Welding is quite a complicated job and needs expertise to perform correctly. However, this process may not be suitable for every situation also. So, often people ask “is there an alternative to welding?”
The answer is, YES. There are a few alternatives to welding metal. Many of these even provide similar performance to welding in terms of sustainability and performance.
So, whenever you don’t have a proper setup for welding or any expert welders, you can use these alternatives. But remember, welding is a permanent type of joint. It melts the parent metals along with a filler metal in some cases.
As a result, it creates a very strong bond, which other means may not achieve. But if it’s just a regular joint, you can use either of these procedures that I will share here.
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Alternative to welding metal
Welding is joining two or more solid parts together, especially metals. An alternative word for welding is bonding or soldering. Due to the fusion of both parent metals and the filler metal, a new area is created.
After cooling down, it turns into a solid part that can not be apart from one another. But there are some issues with this process.
First of all, let’s see why you may need to look for alternatives to welding.
Costly and dangerous:
The initial investment in welding is high enough. You need a workshop or at least a good setup to perform welding. If you are not an expert in welding, you may need to hire one who can charge you a lot.
Moreover, it needs close supervision and proper training to do the job. If anything goes wrong, welding can be dangerous as high heat is produced during this process.
Vulnerable to vibration:
Welding joints can fail under continuous vibration. So, it may not be suitable for bridge or rail constructions.
Stress and metallurgical defect:
Due to welding, the metallurgical properties of a metal can be altered. And that can affect the whole structure. Again, there may develop residual stress due to welding.
That’s why sometimes you should look for an alternative. So, now I’m going to discuss those alternatives. Let’s start.
Alternatives to ultrasonic welding
Ultrasonic welding is an amazing process where vibration under high pressure is used. The parts that are needed to join are placed together. Then due to strong vibration under high pressure, a metallurgical bond is created.
In ultrasonic welding, no melting is needed. But the horn size of this welding process is limited and it can’t be applied to large structures. So, here I’m mentioning some alternatives to this process.
Brazing is a process of joining solid parts where a melted filler material flows over the joining area. After being cold, it turns into a combined solid part.
Generally, the melting process can be done by a torch or oxy-acetylene gas cylinder. The required temperature is about 840 degrees F. On the other hand, for arc welding, the temperature can be as high as 10,000 degrees F.
There is plenty of welding alternative adhesives, which can be used instead of welding. All you need to do is to mix the glue well as per instructions and then apply it at the joining point.
But before applying the glue, the area must be cleaned properly. For large parts, this process can be simple and effective at the same time. It will also save a lot of time and money. The process is also leakage proof and can serve for a long time.
Alternative to laser welding
In the laser welding process, a laser beam is used as the power source of welding. For the Arc welding method, the energy source is high voltage electricity, for Gas welding, it is compressed gas.
This laser beam generates extreme heat for which the metals melt. And just like arc or gas welding, after solidification, it becomes hard.
But laser weldings also require costly setup and expertise. So, you can try the following alternatives. These can be applied instead of ultrasonic welding too.
Suing rivets can be a very good option if you are willing to make a permanent and strong joint. Rivets are metallic unthreaded bolt that is used to join parts. Riveting tools are required for this process to be done.
Rivets are excellent where vibrations are obvious. Because the performance of rivets doesn’t fall in those situations.
Bolt or screw:
Bolts or screws can also be used for riveting. These are not permanent. So, you can disassemble them anytime and can modify them if needed.
Both bolts and screws are threaded. They are attached to the parts through threaded holes. So, whenever needed, these bolts or screws can be removed and re-attached as per requirements.
These are different ways of joining metals instead of welding. Joining Aluminium without welding can also be done by any of these processes.
Read More: 10 Ways To Reduce Your Welding Cost
Frequently Asked Questions
Well, a laser welder can cost you about 25,000 USD to complete a job. So, in that case, I guess, Yes, this is quite expensive.
Yes, rivets are also permanent joints like welding.
Without destroying any portion of the parts, it’s not possible to detach a welded joint.
If you need to do some basic work, Brazing can be a better option as it is less complex. But for bigger construction welding can be good since it is stronger.
Welding is the most popular method of joining metallic parts together. But it has some drawbacks too. So, knowing the alternative to welding metal is necessary if you often need to perform a joining job.
There are many types of welding like ultrasonic, laser, arc, and many more. Though different methods are suitable for different purposes, most of these can be used as an alternative to others.
But if you’re not willing to use any of those, feel free to use the process I’ve mentioned in this article. You will have a similar performance with comparatively less effort I hope.
Read More: How To Get A Welding Job With No Experience