Are Robots Going To Take Over The Welding Industry?
One comment we hear repeatedly is that our welding systems are taking jobs from people. Having an inside perspective on the matter made this question sound a little crazy, but I understand where people are coming from by asking. While I don’t think automated welding will ever completely replace manual welding, I think there are big benefits for companies to integrate automated welding into their normal operations to help with productivity.
Fast and Consistent
By using automated welding you are going to get more consistent welds- not to say that manual welding can’t have consistent outcomes, but this will eliminate a lot of factors that could be problematic to production. A big factor is welding speed, with manual welding there tends to be a lot of starting and stopping or slowing down to focus. With automated welding the machine will keep the same speed for every piece, ultimately allowing a company to get more pieces done in a day. Another factor is fatigue, with a robot you don’t have to worry about needing to take a break.
Reduced Labor Cost
While the system doesn’t replace workers, it allows companies to be a little more flexible with who they hire. Instead of needing to hire a very experienced welder who may need a higher pay, companies could make decisions to hire people right out of school or welders with less experience who know the basics but can be there to step in and fix the program and move pieces as needed. This also greatly lowers factors like workplace injuries, sick leave, and staff turnover.
With robots producing products with a lot less errors, there is less wasted materials involved. This would allow companies to make a larger profit by ultimately having more product in the end to be able to sell. The machine’s superior performance accuracy is what I would say really sets automated welding apart from manual welding.
It Can’t All Be Perks, Right?
Of course there is an elephant in the room- automated welding systems are costly. However, for larger operations the machine will essentially pay for itself. When you account for the making up of lost costs as well as the potential of lower labor costs, over time production will outweigh the initial cost of the system.
Automated Welding Is Here To Stay
Here at THG Automation, we understand that everyone has their own opinions when it comes to automated welding. And what it really comes down to is that it is very new and different than a lot of people are used to. We don’t feel that it will completely change the welding process, but we do feel like it is here to stay and you will start to see more systems being integrated into companies. Want to read more about the future of welding automation? Check out this article from weldingheadquarters.com.
Have any questions that we didn’t cover? Interested in getting a system for yourself? Feel free to send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out a contact form on our website. We would love to hear from you and hear some of your thoughts on the topic.