In welding, bad cut quality can often be attributed to one of two reasons: a poorly manufactured nozzle and/or an inadequately maintained nozzle. So what can users do to ensure their nozzle delivers a good cut quality for the long term?
Three of the most effective and common ways of ensuring longer nozzle life and optimising performance are to handle, store and maintain nozzles properly. This means: wearing gloves when handling a nozzle, which prevents foreign matter from adhering to it and contaminating the weld puddle; storing a nozzle in its original packaging, which prevents scratches and dents that may shorten the life of the nozzle; and periodically inspecting and effectively cleaning the nozzle of spatter build up.
Although looking after a nozzle properly can extend its life, more important is the need to appropriately design and manufacture a nozzle to a high quality. Generally speaking, the better quality the internal surface finish of the nozzle, the better the gas flow, which results a faster and improved cut. This is where precision cold forming has the edge over many other types of nozzle manufacturing technique. Whereas a machined nozzle may have an internal surface finish of 1µm, a precision cold formed nozzle has a surface finish of 0.1µm – resulting in less turbulent gas flow and improved cut quality.