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Structural Steel Welding Tips For Beginners

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There are many types of welding jobs that exist today. One of the most important is structural steel welding, a type of fabrication that is performed to erect structures like metal frameworks. If this career path in welding interests you and you're a beginner, here are some welding tips that can help right away.

Master the Appropriate Angles

There are many techniques you'll need to use as a beginning structural steel welder, but a foundation to build off of early on is getting the proper angles. Your welder needs to be positioned just right before it is used to combine different structural components together.

Proper welding angles can help you get better welds and also help you stay safer when working around structural components like steel. The ideal angle you want to achieve is dependent on the specific welder you're using and the materials being welded.

Be Wary of Cracks

When materials are welded for structural purposes, they need to be free of cracks in order to last. For example, metal frameworks can't have cracks because if they did, they could become structurally compromised and not hold up like they're supposed to around other structural elements.

Keep a vigilant eye on the possibility of cracks developing. Things like pre-heating your materials — especially high-strength steel — can help you keep cracks from surfacing and ruining your welding work. Knowing about the material's properties that you're welding can also help you weld more effectively and avoid cracking.

Reinforce the Right Sections

There are going to be areas that you'll want to reinforce when completing structural welding on a material. For example, high-stress points will probably need to be reinforced so that the welds hold up better and these areas don't compromise other sections.

Reinforcing basically means adding more materials around certain areas and then welding them in place. Make sure you use the right materials and perform multiple passes to ensure they stay in place. With more experience, you'll get better at identifying areas that need to be reinforced. 

When it comes to putting together materials like frameworks, structural steel welding needs to take place. If you possess the right skills and a passion for this type of welding work, make sure you study this industry and prepare for the activities you will be involved in. Do this early, and you can have more success as a structural steel welding novice.