Small Fillet Weld on Aluminum Parts
Posted on Mar 13, 2014
Recently, I received a call from a regular, long term customer of our Anaheim metal fabrication shop. It seems he needed a small fillet weld on some aluminum parts. What’s interesting about this job is that smaller welds are not usually the case. For this job, it seems that the finished part had to mount somewhere and too big of a weld would interfere in the overall assembly.
The aluminum materials were a 1/4″ thick base plate and 1/8″ wall rect tube, with a .12″ fillet size. That’s 3 mm…and it couldn’t be any bigger than the .12″.
I sent off my quote and later had a conference call with the Project Manager and Lead Engineer for the customer. During the conversation I found out that recently another supplier made some of these parts and they were not happy with the weld size.
Because of our commitment of getting things right for our customers, I offered a sample of the assembly before they cut a purchase order. I conferred with my pops and one of my best aluminum guys in the shop. We came up with a process that included the back chamfer, pre-heating the part after tacking and using a small cup and a sharp .093 tungsten…and helium. On our shelf, we had some materials that were almost exactly like the finished part. The samples came out great (see the pic).
Later in the day, we sent the customer a couple of samples and if all goes well we should have a nice PO tomorrow for 150 assemblies. This will be good sized project that includes some precision machining as well as the welding of the components into a nice assembly.