Is There a Difference Between Welding and Metal Fabrication?

When you’re creating metal products, you might be under the impression that welding and metal fabrication are the same thing. That’s not quite accurate—while welding is a type of metal fabrication, metal fabricating services encompass a variety of different processes. When you work with a metal fabrication shop, they can help you figure out which process or processes are necessary for your project.

Read on to learn about the difference between fabricating and welding services.

What is welding?

Welding is a way to permanently join pieces of metal, thermoplastics or glass together. Welds can be created through heat, pressure or both. Typically, a weld joint will include both pieces of the parent material as well as filler material. They may also use a shielding gas, which helps keep dust and debris out of the joint as it’s welded together.

The result is a high-quality, permanent joint that’s designed to stand up to wear and tear.

Welders may use MIG, TIG or electric arc welding on metal. Each type offers specific advantages and drawbacks. One type may be more suitable for your project than another, so don’t hesitate to ask your metal fabrication shop for their expert input.

Welding isn’t the only way to join metal and thermoplastics together, but it’s one of the most popular. If you’re not sure whether your project needs to be welded, ask a professional.

What is fabrication?

Fabrication services involve forming, cutting, welding, burning, machining and assembling pieces to create machines and other products. Metal fabrication can be employed to create anything from guardrails to complex machinery. It’s used across a variety of industries, including automotive, aerospace and manufacturing.

Typically, a metal fabrication shop will offer a variety of fabrication services. Depending on what you have in mind, your project may need several different processes—even simple metal signs may require cutting, machining and welding.

When you’re unsure as to what your project will require, it’s best to talk to the professionals at the fabrication shop. They’ll evaluate your design and raw materials, then suggest fabrication services that will achieve the results you desire.

All metal fabrication processes require safety measures and equipment. Unless you have been trained and have experience in metal fabrication, it’s advisable to leave these techniques to the professionals.

Choosing a fabrication shop

Whether you need welding or other fabrication services, it’s important that you choose a high-quality professional fabrication shop. One of the best ways to find a fabrication service provider is to ask others in your industry who they use. If you’re an amateur, however, you may need to call several different shops before you find the right one.

When considering a shop, be sure to ask about their training and experience in the different types of fabrication you need, as well as whether they have suggestions for your specific project. This will ensure your fabricators can produce the results you seek.

When you need metal or thermoplastic fabrication services, Escofab Inc. can help. Call us today to learn more about our services and get a quote.