The Strangest Buildings Made Possible with Stud Welding

Since its origins in shipbuilding during the turn of the century, stud welding has opened doors for thousands of construction projects unlike any others. Today, stud welding is used in a broad range of manufacturing operations, from sheet metal building to composite construction.

 

If you are working with stud welding fastening systems, you can count on Northland Fastening Systems for all your welding needs. Our skilled stud welding technicians offer expert advice and provide a comprehensive selection of welding studs, tools for rent and purchase, and stud welding accessories.

 

While stud welding is a common operation in many different industries, it has been used in many cases to build highly uncommon structures. Some of the strangest architectural endeavors were made possible thanks to the capabilities of stud welding. For example:

 

  • Guggenheim Museum: Located in Bilbao, Spain, the Guggenheim Museum was completed in 1997. The swooping titanium structures that make up the iconic avant-garde architectural look of the Guggenheim are held in place with multiple stud systems. This organic and deconstructivist style of architecture heralded in many other similar, yet unique structures.
  • Burj Khalifa: Dubai’s Burj Khalifa has been the tallest building in the world since its completion in 2009. The building reaches 2,722 feet at its tip and has a total of 163 floors. This massive skyscraper was built using stud welding in many different ways, including beam fastening and composite construction. In fact, stud welding allowed for the construction of all skyscrapers and many other building types since the first modern multi-story structures were built in the early 1900s.
  • Habitat 67: Finished in 1967 in Montreal, the model housing complex Habitat 67 offers 146 units in a unique format. The full structure of Habitat 67 is built with 354 concrete forms stacked and connected in various sections. The goal of this housing complex was to create the outdoor and indoor spaces of suburban neighborhoods within a confined city environment. Habitat 67 builders relied heavily on composite stud welding construction to complete this bold architectural project, and today it remains one of Montreal’s many interesting landmarks.
  • Eden Project: Located in Cornwall, England, the Eden Project is a large greenhouse complex inside multiple adjoining domes. These domes are made from polygonally connected steel tubing and inflated ethylene tetrafluoroethylene cells. The Eden Project is designed to emulate organic forms in reference to the thousands of protected plant species housed inside. Many components in the Eden Project were connected using stud welding fastening systems.

 

These are just a few examples of the many bold and unique construction projects that stud welding makes possible across the globe. To learn more about the stud welding supplies and tools we provide to a broad range of customers, contact Northland Fastening Systems today at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online to get started with our team.

 

Stud Welding Equipment Rentals and Repairs

Any stud welding technician working in the field knows that a malfunctioning or damaged welding tool can put a solid stop to any operations and significantly increase the time it takes to get a job done. At Northland Fastening Systems, we’re here to support welders on the job with equipment repairs and stud welding tools for rent or purchase. In addition to tool support we have welding studs available in a broad range of dimensions with options for custom sizes, and welding accessories like cable connectors and ferrule plates.

 

If you’re welding in the field, in your facilities, or any other job site and experience a sudden tool failure, our technicians offer rapid repair services and tools for rent to keep production going while your tools are being fixed. From repairs to supplies, NFS is here for all your stud welding equipment needs.

 

Repairs

NFS provides maintenance and repairs for a broad range of industry-standard stud welding equipment. This includes brands like HBS, Tru-Weld, Cutlass, ProWeld, AGM, Nelson, ERICO, NOVA, MFI, and Tension Control Tools. We have over 30 years of experience in the stud welding industry and in providing repairs for these brands and more. In addition to our expertise, customers can rest assured the price will be reasonable. No one should have to compromise quality repairs for a cost-effective solution. Our service technicians provide excellent repair work at a fair price.

 

Rentals

While we work to repair your stud welding equipment, you can take advantage of the many tools we have available for rent to keep production running. Our rental options meet a broad range of welding needs including automated welding, CD welding, drawn arc welding, and short cycle welding. We also provide options for any electrical setups our customers might be working with, taking into account the specifications for phase, voltage, and other weld calibrations.

 

When you rent stud welding equipment through NFS, you will also have the full support of our technicians, including advice and instructions on using a tool you may be less familiar with. We rent tools at daily, weekly, or monthly rates so you can get the best deal for your timeline. Whether you need a stud welding tool for a temporary job or a replacement while your tool is in the shop, we have the stud welding equipment that will meet any of your requirements.

 

A broken tool and the subsequent downtime while it’s being repaired can extend production timelines significantly, costing you more time and money. Don’t wait to get the job done. Bring your stud welding equipment to NFS for repairs and find the perfect rental to keep production going at your job site. Contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770 today or request a quote online to get started with our team.

Solutions for Jobsite Stud Welding

In the construction industry, almost every project involves stud welding operations in some way, including anything from building construction to other large-scale structures like bridges and water towers. Because stud welding is used for such a broad range of projects where accuracy, strength, and long-term reliability is critical, onsite production welding technicians need access to the best tools, equipment, and knowledge. At Northland Fastening Systems (NFS), we provide a comprehensive range of stud welding products to support your needs, including a range of stud dimensions, stud welding tools for rent or purchase, equipment accessories, and our own technicians’ expertise. In addition to our complete stud welding resources, we also provide options for jobsite welding and mobile projects.

 

Jobsite welding has multiple obstacles that technicians face often. The most common is the lack of power on construction sites when steel skeletons are put up before electrical lines are run. Handling the lack of provided electricity requires technicians to bring their own power source with them to the jobsite.

 

Power Source: Supplying your own power source is as simple as bringing a lightweight generator that can be calibrated to the specifications of your tools and the materials you’re working with. When you work with NFS, you can take advantage of the generators we rent to clients with jobsite welding projects. For construction jobs in the early stages without onsite power, a generator is a necessity to perform any of the stud welding that is so often crucial to continuing the fabrication process.

 

Portability: Another important aspect of jobsite welding is portability. Some stud welding units can be bulky, difficult to move, and even harder to install in a safe, working position. The problem with choosing a lightweight, portable welding unit is a potential need to compromise for welding power. With the right NFS welding units and equipment, you don’t need to compromise portability for power. Units like the HBS IT 2002 and other similar models offer heavy-duty drawn arc welding capabilities and mobility with ease.

 

With the right power source and portable welding unit, you can take on any jobsite welding project, no matter what stage construction is in. Because stud welding is such a heavily used operation in the early stages of building construction, and throughout the fabrication process as a whole, it’s important to have access to tools that are portable and external power sources.

 

Don’t rely on the jobsite to provide what you need to get the job done. Portable tools and power sources are available to you through NFS today. To learn more about the stud welding products and other fastening solutions we provide, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770. Request a quote online to get started with our experts.

Stud Welding Equipment Highlight: HBS Visar 650

At Northland Fastening Systems (NFS), we work with clients who are handling a broad range of jobs, from food grade stud welding to large-scale construction. To help our customers finish projects, we supply everything they need for stud welding operations, including welding studs in many dimensions, custom stud options, welding tools for rent and purchase, stud welding accessories, and the expertise of our own technicians. When it comes to the stud welding equipment we offer, customers can benefit from a broad range of stud welding tools that meet exacting specifications for electrical sources, weld calibrations, and other job requirements. One of the newer models we offer is the Visar 650, which meets some specific requirements that many other types of welding units don’t.

 

The Visar 650 is a drawn arc welding and short cycle welding unit that has maximum welding rates and efficiency as well as minimum weight and energy consumption compared to many other similar models. Thanks to HBS inverter-capacitor charging technology, the Visar 650 is able to offer a single phase 110v to 240v option. Because most similar stud welding units require a three-phase connection at 230v or 460v, they are much more restricted than the Visar 650. The option for single phase and 110v to 240v specifications means the Visar 650 can be used on a larger range of job sites and with more standard electrical outputs in residential or commercial settings.

 

The Visar 650 can weld studs between 12ga thru 3/8” (3-10mm) diameters.  We can accommodate any length greater than 5/8”.  The welding rates can be up to 40 studs per minute depending on the weld base diameter.  Both stainless steel and mild steel studs can be used with the Visar 650. The power range for the Visar 650 is 100v to 240v, with single phase electrical distribution.

 

Thanks to its power requirements and a 2-pin grounded safety plug, the Visar 650 is a versatile stud welding unit capable of being moved and installed in many different worksites. An F-type temperature-controlled fan prevents overheating, and a 15.91′ welding cable gives technicians a broad range of movement. As a smaller unit (approximately 18′ x 13′ x 14′) with a handle, the Visar 650 is easily ported from worksites. For any drawn arc welders working in setting with standard U.S. electrical specifications, the Visar 650 is the perfect stud welding equipment choice.

 

To learn more about the Visar 650 and our other drawn arc welding, short cycle welding, and CD welding units available for rent or purchase, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770. You can request a quote online to get started with NFS as your supplier of stud welding equipment.

Safer Cars with Automotive Stud Weld Fastening Systems

Like so many other construction industries, the automotive production world utilizes stud welding extensively to manufacture components that are used in almost every type of vehicle today. Stud welding is a very versatile manufacturing operation that is applicable in a broad range of fastening systems.

 

At Northland Fastening Systems, we understand the widespread use of stud welding in many industries, and we provide an equally broad selection of stud welding supplies. With NFS, you have access to a comprehensive range of stud dimensions, stud welding tools for rent or purchase, and stud welding accessories, as well as our own technicians’ advice and expertise in stud welding as a fastening system.

 

When it comes to the automotive industry, stud welding is used in multiple production stages. One large part of all automotive production is the support of all the safety measures that get built into a vehicle. Stud welding is used in many of the safety aspects of a vehicle, including the following:

 

  • Airbags: Today, many vehicles have airbags installed in multiple sections of a vehicle, and every new vehicle made has at least one airbag on the driver’s side. The installation of these airbags would be impossible without the capabilities of stud welding. Using stud welding, automotive manufacturers can install airbags in safe ways that are reliable in the long term.

 

  • Power Steering: In addition to airbags, power steering system installation relies on stud welding. Power steering systems are a relatively new part of the everyday vehicle, but anyone who has driven a classic car knows how much easier power steering makes daily driving.

 

  • Exhaust Systems: Unless you drive an electric car, your vehicle emits dangerous carbon monoxide and other gasses through the exhaust system. To prevent the passengers and driver from being exposed to these fumes, specialized exhaust systems are needed. The fabrication and installation of these exhaust systems with stud welding operations is another key factor in the level of vehicle safety.

 

  • Insulation: In any vehicle, there is an extensive amount of wiring and heat sources. Protecting the rest of the vehicle from exposure to electrical current or high heat requires the inclusion of insulation in various parts of the automotive interior. This insulation is commonly built or installed with stud welding and composite stud weld construction.

 

  • Heat Shields: Another major component of safety in a vehicle is heat shields. To protect car components from a combustion engine and electrical heat, advanced heat shields are required. These automotive heat shields are assemblies that use stud welding in the fabrication and installation process.

 

Overall, stud welding is an important part of the automotive manufacturing process. To learn more about stud welding as a fastening system and the industries it’s used in, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online.

 

Implementing Production Line Practices into the Stud Welding Process

The stud welding process is a widely used group of operations in the manufacturing world. Because the process has so many applications, manufacturers find it highly advantageous to be able to automate stud welding on a production line. Streamlining stud welding into an automated production line process allows manufacturers to increase speed, precision, quality, and efficiency for any fabrication project. If you are working with stud welding as a contract manufacturer or professional welder, you can greatly increase your output without compromising quality by implementing production line practices in your facility. At Northland Fastening Systems (NFS), we provide a broad range of tools to automate your stud welding process as well as tools, studs, accessories, and expert services to support your current non-automated stud welding operations.

 

Whether or not you have the facility accommodations to integrate a fully automated stud welding process, you can always implement elements of a production line in certain ways. Handheld stud guns and other units can be effectively used in a production line setting, although the most efficient process in many cases is automated.

 

Non-Automated Production Line

The general structure of a production line is designed to operate in stages, with each step of the fabrication process occurring at its own stage. When it comes to non-automated stud welding, forming a production line is entirely possible. An example of an effective non-automated production line process might include these steps:

 

  1. The surface of the base material is cleaned or otherwise prepped.
  2. Any shielding gas that will be used in a drawn arc process is prepped.
  3. The gun tip is prepped, including any ferrules, fluxes, and stud that might be used, depending on the weld type and the necessary stud dimensions and material.
  4. The weld is performed.
  5. Ferrules and other waste materials are removed.
  6. The weld is inspected for quality.

 

In this scenario, the majority of the process will be performed by a welding technician, and likely one weld will be performed at a time. When it comes to automation, there are a few key differences that make a production line more efficient.

 

Automated Production Line

Automated stud welding processes are typically used in sheet metal construction where a large base material can be fed through a conveyor system, but there are some other applications that can feed smaller components that are not necessarily in sheet form through an automated system. Automated production lines often use stud welding tools controlled by a software system. Each step of the process can be done in bulk, including the performance of the weld with multiple stud welding tips. In some facilities, up to 40 studs can be welded in one step, and the software used in a welding process can be calibrated to highly specific results. This can include intricate patterning of the studs with precise placement.

 

To learn more about integrating an automated or non-automated production line stud welding process into your facilities, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online today.

NFPA 70E Electrical Standards for Stud Welding

Like any other aspect of the commercial manufacturing industry, stud welding has its own set of regulations. Stud welding practices, tools, and materials are all regulated in certain ways to U.S. and worldwide standards. In addition to the regulations specific to stud welding, there are universal standards for all types of welding, including electrical specifications according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the National Electrical Code (NFPA 70) the NFPA outlines.

 

If you’re working with stud welding tools, understanding the regulations of the NFPA and general electrical standards can be a key part of the job. At Northland Fastening Systems, our expert technicians can provide guidance, and our primary role as a stud welding supply shop offers a comprehensive range of tools for rent or purchase, studs in many dimensions, and stud welding accessories.

 

In the U.S., the NFPA covers a broad range of regulations for electrical situations depending on the location, purpose, and general circumstances. When it comes to electrical safety in the workplace, especially in terms of a manufacturing setting, the NFPA 70E regulations detail the exact specifications facilities need to meet.

 

The goal of the NFPA 70E standards is to “provide a working area for employees that is safe from unacceptable risk associated with the use of electricity in the workplace.” To reach this goal, a broad range of workplace specifications must be met, but generally speaking, it addresses the following:

 

  • Electrical conductors and electronic equipment installed inside buildings and other structures or installed on those structures
  • Conductors that connect those installations to a power source

 

While the NFPA 70E also covers numerical specifications concerning voltage, hertz, heat, conductivity, calories/cm2, and other properties of electrical systems, it also includes more general regulations for the workplace. For example, designating a safe work zone with proper signage, warnings, and distancing precautions is a significant part of any stud welding site. Setting standards that take into account sparking, shielding gas, and personal protective equipment are also key to the NFPA 70E.

 

Overall, most stud welding technicians have a strong grasp on safety measures, and many welding units take into account electrical issues like surges. If you’re working with any NFS tools and equipment, you’re using high-quality stud welding products that will not have any electrical problems when used properly. NFS provides state-of-the-art tools through our rent or buy options, our studs can be custom made to fit your exact specifications, and all our experts are just a phone call away.

 

To get started with Northland Fastening Systems on your project today, contact us at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online.

Stud Welder Product Profile: HBS IT 3002

At Northland Fastening Systems (NFS), you can find everything you need to get the job done without running into inconvenient obstacles or compromising quality. We offer a diverse range of stud welding units for rent or purchase in addition to studs in comprehensive dimensions, accessories, and the expertise of our stud-welding technicians. Whether you need a portable handheld CD stud welder or a heavy duty automated drawn arc welder, you can count on NFS as your one-stop shop for stud welding projects. For short-term projects, we offer a broad stud welder selection for rent, and for dedicated welding technicians, we have a wide range of high-quality welding units for sale.

One of our favorite drawn arc welding units for heavy-duty stud welding in a large-scale construction setting is the HBS IT 3002. This welding unit is a dual gun drawn arc welder with a stepless current range between 300 and 2600 A.

The IT 3002 has welding capabilities for stainless steel, mild steel, and aluminum with stud ranges up to 1″ diameters. Welding times with the IT 3002 are 5 to 1,500 msec, depending on the stud dimensions and surface materials.

Application abilities: The IT 3002 is a construction-grade welding unit capable of through-deck welding and other industrial applications. Its best applications include thick sheet metal welding (2 mm or thicker) and composite construction such as concrete anchors, shear connectors, and deck welding.

Weld variations: Welding with the IT 3002 means working with a ceramic ferrule and drawn arc processes. It is also possible to calibrate the unit for short cycle drawn arc welding, and shielding gas is a built in option.

Unit dimensions: Because the IT 3002 is a unit for construction-grade welding, it is on the heavier and larger side. The full unit weight is 352.7 lbs (160 kg) with the dimensions of 25.6″ x 22″ x 50.8″. Though the full unit is a bulky tool, it is relatively easy to move from site to site with wheel and handle attachments.

Additional features: Thanks to features such as a precision-based microcontroller, continuous internal system function monitoring, lift test capabilities, and fine-tune adjustment ability with the library/specification function, the IT 3002 is a highly effective, reliable unit for even the most rigorous industrial applications.

Safety: In addition to excellent quality and precision control during the welding operation, the IT 3002 has several built-in safety measures. These includes a mains filter that protects against voltage peak, making it optimal for large mains voltages on construction sites. Additional features include lock-out triggers, thermal monitoring, and temperature regulations.

Overall, the IT 3002 is a compact construction-grade unit that is mobile and easy to operate. To learn more about this unit and other stud welder units we offer, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770. You can also request a quote online to get started with us today.

Inspecting Finished Results as Part of the Stud Welding Process

When performed correctly, stud welding applications can provide a fastening system with connection points stronger than either the welding stud or the base material. The basic result of a stud weld is a chemical combination of the two metals being connected, rather than just an adhesion. This chemical bond between two different components is a critical tool for a wide range of manufacturing industries. If you rely on the stud welding process for your production operations, you can find everything you need at Northland Fastening Systems to get your job done efficiently and effectively. From studs in a comprehensive range of dimensions to welding tools for rent and purchase, our expert technicians and knowledgeable staff can help you get all the accessories you need.

Whether you are using drawn arc or CD (capacitor discharge) techniques, each stud welding process has similar stages and requires the same level of inspection processes. Weld inspection is a critical aspect of a well-executed welding operation. For all stud welding processes, the following basic components comprise a thorough weld inspection.

  1. Spattering: One sign of an obvious issue in a weld is spattering, which is splashed or spattered molten metal around the weld point, that points to a too-hot weld. Overly hot welds cause weaker connections and shorten the stud length more than desirable.
  1. Burn through: Another sign of a too-hot weld is burn through of the stud too deeply into the base material. This issue leads to rapid metal fatigue and a poor visual result.
  1. Dull/low flashing: A cold weld, on the other hand, shows slightly different, but easily identified issues. First, a cold weld problem results in dull flashing or a low level of molten metal around the weld point. Cold welds can also result in a failed connection or damaged stud.
  1. Stringing: Another clear sign of a cold weld problem is metal stringing around the weld point. This slight spattering has longer, duller strands of molten metal around the connection than hot weld spattering.
  1. Undercut: If poorly centered, improperly aligned, or welded with too much lift, a weld can show an undercut at the connection point. This means the weld was “hung up” and has a weak connection. Other issues of an undercut is little flashing and a long stud length.
  1. Bend: The bend test is one last test after initial inspections that can reveal welding problems. In stressing a stud and connection point by bending it back and forth, you can ensure your welding tools are correctly calibrated. If the weld connection point breaks before the stud, your tools are not performing correctly. In any good stud weld, the stud should snap before the connection point cracks or breaks.

With these simple visual inspections and the bend test, you can eliminate the majority of weld issues. To learn more about the stud welding process and troubleshooting a weld, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770. You can also request a quote online to get started with us today.

Using the Stud Welding Process with Aluminum

Stud welding is typically associated with the fastening together of two steel bodies. While this is often the case, welding can also be used with a variety of metals and other nonmetal materials such as plastics. One of the secondary metals used in welding processes is aluminum. In fact, when it comes to welding studs on an aluminum surface material, the right process can create a strong weld that is effective in the long term. If you are working with aluminum in your stud welding process, Northland Fastening Systems (NFS) provides the tools, studs, and expertise you need to get the job done effectively and efficiently.

Welding studs on an aluminum surface can be a more difficult task than working with steel materials, largely because aluminum is a much more conductive metal, both thermally and electrically. A higher conductivity at the weld point draws heat away from the stud, rendering the temperature insufficient to form a strong connection. Without correctly preparing the weld process, welding to aluminum surfaces can be like trying to heat up a cup of coffee during a blizzard.

The best way to achieve a strong stud connection to aluminum is to prepare the surface and correctly calibrate the stud welding process.

  • Surface Preparation: Aluminum surfaces can easily build up oxides. For a quality weld, these oxides need to be removed with a stainless steel brush. After brushing off oxides, surfaces should be wiped down with a non-VOC cleaner.
  • Weld Speed: Both CD and drawn arc stud welding processes should be done as quickly as possible when working with aluminum. Speed can help limit the unwanted conduction of heat away from the weld. CD weld times, for example, are completed in 10 milliseconds.
  • Shielding Gas: If you are using drawn arc stud welding with aluminum, then shielding gas is a requirement. This gas is critical in generating enough heat at the weld point and combating aluminum’s higher conductivity. Most welders use 100% argon shielding gas, but 100% helium or a mixture of helium and argon are also useful in aluminum welding.
  • Ceramic Ferrule: Like shielding gas, ceramic ferrules are necessary when drawn arc welding onto an aluminum surface. This ceramic ferrule contains the tip of the welding stud, and more effectively distributes heat and shielding gas around the weld point.
  • Stud Design: Another key difference in aluminum welding is the stud design for drawn arc stud welding processes. The best aluminum studs have a built in ignition tip that burns away before the weld is performed. This allows the welding arc to last longer and generate more heat than a typical welding stud would.

To troubleshoot an aluminum stud weld result, examine the connection point and surrounding surface material. If there is a flash ring or if the stud and/or surface are left shiny, the weld was not performed correctly.

Learn More About the Stud Welding Process

To learn more about the stud welding process when working with aluminum, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770. Request a quote online to get started with us today.