Archive for August, 2010

Interestingly enough, I have not noticed requirements of regulations in customer specifications regarding the concept of welder continuity. Welder continuity is the idea that a welder must continue to weld using a given process within a six month period to remain a “qualified welder” (See ASME Sec. IX, QW-322). ASME Section IX states that if a welder “has not welded with a process during a period of six months or more” he must be re-qualified. So just because a welder has passed a GMAW weld procedure qualification in the past does not mean he is qualified for the rest of his life. For example, if a shop makes a welder pass welding tests for GMAW and GTAW in order to be hired but then only uses the welder for GMAW for the next eight months the welder’s GTAW qualification has expired and he must be re-qualified. You’re probably thinking, “what a pain” and you could be right! If you do not have a continuity log for your welders showing the welding processes they have used within a six month period since they qualified it could get very difficult to remember who is still qualified for what! Continuity Log. This is a simple spread sheet that records the date and procedure a welder passed the qualification test and then maintains a running log recording that a welder has used the welding process every six months. I underline process because if you have multiple welding procedures for the same process (GMAW for carbon steel and stainless steel, etc.) then the welder remains qualified for every weld procedure he has successfully tested for within the same PROCESS by welding any of the weld procedures within that process. Every six months you simply review the log and record a date and a reference number (to either a job, a part, a test) that the welder was working on for a given process. If the welder has not used a process in the six month period you simply grab a couple of pieces of scrap material and have him weld it for you. Then record the job number and move to the next welder. It seems very simple and it is. Even if you use rig welders or a mobile welding service you can call and have them stop in for an hour to make a weld or two then record it on the log. The nice thing about the log is you always have a reference to review for which welders are qualified for your welding procedures if you keep it up to date. The bad thing is it only comes around every six months which makes it really easy to put on the back burner and forget about. When it comes time for a quality audit and someone asks to see it or asks how you keep track of your welder qualifications it can become a simple check mark or a sticking point. Feel free to stop by Precision Pipe & Vessel and ask to see our welder continuity log. We like check marks!


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Information.  It’s better to have too much than too little.  This should be obvious, and yet there are still people out there that do not want to give out enough information.  In the fabrication industry, this is not good.  Sure, there is a certain freedom in having fabricators do what they want and what they consider the best practices or the way they feel it should be done.  Unfortunately, this lacks structure and thus makes it difficult to plan the job and give an accurate account of when the job will be completed.  This also makes fabricating the project difficult as there are details missing and the customer saying “just put it anywhere”  doesn’t help matters at all.  The difficulties may “end” at the fabrication process, but having a lack of information also disrupts the “start” of the project during the quoting process.  Giving a general idea of what needs to be done to a company will result in a “general” quote.  Again, this may work initially, but once details start coming in and changes are introduced to the project, both sides start getting rubbed raw as the customer wants to know why the changes result in him spending more money for change orders and the fabricating company wants to quit using man-hours working on the changed designs and putting change orders together.  If you are a company looking to get a job done, remember to give as much information as you can or your job may take longer than you think.

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