| Repairing an aluminum mold is tough. If you try to
use an standard TIG welder to fill scratches, digs, gouges, or machining
mistakes the mold the mold gets so hot that the alloy looses its temper and can
distort or crush in the molding machine. But a pulsed micro TIG welder heats
only locally. Filler metal is deposited one pulse at a time, melting a 1-4mm
area. This keeps the temper of the mold and the method of deposition prevents
voids. Then put the mold back on the mill and re-machine the
For aluminum mold repair we use the Orion 100c Pulse-Arc Micro-TIG Welder. The weld pulse is triggered by touching the electrode to the work surface. The electrode is automatically pulled back during the arc to prevent the electrode from touching the surface, thus preventing the electrode from sticking. It also keeps the electrode sharp.
The welder can also add modulation to the weld pulse, they call it agitation. This causes caused the melt pool to crystallize into smaller domains. These small crystal domains are less able to seed the next melt pool to form contiguous crystals. The result is a more homogeneous fill material. And it is very good at making a fill without trapped voids.
We literally paid for the cost of the welder in 2-3 mold repairs, not even counting the saved down-time when we were able to quickly get back to making valuable parts. Our previous method of repair was to machine a cavity into the mold, machine and bolt in a matching piece of metal and machine that.
The welder can be operated on standard household voltage and powers.
| Orion 100c Pulse-Arc Micro TIG welder
100 Joule maximum pulse energy
Recommended for aluminum mold repair
|Orion 250s Arm Pulse-Ark Micro TIG welder
250 Joule maximum pulse energy
Rapid pulse mode (up to 5 welds per second)
Recommended for steel and stainless steel mold repair