through zero to the opposite direction. DC as welding current DC is by far the best suited and most commonly used current for welding processes. The pulsating effect of AC has proven to be especially dangerous to an operator in case of electric shock. constant towards the positive (+) pole.ELECTRODE WELDING AND GOUGING AC as welding current Mains power will normally be AC. several countries have issued regulations on how smooth the DC current shall be in order to be accepted as DC without requirements for open circuit voltage reducing devices. the AC pulses may in addition cause cramps and heart failure as the pulses affect the nervous system. 338 . Authorities in several countries have therefore issued special regulations and demands for open circuit voltage reducing equipment for welding power sources with AC output. and the simplest form of welding power sources are transformers that reduce the mains voltage and provide means for adjusting the amperage (welding current). 50 or 60 complete cycles per second.

The principal task of all power sources is to take alternating current from the mains and bring the high voltage down to a suitable working voltage. Most root runs are done with DC. This type of current changes direction 50 or 60 times per second (50-60 Hz).ELECTRODE WELDING AND GOUGING Basic principles There are three different types of current used for Welding: DC-. There are restrictions on alternating current used on board ships because this type of current goes deep into the body and can harm vital organs if the body becomes part of the electric circuit. If we want deep penetration we can connect the electrode to – polarity and thereby bombard the base material with electrons that make 70% of the heat accumulating in the base material. Manual Metal Arc welding Transformers: Alternating Current Inverters & Rectifiers: Direct Current + or – Welding machine Return cable Welding cable Electrode holder Arc Ground clamp Coating Core rod Shielding smoke Base metal Molten weld Travel Metal transfer 4. high weld build up and shallow penetration. This type of current runs in one direction (from – to +) so we can manipulate by connecting the electrode to either . Rectifiers and inverters also convert the AC current into DC current.01 – electrons + 30 % + 70 % electrons 50 % electrons +– AC Alternating current 50 % 70 % DC- – DC+ 30 % Direct current moving from – to + 339 . Connecting the electrode to + polarity gives the opposite reaction with a high burn-off rate on the electrode. DC+ and AC. while filler passes and capping runs are done with DC+ polarity.or + polarity. Transformer power sources produce alternating current (AC). Rectifier and inverters produces direct current (DC) which is regarded as a safe type of current to use on board.polarity to get the necessary penetration.