Acetylene gas is widely for cutting, grazing and welding. Manufacturing industries have to use welding for fabrication of metals. Gas-welding which use acetylene gas along with oxygen is the most widely used for variety of reasons, which are discussed below. In the gas welding, oxygen and acetylene gas is used for combusting to generate heat. Use of oxygen and acetylene for cutting metals and welding is prevalent since first decade of twentieth century. The gas welding has been considered as the safest and the most cost-effective welding process. Now there is a growing belief that propane welding is better than acetylene which is far from being true. We will discuss below how acetylene and propane welding is different and what the advantages of gas-welding are.
Major differences between propane and acetylene welding
Oxygen makes a reducing zone when a metal is burned in oxygen thus cleaning the metal surface. On the other, propane welding does not have reducing making it not so ideal for welding. We see application of welding high strength steel is done with combination of oxygen and nitrogen.
There is a big difference in flame between acetylene and propane. On being burned in oxygen propane is able to generate flame temperature of ~2800 degree Celsius while acetylene generates flame temperature of ~3100 degree Celsius when burned in oxygen. Obviously, high flame temperature makes acetylene a better choice.
Safety is an important factor that should never be ignored. Acetylene used in combination with oxygen has high efficiency in generating high temperature flames. High level of safety standards are used in handling acetylene cylinders. Moreover, acetylene gas with oxygen lasts longer than propane with oxygen.
Oxy-acetylene welding is more cost-effective compared to propane & oxygen welding. Acetylene required less oxygen for combustion than propane. Propane requires oxygen in 4.3 to 1 ratio while acetylene requires 1.2 to 1. Obviously, more oxygen is consumed in propane welding than acetylene welding.
Why acetylene welding is preferred over propane welding?
We have already discussed above differences between acetylene welding and propane welding. It is already discernible that acetylene is a better choice. However, we will further discuss reasons why it is better to use oxy acetylene welding.
Safe to use-
Safety is a high priority in most of the industries engaged in manufacturing processes. Being lighter than air, it is less likely to gather at low levels. It is an important property which makes acetylene ideal for use in anywhere, even underground.
Unmatched welding quality-
Acetylene gas is considered as the best fuel for welding variety of steel materials. As discussed above, it is the hottest fuel when burned in oxygen. It is the right choice for welding high strength steel and its finishing on the surface is clean, which is the reason for its popularity.
Economical with numerous applications
Oxy-acetylene is known for numerous applications in variety of manufacturing processes such as cutting, brazing, heating and welding.
Acetylene gas filling plant can be used for on-site generation and can be filled cylinders of various capacities. Acetylene cylinders are filled with strict safety standards and it is easy to transport.