The car industry is always on the move, working to make vehicles better, lighter, more efficient. And shop owners and technicians have to pivot to keep up. As you make the shift to handle more aluminum vehicles from your customers, it pays to get to know the technology behind your tools. Here’s a closer look at one: synergic pulsed technology for MIG welders.
How It Works
Metal Inert Gas (MIG) welding, which is also called Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW), forms an electrical arc between the electrode (wire) and the material being welded. That arc melts the metal you’re working on and the wire, fusing them together. MIG welders are a staple in collision repair shops, and manufacturers have made updates so they can be used on thinner metals like aluminum.
In pulsed MIG welding, the current from the power source fluctuates at a regular pace instead of staying steady. The heat of the current forms a drop of melted metal at the end of the wire, and then the pulse of the current forces the droplet off the wire onto the metal. So one drop is deposited with each quick pulse, and the electrode doesn’t actually come in contact with the weld puddle.
For all of this to happen, the feed speed of the wire and the pulse of the current from the power source have to work in tandem. “Synergic” refers to the welding machine’s ability to coordinate that. A synergic pulsed welder should have a complete set of programs in memory, so you can easily work on a variety of jobs.
Advantages for Aluminum
Welding aluminum is different from working with metals like steel. One big difference is that aluminum has a much lower melting point, so there’s a greater chance for burn-through. Synergic pulsed technology offers a much cooler way to weld. The metal heats up when the current peaks during the “pulse,” but that current also drops back down, leading to a lower temp overall, which reduces the risk of burn-through and makes it a better choice for aluminum. That’s why synergic pulsed technology is required by most OEMs when welding aluminum.
This type of technology has been around for years, but it’s become more popular as the vehicle industry embraces aluminum. Shops and technicians are always looking at the horizon, preparing themselves for the next big thing, and the best equipment manufacturers are right there too. Providing the tools—and technologies—needed to get the job done right.