Posted in:

A Complete Guide To Orbital Welding

When you want to fuse two separate pieces of metals or electrodes, you weld them using high heat. Orbital welding started to develop in the 1960s when a more precise method was needed, especially in the aerospace industry (read more). 

This process refers to an automated fusion of secured pipes or tubes orbiting around the tube. The arc will rotate 360° around the object continuously. Starting from that industry, this type of welding was then finding its place in various fields from automotive to food processing. 


The main components are the power supply which is connected to computer control, the welding head, and a wire feed mechanism. A water or coolant system is required if you weld various materials and sizes. And for the results, every material, size, and factor will influence them. 

The factors include the pulse and magnitude frequency of the current, arc length, inert gas, speed, filler material, parent material, thermal conductivity, and preparation. Good results are achieved from detailed knowledge of how to adjust all the factors precisely for every task you run. 

When To Use The System

You can choose to use this orbital way at least in three different situations. The first one is if you find difficulty when handling the production manually. You’ve got to remember that the location where the machine takes place and where the welding is positioned will affect the welder’s safety. It is also showing the difficulty to complete a task. So, if one’s safety is compromised, you better use an automated procedure.

The second condition is large quantities of welds are to be produced. Because the process is automated fully, this way is perfect for producing large amounts because of the repeatability. The last condition is if your production requires customized parts and small quantities. In this situation, a combination of mechanized and semi-automatic can be used.

Different Types

There are several types of Welding processes like Flux-Cored Arc, Stick, MIG, Submerged Arc, TIG, Elcetroslagy, Atomic Hydrogen, and also Carbon Arc. And for its processes, welders must be familiar with several types of joints like corner joints, butt joints, tee joints, lap joints, and edge joints. 

  1. Gas Metal-Arc

This type is also called the Metal Inert Gas way, which is the most common process in the industry. In Gas Metal Arc, a shielding gas that is running along the wire electrode is used to heat two metals to join them. To get it done, you need a steady voltage. Use a direct-current source of power. It uses four primary methods to do the metal transfer: the short-circuiting method, the globular method, the pulsed-spray method, as well as the spray method.

  1. Shielded Metal-Arc

The welders who do this way will follow a manual procedure for stick welding. They deploy a stick to create an arc that spreads between the metal and stick they try to join by using electric current. This welding type uses weld steel and iron in the steel structures construction.

  1. Flux Cored Arc

This is used when shield welding or semi-automatic arc is needed. Most construction projects use this way because it provides high-speed welding and is portable. 

  1. Gas Tungsten Arc

This way is commonly used for welding thick stainless steel together and for welding non-ferrous metals. The procedure produces a tungsten electrode weld. Gas Tungsten Arc is a complex way, and compared to other methods; it is more time-consuming.

Jobs rates for welding have evolved over the years. Some changes affect the need for good welders and the best techniques to choose for any job. So many welding processes that already use a piece of automatic equipment. Yet, like what TechSouth orbital welding does, there are many projects that need human skills to customize certain products and complete the job manually. That’s why it’s also important to take the company you’re hiring into consideration.

The Benefits

The orbital welding creates repeated and consistent welds. And we’ve listed the benefits you get when utilizing this way for your projects.

  1. Clean

During the process, it is important to keep any contaminants away from the metal tubing. Because if you find unwanted gas or materials trapped inside it, it can ruin the entire process, which results in a waste of money and time. The orbital procedure is done in a cleanroom area, where fittings and tubes are welded in a contaminant-free and high-purity environment. 

  1. Productive

Using the method, the need for labor decreases since most of the work is done by the machine, which makes it more productive. Yet, of course, there will be an upfront cost for purchasing the whole equipment, it still is efficient to cut the time and number of labors needed.

  1. Efficient

The welds give you a consistent and clean result, which leads you to a more efficient job (link: Computerized tools make the whole process can be documented and scheduled ahead of time. This helps to decrease the overall costs and production time. 

  1. Consistent

The manual procedure can produce accurate results if it’s done by a skilled technician, but the orbital way will always give you a more consistent weld. This is caused by the tool’s ability to set the equipment to a specific program, which allows the system to remake the same welds repeatedly without defects and errors. When you do manual welding, there always be an inconsistent result between welds. 

  1. Better Quality Results

An orbital weld created using the right settings and equipment will result in a good quality weld, while if you hire skilled manual welders, it will be effective when you use them to create a specific purpose of high-quality welds. This is crucial, especially in pharmaceutical and semiconductor industries, since they have strict requirements to follow. 

  1. It Solves Problems

The orbital welds are great if you face unique manufacturing conditions, like in some cases where the condition is not practical or feasible to rotate the pipe or tubing to be welded. It can also be used when you need to perform welding in a very tight place which would not possibly be done with manual welding.