There are many different types of welding that you can use to join materials together. I’m going to be talking about the welding of metal to metal and steel to steel.
The most common forms welding are:
Wire feed welding – which some people describe as mig, mag, gasless or flux cored.
Arc welding – also known as stick welding
Tig welding –
Wire feed welding is also known as MIG welding. The proper term is GMAW or Gas Metal Arc Welding. When using this welding technique you hold a torch or gun in your hand and squeeze a trigger. As soon as you squeeze the trigger, wire inside the torch will start to come out.
This wire is then pointed at what you want to weld.
The technical name for arc welding is SMAW or MMAW. This is Shielded or Manual Metal Arc Welding. This time you use an electrode which is just a length of filler wire that is on average about 1 foot long and is covered in a flux. As you use the rod up the flux will burn off and create a shielding gas that protects the weld.
Tig welding is a very fine and delicate welding technique. For this you need to hold you torch in one hand and use a filler rod in the other. The idea is that you slowly feed the filler rod into the weld as you go. You can weld with TIG or GTAW, Gas Tungsten Arc Welding without using the filler rod and simply just melt the two bits of metal together. This is known as “fusing”, where using the heat from arc you melt and fuse it together.
And the last different type of welding that you have is called “spot welding”. This is often used for sheet metal fabrications. In a nut shell the two pieces of metal that need to be joined are placed between the electrodes on the ends of the arms of the unit. They come together and the welded part will be between those points. It is only usually a second or so for this to happen. Just a buzz and it’s done. This is a very fast way of joining sheet metal parts. Things like toolboxes are a great example of what can be and are spot welded.
There are also many other different types of welding processes for metal like friction, ultrasonic, thermite and sub arc just to name a few.
But by far the ones mentioned above are the most common today.
Check out this site to find out more and discover how to weld. In particular you might be interested in how to mig weld