Estes Design and Manufacturing is excited to launch our 3D Laser Welding Whitepaper series. These whitepapers will be written by our very own resident expert, Jay Reddick. Jay has been with Estes since the beginning. In 2009, when Estes decided to invest in leading-edge technology in the laser welding market, Jay was integral in the R & D effort, experimenting on corner welds in cold rolled steel. Estes developed much of the team’s expertise with laser welding in-house and is still one of the few job shops in the country with laser welding capabilities. Jay has 46 years of experience with MIG, TIG, and laser welding in a production environment. He served as a board president of Blue River Career Programs of Shelbyville, Indiana and as an advisor to the welding program at Central Nine Career Center in Greenwood, Indiana. Jay has also presented at ALAW (Advanced Laser Applications Workshop) on laser welding challenges within a job shop environment.
Our website and eBook cover the basics of laser welding, demonstrating how laser welding is a fast, efficient, and precise alternative to traditional welding techniques and suitable for a wide range of projects. However, these whitepapers will take a deeper dive into the benefits, cost savings, and applications of 3D laser welding.
Laser Welding & the Reduction in Peripheral Costs Commonly Associated with Standard Weld Finishing
Our first publication takes an in-depth look at the additional processes and costs that must be considered when determining the total weld cost of traditional MIG or TIG welding. The assessment of this total weld cost in turn affects the evaluation between standard welding and 3D laser welding.
Total weld cost encompasses many aspects of production costs. You have the basics of labor, equipment, and supplies. However, there are often forgotten or unmeasured costs in the comparison of standard MIG or TIG welding and 3D laser welding. During both MIG and TIG welding operations, metal filler is used to join together two or more metal pieces. The excess filler buildup on the part must be removed, generally through grinding or similar finishing processes, before the part goes on to further processing operations or into use. By contrast, laser welding employs such a focused, brief application of heat that there is virtually no material buildup, and the result is a strong and aesthetically appealing weld. Laser welded parts do not need to undergo post-welding grinding or other finishing operations and can proceed directly to painting and/or assembly.
The post-weld cleanup process required on MIG and TIG welds, as well as the peripheral equipment and supplies required for the removal of excess weld material, is often an overlooked cost. Many of these types of costs and processes are not considered when determining total weld cost. However, this whitepaper explores some of these overlooked costs, and the discussion will aid in the determination that laser welding is the better process for cosmetic applications.
Download your FREE whitepaper here.
One of our dedicated engineers is ready to talk to you about how 3D laser welding can help you be more competitive and increase your profits. Contact us today to learn more!