For me, one of the biggest conundrums involving the welding process is understanding the differences between Oxy-acetylene vs Mig welding. First and foremost, I have to admit that Mig welding is very easy to learn and just as easy to use. On the other hand, oxy-acetylene requires more understanding of the behavior of metal and does requires lots of practice. But, when one overcomes the challenges the ultimate reward is unparalleled.
Why oxy-acetylene? For one thing when used correctly it achieves optimum performance, durability, workability, and strength. Lets break this down further:
When working in an automotive setting where there are lots of panel welding and corrections required, the oxy-acetylene welding out performs any other method …….
Durability: oxy-acetylene welding when used correctly achieves maximum penetration and it allows for the weld to be fused into the panel achieving a virtually invisible finished product.
Workability: Another of the biggest benefits of oxy-acetylene is that the metal can be hand planished as the same time it is being welded in order to bring the panel to the desired shape.
Mig welding, on the other hand, is very easy to use and it is not hard to learn. It can work under many environmental conditions such as dirty surfaces.
It is the preferred choice of most body shops and metal shops across the nation.
Now the hard stuff: mig welding crystalizes the metal and the metal weld is not workable. It requires grinding which weakens the metal making the weld brittle.
Because mig welding makes a hard welding bid, the weld can not be hand planished or fused into the metal thus giving a very unattractive line that requires body filler to hide.
At our shop, we use a variety of welding equipment such as Mig, Tig, Spot and oxy-acetylene welding units and all of them have their proper applications for the intended job.
Hera are some oxy-acetylene samples:
The final step as seeing in this last photo note that there is no metal grinding of any sort. Just some hand planishing and light filling to highlight the working surface area highs and lows being worked. This type of work can be completed with Mig or Tig but, the ultimate finish product will vary widely. The bottom line is, What is your tolerance for how much filler you want on your car?