Back Alley Customs

Bob Capudean

Contributing Writer
Back Alley Customs
Waterford, MI
He is a welding instructor at Oakland Community College, Auburn Hills, MI.

Welding's effect on strengthening steel

December 11, 2003

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Welding can severely influence strengthened or hardened metals, depending on the hardening technique used. Because of this, post-weld heat treatment is often very helpful in maintaining weld joint strength because it softens or tempers any martensite or bainite that formed in the HAZ.

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Making steels stronger

October 9, 2003

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When it comes to modifying a steel's strength and hardness, it's important to not confuse hardness with hardenability and remember that hardenability characteristics are important because they help identify how much a specific steel will harden during welding.

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Carbon content, steel classifications, and alloy steels

August 28, 2003

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Steel classification is important in understanding what types are used in certain applications and which are used for others. For example, most commercial steels are classified into one of three groups: plain carbon, low-alloy, and high-alloy. Steel classification systems are set up and updated frequently for this type of information.

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Phases, structures, and the influences of temperature

June 26, 2003

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When you heat or cool a piece of metal to a specific temperature, that metal goes through what's called a phase change, in which its crystal structure changes. Sometimes the change is obvious. For example, when a piece of metal melts, it goes through a phase change when the crystal structure breaks down and the metal goes from solid to liquid. When it solidifies it's also a phase change, as the structure re-forms from liquid to solid.

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The structure of metal

April 24, 2003

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Let's start with the obvious: Molten metals have no particular structure. The atoms that make up that metal are just whipping around helter-skelter—at a high rate of speed—with no real orderly, defined pattern.

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It's all about why

February 27, 2003

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Talk about a can of worms ... From crystalline structures to phase diagrams and interstitial solutions, from microstructures to allotropic transformations, it sometimes seems that for every question metallurgy can answer, for every problem it can solve, it creates two more.

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