What is oxy welding and cutting?

Oxy welding and oxy cutting refer to the same thing: the process of using fuel gases and oxygen to cut or weld metals. It’s one of the oldest welding processes in the world.

Oxy – as in oxygen

Oxy welding and cutting employs the use of pure oxygen, as opposed to air, to increase the flame temperature. There are several methods of oxy welding and cutting and they burn at between 1,980°C to 3,500°C.

In oxy cutting, two pieces of metal are melted until there is a shared pool of molten metal; a filler is then used to combine the metal pieces. The type of filler used depends on the material being welded: acetylene is the most commonly used fuel for oxy cutting and it burns at between 3,200°C to 3,500°C.

Gasoline fuel is another method used when no other fuel is available or safe on a work-site. On materials up to 0.5 inches it is shown to cut at the same rate as acetylene.

Hydrogen fuel produces a clean flame, and is best used when it comes to working with aluminium. It operates at higher pressure and therefore can be used to cut and weld under water.

In oxy cutting, a torch is used to get the metal to its kindling temperature, before a stream of oxygen is focused on the metal. It is burnt into a metal oxide, until the kerf extrudes what is known as slag.

Who uses oxy welding and cutting?

These methods are used in:

  • Stone working
  • Steel fabrication and processing
  • The glass industry
  • The jewellery industry
  • Automotive repair, among others

When doing any form of oxy cutting, proper safety precautions should be taken, such as eye protection, guarding against fuel leakage and being prepared for possible impacts of gas exposure.

At ShapeCUT, our experts can provide same day service for oxy cutting as well as high definition plasma cutting. For the best profile cutting in the business, get it touch to discuss your needs. Call 1800 742 732.