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Rent the Right Generator

18 July, 22 2:56 pm · Leave a comment · Red-D-Arc
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diesel generator rental units on trailer

Portable generators are available in a wide range of sizes, referring both to the physical dimensions and capability—the output—of the unit. Consumer units that are light enough to be lifted or wheeled by hand certainly provide unique benefits to the home and small jobsite. But as demand grows, so must the generator. The next “nominal” footprint is that of the towable diesel generator. These units are a more appropriately scaled solution for large events, busy construction sites, and critical systems in need of emergency power.

Towable diesel generators are engineered for continuous operation, and many have the fuel tanks to support such use. But in addition to large fuel tanks and a variety of power receptacles, these units can offer three-phase output in the voltages needed by industrial equipment such as portable lighting, compressors and pumps, welding equipment and more. Using welding equipment as an example, three-phase power may improve equipment output and duty cycle.

 But is a 60 kVA generator sufficient? An insufficiently sized generator will leave your operation suspended while you search for something with greater output. Should you “err on the side of caution” with a 250 kVA unit? Bigger is not always better because operating a generator for long periods of time without sufficient load (as is the case with a significantly oversized generator) can be electrically inefficient, demands a higher rental rate or purchase cost, and requires accelerated fuel consumption. Instead, renting the right generator “size” is critical to meeting your needs, minimizing the drawbacks to off-grid power, and maximizing operational efficiencies. (more…)

The Welding Equipment Used in Automotive Shops

18 July, 22 2:54 pm · Leave a comment · Red-D-Arc
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welder at automotive shop

Whether you are a professional or amateur gearhead, the automotive shop you work in requires a lot of tools, technology, and know-how to bring a project from start to finish. In that process, welding is one of many critical skills in the world of automotive fabrication and repair. Like all skills, staying sharp on the tools and techniques used in automotive welding can certainly pay dividends by making your work higher quality, faster, and easier.

Welding Processes for Intake and Exhaust Fabrication & Repair

Intake and exhaust components often utilize either Gas Metal Arc Welding (aka MIG) or Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (aka TIG). When comparing the two processes, TIG offers a much greater degree of control at the expense of speed and ease of use while MIG offers improved speed and ease of use at the expense of precision. It is possible to fabricate complete systems using either process, but muffler repair shops working on consumer-grade and OEM components typically employ MIG, while custom fabrication typically employs TIG.

Many of these custom fabrications (an example being intake manifolds) utilize exotic materials such as titanium to help reduce weight. The difficulty in forming these materials to the desired radii often require “pie cuts” to be pieced together, which requires a lot of precise welding and fabrication know-how. Here, TIG has a distinct advantage, since the ability to feed filler wire independently of the heat source allows for sufficient penetration while producing aesthetically pleasing welds requiring minimal—if any–post-weld finishing.

 A power source such as the Miller Dynasty 200 AC/DC TIG Welder allows for direct-current (DC) operation on carbon, stainless, low-alloy steels such as “chrome-moly” (often AISI 4130 and similar steels), and titanium. With a button press and a change of filler wire, it is possible to weld aluminum and magnesium using the power source’s alternating current (AC) output.

A Tip for Welding Intake and Exhaust Components:

Keep Gaps to a Minimum. Spending time learning layout theory can greatly reduce the time spent achieving perfect fit-up. Like painting, spending time with preparation is key to reducing headache later. (more…)

The Advantages of Inverter Welders

18 July, 22 1:13 pm · Leave a comment · Red-D-Arc
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welder using inverter welder

If you’re searching for a welding machine, you may stumble across descriptions such as “transformer” or “inverter.” If you are unsure which is best for your application, at least know this: transformer and inverter welders are perfectly capable of producing high-quality welds. However, keep in mind that most new models produced by industry-leading manufacturers are inverter-based. 

Transformers are not necessarily bad, they are just “old school” compared to the “new school” inverter welders. An inverter and transformer power supply converts AC input power to DC output power suitable for welding. But just as the modern sedan can offer improved fuel economy through aerodynamics, lightweight materials, and engine design advancements, the inverter welder can also offer benefits to the welder through electrical technological advancements.

Inverter History

The inverter-based welding power source traces its commercial origins to the 1980s, thanks to advancements in solid-state electrical components. At that time, the new inverter technology lacked the same reliability as the proven transformer technology. This reputation stuck even as high-amperage solid-state technology continued to advance. 

Today, inverter welders are much more reliable than when they were first introduced, have an increased practical lifespan, and can tackle applications not previously recommended, such as carbon arc gouging in-field welding conditions.
(more…)

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Airgas, an Air Liquide company, is the nation's leading single-source supplier of gases, welding and safety products. Known locally nationwide, our distribution network serves more than one million customers of all sizes with a broad offering of top-quality products and unmatched expertise.