Tag: welding

Tag Archive: welding

  1. Why Welding May Need to Lighten Up on Helium

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    How will helium prices affect the welding industry?

    “helium” by Michael Pereckas, used under CC / edited from original

    For being the second most abundant element in the Universehelium is becoming harder and harder to obtain.  Helium is widely utilized in industry and is used in MRI scanners, nuclear power plants, the Large Hadron Collider, and, of course, welding.

    Helium has remained popular in the welding world as a shielding gas due to its high thermal conductivity.  Though widely used, there has been 50% increase in price of helium since the year 2000, a spike which has been fueled by a helium shortage.  With the prices of helium in a constant flux, the welding industry is looking for alternatives.


    How It All Happened

    Traditionally, the United States has been the leading supplier of helium worldwide but production has declined heavily in the last 20 years.  The U.S. Helium Federal Reserve, which provides 35% of the world’s helium, is set to close in September 2021. The closure will decrease helium production and it is predicted to increase the strain on the helium market.  

    The US government has tried to privatize the helium gas supply by closing the reservoir but due to the lack of response from private companies, it only succeeded in contributing to the shortage.  When coupled with the fact that there simply aren’t many helium sources left in the world, a dire shortage is looming.

    Even with a recent massive helium reservoir recently discovered in Tanzania last month, at the current consumption levels of helium (which is expected to remain on the rise), the supply is expected to run out in 7 years. The dwindling supply and the competition of other industries means that the welding industry must find alternatives

    How Does this Affect the Welding Industry?

    It’s evident that the industry must adapt to the shortage of helium but in many cases, the gas is hard to replace.  For example, hydrogen can be used quite well for welding stainless steel but underperforms when welding aluminum.  

    A common solution is creating blends that have a lower percentage of helium or eliminate the gas altogether by combining two different gases like argon and nitrogen for the same effect. These mixed gases could mean the difference in a future with no helium. If the use of helium is unavoidable, it is best to use high quality equipment to ensure that the helium is used in the most efficient way.

    At Sutton Garten, we strive to satisfy the needs of our customers.  Whether those needs include helium, helium gas alternatives, or the latest in high-quality welding equipment and technology, we have it covered.

  2. Welding Jobs: How to Stay Cool This Summer

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    In most parts of the United States the temperatures are rising, and it’s only going to get warmer. Although welding is typically performed indoors, the heat can still take a toll on workers. Welders are usually required to work for long periods of time in heavy protective gear and equipment that can add to the risk of heat-related health problems, including the following:

    • Heat stroke is the most serious heat-related illness and occurs when the body’s temperature regulating system fails. Body temperature can then rise to critical levels of over 104°F.  
    • Heat exhaustion is the next most serious heat-related health problem. The signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion are headache, nausea, dizziness, weakness, irritability, confusion, thirst, heavy sweating and a body temperature greater than 100.4°F.
    • Heat cramps are caused by a loss of body salts and fluids from sweating and can result in muscle pain.
    • Heat rash is a very common problem for those who work in hot environments. It is caused by sweating and leads to a breakout on the skin.

    Heat-related illnesses can affect the health and productivity of workers. Whether you are a manager or employee, be sure to be proactive by keeping indoor areas cool and ventilated. OSHA also recommends other methods to reduce indoor temperatures such as the use of reflective shields to redirect heat, as well as using fans to increase air speed. The CDC also has tips for employers and workers on how to stay cool and prevent heat stress.

    Sutton-Garten is here to fulfill the needs of our customers. We must provide them with the best products, and back them up with the technical knowledge and service capabilities to solve their problems.

  3. Size of the job? That doesn’t matter, but quality and service do.

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    At Sutton-Garten, we understand that the size of the welding  job doesn’t matter. That’s why we not only sell equipment and gases to companies, but we also sell to individuals. Besides offering a wide array of products to our larger customers, we also offer training for a variety of certifications and welding techniques. Our training can be customized to help upgrade skills for welders at your company. In addition, we also offer training to fulfill AWS and ASME certifications, at your place or ours, for up to 6 welders at once in stick, mig, or tig welding.

    And for the hobbyist? At Sutton-Garten, we also offer an introductory welding class. With this training, even the hobbyist will be able to put down a good weld for everything from home repairs to original creations. Our classes are located in a 2000 square foot training facility with welding booths and an air-conditioned classroom. Approximately 90% of the time is spent welding in the lab, so you will get plenty of hands-on training. Contact us now for more information.

    So back to jobs big and small. Here is a story about an interesting last-minute request at a custom metal fabricating shop in North Carolina proving that you just never know when and how and for what, welding expertise will be needed…


  4. A Recap of FABTECH

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    Each year, FABTECH brings together companies from around the globe to celebrate the metal manufacturing industry. It’s the largest metal forming, welding, fabricating and finishing event in North America. The event spans four days, and this year took place in Atlanta, Georgia with over 40,000 people in attendance and over 1,500 companies providing exhibits.

     In addition to the many displays, there are hosts of learning opportunities with more than 100 educational presentations led by experts in their respective fields. These presentations cover everything from the latest trends in metal forming to the newest technologies in the welding industry.

     This year, Sutton Garten Co. was in attendance to support a few of their vendors: Miller Electric, Cold Jet, Lincoln Electric, and Victor Technologies. With over 95 years in the welding equipment, welding supplies, and gas business, Sutton Garten Co. takes pride in being a leader in the industry and believes that education and keeping up with current trends and technology is not only important for business, but important for the future of our field.

     Sutton Garten Co. strongly supports local schools dedicated to education in this field, as well as offering classes on site in tig, mig, and stick welding. This aligns with how FABTECH reaches out to students and school groups in an effort to teach them more about manufacturing and how exciting this field can be.

     With the future of manufacturing looking so promising, now is the perfect time to recruit students interested in pursuing employment in this industry. Sutton Garten Co. is looking forward to the next FABTECH planned for November 2015, sure to showcase the latest in technology and advancements in the growing metal working, welding, and gas fields.

  5. New Millermatic Welders 141 and 190 replacing 140 and 180

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    Since our company was started in the early 1900s, we’ve been focused on welding supplies and services. We currently over a wide variety of welding equipment and a vast selection of gases, safety, and other related equipment. One of the most popular welding companies, Miller Electric, manufactures welding and cutting equipment for use in the manufacturing, fabrication, construction, aviation, motorsports, education, agriculture, and marine industries. Two of their popular welders, the Millermatic® 140 Auto-Set™and the Millermatic® 180 Auto-Set™ will soon be replaced by the more advanced and innovative Millermatic® 141 and Millermatic® 190. Both the Millermatic 140 and Millermatic 180 are standard and basic everyday welders that industry professionals know and trust for their ease of use and dependability.

    The new Millermatic 141 is an all-in-one wire welder that welds 24 gauge – 3/16 in. mild steel using 120V input power. A variety of new and exciting features set this model apart from similarly priced welders. An auto-set feature allows you to automatically control and set your welder to the exact specifications. It also offers all-in-one MIG so that you don’t have to find the parameters. The 141 also has manual mode so that you can easily set your own parameters, an angled all aluminum drive system for consistent feeding and ease of use, quick select drive roll for differenced sized sold wire and flux-cored wire, along with a smooth-start start, an auto Spoolgun detect and thermal overload and ‘tip saver’ short circuit protection.

    Miller also recently released the Millermatic 190, an all-in-one welder that weld 24 gauge- 5/16 in. mild steel using 240V input power, enough to handle the most complex project. Weighing only 35 pounds, this unit is extremely portable and easy to maneuver throughout your project area. Additionally, with its angle all aluminum drive system, it creates consistent feeding and easy setup for up to 15-food MIG guns and three groves, two for differenced size solid wire and another for flux-cored wire. Other features such as auto-set, fan-on-demand, and smooth-start make this welder extremely easy to use and clean. It also has a thermal overload and ‘tip saver’ short circuit protection feature to shut down the unit to prevent damage if it overheats.

    For a limited time, Miller is offering a free helmet with the purchase of either the Millermatic 141 or the Millermatic 190. These new welders are set to revolutionize the small welder market and are going to be displayed at the upcoming FABTECH show in November. To learn more about Miller’s welders, visit their website.

  6. Our Recent Welding Involvements

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    As spring has gotten underway, things have really picked up here at Sutton Garten. By this, we mean we have been involved in a lot of different industry events! Let us tell you about them.

    AWSAWS Chapter meeting: As members of the AWS, we often attend chapter meetings, to keep in touch with other members within the industry and stay on top of any new technologies or trends in the welding world. This past April 2nd, we hosted the chapter meeting, something we typically do about once a year. At this meeting, we discussed and demonstrated a new piece of Miller welding equipment, in order to show how to build up your welding facility and fleet of equipment.

    Midwest Team Welding Competition: On April 24th and 25th, the Midwest Team Welding Competition, sponsored by AWS, was held at the JE Light Career Center. Essentially, the competition includes teams of high school students from various vocational schools in the area, encouraging them to compete in welding contests. Specifically, we sponsored the TIG welding content, as we have been a part of the competition for some time, and want to help build up schools that are training students in the welding methods.

    Although a busy month, April helped get us more involved in the welding community—something we are continuously working on!

  7. The Year Ahead

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    2012 was a great year here at Sutton-Garten with record sales in almost every category – welding machines, filler metals, rentals and gases.

    As we look forward to the year ahead, we hope that sales growth continues. Change continues in almost all of our markets, including:

    Welding Machinery – New and better equipment continues to be introduced by the manufacturers. Miller has exciting new products to enable faster production rates and higher quality. With the continuing shortage of qualified welders, the new equipment makes it easier to obtain the quality welds you need in your processes. Hypertherm has continued their improvements in plasma cutting equipment with the introduction of the Powermax 105 and MaxPro 200. Their HyDefinition products give laser-like quality at substantial cost savings.

    Filler Metals – Suppliers continue to develop new welding filler metals that give higher deposition rates with existing machines. Flux cored wires from Alloy Rods and Lincoln can replace hard wires and give much higher weld speeds and lower overall costs.

    Helium supply – The availability of helium has gotten somewhat better even though pricing continues to be quite high. We have locked in a supply of high quality helium that will take care of existing customers, and allow some growth. We will also continue to work with customers in changing their process so they can eliminate helium and use lower cost gases that give the same or improved results.

    Beverage gases and Dry Ice – Our CO2 Division continues to grow and a new long-term supply agreement will stabilize our pricing. We have doubled our dry ice capacity and continue to supply “the freshest and best dry ice in town.”

    Welding Classes – Our Welding Classes and Certification testing have been very popular with existing and new customers. Give us a call for any of your weld training and testing needs.

    We are looking forward to making 2013 another year of record sales and hope to bring in even more new customers. Wish us luck on our resolutions and make sure to check in for more news!




  8. Sutton Garten is the “Image of Welding!”

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    We have some exciting news to share: This past fall, the American Welding Society (AWS) awarded Sutton Garten with the “Image of Welding” Award!

    The “Image of Welding” Award is an annual award presented by AWS at the yearly AWS/Fabtech convention (which features those companies who represent the welding industry). A national board selects the winners of the award and this year, we are honored to have been a recipient!

    Sutton Garten and AWS

    Ever since the 1920s, when our founder Ray Garten joined the AWS organization, Sutton Garten has been active in the welding industry. For the past ten years, we have been hosting annual AWS meetings here at our downtown Indianapolis facilities, where we have highlighted our welding classroom, welding lab, and showroom featuring our current products. During these meetings, industry and society members demonstrate new technologies and discuss current industry events. AWS is an organization we have been involved with for so long simply because of what the organization stands for: the support of welding education and the encouragement of young people to learn the techniques of the trade. Along with our society membership, we have found ways to bring recognition to the welding industry. Specifically, we help a local AWS Midwest Welding contest, participate in various exhibitions and shows, and support AWS scholarship funds.

    Sutton Garten and AWSAs long-time members of the society and the industry, we are pleased to receive the award and be acknowledged as an integral part of the welding industry. We hope that we and AWS can help further foster the welding industry!

  9. Welding: Lesson 101

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    In our previous blog post, we highlighted the various welding and certification classes we offer. These classes, which can either train students to a specific welding standard or on the basics of welding, are a good introduction to the welding industry. Since not everyone can make our classes, we have decided to bring some welding instruction here. Let’s look at the most common types of welding and cutting:

    MIG Welding: Also known as GMAW (Gas Metal Arc Welding), this is the most popular form of welding. What does this process involve? A shielding gas, MIG gun, welder or wire feed machine, and MIG wire. MIG welding is used in many applications, including automotive, aerospace, sheet metal, machine and tool and die shops, and manufacturing. Similar to MIG welding is FCAW welding (which stands for Flux Core Arc Welding), which does not require a shielding gas.

    Stick Welding: The oldest electric welding technology, also known as SMAW or Shielding Metal Arc Welding, uses a “stick” electrode, with an electrode holder and an arc welding machine. This welding process is used primarily in the construction, steel, and manufacturing industries.

    TIG Welding: Known as GTAW or Gas Tungsten Arc Welding. The process requires a tungsten electrode and “TIG” torch, and uses “TIG” rods or 36” length pieces of steel, stainless steel, aluminum, or titanium, as well as Argon shielding gas. TIG welding is used in auto body work for vehicles and motor sports, and in aerospace applications. Little known fact: this welding is the most difficult to master because in a way, it is art-like.

    Oxy-Fuel Welding: This welding requires a cutting/welding torch with acetylene and oxygen and can be used to weld metal with the “welding tip” or cut thick metal with a cutting tip. Oxy-fuel cutting is primarily used in the steel manufacturing, automotive, and scrap metal industries.

    Plasma Cutting: Uses compressed air or nitrogen and a plasma cutting torch to cut metal with a more precise cut then produced in Oxy-Fuel Cutting. This welding process is used in almost all facets of the metal working industry.

    Welding Machines

    Do you have a better understanding of the various types of welding? Stay tuned for more welding, company, and industry news!

  10. Welding a Class Load of New Welders

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    MIG welding. TIG welding. Stick welding. Oxy-fuel and plasma cutting. Though each welding process differs slightly from one another, they all have one thing in common: we are experts at all of them. For years, we have provided the welding industry with a wide variety of welding and cutting equipment and rental and repair services. Why limit our welding knowledge only to the technology? That is precisely the reason we decided to offer welding certification and training classes.

    Welding Lab And Classroom

    What do these classes cover? The welding basics:

    • Equipment setup. How do the machines for the various welding processes work?
    • What are base and filler metals, and how do you select the appropriate ones?
    • Introduction to metal alloys: We cover all metals from aluminum to mild steel and stainless steel.
    • Base metal cleaning and preparation.
    • Looking for a specific certification? We can train to AWS and ASME welding codes. Not to mention, we will show you how to test the equipment to ensure it is continuously meeting these standards.

    Welding LabNot only will you get specific instructions in the introductory and advanced level classes, but you will also have the opportunity to work on individual projects. Our instructors are all certified welding inspectors by the American Welding Society. Want to sign up for a class? See our website for more information!

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