Understanding Certificates of Conformance for Filler Metals

Most of the time when we ask a manufacturer of welding consumables for a certificate of conformance it is simply to have it on file.  But sometime we need to actually read and understand it to make sure that filler metal meets the mechanical and physical requirements of our specific application.  Certificates of conformance contain […]

How to Qualify Welders for Internal Purposes

Whenever we think about qualifying welders we typically think about welding codes such as one of the AWS structural welding codes, API 1104 or ASME Section IX.  In most cases qualifications are carried out to comply with a customer requirement. But what if you simply want to qualify your welders as part of your own […]

How Hard is the CWI Exam?

Why passing rate is so low and what to do about it

Are you planning on becoming a certified welding inspector (CWI) in the near future?  Or do you need one of your employees to get this certification?  If so, you have probably heard that the exam is pretty tough.  Although the American Welding Society (AWS) does not publish information on passing rates, it is estimated that […]

Common Tests for Welder Performance Qualification

The purpose of welder performance qualifications is to ensure that the welder can deposit sound welds.  There are several tests, both destructive and nondestructive, that are used to evaluate a welder’s ability to deposit good welds.  Below are four of the most common test applied for these qualifications:   Visual Inspection (VT) Visual inspection is […]

Fillet Weld Leg Sizes Are Meaningless!

Measuring fillet weld legs is meaningless, well… not really.  Fillet weld leg sizes are very important, but simply measuring the leg of a fillet weld does not tell us if we actually achieved the desired throat dimension.  The strength of a fillet weld is determined by its effective throat.  As you can see in the […]

How To Qualify Welders

One of the most common requests for help that we get pertains to the qualification of welders. Our customers win a contract and later find out they need to qualify their welders.  Often, they realize this right before production is to begin and scramble to get their qualifications done.  Even worse, they may also need […]

Etching Solutions for Steel, Stainless, Aluminum and Other Metals

For high-quality macro-etches

The qualification of welders and welding procedures often involves macro-examination of welds.  Performing macro-etches is a relatively simple procedure, but strict guidelines must be followed to ensure safety.  Most chemicals used in etching solutions are hazardous and must be handled accordingly.  Any person etching with these chemicals must be familiarize him or herself with the […]

Bigger (Weld) Is Not Always Better

When it comes to fillet welds, bigger is not always better.  A fillet weld is easy to measure, simply take out your fillet weld gauges measure it.  However, there is an incorrect assumption that a bigger weld (as measured with a fillet gauge) is always stronger than a smaller weld. Before we get into this […]

5 Types of Tests for Welder Performance Qualification

Codes detail the requirements for performance qualifications of welders, welding operators and tack welders. Many codes do not demand that a Certified Welding Inspector (CWI) or a welding engineer conduct the necessary testing.  Unless your customer specifically asks that a CWI or third-party do this, you can simply follow the code yourself to perform all […]