No Turning Back: Pipe Welding System Kicks It Up a Notch
Using the PipeworxTM Welding System from Miller Electric, Shinn Mechanical has increased its pipe fabrication quality and productivity with flatter bead profiles, good sidewall tie-in for 30 percent less grinding, and superior weld puddle control – with no wire rejects in over a year.
Using an advanced pipe welding system, this fabricator has increased their pipe fabrication quality and productivity with flatter bead profiles, good sidewall tie-in for 30 percent less grinding, and superior weld puddle control – with no wire rejects in over a year.
Founded in 1994, Shinn Mechanical, Inc. (Kent, WA) serves the industrial piping, processing, HVAC, refrigeration and plumbing markets, welding everything from ½ in diameter 316L stainless steel to A106 double-containment pipe to 34 in diameter A53 black pipe. They also fabricate complete platforms or skids. Located only minutes from the Seattle Sea-Tac airport, customers include those in the aerospace and military industries, as well as in healthcare construction.
“It’s always better to have the right tools,” smiles Mike Shinn, president of Shinn Mechanical. “My philosophy is that even if you can save two or three percent on every job, and you do that over time, it’s a big percentage at the end of the year.” Considering that the overhead rate for pipefitter/welders in the Pacific Northwest exceeds $1 per minute, those sorts of savings add up pretty quickly.
Among its recent money-saving accomplishments, this fabricator reduced material handling time by at least 10 percent – and increased safety – by building and designing “the ultimate welding boom”. On the welding side of operations, Shinn Mechanical has increased MIG weld quality to the point where operators cannot remember their last rejected weld, reducing grinding time by 30 percent and process changeover time to “two seconds.”
That’s not all. Shop operators here complete joints three to four times faster than shops that rely solely on stick and TIG technology. How? They use a pipe-specific multi-process welding system from Miller Electric Mfg. Co. (Appleton, WI) called PipeWorxä that was recommended by Jim Hedberg, a representative from Pacific Welding Supply (Tacoma, WA).
The PipeWorx system uses Pro-Pulse™ pulsed MIG and RMD™ (regulated metal deposition) processes, as well as stick, TIG and flux cored processes that have been optimized specifically for pipe fabrication. The system also provides traditional MIG processes. Switching between processes requires only the push of one button, with no need to manually switch polarity, cables or hoses, thus increasing productivity and eliminating a potential source of errors.