TWI Industrial Member Report Summary 334/1987
P N Hone
There have been no reported production applications of magentically impelled arc butt (MIAB) welding involving aluminium alloys to date. Early work carried out at The Welding Institute established that good quality welds could not be made using conventional MIAB welding equipment. This was thought to result from arc instability when welding with the tube axis horizontal and insufficient forging speed.
A special-purpose machine was designed and built at The Welding Institute in order to study the feasibility of MIAB welding aluminium alloys. This had the ability to weld with the tube axis vertical or horizontal and forge velocity was in excess of 700mm/sec. Welding trials using BS 1471:1972 Grade 6063 aluminium alloy tube, in the solution heat-treated and artificially aged (TF) conditions, were carried out. Both 32 and 38mm diameter tube of 1.6mm wall thickness were used during this work.
This report covers the basic design of the machine and the results of the welding trials using a conventional d.c. arc power source.