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MIG vs. TIG Welding: Which Type Do I Need?

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Do you have a welding project that you need to get done? Say you’re looking to make two additions to your backyard: a new metal awning over your back porch, and a delicate metal fence around your garden. You may have heard that there are many types of welding out there. So which one is best for your needs?

HB Fab Co is here to answer your questions. Contact us with the details of your welding project and we’ll find the best approach for the job. In this blog, we’ll explore the difference between two common types of welding: MIG and TIG.

Differences Between MIG and TIG Welding

Every welding process is essentially using a piece of metal to join two other pieces of metal. In MIG (Metal Inert Gas) welding, this filler material is a fully consumable wire electrode, composed of different materials depending on the metal being worked on. The electrode is automatically fed through the welding gun.

In TIG (Tungsten Inert Gas) welding, on the other hand, a non-consumable tungsten electrode is used alongside a separate piece of filler material. This means that TIG welding requires two hands: one to manipulate the tungsten electrode, one to manually feed the filler material in. A foot pedal is also used for the welder to adjust the heat.

These basic differences make TIG welding more difficult, costly, and time-consuming. However, TIG welds are cleaner and more aesthetically pleasing, making them better suited for finer work.

Pros of MIG Welding

MIG welding is faster, cheaper, and easier. It’s also best for working with thick materials. If you need a simple steel frame assembled and aren’t concerned with the aesthetic quality of the welds (or plan to cover or paint over them anyway), MIG welding is probably the right process for your project.

Pros of TIG Welding

TIG welding is more costly and difficult, but it produces stronger welds with greater precision and better aesthetics. It’s also better suited to working with thin materials. If you need intricate metalwork done and you’re concerned with the aesthetic quality of the results, then TIG welding is probably best suited for your needs.

So back to your original project. For that awning over your back porch, the one that’s meant to be more structural than aesthetic, MIG welding might be best. It’ll provide you good, solid results using thick, sturdy materials. For that delicate fence around your garden, the one that’s meant more for decoration, TIG welding is probably the better choice. It’ll give you a beautiful product with finely crafted metalwork using thinner, lighter materials.

Both MIG welding and TIG welding are broadly useful and have their place in a variety of metalworking projects. Contact HB Fab Co to learn which method is best for your project.

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