Last Updated on May 30, 2022 by Luis Ferency
Generally, welding is considered as the fabrication process which involves the usage of pressure and/or heat to create a durable, long-lasting sturdy joint between two different metal pieces by using different welders tools. Hence, depends upon the part or specific production or employment as an industry professional that is assigned to perform different welding techniques in order to create the required assemblies.
Two of the most common welding method that was used while welding is MIG and TIG. Hence, in our today’s post, we will be taking a deep comparison between these two most commonly used welding processes i.e. Similarities and Differences between MIG and TIG Welding
Typically in each process of the welding arc, there is an electric arc that is constituted among electrodes and conductive base metals. Thus, the arc supplies are necessary to use heat to fuse the faying surface with the base plates. Hence, there are different processes of the welding arc, for instance, manual metal arc welding, flux core arc welding, gas metal arc welding, submerged arc welding, gas tungsten arc welding and etc.
Since each process holds a unique characteristic that offered numerous benefits as compared to others. During the process of gas metal arc welding (GMAW) the consumable electrode wire employs to supply filler metals within the welding zone. Hence, this wire electrode is then wrapped into a wire pool which is responsible for continuously feeding to the welding zone by using an automatic arrangement. Hence, shielding gas is supplied to the welding zone through a separate gas cylinder in order to protect the hot weld bead from contamination and undesired oxidation. So the GMAW has been classified into two major groups, depending upon the constituent of shielding gas.
Metal Inert Gas (MIG) welding and Metal Active Gas (MAG) welding. By the mane, you might be clear that it is an inert gas such as helium, argon, nitrogen, or some mixture of such gases that are used to shield them while the MIG welding process. On the other hand, a combination of active gas co2 or oxygen and inert gas will be used as shielding gas while doing the MAG welding process. Since the GMAW process involves MIG welding where inert shielding gas has been supplied.
Next in our fusion welding process list is Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) welding which is also termed Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW). Here the electric arc has been established between tungsten electrodes the non-consumable with the conductive bade plates. As the electrodes are non-consumable, thus there is a need to supply additional filler metals by feeding the filer rod underneath the arc. Though, TIG welding is one of the preferred autogenous weldings that requires no added filler metal to join the components. Contrasting to other welding processes, especially MIG where the electrode materials have been selected based upon the base metal composition. Here in the TIG welding process, regardless of the chemical composition of a base material the tungsten electrodes utilize themselves.
Additionally, TIG welding is also employed in inert shielding gas which is responsible to protect the hot weld bead components from contamination and oxidation. But most importantly, TIG should be carried out properly. Additionally, the TIG welding tends to produce a very subtle defect-free sound for the joints that create a great appearance in the final results. Furthermore, TIG welding is safe and secure as it does not produce any type of spatter.
In addition to this, the TIG welding and MIG welding also have so many other properties that are different making them more unique as well as some similar properties that both welding processes are sharing as common.
Below we have highlighted the in-depth details about the similarities and differences between both welding processes.
Difference between MIG and TIG Welding
These are some key differences that both welding processes i.e. MIG and TIG are included as their unique property;
Typically MIG welding includes consumable electrodes that continuously fed within the welding zone through a wired pool.
Typically TIG welding includes non-consumable electrodes that are statically and intact fed within the welding zone.
Generally, the electrodes melt themselves to provide the necessary filler metal that is required to fill up the root gap between electrode and base metals. Hence, these electrodes will act as filler metals. Though you don’t need any extra filler.
If needed, the additional filler metal is supplied by feeding a minor diameter filler rod inserted into the arc. Hence, filler metal has been supplied separately.
Thus, the composition of electrode metal has been selected with a parent metal. Typically, the metallurgical composition of electrode metal through similar base metal.
Since electrode has always been made with tungsten through the minor proportion of other alloying elements for instance thorium.
Suitable for homogeneous welding. As it cannot be carried out in autogenous mode welding. This is due to the filler that applied inherently.
Particularly suitable for autogenous mode welding. Thus, it will employ both modes i.e. heterogeneous or homogeneous while supplying added filler.
Since the electrode-cum-filler used for MIG welding available in the form of a small 0.5 – 2 mm diameter along with several hundred meters wire wounded with a wire-pool.
Typically, TIG welding filler comes in the form of a small 1 – 3 mm diameter also with a short 60 – 180 mm long rod.
Because of the large length, the MIG filler electrode without replacement will be fed for a lengthier duration.
Because of the large short length, the TIG requires frequent filler replacement. Thus, doing this unintentionally interrupts the whole welding process.
Commonly the MIG welding has been carried out either in AC or in DCEP polarity. This means that the electrode can melt and deposit at a very fast rate.
On the other hand, commonly TIG welding has been carried out either in AC or DCEN polarity which in other words tend to increase the electrode life.
The process is highly productive due to the high deposition rate of filler.
The process brings low productive due to the low deposition rate of filler.
Usually, MIG welding produces sparks and spatter while welding. This can cause greater loss of expensive filler metal and also dangerous for your safety.
Usually, TIG welding doesn’t produce any type of sparks and spatter while welding. This can enable no cause of losing any expensive filler metal and also a safe welding process to rely on.
The finish results are not so smooth. Thus one must compromise on the appearance and quality of the weld bead.
The finish results are so smooth. As it has the tendency to produce defect-free reliable joint. Thus one must expect a good appearance and quality of weld bead.
It doesn’t lead to any type of tungsten inclusion defect.
TIG welding sometimes leads to tungsten inclusion defects. This defect can occur when a broken or melted part of the tungsten electrode gets entrenched into a weld bead.
Similarities between MIG welding and TIG welding
These are some key similarities that both welding processes MIG and TIG are sharing;
- Both MIG and TIG welding are arc welding processes. An electric arc has been constituted between base plates and electrodes. This electric arc helps them in melting down the faying surface to produce coalescence. Thus, they come under the welding process category named fusion welding process as a metal base and fused while joining.
- MIG and TIG welding processes utilize bare electrodes. Though the material used by both electrodes is quite different in both processes. However, there is no flux-coated electrode has been employed in any of these two processes.
- During both welding processes, the shielding gas is required in order to supply any type of extra additional sources. This is unlike other welding processes such as MMAW or FCAW. As in these welding processes the shielding gas has been obtained inherently due to the disintegration of available flux through electrodes.
- Since the inert shielding gas used in both welding processes can be used to protect the hot weld bead from contamination and oxidation. Hence, only inert gases such as nitrogen, helium, argon, and any combination of such gases are used for shielding purposes.
- Lastly, only conductive metals will be used to join through these two processes. All the welding process arcs are applicable to work for conductive metals only. In order to join non-conductive metals, solid-state welding is applied.
Luis Ferency with experience of 35+ years is a semi-retired welder. Though his passion for welding and learning keeps him going further. He loves sharing his knowledge on his expertise in SMAW, GMAW, GTAW, and FTAW. Hence, this helped the new welders to seek leverage knowledge and improve their welding skills.