What Is a Weld Symbol?

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What Is a Weld Symbol?
Welding workers use weld symbols to indicate where welds must be located. (Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images)

In engineering and fabrication drawings, a weld symbol is used to convey information about a construction work from the designer to the workmen. Weld symbols are mainly utilised in engineering drawings, and welders use them to perform welding jobs based on a set of blueprints. These weld symbols are standardised by the American Welding Society (AWS).

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Differentiating Weld Symbol From Welding Symbol

While used in the same industry and application, there is a distinction between a "weld symbol" and a "welding symbol." A weld symbol is a small sign or icon drawn within a welding symbol. And so, a weld symbol is actually a part of a welding symbol. It indicates the type of weld required in the project being made. The welding symbol completes the actual guide a welder needs. Other than the weld symbol, a welding symbol consists of different basic elements that typically include the reference line, arrow, dimensions, finish symbols, tail and other significant welding information.

Types of Welds

A weld symbol provides a small drawing meant for a specific type of weld, which can be a fillet, groove, plug or slot weld. A fillet weld is meant for making lap joints, T joints or corner joints. A groove weld is primarily meant for the production of edge-to-edge joints, but it can also be used in corner joints, T joints and joints placed in between curved and flat pieces. Meanwhile, a plug weld and slot weld are meant for joining overlapping pieces, with one having holes that are either round for plug welds or elongated for slot welds.

Using Basic Weld Symbols

There are a number of basic weld symbols used in welding works. General weld symbols indicate the welding processes to be used in joining various materials. Arc and gas weld symbols are typically used for cross-sectional representations of either a joint design or a completed weld. Resistance weld symbols are used in a resistance welding process where the fusion of pieces is made by obtaining heat from a circuit's resistance to the flow of electric current. There are also other basic weld symbols used in brazing, forge, thermit, induction and flow welding projects.

Weld Symbol Placement

Each type of weld features a unique symbol that is usually placed near the centre of a reference line in a welding symbol. It is always positioned within the reference line. If both sides of the reference line have weld symbols, this means that the welds will be applied on both sides of the joint. According to the Integrated Publishing website, a weld symbol's vertical leg is always drawn to the left regardless of the type of weld being used.

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