Weld with a gas bottle

When welding, the best results are achieved when working with so-called inert gas. It displaces the atmospheric oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen around the weld. Welding with a gas bottle requires some practice and proper selection of the protective gas. Buying, renting and trading is possible.

Reference and trading principle

Protective gases for welding are referred to as technical gases. Unlike propulsion and heating gases, they are therefore sold in construction-relevant trade. It is not possible to buy or exchange the gas bottle at the filling station.

Usual sources of supply are DIY stores and building materials dealers. Gas bottles can be rented, bought or exchanged. As with other gas cylinders, the dealer bears the responsibility for sufficient durability and the appropriate technical TÜV test. When a gas cylinder is returned, most dealers will dispose of it properly.

Welding methods with inert gas

Inert gas welding is demanding and is used in six methods:

  • Tungsten gas shielded arc welding with non-consumable electrode
  • Tungsten gas welding (TIG) with open arc
  • Plasma welding with constricted arc
  • Metal inert gas welding with a melting electrode
  • Metallinertgasschweißen (MIG) in Edelgasmilieu
  • Metal active gas welding (MAG) with carbon dioxide or oxygen in the gas

Rules and regulations

Depending on the different welding methods and the various metals and alloys, there are about forty common types of inert gas. They are assigned to both the possible methods and the metal and alloy components. In order to obtain the right and properly filled gas cylinders for welding, the seller must be qualified.

All protective gases for welding are freely available. However, this accessibility does not relieve the user of the structural regulations that must be complied with in welding work according to DIN EN 1090. Some welding jobs even require special qualifications. Generally, the following elementary gas components are available in gas cylinders:

  • Acetylene used in gas welding and brazing
  • Oxygen, with which metal can also be cut by means of burning
  • Specific inert gas for MAG welding
  • Argon for MIG and TIG welding

In principle, all welding work can be carried out by any person. The restriction arises from the result. The DIN EN 1090 or similar standards in vehicle construction determine the durability and strength of the welds. Laypeople almost never meet these standards.

Tips & Tricks

If you are welding protected from the wind, you can reduce the protective gas consumption by up to half.

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