What Does Tandem-Mag Welding Mean?

08 April 2019

Tandem-mag welding (also known as twin-wire welding) uses two different wires to flash-create weld joints. Also of note, Tandem-Mag technology is an active gas technique. Instead of a MIG (Metal Inert Gas) shield, a MAG (Metal Active Gas) shield cloud mixes argon, carbon dioxide and oxygen into a steel-specific welding gas. Back to the “tandem” label, why is the welding torch utilizing a doubled-up wire feed system?

Approaching Double-Wire Welding

As automated rigs speed up, probably because of the need for high-productivity manufacturing environments, contemporary GMAW technology is struggling to keep up. A single wire system can just about manage, but that ability is about to hit a wall. To leapfrog that barrier, Tandem-Mag welding delivers a speedier edge. Now, with this tech firmly in place at the end of an automated machine’s arm, the necessary spot welds can be applied in a fraction of a time it once took to do the job. It’s just basic arithmetic, the knowledge that all of these swiftly applied welds equals a faster production run. In many industrial sectors, especially automobile assembly work, such production-accelerated work speeds are indispensable.

Breaking Down Tandem Welding Technology

Basically, the process gets as much weld material onto the joint surfaces in as possible. And it happens fast. That feature benefits robot-operated manufacturing lines. The speedier weld deposition uses a two-wire feed system and a dedicated weld gun type. Additionally, inside the welding equipment, high-powered power sources employ advanced inverter circuits and waveform control tech to manage the weld deposit rate of the twin wire lines. Ultimately, although the two different weld wires work independently, and they’re insulated from one another, they’re pulsed so that they don’t create magnetic interactions.

Employs Metal Active Welding Shielding

If there are two lines of wire and pulse-controlled electrical currents running through the gear, why has the shield gas changed? To be sure, an inert gas is favoured in other applications, but Tandem-MAG Welding gear is mostly used to join carbon steel parts. Engineers, knowing carbon is the alloying element here, opt for an active gas. They call upon carbon dioxide and argon, plus a little oxygen, as the active components. It’s this active gas that works with the alloy steel to encourage arc stability, splatter control and metal transference. Again, the automotive sector has the most to gain, for automated welding robots have access to this purpose-provided cloud of carbon-heavy shield gas.

This is probably one of the finest examples of the old “right tool for the right job” adage. Not only do the dual wires and pulsed power supplies maximize weld joint integrity over a reduced time frame, but the active shield gas also provides a deliberate, environment-specific edge, with the carbon adding control to the steel whetted welding surfaces.

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