Automation Solutions For Special Applications
- Travel speed: 20 cm/min per pass
- Arc Voltage: 28 volts
- Amperage: 160 amps
- Torch Angle: square in rotation and in lead angle – push / pull
- Oscillation: 6mm
- Side Dwells: 0.3 seconds per side
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Based in the United Kingdom (UK) near the heart of Manchester is a company by the name of Langfields, who specialize in the fabrication of nickel alloy and titanium components for the Pharmaceutical, Chemical, Marine, Oil, Defense and Energy industries. They have been satisfying the needs of their customers for over 100 years (Since 1908) and recently Langfields has had to adopt new welding procedures in order to accommodate tighter deadlines. As a result they have turned to Gullco International, a world leader in welding automation and cutting automation systems for a solution.
The project under way at Langfields involves welding large sections of stainless steel pipe in segmented bends. The internal diameter of the vessel is 1900mm with circumferential seams of 90 and 135 degrees. After the application was assessed by one of Gullco’s technical welding specialists it was determined that the Pipe Kat® Orbital Welding System could produce clean, consistent welds while meeting the time constraints of the project. The primary reasons which lead to this decision was the Pipe Kat®s ability to improve productivity and reduce overall labour cost. The ease of use, increased welder safety and overall weld consistency were also determining factors in Langfields decision to use welding automation from Gullco International.
Due to the scope and size of the project, all circumferential welds were completed in the 5G position using the Pipe Kat® welding carriage. The material being used was A240 304H with various butt welds in wall thicknesses of 16,27,43 and 50 mm making up a completed 66.5 ton vessel. The intuitive nature of the Pipe Kat® controls, coupled with application specific on-site training resulted in an immediate 60% reduction of overall weld completion time. 100% of the welds were DPI and radiograph tested and stood up to all quality standards. Over the course of the project, 2000kgs of 1.2mm FCAW filler was used with the Pipe Kat®, which resulted in considerable cost savings both in reduced weld defects, as well as overall production time. Due to the nature and design of the Gullco welding automation carriages a simplified version of the Pipe Kat® was converted to make a plasma cutting carriage. This simplified carriage was used to produce the 90 and 135 degree bevels in the segmented sections of pipe. The versatility of the Pipe KAT welding carriage allowed for the automatic welding of sectional bends which otherwise would have been done by hand. This reduces the need for costly gouging and increasing the production by increasing arc on time.
As Langfields looks to be competitive in an increasingly difficult industry its choice to use welding automation and cutting automation supplied by Gullco International UK Ltd. has proven to be a step in the right direction. As the welding industry and the world as a whole demand higher quality results, in shorter amounts of time, the move towards automated welding processes will become a reoccurring theme in the years to come. Production times decrease and weld integrity and arc on time are increases when the Pipe KAT welding carriage is used in applications where orbital welding automation can be applied.