ARCHITECTURE, BUILDING & CONSTRUCTION

Metal Fabrication vs. Welding

We spoke to:

Name: Jake Offner

Current job: Welder and fabricator 

Studying: Certificate III in Metal Engineering and Fabrication at TAFE NSW

So what’s fabrication vs welding?

Metal fabrication and welding are two completely different things, but they go together. Metal fabrication comprises of several processes and welding is just a part of it.

Unlike welding, metal fabrication is not just about putting two metal pieces together. It is much more than that. If a piece of metal is big in size, it has to be precisely cut to a particular length and shape. When you need a particular sheet to be bent in a specific way, it will not require a welder but a bending machine. Also, this kind of shaping and bending can be done only by an experienced professional. For really intricate designing of metals, laser cutting is used.

There is also a difference in tools used. Metal fabricators use tools like:

  • Adjustable wrench
  • Abrasives
  • Benders
  • Consumable electrodes
  • Cylinders with custom carts
  • Chipping hammers
  • Electrode holders
  • Hand file
  • Vice and vice grips
  • Welding clamps
  • Soapstone
  • Tungsten inert gas consumables

So welding is a metal fabrication technique and works hand in hand with sheet metal fabrication. In order to get the final product, every process involves techniques like assembling and bending. You can weld in different ways – but in short – welding just involves joining two pieces of metal together. It doesn’t involve designing, layout creation, forming, cutting or machining. You could specialise in pipe welding, ironworking, structural welding. You could go into agriculture, transport, construction, mining, shipbuilding, nuclear energy, aviation, aerospace, etc.

Want to get into it? Watch the full video.

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