Welder Deposition Rate

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Data Points

  • 450A MIG with 1/16" wire gets 17 lb/hr. [1]
  • Submerged arc welding is limited to flat horiz surfaces due to need to cover with flux, but gets 40 PPH rate (Pounds Per Hour) [2]
  • This gets us to make about 1-2 heavy duty sprockets for tractor drive
  • This gets us know into fesibility of MIG Casting engine blocks.
  • This is a low skill process, allowing further opportunity in Extreme Manufacturing starting with scrap steel. This upgrades the need for wire drawing to produce welding wire.
  • Disadvantage: this requires 2x the energy over casting or hot rolling - because an extra step is needed to melt the feedstock fully. Quenching in water can possibly reclaim energy of water for space heating.
  • Using multiple welders at the same time in the Extreme Manufacturing scenario allows for the quickest way to cast complexity - 5 minutes per 1 lb part such as a small coupler. This is the amount of time to just turn on an induction furnace for regular casting.
  • With 5 welders and 50kW - we have 80 lb/hour deposition rate of finished parts.
  • This lends itself to robot arm automation in due time.


  • The above indicates 6 cents/lb metal energy cost for deposition with a 450A welder.