American Welding Society Forum
I remember reading in D1.1 that we were not to weld SMAW in "excessive winds".
I do not recall seeing what "excessive wind" is exactly. Rain, extreme cold are pretty self explanatory whereas wind is not. Has there been some sort of testing that says at 20mph wind will disrupt your arc causing pinholes? Or is it 15mph? Or perhaps 30?
When somebody calls out "to be welded according to AWSD1.1" and I find myself being blown around like a rag doll I often wonder, is this excessive according to AWS? Oh, no I can put up a shelter and no I can't block it with my free hand. It is usually holding the stinger to give me the M1 Abrams affect. You know, tank driving along, bouncing thru a field, barrel stay perfectly fixed on target.
Is there anywhere that calls out specifically what "excessive wind" is by a speed? If so could you reference it please. Some engineers say we can not work if the wind is above 15mph, shown on prints. Others use the "excessive speed" cop out. It's far easier and convincing if you have a standard to go by when you call in to shut the job down for a day.
This has been something I have been wondering about lately. Thanks for any info and discussion!
I don't recall seeing anything with regard to the SMAW process, but for the GMAW, GTAW, EGW, and FCAW-G, D1.1 states that welding "shall not be done in a draft or wind unless the weld is protected by a shelter. Such shelter shall be of material and shape appropriate to reduce wind velocity in the vicinity of the weld to a maximum of 5 mph".
Don't know if this will make you happy or sad.
Great published controls for every process but SMAW.
For SMAW and Self-shielded FCAW you prolly need to look to 5.12.2 (3)
5.12 Welding Environment
5.12.1 Maximum Wind Velocity. GMAW, GTAW,
EGW, or FCAW-G shall not be done in a draft or wind
unless the weld is protected by a shelter. Such shelter
shall be of material and shape appropriate to reduce wind
velocity in the vicinity of the weld to a maximum of five
miles per hour [eight kilometers per hour].
5.12.2 Minimum Ambient Temperature. Welding
shall not be done
(1) when the ambient temperature is lower than 0°F
(2) when surfaces are wet or exposed to rain, snow, or
(3) high wind velocities, or
(4) when welding personnel are exposed to inclement
There is nothing in the commentary that will give more ammo.
I would say Tornadoes coming through classify as 'high winds' Shawn.
But, I have not found where "high wind velocities" are defined by any of the codes or manufacturers of electrodes.
Others have already given you the D1.1 quotes from Clause 5. Just for the record, D1.8, which 99% of the time won't involve you, limits atmospheric wind to 3 mph.
I'll keep looking as I find time. Stay safe.
He Is In Control, Have a Great Day, Brent
Welders are mostly concerned with wind trying to prevent porosity. But don't forget that wind could also create increased hardness due to accelerated cooling/quenching. This could lead to increased cracking potential. Hydrogen diffusion issues, material type would be variables here.
The only problem I have with your statement jarsanb is this. A year and a half ago I asked a similar question about welding in cold weather. If it is +1 degrees Fahrenheit with a minus 15 or worse wind chill, say, minus 30 or 40(as it miserably was at the time) would that according to AWS mean I should not weld due to the increased cooling of the material being welded due to the wind velocity.
The responses I got basically said that the temperature was there for me, the welder and the wind would not affect the weld as long as preheat and interpass temperatures were monitored/maintained. Also the wind chill was not a factor in the temperature range as it is a "straight" temperature that is cited in AWS D1.1.
I do understand what you are saying though. How quick will a 20mph wind cool, say a 4" thick piece of metal once it is preheated and between passes when you consider hitting it with a wire wheel then loading another welding rod? Would it cool it enough to cause the issues you mention on an 80 degree day? A 5 degree day with a wind chill of minus 15 or 20?
Where I am working if that is a problem then they might as well hang it up and stop all work all across the country, lol!!!
If preheat temps were monitored and maintained then you wouldn't have an issue. That would be correcting the issue. Regarding the questions you've asked, the answers would vary depending on the type of electrode/welding process and material type. For some combinations, no, not much of an issue. In others, yes, it would be a big deal. If your preheating and maintaining temps then you covered your bases. It's the "maintaining" part that gets lost in the shuffle. If that 5 degree day with wind chill at -15 or -20 was causing your material temps to fall below any required preheat temp between passes then you haven't maintained anything. This could lead to a problem yes. That's why there are certain products to help with this issue, like induction blankets when torches can't offset the issues on a job or wraps used to protect a completed weld from cooling to fast from....maybe wind, or having people assigned to help the welder running torches/grinders. Anyway, my point was wind isn't just about porosity. If you utilize preheat when necessary and preheat maintenance then you've got it under control. Welded things tend to break on occasion, sometimes it's because things weren't done as well as they should have been.
I've attached a picture. Weld was made of the same material, same welding process and procedure. Picture on the left was cooled by wind where weld preheat temp was not maintained. There were eight welds made, none protected from wind allowing temps to fall below requirements. Welds were cut out and replaced using exact same procedure but also wind shields. Eight straps in the noncompliant welds all failed as specimen on the left. A verification weld was cut out and all 16 specimens were as the same as the specimen on the right. The failed area shown is not porosity, as the picture might indicate, but hydrogen embrittlement commonly know as "fisheyes"....Base material has a 90K tensile, 70K yield welded with low hydrogen process.
See attachment edited in above post...
I once shut down the firing line on a pipeline, 36" pipe, with the wind blowing straight down the line. Radiography, which was internal radiography with a fine grain film, did not show any porosity but the visual appearance of the weld cap did show the weld metal higher on the down wind side of the weld. This did not represent "a uniform cross section" of weld metal. Didn't care what the wind speed was. Strange to see most of the cap on one side of the weld on the down wind side of the weld with little or no cap on the up wind side of the weld. The next day "wind boards" were on the job and I don't think there was another day they were needed. Welders didn't loose an hour, it was after noon, just the contractor lost production.
There was no effect on any other portion of the weld since all the other passes were below the outside surface of the weld.
You instigated a very interesting topic for research which could really use some of Henry's input with some walls of references to help.
But, as he has been increasingly absent, wish you well Henry, I entered 'effect of wind on molten weld pool' into Google and got some basic beginning references that were interesting. AWS, Lincoln, and many others.
Anyway, it appears that both FCAW-S and SMAW are pretty immune to the effects of even some pretty high winds because of the way the flux introduces the gas shielding 'INTO' the molten weld during the high heat/burning process and has completed it's work prior to being able to be blown away by even extreme winds.
With that as a very brief background, it appears then that the only recourse one has is to the environmental factor causing unsafe working conditions and at times being severe enough to be restrictive of the welder depositing sound weld. Cold, wind, and other factors will greatly reduce the odds of successful quality welding.
I'm afraid there are not any exact numbers anywhere to help you with that one unless you can find them in OSHA. There should be some guidelines there for climbing, welding, or other areas that would be included in their jurisdiction.
He Is In Control, Have a Great Day, Brent
Thanks to all that replied, good reading and info.
I had a good laugh at the 5mph. Unsafe for us is, "will it blow sparks into the pine trees? The field of fresh cut hay?"
I told an engineer that I stop welding with SMAW when I see whitecaps in the weld pool.
He asked what was the wind velocity needed to produce whitecaps?
I replied, "about 128 mph."
"Good Lord, that would be a hurricane!" he said.
"That's when I stop!" I responded.
An example of excessive wind: "Pull my finger."
I wasn’t going to go there, but Al opened the door. I was on the bus the other day and I had one of those attacks. The music was really loud, but I managed to time my excessive wind with the beat. After four or five songs I started feeling better. As I left the bus, people were really giving me the evil eye. That’s when I remembered that I’d been listening to my iPod. It’s not really my fault. I've been diagnosed with excessive wind, but like everybody else who has a severe medical condition, I'm not going to suffer in silence. When I was a kid, I remember trying the trick where you light one on fire. We weren’t allowed to play with lighters, so I used a candle. The Priest didn't find it as funny as I did, and everybody just sat there looking at me in disgust. One lady in the front row even told me to pull my pants up. A few years later, a bunch of us were in a crowded, but it was a quiet room. Me being me, I decided to initiate another round of excessive wind. All of a sudden, the quietness in the room turned into laughter. One of my friends approached me about 30 minutes later, saying how it was the funniest thing he’d ever seen. My wife however, said that it ruined our wedding. I’m good at it, but I can’t hold a candle to my wife, and I wouldn’t want to. Remember putting a blade of grass in between your thumbs, blowing it, and hearing the weird sounds it made? Same thing happens when my wife wears thongs. Don’t get me wrong. Her excessive wind outbursts are not all that frequent because she can’t keep her mouth shut long enough to build up any pressure. When it finally does happen, I’m not saying it’s loud, but she'll never get hit by a ship.
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