History of welding and fabrication is hard to write in one short article, but I will summarize it as much as possible…
Today when we are using different complex welding tools we need to know the history of welding a little bit. We need to look back and see when welding first came into being. To know that, we need to go back to the Iron Age.
At the time the Egyptians and the Eastern Mediterranean people first started the process of welding. They liked to apply this process to perfect the craft of welding their iron pieces to make iron boxes. This was during a time the hammer hadn’t been invented.
The hammer appeared later in the middle ages to make different kind of small iron products. They used to pound heat until it bounded. That process became older when Edmund Davy in the 1830s discovered Acetylene with which welding became much easier to do. It helped to identify the arc between two electrodes.
The invention of arc lighting gave a new modification to the conventional welding process where cutting and gas welding became far easier than the previous ones. At that time welding became popular as a joining process.
After almost 50 years, another scientist came with a new invention which influenced largely to the process. He was a Frenchman named Auguste De Meritens. He did show a new path to weld lead plates. He used the heat of the arc. This practice first started the famous carbon arc welding. It became popular from the 1900s.
The welding process became more popular in the 1900s. At that time coated metal electrodes was already invented and rapidly became very popular. The up-gradation electrode was very common at the time and all these modifications were, in fact, helping to deliver a more accurate arc. The year 1914 was really a very important year because the stick electrode was first introduced at that time.
With the perfect use of that stick electrode, many welding processes at that time became finer. Projection welding and seam welding were also greatly influenced by the involvement of stick electrode in the welding process. Many welding processes were benefited through this breakthrough in welding. The quality of gas welding and cutting began to improve rapidly. Blowtorch and low pressure acetylene were already there.
The popularity of welding businesses grew rapidly at the time of World War I. Countries were competing with each other in many aspects. Welding technology was one of them. They were trying to invent advanced technology of welding process to make powerful ships as ships played a very important role in the war.
One was able observe a revolution in welding business during this time. The British started to build their ships using the arc welding process. Because of that, arc welding became very popular in Britain and Europe. Americans had different plans and different goals to achieve. They concentrated more on repairing jobs. Instead of building new ships, they preferred to repair their ships and make them stronger. It can be seen how these powerful countries knowingly or unknowingly made a very serious contribution to develop welding process.
Airplanes also benefited from these emerging welding processes. After that revolution fifty years passed and when laser was invented, people again observed a change in the welding process and business. Laser beam welding became popular. This was a quick and automated welding process and even today this process has no competitor.
Welding has had different contributors from the different parts of the globe. Professional experts say that to become a Master of any technology, one need to know its history very well for his own improvement.