Plate & Pipe Beveling Solutions
Weld Preparation is one of those fundamentals which if not addressed properly can be a root cause of many problems. If you’re not making careful consideration of your beveling process, chances are it’s costing you money. Achieving complete joint penetration welds require accurate and consistent bevels that fall within your groove preparation tolerance. Inaccurate bevel geometry can create some costly problems. Lack of fusion, lack of penetration, burn through, underfilling and over welding can all be a result of your initial beveling process.
There are several different methods used to prepare single and double V groove joints for welding. Some methods are more advantageous than others.
Grinding your bevels with fiber wheels has been the norm for many shops. This process requires little capital expenditure. Electric grinders are inexpensive and a type 27 fiber wheel costs just a few dollars. The downside to this method is that it is slow and labor intensive. Without proper control, grinding can lead to inaccurate and ununiform bevels. This method also presents some very serious safety concerns. Grinding wheels generate hazardous dust and if not used properly, can cause physical injury from disintegrating wheels.
Oxy-Fuel or Plasma burning are also common methods of beveling. These processes are much faster than grinding and when used in conjunction with automation, can be very productive. There are however shortcomings. Burning requires a higher level of skill. Achieving quality Double V Groove bevels with these processes can often be challenging. Kerf, torch position, and torch angle can create variations in the root face dimension(land) that often lead to problems with weld penetration. Thermal Cutting can also produce surface oxidations, decarburization and a Heat Affected Zone(HAZ), all of which require secondary grinding operations to be removed from the material before welding.
Creating Bevels by Milling has always been the most advantageous method of beveling. Milling machines create precise uniform bevels without creating dust or HAZ. The bevel is weld ready and requires no secondary operation. Until recently, milled bevels were a luxury that involved the use of vertical mills and CNC machining centers. The cost for this equipment required large capital expenditures that made them beyond the reach of many shops. Today, however, there are many new options available in portable beveling tools. These types of tools require limited skill to operate and are relatively inexpensive to implement. Steelmax Tools LLC offers an extensive portfolio of portable beveling tools. If your beveling plate or pipe, chances are Steelmax Tools has an affordable solution for you.